All Beckett could hear going through Dahlonega, Georgia were vile screams filling the air. Beckett ran to find this underground bunker. America had just stated that a new Pandemic had been released killing millions of people. Beckett didn’t know what to do because he has never been in this kind of situation. Everyone around him coughing up blood and having little to no energy to try to find somewhere safe. “Where in the hell is this bunker?” Beckett said frazzled. He kept running and running as fast as his legs would take him. Suddenly he tripped and fell over a metal handle in the ground. He couldn’t see it because it had leaves covering it like someone had been trying to hide it. He quickly uncovered it and went down there seeing that there was food and water like someone was expecting him here; he didn’t realize how long he would be down there.
Unkempt Beckett Cain came out of the underground bunker onto the dry desert ground in the middle of Dahlonega, Georgia; he covered his eyes--after being in there for more than a couple of months--to stray away from the darkness of the place he found safe. Beckett was uncertain of what happened to all of the life for he was the only one there. The dusty parched air hit his face and he soon realized what had happened--the whole world had turned for Beckett Cain.
Beckett was dumbfounded at what he was seeing, all of the beautiful dark basil colored trees and the soft grass that he was used to playing in when he was younger. All he could see now was scorched beige sand and harsh wind blowing in his face. All of the houses were gone, and so were all of the people too. He began to see some black smoke appear out of the ground below him. Holding the scythe in his hand he began to set off and try to find out what happened. Looking down at his rough, calloused hands trying to figure out what to do next.
Beckett began walking and walking for what seemed like forever was only the shortest part of the journey. The constant questions running through his head like ‘when will there be a water source?’ ‘when will I find another person?’ Looking far off into the distant he saw an upside down boat sitting in the middle of nowhere. As curious as he was he had to go see what it was for himself. Getting closer and closer to this mysterious boat he noticed that it began to move. He walked up to it and slowly lifted it up to reveal a lady about mid 50’s with hair as white as snow. Though she was much shorter than Beckett. She churlishly asked, “What do you want? I’m trying to take my afternoon nap.”
“Ma’am I was only wanting to see why this boat was just randomly moving,” sighed Beckett. All she did was turned and looked at him like she didn’t know what was going on. He just quietly sat down to keep her some company even if she wasn’t interested. He was still trying to figure out why and where she had come from. About an hour or so passed by; Beckett was still sitting with the old lady. She had a constant sparkle in her eyes looking like she was up to mischief.
The old lady looked at him like she had never seen another person and asked, “Since you don’t want to talk I guess I’ll start the conversation. So what is your name and how did you get here? My name is Ansley Parsons.”
Beckett stared at her and was astonished that she was actually talking to him. “Well Miss Ansley my name is Beckett Cain and I come from here Dahlonega, Georgia. Do you have any idea why everything is now all dried up and everyone is gone?” She didn't even blink because what she was about to tell him would be devastating. She looked at him sternly.
“Well you remember the pandemic that broke all through the country? Well apparently the government had been trying to get rid of it but they came to the conclusion that it was incurable. So they had an idea and my husband told me to take shelter because he knew what was going to happen. So I began to make my way to go and find an underground bunker. Eventually I had found one and hid in it and all I remember next was waking up and not being able to find anyone here.” Beckett continued to listen to this lady’s story as she was trying to say that they tried to wipe out the entire city but Beckett didn’t believe it.
“So that's why we’re here? Is because the government can't control a disease?” He became enraged. There had been conspiracy theories that very time there was a pandemic outbreak it was just another way for the government to cover up something that they didn’t want the public to know. So was this just a cover up or something more? After what had seemed like forever he got up and started walking. Beckett wanted answers and that's what he was going to get, But not the kind of answers he wanted to hear.
Ansley looked at him with a puzzled look and asked him, “Where do you think you're going? Why do you want answers from something that you have no control over someone of a higher power than you.” She was bewildered at what she was seeing though she was hungry and needed something to drink. She began to think that maybe going on a journey wouldn't be so bad. She tried to get up but wails cause her bones are frail and weak. She had Beckett help her get up and they began to set out on their journey. As they began walking they saw something off into the distance--an oasis maybe? Beckett began running to it but soon came to realize that it was only a figment of his imagination. He felt like he was going to go crazy if he didn’t find some source of food and water. He began to have demented thoughts like, ‘What if the old lady dies?’ ‘Could she be used for food?’ All of these awful thoughts began flooding his head. Beckett realized what he needed to do to stay alive. So he waited till it was nighttime and they began to set up for the night. Beckett had waited for Ansley to go to sleep. This was the most sickening thing he had ever done in his life. He was going to kill this old woman for food. As crazy as it sounds Beckett found it rational in his own twisted mind. It was about midnight and Ansley was fast asleep. Beckett listened to her lightly snore. His adrenaline began to rise and he became anxious as the time came near. Beckett grabbed his scythe and stood over Ansley but before anything could happen she woke up. Ansley frantically shrieked in terror. She tried very hard to get away from Beckett but her bones were too frail. As He went to strike her with the scythe she rose her arms up and said “I’ll give you the answers you want!” Beckett was intrigued and began to put his scythe down. She looked up at him and said “My husband was apart of the U.S special forces he got put on a special mission to try to get rid of the pandemic and he had told me what was going to happen but sadly he couldn't come with me cause they wanted to wipe the whole nation and not let any of the survivors know what happened.” Beckett smiled and was astonished because he knew he was right. But something clicked inside of his head. ‘I still need to eat.’ As bad as he needed answers he need food more. He proceeded to lift up the scythe and struck Ansley with it but as soon as he did it went right through her. Ansley chuckled hysterically and looked at him.
“I’m afraid to tell you my dear but I am only a figment of your imagination.” Beckett became enraged and tried to hit her again but the same thing happened. He began to wonder ‘Am I going crazy? Is this all in my head?’ Ansley out of nowhere just disappeared.
“Back to square one I guess.” he sighed and began walking again trying to figure out what to next. Looking down at the scythe he began to question if it was really worth struggling just to get answers of something he’s not sure of. After walking for what seemed like forever he decided to lay down for a little bit and get some rest. Beckett woke up startled due to the loud boom he just heard. He groggily walked over to the noise. Looking over the hill he was looking at this smoke coming out of the ground. Due to the small knowledge that he has of this ‘new world’ Beckett was frightened because he had no clue of what was going on, and where he was going to next. He began to wonder where this smoke was coming from. Beckett began to walk closer to the mysterious smoke, and as he got closer and closer he really began to question why the government let him survive. As Beckett came right up to the smoke he looked down and everything went black.
“Mr. Cain are you awake?” a tall lady figure stood over Beckett. He began to slowly open his eyes and began to notice where he was at. Staring at the all white walls lying in a hospital bed connected to a bunch of cords. He bolted up frantically and began to question where he was at.
“Where am I?” he reached to unplug the cords but his hands were tied to the bed. He began to get furious “Why are these damn cords attached to me! and why are my hands tied?” The nurse walked out of the room for about 10 minutes the door suddenly opened and the doctor came in.
“Mr. Cain I’m Dr. Schimmel how have you been. Well you are in a mental institution for a few reasons. Do you remember those psychological tests we took last year? Well you had been diagnosed with schizophrenia and you asked me to monitor your behavior. At first we didn’t notice anything changing so I thought that you would be fine. Well last week I had gotten a call from your mom she had been telling me that you were staying in your room calling it a bunker and began wandering around talking to someone named Ansley, and no one was there, and also how there was some pandemic and it was all the governments fault. That’s when I began to worry.” he sighed looking at him sympathetically.
Beckett looked at him angrily and said “Well then why do you got my hands tied up? Everyone talks to themselves sometimes. So why am I here?”
“Well last night you almost stabbed your mother claiming that she was food. So she called us to come and get you and let you stay here until you are better. We can put you on a medicine to see if it works and helps you.” the doctor had no clue of what to do with Beckett. Cause he clearly had no recollection on what had happened, and he probably never will.
Up In Smoke