A Disaster In The Darkness

January 14, 2018
By , Franklin Lakes, NJ

Saturday, April 3, 5:37 a.m. A fierce boom erupted through the air. Particles of dust and debris fly through the air. Some as small as an ant and others as big as a car. The lights flickered and then finally gave out. The house shook and the sun was completely engulfed by a thick blanket of darkness. I felt as if I was glued down to my bed, body in a coma. My brain spinning at 100 miles per hour and my body remaining non-responsive and lifeless. My throat croaked and the hairs upon my skin stood up. Sweat trickled down my forehead and I finally found the power to escape my bed. I ran to the window and saw our large town swallowed up in dust. Although it was dark, I could make out the people that were scattered along the sidewalks, trying to run to shelter to escape the toxic fumes that slowly filled their lungs. I could see through the glass vividly despite the thick dust, a little girl, she must have been two or three, without a parent to accompany her. She clenched her chest and after about two minutes of watching her attempt to run she fell to ground and laid there motionless.
This was the beginning of the end. No power, no light, no food, no fresh air, no running water...no hope. I lived alone in my one story house. My house was sturdy and could shield me from the dangers outside, however I don’t know how long the supplies I have will last before running low. I hobbled over to my kitchen, opened a drawer and scrambled to find my flashlight… “got it.” I went into my pantry and sorted through my food. Luckily but unluckily, with the darkness came the extreme cold. The food that could no longer be refrigerated by the lack of power, could be kept fresh for at least a few more days. I counted my belongings and I had enough food to last me at least a month as long as I was smart about what I ate. I allowed myself two small portions a day and some left over iced tea, as I was conserving my water bottles for even more desperate times. I was lonely and hopeless and I wished I could go live with a neighbor to be in the presence of others.
The once large, crowded, and noisy town was now silent and chilling. Each day I knit and slept to pass the time. My body growing more and more frail and my mind more pessimistic. I felt like I was a lucky one, considering that I still had food. There was no way of knowing what was happening to the people next door or anywhere though. That night, the wind howled louder then I even knew was possible. There was a knock hard against my window. Thinking it was a person, I jumped up to help, only to see that it was a large branch.
My mind eventually over time began to crumble and my body grew weaker and weaker as the days progressed. Now, I was beginning to run low on food. I had no energy or desire to be optimistic or attempt to figure out what would happen next. I layed in bed, knitted, ate a little, slept, and repeated the boring cycle. In order to remain sane, I decided to write. Each night, I wrote one diary entry. I titled it, gave it a time and date and signed my name. I explained what had happened to the crippling world. I explained what little food I ate, that lacked nutrition. Also, I described how poor my body felt that day. I addressed my emotions and any new feelings I had. Often it was always either hopelessness, tiredness, loneliness, or despair.

The following days were beginning to look even darker. I could not lift my head off my pillow, as my head felt like a fifteen pound weight. When I did gain strength to leave bed I dropped everything I touched. I lost feeling in my limbs and I noticed just how skinny my body had become. My fingers shook and I smelt of such a terrible odor. How I longed for hot water to bathe in. A question dawned on me...  Was I the only person left alive? There was no way of knowing. I wish I could open my eyes and pretend like this was all just one horrific dream, however I knew better not to shed light on this fantasy. There was no way of telling time but the day was going by extra slowly and painfully. So, I decided to do what I knew best, sleep.

Monday, May 9th… The wind howled as it always did and the branches violently hit against the window. The once occupied home was no longer. The house, now 12 degrees and below freezing. Countless diary entries scattered among the floor. The pantry shelves held nothing but cobwebs and empty cans. Toxic fumes were collecting and dust covering the once glistening hardwood floors. The once booming town now lifeless. Homes left in pieces; the wood planks rotting. Not one voice or breath from a single living thing. Now silent and empty. Darkness had taken over.

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