The Wind

May 21, 2011
By Unwright BRONZE, McMinnville, Oregon
Unwright BRONZE, McMinnville, Oregon
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

I walk to the middle of the open. For miles around, there is nothing. I carry with me a blackened hunk of unidentifiable matter. It will serve as a proxy for my life. I bend low to the ground, and note the lack of smell. I take the small lump of char and rub it on the ground. It leaves a thick, dark trail. I begin to write in ancient script, long since forgotten by eternity,

"The following is meant for anyone who ever stumbles upon this forsaken rock and can read this language. I don't know if this message in the dirt will ever be seen, but my mind is tired. It is my first and last message. I have no other living memoir of my existence.

I have always had a fascination with the wind. All throughout my life, it has remained the only constant. I can't even count on the tide, or the rise and fall of the sun anymore. The wind has always persisted-- it would seem to appear from nothing, and then would fade away just as quickly. I had a name, once. It's been… so long since I've heard it out loud. I don't remember what it is. If anyone sees this, keep me in mind as Nu.

I'm an anomaly. Through some coincidence, perhaps by genetic luck or magic, I am immortal. I do not sleep. I never have. Every single night I spent in the light of torches, candles, or just… blackness. Never a second of sleep. I cannot die by any means, so far as I can tell. Time has no judgment on me. Wounds heal almost as fast as they are inflicted. Crushing, drowning, rending, beating, nothing. I am immune. I've heard for millennia of all the people who would give anything to have what I have. They'd sacrifice their children, their lovers, their wealth, their soul, just to live as I do. They know nothing. I have been by the side of every friend I've ever had, watching helplessly as they fade away. Immortality is not all that it's cracked up to be. I've seen this world a thousand times over. Millennia seem as minutes. I've seen utopia, and I've seen dystopia. I had dreamed of traveling to another world-- seeking companionship, but this world's resources have long since been exhausted. I lack the technical ability to find more.

I miss food. I haven't had anything to eat in … I don't know how long. I've forgotten individual tastes. I just miss the feeling of being full. I'm constantly hungry, always dehydrated. Every last bit of water vanished when the atmosphere burnt away, and with its disappearance, there's no longer any food. So far as I can tell, I'm the only life left here. It's an odd thought, being all that remains of humanity. For many years, I was thought to be the holy grail of humanity's continuation. I was experimented on for ages upon ages. Probed and poked at, chemical baths, genetic splicing, endurance tests, everything. I don't blame anyone for their work. It was so long ago, I don't even remember it.

I tend to lose track of time when I have no basis for comparison. I used to own a timepiece. It was a beautiful little doodad, silver bezel, etched with the Roman Numerals, filled with a tiny intricate meshing of different size gears and springs. Whenever I was bored, I'd pry open the back, take it apart, and with practice, eventually put it back together. But, just like every thing else, eventually it faded away.

It's amazing, the amount of knowledge that one can absorb without time as a constraint. Though, I don't know everything. Far from it. I learned only what interested me, or what I might be able to get some use out of. I suppose that's why I can build a hut from scratch using only rocks, but can't name all the cities that once existed inside of Germany. Oh, well. I spend my days walking the earth, trying to find some hope that I mightn't be alone, but I've never found anything. I've scaled the highest mountains, and transcended the seemingly bottomless trenches of the former seas. This dead little rock is my home, and my only friend. I know that eventually I'll be subject to an endless night, and might exist solely in frozen nothingness, but that wouldn't be so bad. It's always burning hot. I wouldn't mind endless ice.

I hold dominion over this place. There's only one thing to do here. Art. I've been left with nothing but charred rocks and dust, so I just pick up small rocks, turn over large rocks, and rub the flaking, black dust on the empty brown canvas. My creations litter the surface. I've always loved to draw. Everything from the cave paintings that people always would make such a fuss about to illustrations that nobody will ever see, but me. It keeps me busy.

Maybe it was my fate to see the rise and fall of ages. Maybe it's all happenstance. I have learned something from my impossible time here though, and that is that there is a God of some description, but he's forgotten about this part of space. I don't like coincidence. It makes me feel like life is cheating. No, I think something decided to create life, sustain it, and eventually wipe the earth clean with purging fire when humanity had overstayed its welcome. It was beautiful. Everything that man had worked for, gone in only a year. Every building collapsing under the weight of the inferno. Every tree, a match in the incinerating wind. Bones would turn to dust in minutes. All of the plastics and metals superheated and eventually sublimed into the atmosphere. Then, the atmosphere itself burned away, and with the solar wind, what remained was swept into space.

I managed to stay. I found a cave and braved the firestorm. My skin would bubble and pop, each wound healing as fast as it would form. It hurt, but the pain was fleeting. Finally, everything cooled. All that was left was barren rock. Thus, I began to explore.

But I was lonely. There was only ever one person to love me. Someone I still miss. Her name was … Ira. She lived for a mere nanosecond in the scheme of my life, but all the time I spent with her seemed as an eternity. She loved me unquestioningly, faithfully, and limitlessly, and I felt exactly the same towards her. We'd adventure away the days, musing at the fleetingness of existence. If only she'd known. She passed away one day, taken from me by serene grace. She faded in her sleep, comfortable in my grasp. I mourned her for ages. There was never another.

That's my life. There is nothing more I can say or do. I suppose I'll lay down, and idle away infinity."

I am overtaken by exhaustion. I collapse near the last period of my final manuscript, and close my eyes. I feel a new sensation. My conscious life begins to fade. A perpetuity of experience moves before me as I lose control of my sentience. I slowly transition into what I can only pray is sleep. I make note of one last thing.

The wind is blowing.

The author's comments:
I just love the concept of immortality, and wrote it from another seldom-touched aspect. Immortality is often painted as this glorious exploration of existence and you can see everything and know everyone, but while your time is infinite, everyone else is living on borrowed time.

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.


MacMillan Books

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!