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Fiction Sad

This story contains sensitive content

Content warning: there is some mild gore, cannibalism and self-cannibalism, nothing too graphic though.

5 days. That’s how long I’ve been stuck in this desert. No water, no food. I don’t know how I have survived this long, but I have. My throat is parched. My stomach hurts from hunger. I weakly move across the coarse sand, bent over clutching my stomach. Stumbling over my legs, my other hand on the ground, trying to maintain some sort of balance. My legs shake, my arms shake, I my legs and arms buckle, I fall over, curled up in a ball. I barely feel the pain of the sand blowing in my face, all I can think of is my hunger and thirst.

An oasis, I must find it. It’s my only chance. I close my eyes, and let myself go to sleep. I should keep moving, but I’m too tired. I start dreaming. I’m in a plane. Everything is going fine. A man across the aisle gets up, and starts heading to the cockpit. I have to stop him. I try to get up, but I can’t, no matter how hard I try. I can only watch him.

He enters the cockpit, then shuts the door behind him. I hear a stifled scream. The plane starts rocking, then my stomach lurches as it starts going down. Everyone is scream, chaos. Everyone is running about, trying to do something. Everyone except me. Once again, I can’t do anything but watch.

We crash in the middle of the desert, the plane is wrecked. Everyone is dead, except for me and some man. We manage to last a few days with the food available on the plane. But then it’s gone. I didn’t trust him, I stole some of the food, and hid it for myself, for later. He resorts to cannibalism, I refuse to participate. I live of my secret stash. But then, there is no more. We start to go hungry. As time passes, he starts going crazy. Then he looks at me with a crazy look in his eyes that I will never forget. He wants to eat me.

He doesn’t act immediately, but I can tell he is thinking about it. Then he finally comes at me. Thrusting a knife at me in the most clumsy way. Stumbling to me. Stumbling over to me, he swings the knife. I easily avoid it, turn around and start running. After a lot of running, I stop and look back. He is no longer following me.

Then, I wake up, it’s dark out, the middle of the night. My stomach is, of course, still hurting. I need something anything. I need a miracle. I struggle to get up. Water, I need water. Forget food, I want water. An oasis. There is nothing for as far as I can see. Time to walk. Each footstep is a pain, I don’t know how I’m going to make it. I manage to climb to the top of a sand dune.

Then I look out for the first time. It’s beautiful, the way the light of the moon reflects on the sand. The way the wind blows the sand around, creating beautiful patterns of moving sand. The way temperature is just right, not too hot but not too cool. The sand is glowing, glowing a slight blue color. My pain feels lessened.

In this incredible moment, shocked, in awe I begin to walk, mindlessly, forgetting my problems. All I am focused on is how truly beautiful the desert is. So pure, and untouched by humanity. So caught up in this, I don’t notice how far I have traveled. Before I know it, there it is, an oasis right in front of me!

A forest of some sort. A big pool of water right in front of it. How perfect, it must have been obscured by the dune earlier. I’m so lucky to have found it. Tired, I collapse, and feel myself start to lose consciousness. I manage to crawl over, and dip my head in the cool water, and take a sip. At that moment, I start to lose consciousness, and what little life I have left leave.

*************

“Ma’am.”

“Yes,” responds the investigator in charge of the search.

“The plane’s over here.”

“Let’s take a look.” She walks over to the plane, and looks around. Out of instinct she goes to the cockpit to get an idea of what transpired. There, she finds blood scattered around, and bones. Nearby is the captains suit.

“This hasn’t been here long enough for bodies to decompose, has it?”

“No ma’am, it has not.”

“Someone must have eaten them.” She turns around to head out, when she hears a scream. One of the other members of the search team runs around to her, he looks pale, and disgusted, “Ma’am,” he stammers, “you will probably want to see this.”

She follows him to the back of the plane, and there is the only body that is not decomposed. In his hand is a bloody knife. There is red, bloody flesh hanging out of his mouth. His skin has parts carved out of it. Self cannibalism.

She turns around, feeling like she’s going to be sick.

“Someone get the medical team, have them prepared the body. If they can.” Disgusted she moves on through the bones, and there, she sees faded footprints.

“Everyone, it looks like there could be some footprints over here. Two of you come with me.” They start heading off, following the footprints. Eventually they fade, but they keep going a little ways, until the lead investigator says, “that’s enough, let’s head back.”

“Wait a second ma’am.”

“Yes, what is it?

“Our maps seem to show some sort of oasis up ahead.”

“Really?”

“Yes, it’s highly irregular, especially for this area of the desert, but it is definitely there.”

“Which direction?”

“Same direction the footprints were headed.”

“That is one lucky survivor. How far off is it?”

“Not too far off, only a mile or so.”

“Could you lead us back to the plane, or would we just get more lost?”

“I can get us back there.”

“Wonderful, let’s go then.” After a mile of walking, in the distance they see an oasis. And there, lying at the pool, is a figure, looking oddly at peace.

August 21, 2022 20:00

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