The Dead Tell Tales
Posted on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 @ 4:39pm by Civilian John Doe
Edited on on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 @ 4:46pm
Location: Ruins - Planetside
Timeline: During/After Graveyard Discovery
A woman who was rather close to studying the structures around the ruins tossed John a camera. He fumbled a bit as he caught it, looking at it a bit before looking back at the woman. She smiled at him. “Here, I’m sure someone will want a video recording of what we’re finding," she said finalizing before returning back to her work, eyeing the fading lines that looked to be writings. “Make sure to get details," she passingly played heading off to another interesting point.
John held the camcorder, looking at it as if it were a rubix cube needed to be solved, but as with anything that suddenly came upon him that he didn't know he knew, his passive memory kicked in. He opened the device, pushed the finder closer to him and pointed the lens towards the structure finding and hitting record. All of this happened in a manner of seconds as he followed the Corporal and he slight gasped in surprise. This had happened to him before, when discussing the appropriateness of having him on this mission. A supply of reflex action that was nearly like someone else taking the wheel. When he noticed the Corporal's eyes on him again, John smiled. "I just noticed the date on this thing," he said pointing at the finder, "didn't know what the date was. Also wasn't too sure if I knew anything about this device." He panned the camera around, "turns out I do."
He followed the Corporal for a time, recording and trying best to get the, "details." Hard thing to do when you don't know what counts as details. It was shoddy work at best, more inline with busy work than actual contribution, but John was happy for it's meager offerings. At least it gave him a chance to compartmentalize his senses to try and experience and look at everything; checking off things that did or didn't jog something in memory as he followed the Corporal more and more away from the ruins' proper.
Overgrowth was the term used frequently, but often John thought of neglect was more inline with this place. It was left abandoned. John didn't feel like it was in a hurry as there wasn't anything as far as remains or evidence of a battle. Just a ruin left for nature to swallow up, as if it had always belonged there.
As far as remembering anything, John had nearly given up, they were nearly five hundred yards away in the dense forest that John nearly slapped the camera shut. However, as they got to the lining grid of delabadated stone markers, John froze, his mind elsewhere.
In a brief instant, much less a second than it actually felt, John was somewhere else. Gone was the tree canopy but rather open sky that bled in fire and death. Above, looming to blot out the sky was a ship, strange and black, sending beams of light and heat down to the ground that teamed with fleeing people and leveled villages. He stood among a battle, the scars ladened in the air singed with flame and the dead littered the ground openly amid the carnage. Men, women, children, all looked blankly at the sky as the ship continued to deliver death. John kept his cool, knew what he was witnessing was a memory, knew better than to freak out but take in the details, jot them down in his mind and then invest time into them later. But it was just so hard not to lose himself in sorrow seeing all the eyes that, somehow, were looking at him. He felt responsible, like their eyes were not just looking at him but accusing him whispering that it was his fault that they were dead. He was suppose to protect them, to love them, like a parent to a child, but now they were dead, now there was nothing.
Another explosion, this time peppered in illumination, like energy weapons igniting against one another. He heard the clash of metal striking another, heard the crunch of bone and the rip of snew. John tried to focus on the sound, pinpoint where it was coming from, look in its direction. The shapes were blurry, the lines hazed by the distances and the heat coming off the ground. He could make out tall bi-pedal monsters, machines maybe, but moving and acting like they were alive as they attacked a few individuals that were holding their ground. There was a flicker of movement from one of these, what John thought may have been one of the villagers, but the figure was moving far to fast to be human. The figure would move and one of the large monsters would fall. It moved again, and another would fall.
Timidly John foot fell forward. He knew not to walk during these episodes, but he needed to see more. "Just a bit forward," he thought just when he heard and felt the ground shake behind him. He tumbled forward and nearly fell when something grabbed him on his right shoulder, spinning him around.
And then he was back. The tree canopy, the ruined graveyard, John stood where he had been before the episode. He didn't think he had moved, but maybe he did. It was hard to determine his placement from before the episode and then after.
He tried to get his bearings, noting that he was still holding the camera at his side. Corporal MacKenna and Colonel Mason were laughing at something said to one another, so he hadn't seperated too far away.
"You ok," came a voice from behind him? Dragon 5, John's shadow had noticed his misstep and confusion. The marine's note of concern came loud enough that the Colonel and Corporal MacKenna could hear.
John felt fine physically, but he didn't answer the man's question, merely stayed stationary for a time, eyes staring at nothing. He couldn't shake the feeling, never mind the horror his mind's eye showcased in the memory, it was that accusation. It was his fault that they were all dead. "It's my fault," John finally breathed aloud, though he couldn't comprehend the context of such a statement. He blinked, looked up at the two officers and slapped the finder closed on the camera. "I don't want to be here anymore," he muttered handing the camera back to MacKenna. "This place is dead. There isn't anyone here." He brushed off concern, shaking his head. "Hellfire," he muttered, "this is a waste of time."