The Ladies of Horror
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In The End
by Kendra Hale
The silence is probably the worst part of this half-life afterlife. I wish I referred to the afterlife that is waiting for one after death and passing. The one promised where things like shame, fear, and regret dissipate. Like the sheer fact of feeling them for our brief existence became a joke. Warmth and happiness, worries cast aside as one is enfolded by the Gods and Goddesses to which they prayed and devoted themselves to.
No, in this fallout, this afterlife, those negative feelings are all I am left with. A vast, expansive void of silence filled only by my sounds and my thoughts. At times I wondered at the passing belief that this was Hell or a Purgatory. But if this were Hell, it was one made fully of man’s creation, not of a higher being.
For decades it was debated on when and what would cause the Doomsday Clock to reach zero. From my limited knowledge, I’m quite sure eyes were watching all the more closely after the 1986 Chernobyl incident and then again after the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi incident in 2011. The world watched but pride cometh before the fall and man messed with sciences it still did not fully have control over. And isn’t that what we all crave above all? Control.
It was just a matter of time before an emotional being made the final emotional outburst. The decision that changed the face of humanity forever.
I have long wondered why I am still here, and what it was that kept me living. I watched as friends and family, acquaintances and pets were wiped from this world. Some taken quickly and hopefully only feeling but a moment of pain. While others suffered in their last weeks, their lungs drowned them as their flesh deteriorated, burning as it sloughed off their muscle and bone. Their drowned gasps haunt me in brief moments of sleep. Their skeletal faces with sunken cheeks and matching eyes follow me as I walk the ruins of this Earth.
Shadows and echoes surround me. Ripples in time as I can place familiar places but there are no faces to be found. Only death masks. Meat.
That silence. The absence of it all. No birds chirping, no music, no insects, no idle chatter, no laughter, or even anger. Just silence. My ears have gotten to the point they cannot even tolerate my own voice without bleeding so I have gone mute. My skin has grown taut and grayish yellow in pallor. Maybe that means I will die soon, I pray for that. For the end to this visage, of being the final witness to the downfall of a foolish species.
An end to this numbness. This silence.
I settle in, night is falling. My meal is ready now. He had looked young, good muscle tone at least. I thank him for the meal in my head, praying he had no radiation in him, but this ache in my stomach doesn’t have the ability to feel any apprehension.
I settle into the silence. The unending silence.
Fiction © Copyright Kendra Hale
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
More from author Kendra Hale:
A Gothic Bite Magazine Anthology
A collection of poetry.
‘Just Emotions‘ is exactly as it states, a group of writers who had feelings they wanted to express in poem form. Inside, there are a range of emotions to explore. Each writer has given a bit of themselves to you, each in their own way.
We hope that you enjoy these writings and that among the poems you may find some thing you can identify with or relate to. Thank you for giving us this chance to open the catacombs and share with you.