The fog lifted to reveal a field of broken stones. Only they weren’t ordinary stones—they were the decrepit remnants of a long forgotten cemetery. The moss-covered letters carved into the stones were of an unknown language. An otherworldly quiet echoed the voiceless spirits of a race eons removed from this realm. This was not a place for mortal eyes.
Every step deeper into the cemetery was more and more labored. Each footfall revealed a patch of land untouched for countless millennia. A walk on this land was a walk back in time—a sacred march on holy ground no man was meant to see. Only in a dream could this place exist—and even then it was hidden from most.
Why was I chosen to see this world? Why did my feet carry me through this place while my mind screamed for retreat? I am not in control of my actions. I’m simply meant to observe—to bear witness to something. Of what, I cannot say.
Deeper into the cemetery the tombstones had become greater in size and more elaborate—more intact and taking the shape of ancient religious figures. These figures depicted monstrous beings with grotesque bodies and ferocious fangs.
What they truly represented I had no idea. But they unsettled me deep down with an instinctual fear. Somehow I knew these creatures depicted on the decayed tombstones, but I could’t remember. It’s as if the memory was a flicker of light embedded in my DNA. The images in my mind did not belong to me, but rather, were passed down from ancestors since buried from the world by the sands of time.
Erected in the center of the cemetery, with menacing black eyes and cracked limbs, stood the unpolished figure of a man; what looked to be a crown of thorns sat upon his head. The figure, gaunt and lifeless, emanated a kind of despair. Peeking through the thick fog below the statue were the words in that unknown language. Does the statue represent a man of virtue or a man of sin?
“Why was I chosen to see this world?”
The closer I moved toward the statue of the man the more tired I became. But I couldn’t stop moving; my legs were no longer my own. My eyes stayed fixed upon his and it was as if the statue was pulling me in. I could feel the despair take over me—the anguish, the loneliness, it was more intense than anything I’ve ever felt before.
Closer and closer I moved; those black eyes feasting upon my fear. I couldn’t pull away. I couldn’t avoid my fate. Then everything flashed to black—and when my vision returned the world had reversed. I saw the whole cemetery stretched out endlessly before me. The tops of tombstones poked through the fog. I was unable move anything but my eyes—eyes tinted black and unfocused. I saw a man standing below me. He was slumped down with exhaustion and wore a crown of thorns upon his head.
Several minutes passed until he finally stood up straight and looked at me. He smiled, then simply walked away—leaving me frozen in my new home among the tombstones.
If you enjoyed this, you should check out the first two parts in the series!