The village I’m from is nothing like the surrounding ones. Their sturdy, plain structures seemed almost shabby compared to our elaborate buildings and grand castles that looked as if they touched the sky. The main part of the village is built around a large chasm with a waterfall and lake in the middle. Bridges make up the large part of our roads in that area – some made of elaborate stonework while others are tiny, rickety wooden planks. Even the outer portion of the village, down the mountainside in a flatland, still boasted buildings with odd curves and materials that were rare in our area in the world.
Despite the beauty of my surrounding environment, I can’t help but grow more depressed every time I look around at all the empty homes and shops in the village. Two weeks ago, my brother was killed by a zombie. He was my last living relative and the only other person in the village. None of the other villages have come to our aid since the monster invasion began six years ago. Since that time our thriving community has slowly dwindled until there was only myself left. How is one person supposed to protect, maintain, and repair all of these buildings? How is one person supposed to survive this world alone?
Every day begins at dawn with work that can be done inside buildings, due to the fact that monsters may still be lurking about outdoors. During the six years before I was alone, we managed to connect a large portion of our buildings with underground tunnels and secure the inner portion of our village from the invasion. I harvest food from our indoor fields and prepare and store what I can. If I have the time, I work on the slow mining to expand the tunnels that were started by the other villagers. Once the sun is high in the sky, I move my work outdoors. I tend to the animals and any outdoor crops, I repair any damage the creepers and endermen caused during the night, and attempt to retrieve any supplies I’m running low on inside.
When there were more of us, this would also be the time that we would work on expanding the village and the castle towering over it. I suppose one could say we had hopeful minds to believe that there would be future generations to enjoy what we worked hard to build and protect. We used to also be able to spare the man power to send out an occasional ranger party or two to gather the supplies that were located further out from our local lands and scout for any village that may be willing to send aid to us.
Now any hope of help has been dashed. Before our last ranger went missing, every report told of villages full of people who were unwilling to face the beasts that plagued our people every nightfall. I still catch myself looking off into the horizon for the army my father promised me would one day come to our aid. I’ve learned the hard way that no one is coming. Heroes are for fairytales.
To be honest, I never would have imagined that I’d be one of the last ones standing. I was young when this all began, and was raised fighting this war against an infinite army, however I’m not exactly the strongest or most clever of the villagers who once lived here. I had to learn to dabble in every trade in order to play my part as the numbers began to disappear; this made me a master in none of them. I can blacksmith, chop down a tree and saw it into lumber, garden, bake, build, and mine when necessary. But due to my novice skill, everything I create turns out bulky and blocky and just good enough to work. It seems as if no time passes at all before it breaks and I have to make another. Some of the other villagers used to be able to make tools that would last for years, but that seems like a dream to me now. Now, everything breaks and everything decays.
Ever since I buried my brother, I’ve thought about casting my gear aside and wandering into the wilderness with nothing but a sword and some bread. Maybe I could find a fresh start in a village that doesn’t have a mob of monsters on its doorstep every night. Maybe I could build a little cabin far, far away from here and live off the land. Anything would be better than to watch these empty buildings fall down around me, right? Is there any point to living a life in this huge place alone?
And for the fourteenth dawn in a row, I’ve awoke with these thoughts racing through my mind. Finally, I decided to give up this forsaken place and seek out refuge elsewhere. I can only hope that the beasts do not follow me. I’ve gathered up only the very basic necessities – sword, axe, pick, food. Right as I was about to set foot outside of the edge of the village, I paused. Was I really going to leave my only home? Was I really going to allow those monsters to win?
Yes. Yes I was. Because this was no life.
I made a quick sign out of materials laying around and I hammered it into the ground with the hilt of my sword. On it read:
Please reclaim what I couldn’t.