The House at the End of the Path

This is for Write on edge week 4.

The prompt is at the end of the post.

Image credit to unsplash:

The House at the End of the Path

In the small town of Doberlin, everyone knew about everyone and everything.

All the locals were efficient, happy, and a bit naive. They waved at passing neighbors, cooked dinner for the weak, and took in stray animals. This was the place that had an air of happiness that you can only find in fun, isolated areas.

However there was one thing that all locals knew everything yet knew nothing about. The path. Everyone fantasized about the path, wondered what lay at the edge of it. But no one dared go into the path, for whoever ventured into it never would return. Sometimes, the curious villager would find odd items near the path, like a bit of blood.

There was one who dared to cross the path, one more recent then the others who dared also. His name was Neil O’malley, a visitor to Doberlin, and this is his story.

In the beginning, Neil’s life was rough. His mother died of cancer, and his father was a washed-up drunk. Fast forward to teen years, and he can’t find a job. His best friend is murdered by a psychotic adult, and Neil is full of grief.

Suddenly, his life took a turn for the better. He was a relatively smart kid, and he was offered a position at Google. He accepted the invitation and was overjoyed when he found his beautiful Indian girlfriend. The next year, his girlfriend dumped him. This was when Neil visited Doberlin and found the path. He spotted caked blood on the tree, but Neil was a man of adventure.

What the hell, you only live once.” He said. Neil entered the forest.

A while through he found the long hike peaceful the birds were singing and the sun was shining, peeking through the trees overhead.

He started thinking about life and his dead mother. Then he thought about his job, and his favorite dog waiting for him in a cage. He thought, maybe my life isn’t so bad, eh? He walked a bit more and almost tripped over a body.

Sir, sir! Are you all right?” He turned over the body and screamed. It was his best friend Paris.

He continued walking, at a faster pace than before. Then he heard his girlfriend’s voice in his ear. “You are worthless… You are nothing.”

You’re… you’re righ- no, I am my own person!!!”

He kept walking and found himself next to a beautiful house that overlooked a luscious forest and lake, the flowers blooming brightly.

In the end, Neil bought the house and the path, kept his job at Google, and found himself a new girl.

In order to find beauty, you must take the risk.

The road may be rocky and treacherous, but at the end, there is always an oasis of hope.

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No Life in a Wasteland

Dystopia story for Saturday’s Write Tribe.

Five years since the outbreak, the government collapse, and five years since almost everyone I knew disappeared. Hell, I may even have killed them myself.

Rick stepped cautiously, trying to see. The wind whipped in his face, its claws piercing the surface. Rick’s feet trounced the earth beneath them, and he took in all the pollution. Lays chip bags lay crumbled, the sky was darker then coal, and before him an enormous figure prostrated on the ground.

Vines clung to her body; her hair tangled scraggly weeds.

She was Mother Nature and she was having the last laugh at civilization.