The typo's in this document are deliberate.
What’s going on? I didn’t realize that everything would be gray in the afterlife. I thought there would be someone to greet me here. It’s extremely cold but I’m not shivering. I can’t smell anything either. Oh wait; there is an auburn light in the distance. I don’t feel like I’m moving but its getting closer. What’s going on? Are they coming to torture me? Is this hell coming for me? I’m afraid! What did I do? There are shadows in the glow. Did I just see teeth? I don’t recognize anyone but there are people in the glow as well. Someone is screaming! I really don’t want to meet any of them. I want to leave this place. They’re still coming. I can see no where to run to. It’s empty here. Oh God help me please! Someone help me.
“I forgive you Stephen! Can you forgive yourself though?”
“Yes, help me!”
“All that you see is the anguish you have caused your loved ones during your life. They weep! They are embittered! Don’t worry; they won’t come any closer now.”
“What’s stopping them?”
“You can draw off of my strength. I’m here for you.”
“Where are you?”
“Don’t be afraid! I’m with you. I always have been. You must face your past, but as I said, you can draw off of my strength. It was your choice to leave, but I am with you. Be strong now. I will be waiting.”
“Who are you?”
As he looks around him, color forms in the nothingness. Green hews appear before his eyes. The orange glow morphs into a brilliant sunset by a river. The creatures vanish and turn into shadows of trees and vegetation.
“What is going on?” Stephen thinks. He is no longer cold. There is an encampment off to his side by the shoreline. Horses are grazing in the meadow close by. Stephen spies about a dozen reed boats floating at the rivers edge. Their thatched grass houses sit peacefully in the shadow between a large hill and the river. There is just enough level land available to fit a field of crops to the side of their homes. He recognizes the three sisters as it was once referred to. The three sisters are usually described as a stalk of corn with beans growing up and around it. There are also squash planted around the bottom of the corn to. It is said that this is to prevent wild animals from doing damage to the crops and the beans have a natural trestle for growing.
Sun kissed inhabitants are looking off in the distance of the river as several large boat glides toward them from the horizon. A couple of them have the American flag anchored in front while it gallantly flaps in the wind. The distress call from a horn bellows out and everyone in the encampment gathers their weapons in a panic.
A dark skinned villager with a tail of long hair flapping loosely over his back runs right through Stephen. With the exception of the pony tail on top, the rest of his head is cleanly shaven. He momentarily stops to look back. As Stephen takes in his appearance, he sees that the man is well built and covered in goose bumps. It must be summertime due to the lush vegetation. The native is wearing a knee length loin cloth that covers his muscular thighs and helps to keep him cool. He has a puzzled look on his face as he rubs his arms. He doesn’t see Stephen but he looks as though he has just walked into a cold draft with a distressed gaze on his face. Then he is gone. He has started running to the encampment once again to help his neighbors and loved ones.
On the shore, the boat has arrived. He spies a group of men in army uniforms marching out carrying muskets. They are not wearing modern military uniforms. Button down burlap sacks fastened at the waist with a belt is an extremely poor description of what the solders are wearing but it is his first thought as he at least tries to amuse himself. The thought is quickly lost during the swift and heartless take over.
Stephen is unsure if they are doing this as a random act of violence or if it is one of the Indian wars that he has read about in school. They are headed to the encampment and burning the grass domed homes. They are raiding the village. He watches in horror as some of the warriors are shot down and the people scatter in panic.
Some of the warriors have muskets as well but there are too many solders. They try to fight with every fiber in their bones but the battle is already lost. Their homes are getting burned. Some have already given up and are being placed in shackles. Others are running to the hills trying to get away. Stephen watches horrified as a dark woman in a dear skin gown falls to the ground while trying to flee with her children. It was clear that all the exits had been cut off. He is embittered that the solders are now placing shackles on the woman and her children. They are crying and being led away. Out of the four children, one of them has a remarkable resemblance to the brave warrior. This child tries desperately to cling to his mother but is ripped from her flailing arms and carted away. He wonders if this is the family of the man that walked through him earlier.
The child’s mother is not so lucky and Stephen’s heart fails him at the sight of her demise. He can do nothing as two of the solder’s cart her off behind a bush. She tries to fight them off but they are stronger. Her hair is undone and flies wildly down her back and in her face as one of the men pulls her to the ground. The other solder wickedly smiles as he pulls out his knife and carelessly begins to cut her dress. Her dark plump breasts shake wildly as they are forcefully exposed. She screams in anger and humiliation as she her skirt is pulled up and she is mounted. Even though the knife is at her throat, she spits in the solder’s face. His would be conquest is short lived as a silent shadow slithers up behind them.
Before either of the men knew what was happening, one is hit in the head by a large stone and knocked to the ground. The knife that he is holding accidentally finds an unwilling target during the confusion. It is silently forced into the woman’s throat. The warrior quickly grabs the soldier’s musket and mercilessly shoots the accomplice down.
After shoving the men aside he gently kneels beside his beloved but it is too late to save her. The cut is deep in her neck. There is just enough strength left in her ravaged soul to pull her husband down to her for a final kiss. Then she fall limp. The young warrior then proceeds to get up and wipe the tears from his eyes before leaving with a pissed off look on his face. Stephen knew the look all to well. It was one that said “someone is going to pay for this.”
Stephen didn’t know why, but he loved the woman who now lay lifeless on the ground. She was perfect to him in every way. She would have been in her twenties and beautiful even though all that was left of her was an empty shell. The long dark hair lay tangled and uneven while gently caressing her bosom. Her abdomen was swollen and somewhat rounded he could see as he examined her mostly naked frame. “Oh God, she was pregnant.” He thought.
More men are pouring in from the opposite direction. Stephen can’t understand the dialect of either the villagers or the invaders. He is thankful that he can’t smell anything. The surrounding sky has gotten cloudy as ash particles gently fall like snow over the thick brush. Most of the inhabitants have already been led away to the boat. The fall of the village had been extremely quick. The white men are burning the field and gathering the horses. All leftover treasure or war spoils are being gathered as they make sure that the landowners have either been killed or forced to move.
It was then Stephen glimpsed the warrior cornered in a ravine on the side of a gently sloping hill. It was the same one that ran right through him. Several of the solders had him backed into a pocket with no escape in sight. They are laughing and one is taunting him with a pair of shackles he’s carrying. The other solders are pointing muskets at him incase he tries anything. The man is shouting something. He points to their fields of corn burning to the ground. He screams at them in an unknown language while trying to direct their attention to the boat. They move cautiously closer.
The dark skinned chap sheaths his knife from the leather holster that hangs to the side of his tattooed leg beside the loin cloth. It has already tasted the blood of an unknown solder or two. The warrior plants the knife directly in his beating chest before anyone could stop him. Stephen feels the pain and at once recognizes the connection. The blood is quickly saturating the front of Stephen’s shirt. The warrior has no shirt on and he can see the damage that was done when the knife reached its destination. Stephen clenches his chest in agony. With each heartbeat he can feel and see his life force being pumped out, only to be soaked up by the ground like a thirsty sponge. This is why he was drawn to this place. This is why he had feelings for the young pregnant lady and her children. This was the beginning. As soon as the connection was made, everything in front of him starts to melt away along with the pain. It melts away into a vast space of dark nothingness.
“This all seems familiar like some type of dream I’ve had.”