Short Stories

Smoke Signals


June 5, 2017, around noon – It’s been 42 days since our plane went down. Today I saw smoke coming from the northeast side of the island. I thought I was the only survivor. There isn’t much food left, and only a little rainwater remaining. The skies are clear today, so I need to make it last. 

I may venture out later to see where the smoke is coming from. If it’s another survivor, we can pool our resources and come up with a plan. 

June 5, 2017, nighttime – I walked northeast. After an hour I stumbled upon what appeared to be a recently abandoned campsite. The embers were still smoking. I didn’t see anybody but got the feeling I was being watched. This was made creepier when I discovered a rabbit corpse. I didn’t know there were rabbits on the island. I should make some traps. 

Clouds are gathering. I’m hoping for rain.

June 6, 2017, morning – I awoke to find my “HELP” message on the beach in disarray. The rocks were thrown everywhere. I’m scared. I don’t think an animal could (or would) have done this. The person (or people?) to the northeast might not be friendly. At least it rained last night. Thank God. Three drinking pitchers are full but the food reserves are almost gone. I sure am hungry. Better start looking for rabbits.

June 8, 2017, morning – The rest of my food was stolen while I slept. It’s gotta be whoever was at that campsite to the northeast. I saw smoke again last night. I’m going to walk over there again and see what I can find out, or steal my stuff back if nobody is there.

June 8, 2017, mid-afternoon – I don’t know what the fuck I just saw. I was hiding in the trees when I saw him. He was human but… different. His skin was bloated and purple and the stench, my God. I’m glad he didn’t see me. He stumbled around like he was drunk, bumping into things. I didn’t see any of my stuff, not that I’d want it back after that thing touched it.

June 9, 2017, nighttime – He bit me. He fucking bit my arm. He stumbled into my area and I tried to hide but he found me. He could sniff me out like a bloodhound. His head snapped toward me and he ran. I’ve never seen anything move so fast. The bleeding has finally stopped. I washed the wound as best I could in the ocean water. I can still move my fingers, so that must be a good sign. I pray to God I don’t get an infection. I don’t have much for medical supplies.

June 10, 2017,  morning – I couldn’t sleep at all last night. I kept hearing something move in the trees by my camp. Was it him? An animal? I want to think the latter, but there was this awful chewing. I’m so hungry. My arm feels fine today. There is no pain at all. I think I got lucky.

June 12, 2017, afternoon – I can barely move. My head feels like someone is drilling into it and my joints feel stiff. I worry that the bite on my arm is infected. It’s swollen and there is a reddish-purple ring around it, but it is oddly dry. No blood or pus or anything and there’s still no pain. I guess that’s a good sign. I keep seeing the purple man off in the distance through the trees. I think he’s keeping an eye on me, watching me with his yellow eyes. I’m so fucking hungry. I saw a rabbit at the water’s edge but he ran off when I approached. My head is killing me.

June 12, 2017, nighttime – No sign of the purple man. I caught a rabbit. For the love of God what is wrong with me? I caught it with my bare hands and broke his neck. I bit into its still-warm stomach and ate its intestines. I did it without a thought, without shame, without mercy. I’m not hungry anymore. Yummy.

June 13, 2017, nighttime – My legs feel funny. I can’t remember how I got here. I stood and stared at the water today and I have a feeling hours went by, but at the time it felt like a few seconds. I looked up afterward and the sun had moved clear across the sky. I’m having a hard time walking. No purple man. No food. No water. Tired.

June 14, 2017, morning – I sleeped. I feal bettar now. Why my skin pupple? My head feal ouch. Nead talk 2 pupple man. Ansers. 




Feature photo by Nenad Radojčić on Unsplash

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