Chapter 01 : Humans, The World, Feelings
She was still alone. Nobody was still beside her. Even so, the story is not ended yet.
She took a small step on the cracking ground. She looked at the ground. There was a big gap in the ground. She raised her skirt until her thighs could be seen, took several steps back, and got herself ready. After taking a long, heavy breath, she began to run. She ran as fast as she could. Ignoring the heat her body emitting or the heat the earth was emitting, she ran with all of her might. She ran as fast as she could, with all of her might. What kind of achievement did she try to get by doing so? Even though the gap was big, it was still small enough for someone to jump over it by just wasting a little energy. Even though the gap was deep enough and dark enough to bury someone for eternity, still that someone could just jump over it with just a small effort. Why did she do that? She herself didn’t know about it. She didn’t know why did she want to do it. She was just doing so reflexively. She didn’t think about it, she just did so. Even so, what was the big deal, maybe. She was the one in that world. Nobody would complain about her doings. Because there was nobody besides her to begin with.
She ran as fast as she could. But suddenly, she stumbled upon a rock. A tiny rock she herself stepped on it. She fell to the ground. The scenery was in slow-motion. Her body second by second was tilted. Like flying in the air, she was falling forward, and of course to the ground also. Her clothes were swinging beautifully, following her figure that was nobly falling. Her eyes were wide open. She opened her mouth in surprise. She stretched her hands towards the ground so she wouldn’t fall dangerously. But due to her unluckiness, she was, in fact, falling into the gap. She was falling, like being sucked into the darkness, she was falling to the gap. She was threatened to be buried into eternity. She didn’t want it. She was afraid. She was afraid of dying. Even though dying and living in that world didn’t really have big difference between them, she was still afraid of dying. Again, she didn’t know why, she just didn’t want to die. She didn’t want to die.
Forcefully, she spun her body in the air. She stretched her hands with all of her might to reach the edge of the opposite ground. She opened her palms, and groped the edge while swinging her body vigorously. Then, she slammed her body into the wall of the gap. She groaned in pain. Her body was in an awful ache. It was painful for her, but she couldn’t do anything about it. The only thing she could do was to endure the pain. Slightly but surely, she raised her body. Despite being a girl, she was not really not athletic at all. At least, she was strong enough to pull herself in a condition like this. She raised her body, and got up as soon as possible. She wanted to get rid of the fear of hers the fastest she could. She didn’t want to die, that’s why.
She was on the opposite side of the ground, now. She made it. With the heavy breaths she was taking, she finally passed it. She finally passed the brink of the death. She felt a relief. A relief? Why did she feel a relief? Again, that is the unanswered question left on her mind. Just like the feelings from before, she realized that those feelings have many kinds. Not only when the wind brushed her face, or seeing the ugly scenery in front of her. But also the fear of dying, and the relief of avoiding the death. What was that? She thought to herself. She wanted to share it with someone if she could. But no, again, with whom could she share those feelings? She gave up the thought of sharing the feelings to anything else. She just would search the meaning of the feelings by herself, then. Even though it was lonely, it was the price she had to pay.
She got up on her feet. She then cleaned the dirt on her clothes, and looked around her. The scenery was still the same. Nothing had been changed. Of course it wouldn’t change by itself only with several seconds. In fact, maybe it wouldn’t change even for eternity by itself. She began walking on the ground. Walking towards something she realized. There was a building. The sign-board was saying “Libr***”. Yes, the sign-board was wrecked. She couldn’t read it fully, but at least she could guess what it was. It was a library. An abandoned library. A library without guests or librarians inside it. She then, attracted by her own curiosity, got in to the library.
Maybe books could teach her about those feelings she had continuously before. Because of course, books were made by other living-creatures besides her, by humans other than her. Even though she was not really sure. She still hoped that she could find anything about it. Even just a single clue, it would be a great help to her. Well, what else could she do? She had much time. She didn’t have works, she didn’t have to go to school, she didn’t have to do her home-works, she didn’t have to do her chores, she didn’t have to have a fight with her families or friends, she didn’t need to live... She didn’t even need to live...
She got inside. The library was big enough to hold several hundreds of books. It had even two floors to hold some books. There were sections between shelves, History, Literature, Science, Social, and everything you could see in the library everywhere else. The library was in wrench, it was wrecked everywhere else, but at least there were still so many books that could be read. The light of the sun was piercing through the wrecked roof and illuminating the rooms inside. It was bright enough to read books there, at least.
She then went deeper to the shelf right in front of the entrance. She looked at several books in the shelf. She tried to skim through the books, and tried to pick some books. But, because there were so many books, she couldn’t even choose to begin with. She was bewildered. Which one of the books that could help her understanding the feelings she wanted to know? She didn’t know. So, with nothing in mind, she randomly picked one book she looked first, and opened it to the middle page of the book. There she saw foreign language with many scribbles. She didn’t know what language it was. She didn’t understand, but she kept trying to read it. And in the end, as expected, it confused her to the most. She looked at the section she picked, it said “Foreign Books”. So that’s why she couldn’t read the book in there.
She went to the other section of the library. It was the History section. She carefully skim at the books again, but she couldn’t indicate what the books were discussing. So, again, she randomly picked one book in the shelf. She carefully opened it, and read the first page. She realized the language. Finally, she could read at least a book in her language. She read the book from the first page, skimming fast through the pages. It was a story of World War II. The same as she knew. The Germany attacked Poland, Danzig to be precise. And then Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, Indonesia was freed, and else, and else. She then closed the book, adjusting her eyes, and went to the other section without putting the book back.
She went to the Social Study section. There were many thick books there, maybe even more than the History section had. They were discussing about Society, in other words, Humans. Why to understand humans, they needed to write books so thick? Wasn’t it easy to understand humans? Then, she thought about her feelings again. No, maybe not that easy, though. She couldn’t even understand herself. So maybe it was right to study humans even more. She took several books from the shelf without skimming it. She picked both the thick and the thin ones. She then went to yet another section in the library.
“Literature” was what it said. She thought that maybe literature might be a good choice to know what is a human thinking. Humans are always thinking, and to not forget it, they put it in a medium where when they look at it, they would remember again. Whatever they are thinking. Philosophy, poems, histories, daily lives, stories they made. Everything they could think about. Humans like to put everything, so they could last forever. That is why, she thought she might found a good reference in those books. She picked several books again, and went to another section.
“Fiction”. She thought that maybe she could find why was human imagining. She wanted to know why was human desiring. Why did human create a different world from the world s/he was in. Why did human wanted to be in another world, when they had his/her world alone. Maybe that was why she was here. She wanted to know too what she was thinking until this time. She wanted to know to what did she desire. Did she desire for wealth? Did she desire for power? Did she desire for everything in the world she could get? Yes, maybe yes. Because... she was in that world. In the world with nothing. Maybe because of her arrogance she got sent to that world. Whatever what it was... She didn’t remember. She didn’t feel anything about her desire. She just wanted to know, the feelings she had. She took several books again, and went to another section.
Next was psychology. The lesson that’s studying about humans’ mind. What were they thinking? Why were they thinking about it? How did they think about it? When did they think about it? Where could they think about it? With whom did they think bout it? Why did they want something? What should they do about their thinking, and else, and else. Again, she took several books from the shelf. The thick and the thin ones.
In the end, she picked too many books that they were piled in her hands. She couldn’t even really see what in front of me because of the stack of the book. She carefully stepped on the floor made of wood, and went towards the chair and desk in the corner of the library, near the window. She put her books on the desk, took a seat, and finally opened the first book in the stack.
She read it fully with concentration. The first book she read was History. Again, she didn’t know why, she found it interesting. The stories of the world that happened in the past, they felt like some stories for her. She imagined about it. She could see them be filmed inside her head. She could imagine it. She could watch it by reading the book. She could be a player in that film. She could be the director of that film. Everything was just like a film to her. She could see the children were cheerfully playing at the peaceful times. Elders were leisurely taking a rest. Everything was so peaceful. At that time, everything seemed so peaceful. But, that was the beginning. Next, she was imagining how Hitler ruled over Germany that time. How was the Pearl Harbor bombed that time. And the counter-attack from America that bombed Nagasaki and Hiroshima. She began to imagine about people dying. She imagined about the parents were separated from their children, and suddenly they were crushed and exploded in pieces by the bomb. How the soldiers were shooting each other. How they burned everything in sight. How they pierced anyone else body with sharp bamboo, bringing out their organs. How everything had been turned into ashes. How they were killing each other in the name of peace. How they were killing each other in the name of love. How they were killing each other in the name of God. Then, it ended. Nobody was alive. Every building was equal to the ground. Everything was left in brown-dust color. It was ugly. It was disgusting. It was sad. Then, she saw someone was getting up in the middle of that ruin. In the ruin that used to be a peaceful city. The girl was dirty with dust and dirt. Her hair was long and red. Her eyes were empty. She wore just like only a piece of cloth. Upon seeing it closer, she then realized, the image of the girl was her herself.
She came back to her sense. Her breathing was ragged. Sweat was all over her body. History was not good. History was not a happy thing. She didn’t want to think about it anymore. She didn’t want to read it again. She closed the book, and put it besides the stack of the books she took earlier. She then picked other book at the top of the stack, and opened the next book.
The next was about psychology. The study about humans’ mind. She then again read it with full of concentration. It discussed about how humans think. Even though the title was saying so, it was full of foreign words. But, fortunately, she could mainly know what they meant. Well, by thinking carefully about the words, that is. She was tired of following the subject. Because of that, her concentration was dissolved into the air. Then, she skipped page by page and stopped in a page where her eyes were attracted. It showed a picture of human’s head. A human besides her. Even though it was just a picture, she was still interested in it. She was absorbed into it. It was a boy. The picture was handsome. She was entranced by it. She touched the picture by her slender, beautiful right hand. Her hand was tiny. It seems so fragile. Carefully, she traced the picture by her hand. It was flat. It was cold, too. It was just a picture after all. It was just a picture drawn specifically on the flat and cold paper. It was a 2D being. It didn’t have warmth. She felt sad. She felt glad. She felt curious because of it. Seeing the other human being besides her. Seeing the other human being that was actually not exist in her world anymore. She wanted to find another. Maybe she could find a picture or more of human beings besides her. She skipped pages, and skimmed the book as fast as she could. But she couldn’t find another picture besides that picture. So, she decided to rip the page off from the book, and kept it in her waist pocket. She closed the book, and put it on the history book she read before.
She took yet another book at the top of the piled book. It was a novel. A book filled with a chronological story or two. Whether it was someone’s experience, or just one’s imagination. She opened the book and saw the title. It said “Beautiful Nightmare”. It was a romance. A love story between a couple. She was interested by it. She thought that by learning of a love story, she could understand more about love. And love is related to feelings, and by understanding about love, she hoped that she could understand about her feelings. She began to read the book. It was a fiction about the relationship of a boy and the girl. The boy liked the girl. But, there was something off about the boy. Whenever he was imagining or dreaming about the girl, he always got stuck in accidentally hurting her. Worse, he always saw the girl died in his dreams. Because of that, he ended up avoiding the girl for her well-being. The girl didn’t know about the boy’s feelings. But she felt awkward because the boy was always avoiding her. She was always striving to reach the boy. She had dream that was contradicting the boy’s dream. Whenever she was dreaming, she always dreamed about being in dangerous situation where she would die every time. And whenever she was in the danger, she would always be saved by the boy in her dream. And because of that, she ended up striving to reach the boy. That’s weird, thought the girl. The boy was avoiding the girl because he liked her. His action was contradicting his own reason. That’s weird. If he really liked the girl, then shouldn’t he struggle to protect the girl, instead of running away by avoiding her? The girl, too. She knew that she might be in danger if she stayed near her. But instead of staying out of him, she was struggling to reach him. Weird, why were they so hypocrite? They wanted the positives, but their ways were the negatives. Was it because of love? She couldn’t understand it. She couldn’t understand about love. Love is so complicated. She was even more confused because of love. Rather than making her search easier, it became much too hard for her to comprehend. She decided to stop reading the novel. She closed the book, and put it on the psychology book.
She took another book again. A coverless book like the others. She opened it slowly, and looked at its content. Some words were placed abstractly. Some titles were in that book. They were some poems. She couldn’t understand what they meant. Of course, they were some poems, after all. They were the works of those who could describe their feelings with words. She thought that if feelings were easy to describe, she wouldn’t have a hard time understanding her own feelings. But, even though it was hard, she still kept trying to understand the meaning of the poems. Many of them were talking about love, so she got less passion than she had before. She skipped several pages, intending to find at least one poem that was not talking about love. Then, she found a poem among many, titled “The heaven above the sky, and the heaven below your feet”. Heaven? She had heard about it. It is a place where good mans are sent to be granted by very much wealth a human cannot obtain because of their deeds. The opposite of heaven is hell. It is a place where bad mans are sent to be punished by very much torture a human cannot bear because of their evil-doings. Then, she thought. Maybe this is hell? Maybe it was right that she was punished because of her evil-doings? Where is heaven, she wondered. “...Above the sky...below your feet” it said. She was not sure if it was right. She couldn’t see heaven through the clouds, neither she cold see heaven under the ground. She gave up. Maybe she really couldn’t find heaven, after all. Well, it was just merely a hope. But for her, in her case, a glimmer of hope was still counted as the thing that could change her life completely.
She was tired. Every time she read a book, she always found something that was off-topic from what she was searching for –the meaning of her feelings. She let out a sigh, and looked outside the window. The sun is about to set. The light was barely enough to make her could read in that library. She closed the book, and put it again at the top of another stack. She took a book from the first stack of books, and carefully opened it. This was the last. She thought about finishing after this book. While carelessly browsing the book, she caught a glimpse of a text which attracted her.
“A human is born alone, and dies alone. But, the fact that human can’t live alone is undeniable. A human cannot live by oneself. One needs other to live. One must needs other to be with oneself. Just like how Adam needed Eve, a human needs other to rid of one’s loneliness. Because solitary is unbearable to human. To share one’s feelings, to get help from another with one’s problem, to interact with, to communicate with. Human indeed needs to be with other in order to live. Maybe there are humans that could live by themselves. But in fact, that is just an act of selfishness. No matter how bad the human is, no matter how dire the situation the human is in, no matter how good, no matter how evil, no matter how strong, no matter how weak, no matter what, human needs other in order to live.
One cannot live by oneself, because one is born alone, and will die alone, that’s exactly why one cannot live by oneself. To fill one’s emptiness. To fill one’s heart. One, needs other to become a human.”
The light dimmed. It was dark inside the library. The girl was still sitting on the chair and staring blankly at the unreadable book. She was thinking. If one needs other to become a human, then she is not a human, then? She thought to herself. One needs to share one’s feelings, one needs to get help, one needs to interact, one needs to communicate. But... with whom could she share her feelings? With whom should she ask for help? With whom she could interact? With whom could see communicate? It’s unavoidable. She couldn’t help it by herself. She couldn’t even deny it anymore, if someone was saying if she was not a human. She couldn’t understand her feelings, she didn’t have anything precious she could share with another. She didn’t have anything.
Adam, you were alone, right? Before Eve was created, you were alone, right? What were you doing when you were alone? How could you be recognized a human before Eve was there? It’s unfair. If you, after that, had Eve besides you, then why couldn’t she? Why was she alone in that world? Why was there nobody to be besides her? In that colorless world. She kept living even though she knew she wouldn’t really get anything. The same as you, right, Adam?
Oh, I see. If that’s the same, then that’s it, right? What she really needed to do, was only to keep living, right? I see. Even though they said that we always have a choice? No, maybe not in her case.
Then, she closed the book and put it away.
She leaned to the chair, then began summarizing what she found on those books she read. History, humans are killing each other when they are loving each other. Psychology, didn’t really find anything besides a picture of another human. Novel, humans’ acts are sometimes contradicting with their wills or needs. Poems, didn’t really find anything besides humans cannot really describe their feelings with words. The last book, human cannot live alone, if a human does, it’s because of his/her selfishness. They didn’t help at all. Reading a book didn’t help her finding the meaning about her feelings at all. It was useless. Or was it? Was it really useless to read those books, after all?
The day was darkened. It was night time. She was still sitting in the library. She was still thinking about finding another way to understand the meaning of her feelings. When she was lost in thoughts, then she heard some loud noises. Grumbles, to be precise. She was hungry. She hadn’t eaten yet. She put her hand on her stomach. It really was her stomach that made some noises before. She then stood up and took a step to get out of the library. Surprising her, she stepped on wrecked floor, and fell down beautifully. She slammed her body against the floor, including her nose. It was hurt. She let out some tears from her eyes while touching her nose. Twice. She fell twice, this day, then. She stretched her hand to grab the desk to support her weight. When she finally was at half way, she then realized something was wrong. The desk was actually fragile. The wood had wrecked too. Surprising her, again, the foot of the table was cracking and finally wrecked in pieces. She fell down again when she was concentrating her weight to the table. She fell beautifully again. The books on the table, of course, fell too. While making some dull sounds, they fell right on the girl. She was then groaning cutely in pain. Not only fell down thrice, she was also struck by several thick books. Was she really this clumsy? While holding the pain on her back, she carefully stood up and stepped on the floor. Tattering, she walked out of the library to search for some foods to consume.