Gathering of Loss Souls

By Richard Mora

Scroll down to start the tale

This narrative is a work of fiction and it utilizes sounds so headphones are recommended.

drawing of a notebook

August 5th, 2219. This all started when I woke up in a large, dark room where I found myself sitting on a wooden chair in the middle of a room. My heart was racing as I look around in this unfamiliar setting, trying to figure out where I was at. I try to think back to a time before I was here, but the last thing I remember was sitting on my desk at home, working on my latest novel. I was getting ready to leave my house for groceries when, as I was putting on my jacket, I suddenly felt tired as I was reaching for the front door. When I closed my eyes for a second, the next thing I knew I was sitting on a chair inside a empty room.

I look around the room to find it mostly barren with only the chair I was sitting on, a worn out podium, a window leading outside and a blank chalkboard. As I slowly got up from the chair, I notice this room had no signs of any light fixtures anywhere; an empty ceiling that looked just as worn out as the podium covered with stains. The only source of light I can see was from the same window to my left letting in moonlight. 'This place looks abandoned; where exactly am I?' I thought to myself as I walked around the room. I was hoping I could find anything that could help me in some way but sadly nothing stands out, not even a door that leads to an exit. The only thing that I found was a window that led outside, which I only saw the night sky surrounded by a forest with no noticeable landmarks. Having seen all I could seen, I decided to head towards the podium.

I noticed a old candlestick sitting on top of the podium. It had an antique look to it, covered in dust and cobwebs. When I tried grab it, when it suddenly lit itself; I pulled my hand back when it happened. What surprised me was the color of the flame; it emitted a erie blue flame covering the area with a soft blue light. The strangest thing about the flame was not just it's color, but when I reached out to the flame with my hand, I felt no heat to the point where I could literally hover my hand inches away from the flame and not get burnt. Since I gotten a little more light, I looked around again. I turned my gaze towards the chalkboard and then...

drawing of a chalkboard with writing

The previous blank chalkboard have something written all over it's surface, saying the same thing over and over again: Please, let me help you sensei. I was taken aback by the sudden appearance of the writing. First the candle and now this writing; how could any of this be possible I wondered. I looked at the chalkboard again and pondered what was written. "Sensei. Hmm, if I remember correctly that means teacher. I remember a friend of mine mentioning this to me when they went overseas. It can't be referring to me could it? I'm a writer not a teacher; I've never taught anyone before." I said trying to process what I just read. And as if the writing on the chalkboard was guiding me, it was pointing towards my left. Before I knew it, I saw a door at the corner of the room. Questioning how I didn't notice that door before, I decided that I spend too much time here and just wanted to leave here as soon as possible so I went towards the door and opened it.

drawing of a hallway

I opened the newly discovered door and saw an empty hallway that look like it stretch for as long as I can see into the darkness to my right and a dead end to my left. As soon as I stepped out, the door shut itself closed scaring me in the process. No matter how hard I tried to open the door, I couldn't get the door opened again. "Oh great, what else could go wrong here?" I said out loud in the attempt to vent out my frustrations, not expecting anyone to hear me. I looked around and noticed that there was no light fixtures anywhere, just like in the room I was just in. Putting that thought aside, I begin walking down this hallway with no idea of where I'm going or where the exit might be.

I moved cautiously as with limited visibility and no reliable light source, I need to be extra careful as I'm walking in this darkness. I've been walking around this hallway for quite some time, seeing only doors and windows that won't open, and no sign of an exit. I wanted to take a short break so I picked a spot near a window and sat down. As I was resting, I checked my pockets to see what I have with me and to help keep my mind from my predicament. I found my car keys, wallet and my personal notebook with a pencil. Weirdly, I didn't find my phone that I usually have with me, thinking that it could be useful as a flashlight so I didn't have to walk around in the dark. I sighed in frustration remembering one of my bad habits of forgetting to take my phone with me when I go out. "Way a go me, the one time you forget your phone!" I was ready to resume looking for an exit so I begin to stand up from my position when, off in the distance back from where I came from... (sound warning)

I looked to the direction of something breaking, must've came from one of the rooms if I had to guess. Whatever it was, I didn't feel safe being in that hallway so, with no hesitation, I ran to the opposite direction. When I thought it was safe enough, I stopped to catch my breath in the middle of the hallway. I wasn't paying attention to where I was going, I just wanted to get away from that area. Now that I calmed down a little, I took a look around to see where I was at but everything looked the same as before and with no map of the area my hopes of finding a way out isn't looking good. I was starting to lose hope that I would never find an exit out of this place, which didn't help my anxiety one bit as I imagine myself cold and alone dying of starvation. "Snap out of it me, it's too early to give up now! I'll find a way out eventually." I said as I stood up from the floor, ready to look for an exit. I started walking.

"You look lost. Please......Let me help you.......Sensei......"

I froze in place when I heard a female voice, too afraid to look behind me where I the voice came from. After a short while, I started to turn my head slowly when suddenly, I felt a sharp pain on my back like someone was pressing a needle against it. The pain was starting to feel unbearable to a point where I bit my own lip so hard, bits of my blood was landing on the floor. I tried to drop down to the floor but something was holding me in place preventing me from falling like someone holding a action figure in their hands. This pain feels like it was moving through my chest causing my to bite even harder on my lip resisting the urge to scream out in pain. Then suddenly, I say something emerge from my chest where the pain was coming from. Whatever it was, it looked like a clear blue orb that is the size of a softball. As it exited my body, I immediately fell to the floor, clutching the area of my chest with my hand where that orb came out from. I looked up and saw a blue flame inside the orb, hovering above me as if it was observing me while I was in pain. It didn't do anything for a while until it flew off into the distance leaving me on the floor.

I took my hand off my chest and looked at it fearing the worse, but when I looked I didn't see anything on my hands or my chest. No sign of any blood, and the pain was slowly dissipating after a while but I didn't have the strength to move from my spot. That's when I saw my notebook in front of me, opened to a random page and the pencil right next to it on the floor. "Wh- when did..?" I had no idea how my notebook got in front of me, so I wanted to check my pockets but I couldn't move my arms to reach them and it felt like I had only enough strength to move my arms forward. The pain started to slowly come back and I couldn't feel the rest of my body from my chest down. I reached out for my notebook and pen and pulled it close to me and... and I couldn't believe what I saw: someone else had written on my notebook, but I couldn't recognize the handwriting as my own. With whatever little strength I had left, I look through the notebook expecting to be mostly empty not including what was on it already. Everything I thought about, everything that has happened to me up until now was appearing before my eyes, one word at a time. All this time, my own notebook have been recording what I've been saying and thinking without me knowing it. I don't know what's causing this to happen but I didn't care, so I made used of what little time I thought I have left, as I felt my eyes getting heavier at ever passing second so I wanted to record what happened. Whoever finds this notebook, I want you to share what is written here to the world. I realize what's written here is unbelievable and made up, but I beg of you please share this story. My name is Xander Wood, 35 years of age.... former freelance writer living in Seattle.

Project Statement

The nature of this narrative was to not only tell a story I created, but to tell it using a combination of images, text and sounds. I wanted the readers to imagine themselves in the story as if they're experiencing it, to have them piece together the story and have them fill in the gap as to what they think happens at the beginning, middle and end. This project also helped me get more familiar with the JavaScript plugin skrollr. The idea I had for this project was a story about a person who finds himself in a unknown place that they have no idea how they got there. I went with this idea because I had an interests for storytelling thanks to a class I'm taking that talks about digital storytelling and the various ways we can tell a story and it fit well with this project. My learning process for this project was learning how the plugin skrollr works properly and learning the syntax of how to get the feature to work. Learning how to set up skrollr was a challenge seeing how this is my first time using it in a project and still learning the different features skrollr has but I'm happy with how this project turned out. Looking forward to working with skrollr again in the future.

Work Cited: