It takes time. A long period of time. Nearly as long as it takes to travel through wasteland amount of time. It really does take that long to finally realise that what you are chasing is long gone and the only thing left is to continue your pain or try to start afresh. I didn’t want to do either…
Through my, initially, lone travels through the Commonwealth my companion would only be the slightly glitchy pip-boy but as the days went on I started coming across other people, creatures, and what was left of humanity and the world I had known.
My pipe boy’s date was showing as the 10th of March 2291 but I really don’t think it was relevant any more. Finally the humanity, or what was left of it could follow the natural progressions of the seasons and periods with the periods of light and darkness, the seasons of wind and snow, and the seasons full of heat from the almost never ending sunshine. It hurt at times.
Jamaica Plains… It was there when it hit me that all my family and friends, colleagues and enemies were more likely to be dead than alive. I sat at a bench a shared a tear or two. Preston, a strange fella who travelled with me for a while didn’t say a word. He looked at me and then moved further away to sing to himself. He liked signing and it was pissing me off more often than not.
I looked around and I realised I sat next to a female skeleton. At least the remains of clothing were pointing this way and then it occurred to me that I don’t have to move on or suffer the pain. It dawned on me that I could capture the essence of the past and make it the future…
I decided to go hunting. A strange type of hunting though. I decided to hunt for skeletons to see if I can grab some of the past essence left in them and work out if I ever came across them, or even perhaps knew than well.
I know. It whacky. Well that’s what Preston said when I shared the news with him but hey, the whole world went whacky many decades, centuries ago. I can be whacky if I want.
So here. I took my camera (it is amazing how long some stuff works for) and grabbed picture of the lady. Unfortunately Preston thought it’d be a good idea to pose so here. I wasn’t gonna waste another click so my journey became with that single picture of Hilary and Preston.
As much flesh the time can eat, it can not eat the holotags we were all forced to carry back in a day and I assumed that idea carried on when I looked through Hilary’s bones finding hers and getting to know her.
I didn’t have much of a plan but to stick and sniff around each skeleton I come across hoping for some pieces of the past that was willing to reveal itself to those who were determined enough.
That very bench she was resting at was her last home and became her grave. I found some scribbles in a box next to the bench and there wasn’t much to go for but all of sudden, the bones I first saw became to me Hilary Mopinngs, a librarian who somehow became a homeless soul in a world where any place could be your home and she picked that bench to rest. Perhaps she had no more energy, perhaps she just needed some sleep. It was hard to say, especially that it was just the beginning of my detective journey.
At least I could say with the peace in my mind that I never knew her as I simply never came across any Hilary in my life. I stood there staring at her remains wondering whether I should bury every bone I come across but as soon as Preston light up his smoke and started singing a song about a peasant girl who lost her boy at war, I knew it was time to hit the road. Only walking was keeping me away from smacking Preston hard enough to make him stop.
So we walked. We walked towards unknown… And I was fine with it…