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My name is Christopher. I have auburn hair, and people describe my eyes as endless pools of black in which light disappears. They also say that I am a vagabond, because my parents are dead and I live on the streets, getting my money through odd jobs. But I disagree. In my mind’s eye, I can still see my parents, and my room in our house. I can still smell the aroma of breakfast, wafting into my room as I wake up. I can still feel the warmth of hot chocolate after a cold winter’s day. But when I open my eyes, I see the reality of my world. I have no friends because nobody wants to be friends with someone who lives on the street. I used to be friends with a few people, but now I don’t see them anymore. When my parents died I had to move far away.
My house is constructed out of a few beams of wood, and a sheet of metal. My house is not very nice, but it does keep me dry when it rains and snows. I sleep on some blankets I found in the garbage. They have some holes, but I make do. My jobs consist of working at the grocer’s place, or helping people with their chores, or occasionally winning athletic events. I am a runner, the fastest runner in town. Whenever I compete, other boys quit, knowing that it is futile to run against me. I always win, and I always intend to win. It was my athletic prowess that began the events that changed my life.
Our town was participating in a tournament, along with many other towns around. It was a series of races, and to the winner would go a small ship. The ship consisted of a room for sleeping in, a control room, a storage room, and the deck. The man who organized the contest offered the ship. He was a very rich man, and loved to watch people run. I decided to enter the tournament. If I won, I could sell the boat for a nice amount of money.
The first stages were held in each town, to determine who would move on to compete against people from the other cities. There were four people from each town, giving a total of 24 contestants. I placed first in our division, and was going on to the next stage. I always knew that I would make it past the preliminary stage, because I raced so many times against the other boys. What surprised me this time was that a girl entered, and placed third. It was not unheard of for girls to race, it was just rare that one would place higher than seventh or eighth. The other two were boys, and boys that I knew could sometimes challenge me.
The next stage was held a week later, in a location near to all the towns. It was about a two-mile walk from where I live, so I decided to jog there. In this stage I would be racing against six people, one from each of the other cities. It was a half-mile race, with the fastest time advancing to the finals. I arrived at 8:45. My competition looked easy. I was up against two girls and three boys. The race started at nine, so there was time to rest and stretch.
At nine, the runners lined up on the track. I was in lane one, the inside lane. As the man prepared to sound the gun, I prepared to run. There was a crack, and my opponents and I began our challenge. As soon as we started, my heart began to make itself known. Thud-Thud-Thud. My heart beat against my chest, but I didn’t notice. I was running faster than I ever had before, my legs were soaring. I was so absorbed in my running that I didn’t stop until after my fourth lap, twice as many as everyone else did. As I stopped to receive the date of the finals, I knew that I could win if I ran as I did today.
As I walked home, I was filled with sensations of joy. I was ecstatic. If I won this race, I would walk away with a boat that I could sell for a lot of money, that I could use to buy new blankets, or food, or a new shelter, such as a tent. My mind reeled with all the things that I could do. I had to win that race, and I decided that for the next week, I would train my running, every day, almost all the time. It was a foolproof plan, one that would get me that boat.
The next day I woke up and headed to the track. A few people were there, but they paid no attention to me. Likewise, I did the same. After five minutes of warm-up, I began to run. I felt the same as I had the day before. My feet seemed to fly off the ground as I sped around the track. My mind only had one thought, to run. Time flew by as fast as the ground beneath my feet. I ran until the sun reached noon, and then I bought myself a lunch of bread and water. Then I began to run again.
I ran all day, only stopping for food and water. It was like my body had transformed into a machine, programmed with only one purpose: to run. At the end of the day, it seemed I had only spent a few hours running. My body was not sore, nor my mind tired. Indeed, I felt as if I could run forever. It was as if some unseen force, some higher power was assisting me. This force seemed to want me running in that race, and it wanted me to win. I felt no other needs besides running, but I knew that I could not run through the night. I headed towards my home, with feelings of awe. Never before had I spent an entire day running. To me it seemed like a miracle. I knew that I was destined to win that race next week, and I would keep running until that day.
I awoke with the knowledge of yesterday’s accomplishments. Today I would strive to improve those accomplishments. As I ran, I began to think of how I was managing all this body-taxing work. I had never before believed in a god, but I started to reconsider that. I knew that it was impossible for me to be able to continue on at this pace, but yet I did. At the end of the day, I decided on one thing. I knew that somewhere, somehow, that there was a God. I can prove it by something that happened today. As I was running, I noticed that I did not get hungry, or thirsty, the entire day. It was like my body was in sleep mode, not wasting any energy, but instead gaining energy. I have always felt hunger in my life, but at the end of today, I was fuller than I have ever felt before. It was an amazing experience.
My training continued until the end of the week. I took a day off on Friday, just to make sure that I would not be tired on Saturday, the day of the big race. On Friday, I mainly stayed home, but every hour or two, I would take a walk, just so my legs wouldn’t cramp up. I had 2 meals of bread and water, but for dinner, I decided to treat myself to some ham I bought from the deli. I manage to buy four to five meals of meat a year, so it was worth buying some meat. After dinner, I took one more walk then headed back home and got ready for bed. I fell asleep thinking of tomorrow’s race.
As I woke up, my body was energized. I felt ready to run, and ready to win. I could barely wait until 9 o’clock for the race to begin. As I walked to the track, I stretched my body out, loosening my muscles. My competition had begun to arrive, and I was surprised to see that the girl from my town was in the finals too. I shook hands with my rivals as we lined up in our lanes. It was a mile race to determine the victor.
The judge raised his gun, and time slowed. I heard the shot in my head and began to fly. My heart pounded, and my mind raced along with my body. I passed up all the competition, except for that girl. She ran alongside me, surprising me. We flew together, step after step. I was ahead then she was ahead. We traded places until we were at the home stretch.
She slowed right before the finish line. I looked at her, and she nodded. She wanted me to win, and before I know it, I crossed the finish line, and time resumed its normal speed. The crowd was cheering, and everyone was clapping. I walked over to the winner’s podium, my mind reeling as I accepted the reality of what had just happened. I had just won first place in the final stage, earning the boat. Truly this was a life changing experience, but I was too shocked to realize it. I received the location of the boat, and the keys, and all I could do was stare blankly. When the crowd dissipated, I walked over to the girl, and thanked her for letting me win. She said that I needed the boat more than she did, and that she never wanted to win, only to run. So she was like me, in that her passion was running.
During the following week, I attempted to sell my ship. I received many offers, but the one outstanding one was an offer to buy my small boat for fifteen hundred dollars. I told the man that if I accepted any offers, it would be his, but I also told him to give me some time to think about whether or not I would even sell my boat. I had to debate that with myself seriously, because once I saw the boat, I began to have second thoughts. The boat definitely provided a better shelter to me than my current hut, but I would still be living the same life, with little funds. Sure, fifteen hundred dollars is not really a lot of money, but it was plenty to me, considering I usually live off of five to ten dollars a day.
I made my decision when I found the book. This book was no ordinary tome, and because of it, my life changed. The title was Mount Analogue. I found it inside my home one day. I did not put it there, and I knew of few other people who knew where I lived. Anyway, I looked beyond how it came to be in my possession, and began to read it. As I set the book down after reading the first few chapters, my mind began to ponder the meaning of this book. Many strange things were contained inside this tome.
My heart began to pound as soon as I read the first few pages of the book. The book was written as a letter, with the recipient being me! I had never been interviewed before, but this book knew my life, inside and out. It knew my thoughts, my feelings, everything. I began to think of this book not as a mere story, but as a living being. The book told me not to sell the boat, but instead to take it on a voyage, to Mount Analogue, the isle of mystery. On this island, the book said that there was a mountain, taller than Everest, but on top was paradise, a paradise different for every person. It said that on the boat would appear food and supplies to last me a few months out on sea, even though the trip to this place would only be a few weeks. I did not know what to think. Could what this book was saying be true?
Here was my chance to escape my life, and start anew in my paradise. My entire life I have been waiting for something like this to happen, but I still had to debate with myself whether to go or not. The book said that the journey to the top was a very hard one and that some people did not survive it.
I decided to follow the book. The buyer was unhappy that I would not sell the boat, but I told him that a more generous deal had been made, for the book made me that offer. As the book told me, there were supplies in the boat. I came to believe that the higher force was doing this, as there was no way that someone could enter my boat and place the stuff there. As I prepared the boat with last minute supplies, such as my blankets, I began to wonder if I would even find Analogue. I had never heard of it before, and I doubted that it was as it seemed.
Four days later, I set out on my quest. My parents taught me how to sail when I was ten, and this boat resembled the one I used to learn, except smaller. The book said that I would find Analogue only if I approached it from the east, and only at dawn. Else the strange forces surrounding the isle would make me loop around it, even though I would be seeming to go straight. If I strayed to long in that never-ending loop, my boat, myself, and everything upon the boat would curve and break. I told myself that I must not make that mistake.
The book pinpointed the exact location of the isle, but it did not say where the field began. I decided that I would get close to the location of the island, but wait until dawn to make my approach. That way I would not risk being caught. The book also warned of the dangers of being up front when entering the island. I would be sucked into a vortex at dawn, and if not secured, could be lost at sea. To prevent that I would make sure that I was in the storage hold at dawn.
After three days out at sea, I began to feel nausea. I wasn’t prepared for seasickness, and it worried me. If I had forgotten one of the most common sea dangers, what else had I forgotten? I spent hours dreading that I had forgotten something, only to check the hold and see it there. At the end of the day, my worries subsided, and something new replaced them. Stars were never visible back at the city, because of the light pollution, but I never dreamed that we were missing out on something so beautiful. It was sad, never having seen this wonder in my life, yet always knowing about it. I decided to camp out on the deck, to rest under the light of the stars.
I awoke in the morning with a sense of peace. It was quiet, except for the calm splash of the waves against my boat. As the day broke, an awful feeling began to form in my stomach. The boat was acting abnormally. It was speeding up, slowly but surely. I had miscalculated, and had reached the shell one day early! I hurriedly gathered my things and ran down to the keep. As soon as I had shut the door behind me, I was beginning to be pushed towards the stern of the boat. The book hadn’t told me of this, and I dreaded that my supplies would be smashed! I tried to reach the supplies, but was unable to due to this force. I eventually collapsed against the back wall, and hoped that things would not be ruined.
As I sat in darkness, chaos all around me, I began to marvel that I had actually found the island. More accurately the shell, but inside was the island. My body hurt from being pushed against the wall, and I wished for it to stop. But it did not, and time hurtled forward. I wished I were asleep, oblivious to the mayhem around me, and my wish came true. As the force became greater and greater, black began to appear at the corners of my eyes. Before long, all faded into darkness, and I lost consciousness.
My head felt as if it had just been in a match with a heavyweight boxer, and lost. As I rose to my feet, I realized that I was no longer being pushed backwards. I could walk freely again. As I began to stumble towards the ladder, my heart began to race. I had reached Mount Analogue, the island paradise. I had reached a place either so mysterious or secret, that it had never been discovered by the general public. I climbed up the ladder, but then stopped. I realized that if there were any inhabitants on the island, that I must look presentable. I went back down and prepared myself.
As I finally went up the ladder, I did not know what to expect. A tropical island, or a forested island? As I opened the door to the deck, I gasped. The isle was nothing as I had expected. The dominating detail was of course, Mount Analogue. That great black mountain nearly blotted out every other landscape on the island. It was huge, taller than Everest, and the tip reached the clouds. Around the mountain was a tropical jungle, and one of dense nature. I could hear the insects even from the shore. By the looks of it, no one had ever lived on this island. The jungle swallowed up the entire island, and only a little bit of beach surrounded it.
I jumped out of my boat to see if any harm had been caused to it. As far as I could tell, the only harm was a few small dents in the side, nothing major. I took my supplies and began to set up a camp on the outskirts of the jungle. By noon, I had successfully set up a tent, fire circle, and a rain catcher. I did not know how long I was going to stay here, but I decided that it was best to have a way to gain water, so that if my supplies ran out, I would be able to survive, at least for a while. I estimated that I had about three weeks of supplies left, and it took about a week to get here. If I only survived using my supplies, I could stay for two weeks, but I would also try to gather supplies while I was here. One of the things I was worried about was being able to get back, as the book never said how to get out of the field. I figured that I would worry about it when the time came.
After I had set up my camp, I took my knife, a small one that came with the supplies, mainly to be used for cutting branches, meat, or fruit, and began to explore the jungle. There were many species of trees and plants that I was unfamiliar with. Some of the trees were shaped like giant brooms, with a small trunk that expanded into many limbs. The plants looked like they would stab you if you stepped on them, but I touched them, and they were so soft and flexible that even the slightest breath would bend them. The more I studied this plant, the more I thought that it was hiding something to the world. I pulled one out of the ground, and to my surprise, a round onion-like bulb was under it. I had just found my first food, but first I had to find out if it was poisonous.
I took my knife and cut off a sliver of it. The plant oozed fluid, but it smelled sweet. I ate my sliver, and found it to be sweet, tasting just like an orange. I waited five minutes and after discovering no side effects, began to eat the rest of the plant. The rest of it tasted just as good as that first bite, and I also noticed something strange. Even though I was pretty hungry when I began to eat, now I was not hungry at all. This plant could provide me with an entire meal, even though it was so small. I looked up and saw these plants everywhere, dotting the landscape with pointy stems. This was amazing, a nearly unlimited supply of food! I estimated that there were at least a few hundred of them, and that would last me at least many weeks, if not months. I decided to call it oranion because it was an onion that tasted like an orange.
After my discovery, I picked a few more, and headed back to my camp, because the sun was setting. For dinner, I ate two more oranions, and by then, the sun had set. I watched the stars in the night sky for a while before heading into my tent. As I zipped up the door, I heard the sounds of insects coming from the direction of the jungle. Instead of keeping me awake, it helped me to fall asleep. Just before my eyes closed and my mind drifted into that land of dream, I had one final thought of my city, and how my life would be if had not found that book.
I awoke in the middle of the night to the sound of a hawk, or at least something like a hawk. I grabbed my flashlight and went outside, hoping to find out what was making that noise. At first, I couldn’t spot anything, but then I turned my light towards where I had put my oranions, and I saw it. It was like a lizard, but instead of just having a plain back, it had wings growing out of its back. It was eating my food, and when I shone the light on it, it screeched and flew away. As I went over to my pile of oranions, I saw that only one was half eaten, but I decided not to take a chance, just in case the lizard was poisonous, and threw the other three in the sea. I was then able to get back to sleep, and slept peacefully until morning.
I awoke to the sound of rushing water, and I hurriedly got out of my tent. I saw a horrible sight; my boat was floating out to sea, as the water around it was being pulled away. I ran for my boat, but I was too late. As the water drained away, the island began to grow larger, and when I finally reached the water’s new edge, I was unable to continue. The island’s field prevented me from continuing. All I could do was watch my boat float away into the distance. I lost all my supplies, and more importantly, the boat that would take me back home. I returned to my camp with a feeling of despair. Because I had not read the book more carefully, I was now marooned on an island with little more then shelter and a knife. I spent the rest of the day in my tent, trying to figure out what to do. I decided to make the best of it, and gather a food supply. While I was in the jungle, it began to rain heavily, and what happened was truly amazing.
As it rained, the broom trees began to let their twigs down, creating a net-like canopy that caught the water and sheltered everything else from water. This also showed that my oranions could grow entirely without water. This was a plant that could survive anywhere in the world, and no one would have to take care of it. If I ever found my way home, I would make a fortune off these plants, and I would never have to buy myself food again! When the rain stopped, the trees continued to hold their canopies up, and I discovered that I could use these as water catchers, just a soon as I could figure out how to climb them to get their water. I had plenty of spare containers to keep the water in, and it would be really useful to have a huge water supply every time it rained, which, from the humidity in the air, I could tell happened a lot.
The next day, I decided to venture further into the jungle, to try and get to the base of the mountain. As I walked through the jungle, I saw more of the creatures that ate my food that one night. They seemed to live on the ground, and when they saw me, they flew away, but they never flew higher than the trees. At noon, the mountain was looming over me, and I stopped to eat a few oranions. During lunch, a large butterfly flew right into me. Normally, this wouldn’t have scared me, but the butterfly was at least as large as my head. As I watched it fly away, its beauty stunned me. It had orange wings with large black spots on the sides, and flew very gracefully. I think that it ran into me because it had never seen something like me in this area, and didn’t know what I was. If I saw something new in an area I called home, I would definitely like to know what it was.
After my lunch I began on my way again. I had only been walking for about half an hour when the jungle stopped, and opened onto a stone building. I was stunned again. People had lived here, or maybe still did. I went up into it, and inside it resembled a temple. At the back of it was a doorway, and all around were words. I went up to inspect them, but I found I couldn’t read them. They were in some kind of unknown text, but as I studied them, they changed. Soon they resembled the words I was able to read, and I started reading the wall at the beginning of the temple.
“All who venture here prepare for what lies ahead. The path to the sacred mountain is beyond this chamber. If you dare face the dangers ahead, proceed, but first know what it is. On top of the sacred mountain is the path to another world, a place of mystery that none have yet found. It is in this other place that lives are changed. Be warned though, for many have tried to climb, but none have yet succeeded, save the one who came from that other realm. He came and passed down this tale, and we, the people of this island, have recorded it for all people who discover this island.”
As I finished reading this manuscript, my mind began to think. I had found a way off the island. Even though I would not go back to my old home, I would be able to escape this island. Maybe there were doors in the other place that would lead back to this world. Who knows, maybe I would find paradise in that other place. I would have immediately begun to climb Analogue, if not for the fact that I had none of my supplies with me. I began to head back to my camp when I realized that I did not think to put any markers to find my way back. I was lost in the middle of a jungle with night falling, and I had no shelter.
As the sun set, I began to worry about how I was ever going to get back. I knew that there was a beach surrounding the jungle, but if I found it, I would not know how far I would have to walk to get to camp. Finally, I realized what I had to do. I had to follow the setting sun. If I came in from the east of the island, I would have set up my camp in the east part of the island. So if I headed east into the jungle, I would have to head west to leave it. With hope put back in my heart, I began to follow the setting sun. Soon I found the place where I had lunch, and knew that I was heading in the right direction. By the time it was dark out, I had just emerged onto the beach. I was so relieved that I was not lost forever. I was so exhausted that I fell asleep right on the sand, instead of heading into my tent.
When I awoke in the morning, I immediately gathered some oranions for breakfast. Having had no dinner the night before, I had four of them before I was full. While I was eating, I began to think about climbing the mountain. The more I thought about it, the more determined I became about climbing it. It was the only way I could think of to get off the island. It is not a bad place, but it is also not the paradise described in the book. Maybe the book indicates that on top of the mountain is paradise. I wouldn’t know until I reach it. I began to pack up my camp, preparing for the long climb ahead of me.
I began at noon, with my tent and remaining tools on my back. The boat had come with a backpack for this specific reason. As I walked through the jungle, I decided that I would stay the night in the temple, and head off again in the morning. While nearing the temple, I saw the butterfly again, this time it was landed in the trees, drinking water from their canopies. As it drank, the tree shook and water drizzled off the side. This gave me a great idea for collecting water, as I had just finished off all of my water supplies. I leant my backpack against a tree and put my bottle at the other end, catching what came down. I took a drink and found the water to be cool and refreshing, much better tasting than what had come in my bottles.
When I arrived at the temple, I went inside and set up my tent. By this time it was nearing dusk, and I went outside one last time to gather a few oranions for dinner. This provoked me into thinking what I would eat on the climb. It didn’t look like anything could grow up there, so I would need to bring oranions from down here. I decided to leave my tent behind and keep them in by backpack instead.
The next morning it rained again, a good sign for me. I filled up all twelve of my water bottles and gathered thirty-six oranions. I figured that I could have one water bottle a day and an oranion for every meal. This would last me twelve days, plenty enough to climb to the top. I took one last check in the temple, to make sure that I was not forgetting anything. I found that I wasn’t and headed through the door at the end of the temple.
I exited onto a steep path that lead up to a gate. Immediately proceeding the gate was the black rock of Analogue. I steeled my mind for the climb, and walked through the gate. As soon as I did, the air changed. It became more dry and hot, and I realized that this would be a problem. With the air being so dry, I would become thirsty more quickly. I now could no longer last on one bottle a day. I would have to drink more, or risk getting dehydrated. I forced myself to only have two a day, or I would not have enough to come down if there was nothing on top.
As I began the climb, I noticed that there was a direct, sloping path up the mountain. I wondered if this was a natural occurrence, or if someone had built it. It didn’t seem logical that someone could build it, having to carve straight through the rock, so I consulted my book. It said that the path was created from the thousands of people who had tried to climb it, only to fail and die along the path. It also said that higher up, I would start to see skeletons of the men who had tried, and failed, dying to the elements and creatures of the peak, and also that the path would begin to get rougher and steeper, as few people had managed to climb that far. I put the book away, starting to get a little scared, but continued on my voyage.
By sunset, I managed to climb far enough that the temple below was just barely recognizable. The path circled around the mountain, sloping upwards at a frightening pace. I estimated that I had climbed about a thousand feet, but I still could tell that I had a lot left to go. I managed to keep to my rule with two water bottles, and I had a meal of one oranion at lunch, but I had to have two at dinner. My legs were hurting at the end of the day, and I realized that it was not a smart decision to leave my tent in the temple, but I could not turn back. I had to sleep with my head propped up against my backpack, and I was cold all night.
In the morning, my body ached from the work I had done the day before. I felt like I could barely move, but after I stretched, my pain eased up. After a sip of water and an oranion, I was ready to go. As I began to walk again, I saw one of the flying lizards crouched over a dead one, eating its own species flesh. These flying lizards are carnivores, and I knew now to stay away from them. It looked like the dead lizard was a different shade of color from the other one, so I also figured that they were poisonous. This must be what killed the men who tried before me. I still had my knife though, so I could protect myself, but I must keep guard at all times. As the day progressed it got hotter and hotter. I could barely walk five minutes without feeling thirsty, and the path was rocky and I stumbled a lot. The only relief I could get was when I passed into the shade of the mountain, where it was about five degrees cooler. I could not see the temple anymore, but instead, I began to see the cloudsI was forced to walk through the night, for fear of being bitten by the lizards. Many times I had to pull out my dagger to scare them off, for they were coming for me because they believed me to be weak.
As the days passed, my supplies began to run low. After three days of climbing without sleep, it was so hot that I needed to drink nearly three bottles of water a day. I once found a small hole in the ground, filled with water from a recent rain. I managed to fill up two bottles from that hole, and I considered myself lucky. Food and sleep were becoming a problem. I had not slept for three days straight, and I was afraid that if I let my eyes close, I would be bitten by one of those lizards. I was down to one oranion a day, and I only had enough left for two days. Sometimes when I stopped thinking, I would eat one accidentally, or I would need to throw one to distract a lizard. I still could not see the top of the mountain, and I was beginning to worry.
On the fourth day, I couldn’t keep myself awake, and I finally succumbed to sleep. While I slept, I dreamt that I was living in my old house, the one I had lived in when my parents were still alive. In this dream, my parents were alive, and I was with them. I was as old as I am now, and had won the boat, but never found the book. We went fishing every week, and we had fun together. In the dream, I was watching from the viewpoint of a person who was always there, but never partook in what was happening. It made me wonder whether this was a could have been, or a could be.
I awoke to searing pain, grabbed my dagger, expecting a lizard to be nearby, but there was none. I found the source of my pain, I had been sleeping with my leg on a sharp rock and it had cut me. I was bleeding, but not badly, so I ripped off a strip of my shirt, and wrapped it around my leg. As I thought about my dream, I realized that I must accept what happened to my parents, and that nothing could bring them back. As I stretched and took a few sips of water, I prepared myself for the long days I had ahead of me. Having only one day’s supplies left, I realized that unless I reached the top soon, I would die. Faced with this grim reality, I now knew that there was only one way to reach the top. I had to run.
As I dropped all unneeded supplies, such as my flashlight and empty bottles, I realized that this would be the race of my life. I had just seen a man’s skeleton, and realized that if I did not win this one, I would die. I removed my shirt and tied it around my waist so that I would not freeze in my sweat when night came. As I began to jog up the steep path, I noticed that it was not very clear where the path was, and I must have been getting close to the top because the book said that not many people made it high up, and there had not been as many feet to smooth out the path. My lungs burned with the exhaustion of running, and I stumbled every few steps, but I had to continue my work. Pain seeped in through my heart and legs and then I saw it.
As I rounded a bend in the mountain, through the clouds appeared the peak. My heart leapt as I saw this glory in the sky as my journey’s end was realized. I had only a few hours worth of climbing left until I reached it, and the paradise beyond. With new vigor I began to run along the path again, still stumbling, but not caring because I had nearly reached my destination. I ran until nightfall, then I stopped and began to walk. The peak was so close now, I didn’t even stop to eat my last oranion.
As the night progressed the peak drew nearer still. I would reach it by dawn, and see the paradise that awaited me. As I rounded the final bend and reached the peak, the sun shone over the horizon. What awaited me on that flat mountaintop, I could never forget. At first I saw nothing, but my eyes were still getting adjusted to the sun’s light and I had to squint to see anything. When I was able to open my eyes, I didn’t notice anything special, but, finally, I saw it.
It was a small patch of darker area from the surrounding rock. I went to it and noticed that it was not anything solid, but more of a hole in the rock. I stuck my head in and gasped. Inside was my house in the city, exactly as it had been before I left. What was even more surprising was what I saw inside my house. It was me. I saw myself sleeping on the ground, with the certificate for the boat in my hand. I pulled my head out of the portal, and thought about what I had witnessed.
Twenty minutes later, I figured it out. It was a loop in history. I realized that I had to give my past self the book that I had gotten from my future self and so on and so on. I had to do what my future self had done, which created a loop in which a book that no one had written or made was repeatedly given to someone else, who in turn gave it back to himself. If this did not occur that person would cease to exist, because he had never gotten the book to begin with. That was the part that scared me the most. Where did the book come from? I stuck my head back in and realized that I was gone. I figured that this was probably the best time to put the book in my house and then I thought. What if I never returned the book? What had happened on this island would never have happened and I would cease to exist. I figure that the latter option would not be a very good one, so I put the book in my house just as I had found it and stepped back into my own world.
For the next few days, I had to hide from my past self and anyone who I knew. But after I left on my voyage, I returned to my home and began to ponder the events of my journey. The book was right about paradise being on top of the island, I just never realized it. My journey made me discover that I had to get over what had happened in my life, and continue with it. Life does go on, even if bad things happen, but you have to make the best out of it. I decided to go find out how to get over my tragedy, and start a new life where I could grow and prosper. As I end this journal, I am leaving to go sort out my life, and am placing this book in the back of the library, a place with all the stories of castaways. May the person who reads this discover what I discovered.