|User Story: The Best Lives are the Ones That Make You Cry, by Morti|
September 11, 2018
So, another life, born to a mother wandering about, with a name, not an Eve, but someone away from home, that appears lost.
I say little, I don't beg for food, I just watch.
She pulls milkweed, makes thread, stands there looking at it for 10 seconds, probably going through the Tab menu, looking at options, then she carries me away.
Next she pulls some clay from a pit, looks at it a few moments, grabs a stone, makes bowls, looks at them for a second, turns them into plates, then carries me away.
This continues as she is moving along. She is experimenting, making items on the spot and leaving them where she finds them.
I will be very patient with this person.
I'm a few years old and she carries me far from those items, first to the west, and then to the south. A bell rang and it was 4.4k away the year I was born. Pointing south. We've traveled roughly 100 meters west and nearly 100 south, but the distance doesn't change. I grow hair on this journey. Eventually she can no longer pick me up.
So, I ask "Where / is / your / home?"
What word did she use? I can't recall. She basically said she was orphaned or that things were tough where she came from.
I decided not to ask more about that. I'm just guessing she ran off to gather food at a young age and never found her way back home.
"So / what / do you / want / to do?"
"Let's find a village" she says to me.
"Or we / could / make / one?"
She seems a little reluctant at first, but says "There is no water here."
"We will / find / some. / But / first / set a / home / marker / so we / have a / point / of / referen/ce."
She agrees, I set mine, ask her to do the same, but she doesn't. Instead she makes rope, a hoe, and uses flint on a berry to make a seed while I am off scouting and find a nice place where the grassland and desert borders meet a swamp with ponds. I return to her and let her know I've found a good place. I take her to it, explaining how it's nice and warm and show her the ponds.
Around this time my sister is born, the one who will go on to give my mother her only grandchildren. I tell my mom I'll get rope and for the next 20 years, go through the motions of running out to gather everything that is necessary at the time to basically tech up.
The farm is just getting started, the hoe my mother made where we were when we decided to start a home has broken and there are 8 tilled plots of soil, 6 of which have gooseberry seeds growing in them. My mother says she's too old and is just wasting our food but I assure her her presence is welcome and that she should stay and live till she is sixty. She agrees to stay alive.
I then decide to set off to get a rabbit for the bellows and I am near the spot where my mother made the hoe and skinned the berry when we decided to make a home. I bring back the seed along with the rabbit. She's still alive at the farm.
"Do you remember when I first started talking? When we decided to make a home? You made a hoe and skinned a berry for the seed. This is that seed." All the while she is making teary faced emotes; T.T and saying how happy she is.
"Shall we plant it here?"
She agrees, we should, but as I am typing "Would you like to do the honors?" she says "byee" and passes away.
This was the first time I cried this life.
I plant the seed. Find a basket, gather up our mother's remains, circle the camp for a place to rest her body and settle on a spot north of the forge about 30 meters and a warm corner of the desert.
Now I would like to let you know something I do, or at least try to do, every life that I find myself the son of an Eve, or any mother, who's other children do not survive to have children of their own. Rather than stop playing, I focus all my efforts on the forge; so that I have the tools necessary so that I may bury my mother and mark her grave. If I have time I will also bury the other members of the family that stuck around to work as long as they could, maybe even marking the grave of a helpful brother, but there isn't a whole lot of time to do all that.
If the family is still thriving, I will try to bury our mother, but my attention is very often divided between that goal and ensuring that there is enough food an resources to support the mothers and their children. But if it's just me, I will try to stay alive until 60 no matter what and once my mother is gone, the only thing left that matters is giving her a proper burial with a marked grave. A grave I will also usually decorate with an item that reminded me of her.
Now the clock is ticking.
I've only just returned the rabbit for the bellows, there is only 1 piece of iron at the kiln that I brought while gathering rope. I bring back 2 full baskets of iron and by that time I have about half of my food meter left. Luckily one of my sister's children takes an interest in the forge and starts helping me by making charcoal and gathering branches. We make the hammer and the ax just as we are on our last piece of kindling and branches are far off in the distance. Next I make the shovel and the chisel and let my sister's kid know that I only want to make enough to mark my mother's grave before I die. Someone comes up and asks for a hoe. I only need the adze, for the mallet, so I agree to make the hoe as well. And with the adze, chisel and shovel done, I run the shovel up to my mother's grave, bury her, find a headstone, return back home, place the chisel and mallet in a basket, bring up to my mother's grave and set off for three skewers to make the M. As I am returning home I read "I found some abandoned tools north" and while darting around for the flint and sharp stone in town to make the M I say "they were not abandoned, please return them" I wasn't sure I was going to have to take anything more than the M up with me. I didn't think I was going to make it. Everything needed was so far apart, but, in the last year of my life, I managed to bring it all together.
M on the grave, chisel, mallet, done.
And I sat there. Tools on the ground as I looked at her grave. And I began to cry again.
Stomach nearly empty, hot water welled up in my eyes, it was an instinct to go for the nearest cactus, but, an instinct that kicked in a little too late. I'd stopped looking at the meter, my mind was full of the highlights of the last 59 minutes. I died at the cactus.
Not shown in this picture are my sister and her kids, for them, see the link.
Well done, Sue.
All of you.
Thanks for making and playing this game with me.
Thank you, for being human.