So I posted this in the Steam forums a few months ago when I rediscovered the game. Thought I would pop it here for anyone's Interest.
Today I saw someone back in Elektrozavodsk. I didn't speak to him. Why didn't I speak to him? I wish I had. I have no idea how long it is since I last talked to someone. But I was scared. I only glanced out of the window and there he was sprinting in the direction of the well. The gun in his hand a terrifying reminder of how dangerous the world has become.
I dashed down the stairs as quietly as I could, took a peak out of the door. With the coast clear I made for the opposite building which would give me a clean line of sight towards the well, and there, through the window, I got another sight of him down the barrel of my rifle. He was drinking from the well.
Silently I watched with sweat beading my brow. Should I shoot? He was armed but as yet unaware of me. He finished drinking and without refilling any bottle he headed west and I let him go. I wanted to shout hello. I wanted to walk up and shake his hand and introduce myself. I wanted to hear his voice, another human beings voice. But I let him go.
Its funny how I can remember what people once said but I can not recall how they sounded. I hear their words in my head but its always my own voice speaking. The memories of long dead friends and family. Of conversations. Ghosts speaking to me from the past in my own voice. Always my own voice.
The sun was beginning to get low in the sky and this place was not safe. I decided to head for Pusta. I prefer to travel by night. It feels safer somehow, and with regret and loneliness weighing heavy on my heart, I picked my way through the empty buildings heading north, west of the power plant.
As the sun set I found the power lines heading to Pusta and followed them up towards the woods. Behind me, from the direction of town, somewhere in the enveloping darkness, I heard several frenzied shots ring out.
I arrived at Pusta before Dawn. The air was cold and my clothes were badly worn. My rucksack is ruined and I worry about losing some of my belongings from it. I make a hurried dash to fill up on water at the well before creeping from building to building, searching for new clothes and a bag. In the dark its hard to see and I disturbed one of the corpses which groaned into animation. I ran for the nearest building, slamming the door behind me. Hot on my heels came a rabid corpse which ran into the closed door. My heart raced and as my breathing began to settle I could smell the horror just outside. Trapped I huddled down for a drink and something to eat.
It was warmer in the house and at some point I fell asleep listening to the lullaby moans emanating from the vocal chords of hell. I dreamt of being chased by hideous undead creatures and suddenly I startled wide awake to silence. The sun was up. The only indication of time I had left. The worlds of consciousness and dreams blended into one continuous mare. I took a sip of water and got out my map.
Pusta turned up a welcome bit of food and several unwanted tools. Useful in a sense but a heavy burden to carry around and with no immediate use I left them all behind except for the Axe. Just what I needed to chop wood for a fire.
I left Pusta behind and began foraging my way to Moglievka. Apples and mushrooms were the feast of the day, again. As I broke the tree line I could see Moglievka perched in the distance surrounded with excellent lines of sight. I paused. Moving across those open fields in daylight would leave me vulnerable. I remembered the man in Elektrozavodsk. A sniper would easily be able to pick me off. I sat a while and watched. It all appeared peaceful. The hum of crickets and rapturous bird song my only company. In the end I decided to move as the cold felt bitter. I took the chance and made it safely to town.
Moglievka proved a welcome relief. A new coat brought some comforting warmth and tinned spaghetti made a change from the usual foraged food. I also found some rice but with no pot to cook (nor piss) in, I decided to leave it behind. I managed to catch some welcome dreamless sleep and awoke as the sun set, ready to head further west. Giving one last sweep of the buildings before I left turned up a torch. This really lifted my spirits as travelling at night had been rather challenging without light but it beat trying to sleep in the cold of night.
Carelessly I left the building, proudly shining my new torch into the darkness, trying to pinpoint the undead. Pinpoint one I did. The corpse chased me back into the house and in the panic I picked up a second stinking corpse. Trapped I sat down to eat and by the time the filthy creatures had wandered off it was late.
I left in a hurry and in the dark inky blackness of the night I lost my way. Travelling for what seemed like forever, I came across a hunting stand and nearby I spent the rest of the night, waiting for daybreak so I could discover my location. With help from the torch I set a fire back in the trees and there amongst the crackles and pops of burning embers I sat and wrote my journal. My only friend.
When daylight arrived I found myself just outside Pusta. At first my mood sank and then I heard it. Somewhere nearby the bellowing call of a stag punctured through the forest. I grabbed my old badly worn rifle and began crawling towards the sound. There, out in a field, not more than 100 meters away and inching towards me came a herd of deer. A rush of excitement flooded my veins and with an unsteady hand and a rumbling stomach, I waited. Then the moment came. A loud bang and the butt kicked into my shoulder. The deer dropped to the ground. Elated I ran to the corpse. I knew that butchering this beast with a steak knife was not going to be easy but I was aware that anyone in the vicinity would have heard the shot, so I quickly got to the job in hand before moving off into the woods. That day I ate like a king while roasting the rest of the meat in an attempt to preserve it longer. This has to be the best day in a long time. Warm venison steak, juicy fresh apples, and a warm fire.
Before moving out I went back and searched the hunting stand. I almost could not believe my eyes. Laid there was a Mosin 91/30 in pristine condition. This must have been some ones pride and joy. It felt good in my hands. At once sturdy and comforting. It felt like a gift from the gods. Of course I had no ammo but compared the BK-18 I had used to bring down the stag, this was on another level. It was also missing a clip and a sight but with plenty of cooked meat in my bag already, it would be a while before I needed to use it.
I got out my map and changed my course. If I headed west there was an abandoned check point which was sure to house some weaponry and ammo. It seemed like a good shot and with my luck on the up I rolled the dice and headed west, once more into the darkness.
Never one for navigation by the stars, tonight the brightest of the stars lead me to the outpost and undercover of darkness I carefully picked the place clean. I found the ammo I had hoped for but no clip, nor sight, for the Mosin. I did however find me a compass. This buoyed my spirits. I could have done with this in Moglievka but then if I had not got lost I would not be in the position I now am. Sometimes mistakes can become good fortune.
I also chanced upon an SG5-K, clip, and ammo. This would have given me some good firepower in a fight but I decided to leave it behind. The whole world may have gone to hell and the rule of law no longer existed but I had no plans to get into a fire fight. Hell, only days ago I ran away from the stranger in Elektrozavodsk. Now my bags were full of food, I had a torch, and a cracking hunting rifle. I needed a fight with a sub-machine gun like I needed a hole in my forehead. Better to play it safe and avoid people. Better to find a spade and plant these tomato seeds. The thought made my mouth water and I sat down once more to eat venison. This life wasn't so bad, even if the loneliness was slowing driving me mad.
Further down the road I came across a medical centre where I found a first aid kit, pain killers, and antibiotics. I had no immediate use for them but it felt like finding gold. Surely its better to have first aid and not need it, than need it and not have it. I managed to cram these into my rucksack and made my way north east to Rog castle ruins where I planned to spend the night. It was an uneventful walk made easier in the dark with the aid of the compass. I got to the castle and settled down for the night. Maybe not the safest place to sleep but where is safe these days?
Tomorrow I will follow the trail to Msta and fill up on some water. Hopefully find a new bag and some better pants.