End

Run. Just run while you can.

I just wanted a future, something to work towards too. Instead, I cause a catastrophe that will very likely affect the whole of my country forever. I continue running, the sharp, cheap road cobblestones slicing and digging into the balls of my feet. With the might of an angry village on my shoulders, I ignore the shooting pain that pulsate throughout my body. In fact I don't even notice the faint trail of blood that I leave behind with every dragging step. Don't think. Only run. Running requires no thought.

Dirty water trickles down my back. I sigh and look up, watching the droplets fall down onto my shoulder, and the tired ceiling fan circulate slowly. How I even got here, I think to myself, I can't imagine.

For the first time since I woke up, I properly take in my surroundings. Pale, stinking mould dominated the ceiling, illuminated by a dim, weak light. In front of me were several boxes of what looked like old-fashioned film reels, all labelled 'Last Happy War', and a dusty projector emitted a bright, white stream of light, the reel turning quietly inside. Across to my right was a door; this door was crumbly and was a poor sufferer of wood rot and lice, yet somehow I was strangely attached to it. Something about it seemed peculiar, like something massive or life-changing happened to this door and into this room. I could feel its emotion yearn and call me.

Its emotion was sad and longing. It was like an object that wanted its story heard; it just wanted someone for it to talk to. And that somebody happens to be me. I had no idea how I could hear or even feel emotions from objects. Yet it was an ability that I've had since I was little.

It faintly called, "Happy...Happy...listen to me...I...need...someone...please, just come..." Its voice was just like that of a young girl's, and she was crying softly.

Her voice faded out. As sudden as her voice appeared, questions began to pop into my head. Who was that young child? Why was she so sad? Most importantly, who was 'Happy' and what caused her to be sad? However, to think that a door had a gender definitely told me I was losing it.

Thinking back to when I was kidnapped, I pondered about the moral of those guys. Why had they kidnapped me in the first place? After all, I had done nothing wrong. I was nothing out of the ordinary. Unless...

I push the developing thought out of my head. I can't let myself lose my mind at this point, I thought calmly, just relax, just watch the reels, and just let them get their way. Only then I realised how stiff and achy my joints felt; I attempted to stretch my legs and arms out, only to find that loose, thick bracelets and anklets, chained to thin, flimsy chains, were clipped onto my withered wrists and ankles. It was loose enough that I could rotate and move my hands and feet around slightly, yet tight enough that I couldn't slip out of them. It was similar with the chains because they were long, so I could move around a bit. It was almost as though my kidnappers wanted to give me a sense of freedom yet constantly remind me that I was a victim of theirs every time I accidentally tugged a chain to full stretch, a form of psychological torture.

After some time, I settled down and began to watch the never-ending film reel. It switched over to a still picture entitled: 'Last Happy War – the War of Emotion'. After a few seconds, faint colour videos of the war started to run. Unlike any war I saw, there was no physical fighting; no limbs being blown off, no bombs, weapons or dead bodies, no family members heaving with sobs over loved ones' graves. Instead, they all stayed in their towns, however all the soldiers were all in one place, a huge temple, in a meditating position. All of them had their eyes closed, but their faces weren't of peace. They were twisted with pain, fear and hurt, and their eyes scrunched up. No matter how uncomfortable they were, they never writhed on the floor. They stayed in their positions, as though they were statues.

The commentary started: "Back at the Last Happy War, the final war to use the power of Possessive Emotions, our brave soldiers endure emotional pain and torture to protect their loved ones and their homes."

I looked sadly at the film of young children and their mothers watching their town's silent temple, knowing that they were going through so much. To me, the worst kind of pain of all was emotional pain. Even though your body would be fine, you lose the ability to think rationally, and go through so much sadness accompanied with strange looks from people or no one understood you at all. It would be so frustrating and would kill you trying to get them to understand.

The film reel finished suddenly, with the words 'The End' listed on there. After, there was no 'Last Happy War' introduction slide. Instead, it was replaced simply with the words 'Last Hate'. It sounded like there was hope, if there was to be no hate after. What I watched was proved me so wrong.

Last Hate is much more than it sounds.