Even if I was the type of person who enjoys being social, I don’t think it would have stopped Nicholas from shooting himself. All I could do was just hold his head in my hands as the blood escaped from his skull. We were the last two people on Earth, having survived the pandemonium of nuclear fallout and natural disaster. For twenty-five years, we survived the desolate hell of mercs and bandits by hiding in the bunkers and subways. He only saw the light for a few weeks before he decided to off himself.
I wouldn’t blame him. Watching the ransacked buildings and the remains of what used to be metropolis could have made anyone break down. All of the corpses, old and new, just laying lifelessly on the ground, on the streets, hell even on the buildings from all the artillery. Well, at least I’d hope it was the destruction that got to him. I’d learn quickly that he was a naive man who frequented social gatherings. An extroverted optimist. Attention and fun was what kept him energized from a day to day basis. He always saw the silver lining in everything. He kept telling me how the world would come to their senses and band together to survive. And then he meets me. A cynical, introverted pessimist. One who can’t stand society and deep in his heart feels that humanity has deserved this.
I didn’t have the heart to tell him that he was wrong. That there was no hope. Truth be told, I needed him to help me survive. I needed him to do the things that I didn’t have time to do. I know, I know. How selfish of me. But is it really selfish to want to continue to live, even when the odds are against you? So Nicholas is in my hands and the blood finally stopped leaking. I stood up and used his canteen to wash my hands, and leaned against the wall. I took a deep breath and began to meditate. It’s been a while since I was able to stop worrying. No more waiting. No more pressure. No more emotion. With Nicholas gone, it’s back to the way things were, even before all of this madness. Back to being alone. Back to being isolated. Back to surviving.