Prologue - The Wheels of Fate Turn
Boredom is underrated.
For years, I’ve patiently listened to my friends and colleagues whine about the lack of excitement in their daily lives. Wouldn’t it be nice to be a movie star or a billionaire’s son? Aren’t pro athletes so lucky, getting paid millions to do what they love? Heck, even being a traveling gourmet would be much better than being stuck inside a damn cubicle, they said.
I understood where they were coming from, but I never shared their views. If there’s one thing I learned from my parents, it’s gratitude. The Brooks family never took anything for granted.
How could I complain about my lot? I was born to loving parents in a safe, peaceful country. We weren’t rich, but there was always food on the table and our heating was never cut off. And even though I graduated in the midst of a recession, I was still able to find a well-paying job.
I have four working limbs and a healthy mind. That alone makes me luckier than countless other people. Yes, office work can be monotonous at times, but isn’t that a luxury too? Never having to fight for survival or worry about where my next meal is coming from - it’s pure bliss.
My biggest dream was to continue living this happy and simple life. I had it all planned out: get married, have three kids, adopt a Welsh Corgi, and spend much of my retirement woodworking or fixing old motorcycles. Just endless days of idleness in my corner of the world. It would have been perfect!
No matter how boring of an existence my life was, I cherished every second.
So… this is quite a shame.
I really didn’t want to die so early.
* * *
My legs were crushed, turned into a mess of shattered bone and flowing blood. It was a miracle that I hadn’t passed out from the pain yet. People around me were screaming, but I barely noticed. My mind was completely in shock. Wait, is the boy I pushed out of the way fine?
Yes. There he is. Thank god, he looks unharmed. I would feel really silly if I did this for nothing. That’s probably his mother covering his eyes. Good call lady. You should probably book a therapist for the poor boy too.
The truck driver was almost hysterical. I’m sure this memory will traumatize him, and he’ll definitely lose his job, but he really shouldn’t have been speeding like that. Stop signs exist for a reason man! Maybe his brakes failed, though. I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt... not like I can chastise him in my current condition.
For the next few minutes, I fought to stay conscious. Everything was covered in a red haze. The sound of sirens told me that I had been put in an ambulance, however, and we seemed to be moving pretty fast.
Deep down… I felt like I wasn’t going to make it.
“Hang in there, hero.” One of the EMTs said, holding my hand. “We’ll get you fixed right up. Your parents are on the way to the hospital too.”
Damn, sorry mom and dad. This will be a horrible experience for them. I can't imagine how worried and afraid they are right now.
Maybe I shouldn’t have tried to save the kid after all. But who could just stand there in that situation? I almost made it out scot free too - the truck only got my lower half.
“Don’t let them see.” I said, in between bloody coughs. “My legs.”
“No worries, we’ll have a tarp or something ready in the ER.” The guy joked.
|[Warning: Critical injuries sustained.]|
A small, translucent box had appeared in the center of my vision. It looked like a notification of some sort - though it only stated the obvious.
What is this? The blue box floated, unattached to anything. When I moved my eyes, it followed to stay in my line of sight. The two EMTs didn’t seem to notice it at all.
|[Warning: HP severely depleted. Death imminent.]|
“The message…” I wheezed, trying to speak.
“Easy champ, save your energy.” One of the EMTs said in a soothing voice, giving me a forced smile.
“We’re almost at the hospital. Just hang in there a little longer.” His partner said.
Both of their expressions were grim, though. They knew that the chances were low.
Every second that passed, more of my strength left me. I tried as hard as I could to stay awake. A little longer! Let me say goodbye to my family, at least! However, it wasn’t meant to be.
My vision faded, and another notification appeared.
[You have died. Ending run 001.]
[Soul anchored in Ascendant Sapphire Dancer’s domain.]
[Returning in 3...2...1...]
After a final breath filled with unwillingness, I fell into a world of infinite blackness.