As charred stone pressed against my palm, it disintegrated into dust before floating away in the gentle sea breeze. It was almost magical in a chilling, not at all pleasant way. Everything was charred now; the great fires of Europe had reduced the mighty continant to nothing more than a pile of ashes and left to age alone forever. Few still journeyed past the safety of their ships, scared the scarred land will harm them either mentally, images of the past still bouncing about in their nervous heads, or physically, with the dust and disease.
I couldn't blame those people -- they had reason to be afraid. I don't. The Transition began before I was born, and ended when I was only a year and a half old. I was one of the lucky few that survived, and though I was thankful for the chance I was given, it didn't come without a price.
Peeking over my shoulder, I gave my best friend a smile and found her smiling back at me. Had she been watching? Before I could ask, Emilia had circled around me.
"Did you hear me or were you spacing out again?"
"Uh..." I rubbed the back of my neck nervously.
"Finn." Emilia lectured. "You have to focus. The crew is counting on us, you know. Do you even remember what we're supposed to be doing here?"
"Gathering info on the terrain?"
"Good," She smiled again and I let out a little breath, glad she wasn't actually mad. "You listening now?"
"Yeah, I am."
"Follow me then," She cocked her head towards west side of the small Island we were exploring. "You're gonna want to see this."