It would have been impossible to say how many bodies littered the field that day. I had a hunch that something was going to happen, but if you had asked me then I never would have guessed so many would die. Part of me wanted to say that if I would have known I would have done something to put a stop to the battle. But I know that’s not true, not because I wasn’t willing to try, but because no matter how powerful I might be, there was no way I could end fighting on that scale. Once humans put their mind to something it’s almost impossible to stop them—even if that something involves killing others for poorly thought out reasons.
“So, no survivors here either?”
Ahh right back to the moment, I reminded myself, at my age getting distracted is oddly easy. The man who was speaking wears a white lab coat and a pair of worn safety goggles. He was surprisingly calm considering what he was looking at, but he wouldn’t have made it as far as he had without the ability to keep a level head.
“Unfortunately, doctor, I can’t sense a single life here either,” I said in a detached voice. It honestly bugs me how easy it is to lose the feeling in my soul when helplessly watching the light of life fade away from so many people. I had to remind myself every time that each life is important, that each person matters. Each person had a life as vivid and as meaningful as my own, even if it’s hard to believe or understand in that way.
The doctor shakes his head, not because he has to, or because it means anything. After all we’ve repeated this process five times now, for each section of this ridiculously large battlefield—turned graveyard. I knew how he was feeling, and he knew my feelings as well. That is the connection between human and monster. The Doctors human soul and my monster one connected together, even if he isn’t able to fully link with all my power. But so few humans can on their own.
“I’m sorry Phex—I’m having a hard time collecting my feelings,” the doctor looked up at me. I wasn’t really that large, but the doctor was a shorter human, so he had to look up to see my face.
I have the body of an owl monster, not that the word owl means much in my world. My feathers are navy blue and brown, and I’m as tall as a tall human. Some have asked me how I can even fly with how much I must weigh at my size, but that is not something I’ve taken to worrying about. My face is always a bird like mask, impossible for human empathy to penetrate, but that’s really for the best.
“Doctor you have no reason to apologize. I have seen far greater humans then you break down at sights like these.” I intend it as a complement. But I realized afterword’s that humans do not like to be told that there are people greater than themselves. Thankfully the doctor is more forgiving then many humans. And a different part of my comment has caught his attention.
“Have you seen things like this before?” he asks gesturing to the abandoned corpses that litter the ground.
I want to tell him that it’s not true, that death on this scale has never happened. And it won’t happen again, that what we are seeing is a onetime thing, an accident of human folly. But that would be a lie…. And I respect the doctor too much to lie to him.
“Yes,” I said simply.
The doctor takes out his M-book, an odd tablet device that Linkers use to store and transport their monster friends. I’ve never put much thought into how it works. I’ve also never been inside one, since my links with humans rarely ever last as long as other monsters do. He looks at the device for a moment and then he hugs it, his affection is clearly for the monsters inside.
“Let’s go to the next area,” the doctor said.
I wanted to tell him to rest, I wanted to tell him that it doesn’t matter how long we keep going, we probably won’t find anyone who’s still alive, no people, and no monsters. But the doctor respects life almost as much as I do—perhaps more. He is a doctor after all. And so, he won’t rest, not until he has searched every inch of that battlefield for survivors. And I couldn’t either, if there is even the slightest chance that we could save someone who’s still clinging to life, then we must keep going. Maybe we’ll find someone in the next area.