A young man loses his memory and searches for his identity.
As I sat I pondered what had happened. Considering the blood, I must have fallen and hit my head. And now my mind was completely blank. All that I knew was that my head throbbed and I was surrounded by dark and gloomy trees. Not that that meant anything. I was as abandoned and alone as if I were stuck in the middle of the arctic with only frozen waste land before me. Looking around at the scenery I noticed that there wasn’t any life to be seen. I couldn’t even see an insect on the ground.
I glanced around and saw a small pool of water. I dragged my body over to it and gazed into a reflection of myself. Brown, mousy hair, eyes as black as coal, a somewhat crooked nose that looked as if it had been broken at some point, a square jaw and a line of dark blood running down my right cheek. I became nervous as I realized that I did not recognize this face. It was as if I was looking at a stranger. In fact, I was a stranger to myself. My whole identity had been stripped from me. No matter how long and hard I racked my brain I could not remember a single thing about my life.
I decided that I needed to find civilization. If I could find somebody that knows me they may be able to help me find my identity. I took a handful of the water that I had been staring into and splashed it on my bloody face. I then took another handful and filled my thirsty mouth. I was hungry but there was nothing I could see to eat so the water would have to do. I searched for anything that I might have been carrying on me but found nothing. Finally I stood up again and this time I stayed standing. I then picked a random direction and started walking. With God’s help I may find some locals nearby. I sent up a quick prayer.
I walked for hours occasionally stopping by a small pool of water to quench my thirst. The whole time I looked for berries or some other food source to fill my grumbling stomach but I searched to no avail.
I stepped out into a small clearing and suddenly I heard a whooshing sound as an arrow narrowly missed me. Somebody was shooting at me! I scanned my surroundings quickly and ended up staring down the sharp end of an arrow. A tanned man stood behind it holding the arrow against a taught string.
I held up my hands palm out in front of me and cautiously said, “Don’t shoot! I-I don’t know what’s going on but I mean no harm.”
The man started speaking very quickly in a tongue I knew not of. When he saw the look of confusion on my face he stopped talking and slowly lowered his bow. He looked at me, cocked his head slightly and in English said, “Who are you?”
His accent took me off guard and I hesitated before I spoke. “I-I don’t know.”
The man paused, obviously confused. “How can you not know who you are?”
“I don’t know what happened but I have no memory. Everything up until a few hours ago is completely blank.”
The man looked me over and seeing my dishevelled figure and the cut along my temple he commanded, “Come with me.” Then he turned and started running through the forest.
I promptly ran after him. I didn’t know where he was taking me or if I could trust him but he was my only chance I had at discovering who I really am. And so I followed.
He brought me to a large clearing in the dark and gloomy forest where a fire was burning in bright contrast. A large group similar to the man that had led me here was sitting around the fire. The man brought me to them and spoke to them in that quick foreign language.
He then turned to me and said, “Welcome. We are here to help.”
I approached the fire and cautiously sat down in a seat that the man was pointing to. The group around me politely changed the language they were speaking in to English so that I could understand their conversations.
For hours they told incredible stories. Stories about fighting, hunting, daring escapes and rescues. A large amount of the stories included their ancestry and what the people before them had done. It seemed to me that this friendly and inviting group had done everything.
Suddenly the group stopped their stories and turned to me. One of the elder men spoke. “Tell us your story.”
I looked at them stunned. I couldn’t tell a story that I didn’t know. I told them what had happened. How I woke up with no memory and no identity. They stared back at me shocked. How could a person not know their own past, let alone their ancestry?
“We will help you find who you are,” I was assured.
We talked and talked over the next days about all the possibilities of where I could have come from, what I might have done during my life. They told me of many interesting cultures that they had come across. None, however, appealed to me like the culture I was surrounded by now. It didn’t take me long to decide that I would stay with these people. They taught me where to look for creatures to hunt and how to kill them. They accepted me as their own and I began a new life.
I no longer feel like I need to know my past. I have found a new identity. And that is who I am.