We had been at sea for months, without even the occasional glimpse of life beyond the waves. The men and woman, they seemed weak and down trodden by the time on this great body of water. I feared that with the coming days would come death, and perhaps illness that would further weaken our journey to a new world. It seems like only days sense we left our former homes and set out over the waves to a land of hope and dreams. Our minds were filled with dreams of what life would be, and hopes of what opportunities would open themselves up to us in our new life. Yet as I sit here looking across the deck, and seeing those with whom I shared those dreams dying, I am sickened at the prospect that the land we had dreamed of. Would only welcome a ship full of corpses that could not withstand the journey. It was early in the morning that our look-out yelled the message we had dreamed would come one day, "Land Ho." The crew yelled in excitement, and mustered their last bit of energy to sail our vessel into the dreamed world and finish this journey that latest longer then we ever expected. It seemed to take days to get close enough, but soon we were dropping landing craft to paddle over to the beautiful world within our grasp. The beach was amazing, white sands being washed over by some of the clearest seas I had ever seen. The men were jumping out of the boats to swim to shore and walk into their new life, away from the despair they feared, but would never see. Finally we were there, the place we set out for and dreamed about. Life could now begin and we would be able to see our families raised in this new world of hope, paradise and freedom from the world we left behind. The journey may have been hard, and at times we thought life would end before the journey was completed. Yet here I stand on the beach of this new world, looking to the tropical world that now awaits us. The first few days have been interesting in this new world. The men and woman immediately started setting up their shelters and looking for things that they had heard would be here. Several members of the crew decided to head deeper inland and look deeper into what the world offers them. They said they would return with news, but we all figure there would be many months before we saw or heard from them again. Their were now small villages up in down the beach. The Larz family had convinced their friends to move in close to them, and promised to use their knowledge of farming to keep their friends feed. The Morgan family had attracted several of the settlers to their location with their knowledge of building and engineering. My family decided to set out on our own though, and moved down the beach many miles to learn to live by ourselves in this place of new hope and dreams. The beginning was hard for my wife and kids, but in time we crossed many challenges and learned to live the way we wanted. Our home was crude, but it had a roof to protect us from the rain. Our food consisted of the animals we found in the sea and the fruits we found in the trees. We were truly happy in our new home and we spent every day working on things to make it all the more to our liking. We wondered how the others were doing, but we decided to keep to ourselves for some time and then take a journey back up the beach to compare notes with those that did not set out on their own. I often wondered most about the Nichols bunch that set out to live deeper inland, "what did they find?", "was there more to this world that we were missing in this location?" Over a year passed since we had settled into our new home. My wife woke one morning and asked that we make a journey to the others and see how they were doing. I admit, I was curious how my old friends were doing living in the bunches they had settled on. After all, some of them were friends I had known for many years and we all left together to find this new world. I figured with their combined efforts, their villages were no doubt teaming with organization and love. My wife stayed with the younger kids and I took my oldest son Jonathon with me to make the journey. We took some items we had made and figured we could perhaps trade with the others for things they would have no doubt made in their time, as well. After all, the bartering system was something we had all agreed upon before we left the old world. It was several miles to the location we had first landed, and the journey took a good three days of walking. In time we arrived and things looked different then I expected. Yes their were still the beaches and ocean, but the villages they seemed smaller and less organized then I had thought I would see. We entered the first Larz family area first, there were farms everywhere. Yet it was obvious from their appearance that no one had tended to their health for some time. Where was everyone we wondered. The village was empty and yet it was obvious that people were living in these homes only a short time ago. We figured they must have all gone over to the Morgan families area for some function, perhaps a get together of joy. We found this thought exciting and figured we choose a fantastic time to return to see our old friends. We walked down the way to the place we remembered the Morgan's had picked out and were amazed at some of the homes that had been built. They put the shabby dwellings we were living in to shame, we wanted to examine what they did and perhaps take some of those ideas back with us to our own home. Yet much like the Larz location, this location was also quiet and unkept. Although there was some noise coming from the far side of the village. We walked in that direction and saw that it went down into a small canyon with a beautiful river making it's way to the sea. I was fascinated by the beauty and kept looking at the way the water was flowing, when my son suddenly screamed. I turned to him, "what the matter?" He was pale and only looked to the other side of the river. I looked in the same direction and before me laid what could only be described as horror. Body parts laying on the shore, rocks stained with blood, and small animals feeding off the remains. I could see that something was moving over there, so I told my son to stay where he was and I waded my way through the water to the other side. As I did, I saw bones in the rock bed down below my feet and the skull to someone I must have known. My stomach was sick and I feared of what more I would find. As I approached the movement, I realized that it was someone alive. He was beaten and bloody, but I could tell he was John Larz, one of the most prominent members of our expedition. I grabbed him and he looked into my eyes, "it's been along time, I never thought you would return." I demanded of him, "tell me what has happened here, tell me I must know." He coughed up some blood, and seemed near death. I shuck him to continue to speak, "New world, peace, security, yeah right." He paused for a minute and spoke some more, ... "It should have been so perfect, so wonderful and just like we dreamed. We blew it though, we blew it and we never even saw it coming." I asked for him to explain, and he started to speak again, "Everything was going just fine up until two weeks ago. We were having our troubles, yes those were all around. Yet nothing like what would happen when the only member of the Nichols group returned. He was near death and weak when he stepped into our villages. The people were scared at his site, and they began to treat him for his weakness and pain. We asked him what was beyond the beach and he did not speak. He seemed weak and scared, and kept saying crazy things like "were all going to die" and "no, no, no" and then he passed out. Within the hour he was dead. The woman were in a panic and the men were readying themselves for what they thought would be an attack. They started arguing with one another about how the battle would be fought and how the enemy would approach the village. Everyone was ready for the war, the end of their life and they stopped doing anything else. The crops were over growing and no one bothered to even eat from them. They were to scared and to frightened that this new world would be the end of their life. Late one night we heard a loud scream down in this canyon and we all ran down to see what it was, it was the Smith boy killed and lying on the rocks. One of the Morgan's was standing near by and the people started accusing him of taking the life of the boy. He said he didn't but before any questions could be asked, his throat was slit and his body was throw on to the rocks. Mayhem ensued and people started taking vengeance for all the deaths. I myself took the life of my best friend, and ripped the life away from his only two sons before someone grabbed me and beat me with a rock and left me for dead. It was brutal, bodies being sliced to pieced and blood was everywhere. By morning, no one was left alive. Children murdered for the crimes of their parents, woman killing and being killed. No life was spared. I have set in this place for days now, smelling the death and wishing to die. Yet death has eluded me, perhaps so that I can could be hear to tell you what happened. ... the man then began to shake. He looked at me and with his final breath and spoke, "nothing ever came, nothing ever came to attack us" and then his eyes rolled into his head and he fell limp into death. By this time the smell of death was making me ill. My shoes were covered in blood and the rooting flesh was all consuming. My son across the way could be seen getting sick over a rock. I walked back towards him and took him away from this site. We walked back to the empty villages, without speaking. We collected a few things we might need from the empty homes and abandoned crops and headed home. Leaving the world, that was these past friends behind us. We knew this would be the last time we ever looked at these villages and inside there was a sadness for what we once thought was going to be something better then we could ever imagine. Yet as we walked the long journey back to our homes, with the small things we took from the villages with us. We started to find joy in the fact that we had been wise in our decision to move out on our own as a family. Yes our journey was hard, and our progress was slow. Yet a year later, life is still in our home and death and anger was all that was inside the place we once thought was so much better then us. The people turned on themselves, the people killed those whom they claimed to love, even though they claimed to be in a place of such love and hope. They were not far off from turning their world into a place of torment in hell, by simply not getting the message of someone that was not even part of their group. As these thoughts went through my mind and I continued in my journey home, to the point that our home was now in site. My smile grew larger with each step, not because I was glad to leave my fallen friends behind me. No, because while they thought they found the best path in life and killed one another. I was alive now and heading off on the path I knew so well. The path I created, the world I controlled, the place I made safe and I could only think, "this is my new world, the world I make new each day without someone else changing it for me, or putting fears into it that could harm me or my family." ... and we arrived home safe.