Friday, February 17, 2017

Microstory 520: Lone Survivor of Plane Crash Missing

Since the dawn of man, there have been two questions that no one has ever been able to answer. The first, what is death? And the second, why can’t people die on the eighth day of the eighth month of every year? For however long in the ancient world, people were not even aware of the phenomenon of The Day of No Death. It wasn’t like people were keeping track of such things. If somebody died, and they weren’t a part of your life, you probably didn’t even hear about it. Long after we had come up with our standardized calendar system, based on the rotation and revolution of the planet, people started noticing, however, that something was different on the eighth day in Asher. Had we noticed before, we probably would have based our entire perspective on time around it. As it stands now, the Day of No Death has become a multinational holiday, set aside to remember those we’ve lost to the devastation of war; a day of observance that we call Verren. It is a day marked by fasting, solemnity, and spirituality. It is also when it’s literally impossible to die.

Most people accept the Day of No Death without question. They go about their lives without thinking about it too much. They drink their tea, get on public transportation, and go to work. Some, however, are more curious. Cults have sprung up here and there, trying to push the boundaries. But most of them end in tragedy. First off, a day without death says nothing about a day without pain. Furthermore, it is possible, and quite common, to ultimately succumb to injuries, and die on the ninth day. In fact, most countries consider mortal boundary testing to be illegal, and will prosecute any violation on life, regardless of what day it is. Still, after all these attempts, not a single person has ever died on Asher Ashto...that is, until last week.
Drummond Breckenridge is a salesman from Oklahoma who was just coming back from a business trip in Jacksonville, hubbing in Kansas City, when something happened that never has before. He woke up in the wreckage of the airplane, having not seen what happened. The plane had crashed, and everybody was dead. Everybody...except for Drummond. One hundred and twenty-one people were on Flight 5683, with service to Jacksonville, and only he had survived, even though it was Asher Ashto. Academics from all fields—from biology to religious studies—have been trying to figure out why anyone was able to die on the one day out of the year when that should not be possible. They have come up with nothing in the last few days. Nor can they explain why Breckenridge survived. Nor can they ask him now.

Breckenridge was being interviewed by a group of reporters near his Kansas City hotel when he suddenly disappeared. Some of the reporters claim to have seen him literally vanish before their eyes, while others saw some kind of flash. Though it was dark at the time, and no one knows for sure what happened, what we do know is that Mr. Breckenridge has not been seen since. Below, you’ll find a picture of Drummond Breckenridge, and a tip line to call if you have any information regarding his whereabouts.

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