Sunday, 27 September 2015

Diary of a Dead Man

I was coming up to my 400th find and wanted a cache that would be memorable. On numerous occasions, various cachers have told me about a night cache called Zombie (GC2A3MP) and they all say the same... it is a must do. I have to agree; the puzzle element is very well put together and is difficult without being unsolvable. The physical part, although in need of a little maintenance - up to 30 fire tacks? We came across about ten - was still an enjoyable adventure.

As this was a milestone cache for me, I wanted to be a little creative with the log which - unsurprisingly - was a little too long for the Geocaching website and so I have made it into a blog post. Enjoy ;D

"Legend has it that lurking in the woods in a place called Croxley, is a man guarding a terrible secret. At least, he used to be a man until others greed and hunger for profit and power forced him to make a tremendous sacrifice. Tales of geocachers going missing in search of this tortured, soulless being are whispered in country pubs all over the Home Counties at Geocaching events. It was at one such get-together that I first encountered utterings of the tale of Dr. Elgin and discovered the existence of his journal. My curiosity piqued; I took it upon myself to investigate this story further.

Progress was slow at first; there is such secrecy surrounding what happened five years ago at Croxley Biomedical Research Facilities that distinguishing fact from fiction was proving to be a challenge. One thing I knew for certain though was that Elgin's Journal held the key to everything; I just had to gain access to it.

For many nights, I worked on the diaries, unlocking it piece by piece. I had mixed feelings as the story unfolded in front of me ranging from anger to empathy and then to doubt. Harbinger's zealous pursuit for riches led all those connected to the project down a devastating path of destruction. Was I being arrogant too? Was my thirst for the truth leading me down an equally dangerous path?

It was late one night when I uncovered the final piece of the puzzle. This was of little comfort however as I sat in a dark room with nothing but the glow of the laptop for light. What started out as a mere need to satisfy my curiosity had become an obligation, a duty, to protect all that Dr. Elgin has sacrificed himself for. I'm just a geocacher though, with only 399 finds to my name, what were my chances of survival against the undead?

Going alone to find Elgin would have been suicide so at a recent geocaching event I recruited a few other cachers to join me on my mission. They needed some guidance with the journal which I was happy to provide. After all, it was essential that they read it so as to understand the gravity of the task at hand. Nobody could go into this blind; too many lives were at stake.

Today was the day. Today I would help keep humanity a little safer for a little longer. All the necessary preparations had been done, a rendezvous time was set, we would reach the coordinates stated in the journal just after sunset. I tried to carry on as normal during the day and not think about the horrors that awaited us this evening but it was futile. The prospect that I may end up as Elgin's next meal was unsettling to say the least. The relentless rain hammering on the windows that day intensified the inauspicious feelings growing in my gut.

The rain had stopped by the time we got to Croxley. Whether or not this would turn out to be a good omen or not was yet to be seen. The woods were dark and unwelcoming; the mud thick beneath our feet. The fingers of tree branches dripped water like blood that spattered on our heads and for a moment I questioned the sanity of what we were about to do. Then I remembered that the future of mankind was at stake, secrecy about the project must remain intact. We were here to ensure that nobody had discovered Elgin or any of his work, just as other geocachers had done before us and many would do after us.

Negotiating our way through the woods proved to be problematic because there was no clear path for us to follow as promised. According to the stories, there should have been a "breadcrumb" trail left by Elgin to show the way but it appears that time has devoured them. Fearing that we were going round in circles, we retraced our steps to where we started. I called a friend, codename Smokeypugs, as I knew that they had undertaken this task before. Though his words were cryptic, his message was clear, we had to persevere in our search for Elgin, we were close, so very close. With a feeling of foreboding, we continued on our quest, still unsure about what we would find so deep in to the woods. And then we got separated.

The journey home was pensive, each of us lost in our own thoughts. I know now that nothing could have prepared us for what we saw that night. The smell, the sound, the sight of a man that once was. It will haunt my nightmares forever more. My encounter with Dr. Elgin invokes feelings of empathy as well as disgust and horror. It is imperative that the world does not learn of his whereabouts; if the virus ever got out it would mean the end of the world as we know it.

I am getting a little concerned now as Nigel's health doesn't seem to be improving…"