Category: 04. Held at Gun Point in Motel Lovenest


Dear Planet Earth,

I said goodbye to Diana today. I propped her up against a tree and said a few words about her out loud. I wept like a baby. I tried to remember everything she ever said to me, what defined her as a human being and how she became an important part of my life in ten short days.

When she was really starting to go yesterday, Diana said she was a fraud. She said her name wasn’t really Diana Sunday and she was never a student at UNLV. Phyllis O’Conner was just another deadbeat post-teen working at Blockbuster when the tremors started and she realized she could make herself whoever she wanted. She was sorry, she said. She said I didn’t have to blame myself for her death because she never really existed.

But things are never that easy.

I’m heading toward the mysterious object outside the city, just like Diana and I planned to do last week. Judging by the number of cars on the road, I’m not the only one.

The dust is starting to clear around it, showing some very weird features. I don’t know if this is a satellite, an alien spaceship, or even a time machine. I only know that whatever it is, it’s inextricably linked to these crazy phenomena all across the globe and those homeless people were willing to kill to keep us from it.

I checked the back of the Hummer today and found it filled with assault rifles, body armor, hand grenades, and plastic explosives. I’m a grieving, hormone-filled teen with murder on the mind. Those bastards better hope I run out of gas.


Six Hours

Dear Planet Earth,

I’ve never been around a dead body before. I always associated death with decay, worms, silence.

When I was ten and my uncle died, I was told this as a fact, as easily as someone telling me my horoscope from the newspaper. It was a permanent lifestyle change determined thousands of miles away. I never saw his body and I never went to his funeral. He died, and I began to live just as I would if he had never existed at all.

She’s gone. Diana took her last breaths six hours ago, but she looks just as youthful and lively as the first day we met. She doesn’t feel dead to me, though her cold skin and my own wailing sobs convince me that she must.

My first love is dead.

And it’s all my fault.

On the Road Again, Again

Dear Planet Earth,

It’s really hit the fan now. We escaped the small army of homeless mercenaries, but for how long is anyone’s guess.

I crashed a TV over one of their heads as he came in to deliver our breakfast. He might have died. I don’t know. I’m beyond the point of caring. Diana took out the guy behind him with a lamp. The stench of blood and piss immediately flooded our nostrils. We grabbed a set of keys off my guy and made a beeline for the Hummer in the parking lot.

“Oh, hell no!” a deep, groggy voice said behind us.

Just as we made it to the doors, Guy #2’s back up and shooting at us. I heard Diana scream, but I was too busy fumbling with the keys and trying to remember the two lessons of driver’s ed I took before I decided I could learn more from Grand Theft Auto IV. The windshield started to sprout spider webs from Guy #2’s AK-47 as I threw us in reverse at 80 miles an hour. It’s all a blur of bullets and screaming after that.

I somehow made it back on the highway. As my adrenaline levels returned to their average levels, I was able to see that Diana was indeed in the car with me.

Relief turned to guilt and fear. She was shot, twice in the shoulder. She was bleeding like crazy, gushing so much over her body that I thought she must have been hit somewhere else, too.

“Stop!” I could hear the lethal pangs in her voice. “Pull over.”

I pulled over and she guided me through how to dig out the bullets and make her a tourniquet. She screamed and sobbed and said “thank you.” She said she needed to rest. She’s been asleep for two hours now.

I don’t know what to do.

Wake Up Call

Dear Planet Earth,

The honeymoon stage is over. Diana and I just had our first fight and it wasn’t pretty. The worst part is, she’s completely right. I haven’t taken any of this seriously, even when our very lives were in danger. I’ve been emotionally numb ever since the tremors stopped, and I probably lost all feeling after I lost Mom.

But these are desperate times. And when an unseen force causes global earthquakes and disrupts the entire flow of media — which in turn causes a homeless armed militia to hold you prisoner for days on end — every sob story is nothing but an excuse, a depressing distraction from the problems you need to conquer now.

I woke up today. I realized the only option I have left is bold action. Tomorrow we make our escape.

Hopelessness with a Side of Eggs

Dear Planet Earth,

Still no luck trying to escape from our homeless captors who are inconceivably armed like former disgraced government mercenaries. Diana and I’ve spent countless hours screaming, reassembling our phones, and flooding the Internet with pleas for help. The weird thing is, these people don’t seem to care about our sometimes blatant attempts to flee, as if they know all our effort will only make us more tired and hopeless. They’re even feeding us pretty well with, what I suspect to be, a menu straight from Denny’s.

It’s all very odd; it might even be romantic if there wasn’t that whole problem with the unwillingness and AK-47s. I came to the conclusion that these people don’t want to kill us, and I felt more confident about that this morning when one of them, possibly their leader, came into our motel room with a hearty breakfast.

“How are you doing this morning?” he asked.

Diana shot him the disgusted look she’s grown accustomed to here and said, “Does it matter?”

He laughed and took a slice of orange from her plate. “No, I guess it really doesn’t.”

The man unbolted the door and was about to leave when he turned back to look at me. “Hey, kid,” he said. “Your name’s Scott Panus, right?”

I quickly answered, “Yeah.” Now I wish I had said something biting and snotty like Diana did.

He nodded his head as he left and we could hear the rusty outside lock slide back into place.

I’ve been trying to think about what they could have seen in my backpack with my name on it. I’m coming up with zilch.


Dear Planet Earth,

Help! SOS! Ayúdame! Avengers Assemble! If anyone out there is actually reading this, this isn’t a joke. Diana and I have been held captive for the past two days by a group of homeless people with AK-47s. I repeat, this is not a joke.

They rammed us off the road with a Hummer — a fucking Hummer — blindfolded us, and brought us to this abandoned motel where we’ve been imprisoned ever since. We were taken about half an hour north of the Strip on the I-15 and they drove another half hour to get here. I can’t find the name of the motel on anything, but outside of the one non-boarded up window I can see an In-N-Out Burger facing a Denny’s.

Please, please, please send any help you can find. As far as I know, the LVMPD is still functioning, though their website — like every other law enforcement agency’s — is completely offline. I’ll try to post again if these guys don’t find my netbook, kill me, or reenact their favorite scenes from Deliverance. I will clarify once more, this is not a joke. Help!