Prompt: Write a story with no characters where the setting itself is the story.

There are no survivors here. You don’t believe me? Look around you if you can, though the water may inhibit that. Let us go to the deepest place on Earth that we know of. Yes, you see it now. The last human structure in existence. If there were any tourists left alive, they would flock to it. I’m surprised you can see it, though; your eyes must be good. It’s half hidden in the sand.

Seagrass has taken it upon itself to seek the light. It must have got stuck under the ship. It grows through the bullet holes, weaving itself around the structure. Adapting. Shame humans couldn’t do the same.

Let us follow a school of fish as they dance around the ship. Oops. One breaks free from the rest to dart under the upside down main deck. Half of it is blown away by a cannon, the fragments long since washed away with the current, but that doesn’t stop the little fish. It darts around, taking in the rust and corrosion.

But what’s that? A few strands of hair shimmer in the water. If you weren’t careful, you would mistake it for algae or an octopus. But the fish was careful, so it swims over.

And very quickly backs away, rushing back to its school as fast as its little fins will take it.

But we’re here now. Let us see what it is.

A man. Vanished from Earth; no longer a person nor a character. His body is bloated from too long spent in the water. He wears a brown uniform, though perhaps “wears” is the wrong word, for it hangs off him. Torn before or after he died? No one knows.

But we know this much: the ship marks the beginning of the end of the human race. You can see it in a white flag on the ocean floor, the bullet holes telling us the peace offering was not accepted. Let us move down into the ship to see what else we can find.

The captain’s quarters. His chest still gleams as though brand new. What could be inside? Let us open it and find out. Documents – plans, to be exact. A map of the world with tacks all over it. One on each country – all the countries in the world – involved.

You can see the corrosion too, can’t you? It’s too obvious to simply brush over. The bullet and cannon holes grow bigger than is humanly possible. Metals begin to rust and break apart.

That’s the problem with sea water – and nature in general, I guess. It always takes back that which should not Be.



This piece really made me think about what constitutes a character. Any living creature? Someone or something which walks and talks? I still don’t know if the fish, the narrator, the captain or the dead human would be considered characters. What do you think?

Well, I’ve been absent for far too long again. I think I have to accept that sometimes work will get in the way. I get grumpy if I don’t write (creatively) for too long. Antsy. I just need to use that as a means of writing again as opposed to lounging around and doing nothing.

The WordPress community always grounds me, though, and brings me back. Thank you.


Author: Jasmine

Hi, my name's Jasmine, I'm 25 and I live in London. This blog is simply to note down my current thoughts - got any opinions on what I write about (or if you simply want to drop me a line), comment me :)!

10 thoughts on “Prompt: Write a story with no characters where the setting itself is the story.”

  1. It’s taken me six weeks to write again. Six long stressful angst filled weeks. You came back and tried. I did too. I find talking to people and writing about their experience helps the creativity flow. Or simply forcing myself to write. Its about ritual and time. Stephen King sat alone in a room, facing a wall for hours to write. My area is a coffee shop. Find time, even if it’s twenty minutes.

    1. You’re right, and it’s awful me using the excuse that there’s no time because there’s always time. You can do it! How did you feel when you wrote again? 🙂

      1. I felt great. I sat down and penned what ever came to mind! Another lapse of writer’s block plagues me. But keep pushing!

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