They told me to never go past the outposts that led into the hills. I was safe where I was and was to live there for the rest of my life. Our days were spent in fear of going past the mud trails and into the wild. We were like a valley, surrounded by our people, our songs, our stories, and our way of life. Our view of the horizon was simply covered by hills and the hours of sporadic sunshine that dropped in through the different times of the year.

Every so often, when people grew frustrated and an air of despair swept through like a poisonous gas, someone would talk of escape. They threatened to leave, to head out into the unknown but it never happened. We would listen and console them, but we knew there was nothing anyone could do. We lived our lives the only way we knew how, but always knowing the hills were watching through day and night. We knew there was something beyond them in the distant horizon but as we grew older, it terrified us less and less.

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