Copyright 2016 Mark Mulle
Published by Mark Mulle at Shakespir
Shakespir Edition License Notes
This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your enjoyment only, then please return to Shakespir.com or your favorite retailer and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
This short story is for your reading pleasure. The characters in this “Minecraft Adventure Series” such as Steve, Endermen or Herobrine…etc are based on the Minecraft Game coming from Minecraft ®/TM & © 2009-2013 Mojang / Notch
Table of Contents
The main problem with being a zombie is that you live your life in bits and spurts. One minute you are wandering happily in the middle of a field of beautiful wildflowers, and the next you find yourself on fire sprinting toward the nearest source of shade or water to quench the blaze.
It is not as if the process of respawning is difficult, to be exact. The real issue comes with reappearing in some unfamiliar location and trying to find your way back home. Zombies are not known for their sense of direction.
My name is Damien and I am a zombie.
I am here to let you know that we are not as bad as we are often made out to be. All right, so maybe we do moan and groan as we walk around the vast landscapes of our neighborhood. Maybe we prefer the darkness in the scarier portions of the world. Maybe we like to battle the daylight walkers who steal our resources and harm even the most peaceful zombies.
We are not monsters. At least, I do not consider myself a monster.
Yesterday, I was slain by an extremely energetic daylight walker named Barron. Barron reminds me a lot of the stories that I have heard of a man named Steve. In fact, they look strikingly similar. It is only their behavior that sets them apart, for Barron is a ruthless hunter.
There I was, minding my own business, when Barron rushed up behind me with his golden sword and caught me unaware.
I felt a deep tingle that ran from the tips of my toes to the very top of my head. Everything turned black and I was gone.
It was not until night fell that I reappeared a long distance away and began to make my way back toward my home. At least, I think that I am heading in the right direction. Follow the moon, my mother always says. It will lead you home.
This was a pretty regular occurrence. Barron has been slaying zombies from our clan for as long as I can remember. For as long as anyone can remember.
The elders say that he is in search of the most unobtainable treasures. Carrots and beets.
Now, we zombies like to laugh when we hear this tale. Carrots and beets are our favorite things. We collect them by the chest full. Our stronghold boasts hundreds and thousands of these tiny treasures. When we find them in the wild, we carefully make our way back to our village that lies buried, hidden, beneath the ocean. There, we hide them and protect them with our most fearsome warriors.
On the off chance that a day walker might come across a zombie carrying one of these items, it is because he has not yet made it back to the village. In these unfortunate circumstances, we zombies will band together to attempt to reclaim the prize.
Additionally, we find it extremely amusing to carry chunks of rotten meat that these individuals might collect. We have absolutely no use for them. Being zombies, we do not eat at all. But as the day walkers search for carrots and beets, it never ceases to amuse us that we only intentionally supply them with useless items.
I have gotten off track. Back to my story.
Yesterday I was slain by the fearsome man named Barron. I dropped a chunk of meat in an attempt to distract him from a nearby friend who was carrying a beet back to our home village.
Though I hope that the distraction worked, I am saddened for another reason.
Here I am, searching through this endless world, attempting to return to my home, and missing one of the most important events of the year in our zombie culture.
Each year, during the season when the moon sits highest in the sky, the elders gather together and tell the tales of our world. There is a great festival, with many celebrations. We celebrate our triumphs, mourn our losses, and prepare for yet another year of battling those who walk in the daylight without protection and steal the precious resources from our lands.
The festival is my favorite time of year. All of the monsters gather together in our under-water fortress to share our history and encourage each other on the tasks that lay ahead.
In all of my life, I have never known a non-monster to attend the event. For that reason, it is extremely special.
Tonight is the first night of the festival and I am missing it while I slowly make my way back home. I cannot help but be disappointed when I think of all the fun that my siblings are having without me. Tonight, the greatest warriors of each species will compete to earn the rare, and coveted, armor that will be awarded by the great Enderman.
Skeletons and Zombies will show their skills with weapons and tracking, while spiders reveal their perfection of the element of surprise, and slimes practice attacking as a team.
I had overheard that there has been an alliance between the spiders and the skeletons, where a spider might allow a skeleton to ride atop its back like some great horse or donkey. I am not certain that I believe this rumor, however, if it is true I hope that the spiders have made a similar agreement with the zombies. I would love to race into battle mounted atop one of the great eight-legged beasts.
It would only be fair, of course, that zombies be allowed this privilege as well.
So, tonight I will walk on. I truly hope that I will make it home in time to enjoy the festival. It usually lasts a few nights depending on the number of creatures who gather.
This year will be the first year that my younger brother, Devon, will be allowed to attend. Devon has been talking about the festival for months. When he grows up, he says, he wants to join our elite forces and wear the shimmering enchanted armor into battle.
I, on the other hand, have no idea what I want to be when I grow up.
I suppose that I have plenty of time to think about it as I walk through the night.
I do not know where to begin when telling you how difficult, and frustrating, this day has been.
As the sun rose over the horizon I found myself in the shelter of a densely wooded forest. This made me happy for two reasons. The first is that the shade provided by trees allows a zombie to move freely during the daytime without fear of the sun. I could run from tree cover to tree cover without fear of injury. That is, permanent injury. I did temporarily catch on fire several times but never had any actual fear for my progress.
The second reason that I was happy was that I recognized the forest I was in. In fact, I was not very far from the entrance to our underground village.
I felt a sudden surge of excitement as I rushed onward. I just might be able to make it to the festival on time.
I am certain that anyone watching would have never have seen a happier zombie in the daylight.
Except for Barron, that is.
Barron saw me. He saw me long before I ever caught sight of him. I was practically skipping, leaping, jumping with joy that I was so close to home.
The forest was noticeably empty today, as often happens when we have our gatherings, and Barron must have been suspicious of the change.
It appeared to me that he thought that we were up to something which, of course we were. Barron must have decided that if the monsters would not come to him, he would go in search of us.
And of course, he found me.
Suddenly, the madman jumped out from behind a low growing tree and pointed his bow and arrow at me.
I was defenseless. I had no place to run and no one nearby to help me. I could not lead him back toward the entrance to our village, for if he ever located that we would be in big trouble.
I tried to call for help but all that came out was a low groan. You see, sometimes when we are afraid, really afraid, we lose our ability to speak. This was definitely one of those times.
Barron just laughed.
“I found you,” he cried.
For a moment I considered running in the other direction, but then I remembered that I had nowhere to run. Instead, I rushed toward him hoping that by doing so I would be able to throw off his aim with the arrows. Barron is an excellent swordsman, but he has not yet perfected the skill of archery. This was the fact that I knew well.
He hit me with one arrow and missed with several others. My confidence rose and I continue to rush toward him. I did not have any weapons, but I could fight him with my bare hands if I needed to. All I could think about was how close I was to the festival. How close I was to being home and being with my family. I could not let Barron stand in my way.
At the last moment, as we finally came close enough for hand-to-hand combat Barron made a move that I was not prepared for.
He switched to his sword in a blink of an eye and before I had time to react, I had disappeared into a cloud of dust.
I did not even bother dropping a spare bit of meat. I was too flustered, too distracted by the fact that Barron had thwarted me yet again.
All was darkness until night fell, and here I am, yet again searching for my way home. Following the moon, and wishing that I will see a familiar landscape in time to attend the festival.
Tonight I have nothing much to report.
The most interesting part of my recent journey was that I fed a pig a carrot that I had found. They like carrots.
I spent all of the sunlight hours bobbing in the water waiting for the moment when I could continue my search for the zombie village.
Afterward, it was simply hours, upon hours, of following the moon.
Another encounter with Barron was narrowly avoided because I happened to spot him building a watchtower on the edge of the forest.
For a moment my heart raced with fear. But then, I realized that if Barron was nearby then the village must be also.
Though Barron’s skill was great, I doubted that he would have traveled very far from his own home in the recent days.
I had to be careful as I followed him back toward familiar territory.
In no time at all I started recognizing the shape of the land and the plants in the area. Before Barron had a chance to notice me, I slipped off behind a vined jungle tree and crept in the opposite direction.
He never suspected a thing. At least, that is what I like to tell myself when I am feeling particularly stealthy.
A short distance later I entered the tunnel, a hidden tunnel that made its way underground through a series of winding passageways.
For someone like Barron, or any day walker for that matter, these tunnels would be extremely confusing. Many of them led down treacherous paths, some connected to an extensive series of caves and tunnels, and some lead nowhere at all.
The trick to finding the zombie village was to always take the third passageway on the left side. If you follow this rule in every single hallway, and by that I mean at least 50 times, you would find our village.
As it was, there has never been a non-monster who has made it so far into our world.
I have been walking for what feels like ages, but has really only been a single day. I know that the village is getting closer but the impatience is driving me mad. I am still a young zombie, I am not very good at waiting.
It has been many months since I have journeyed this far underground. Normally, I live in a tiny cave with my parents and seven siblings, but for the festival everyone will make the trip all the way to the village. Those who are old enough, will attend the festival while the younger zombies will remain in a smaller cave that is nearby.
Today I finally reached the village, and guess what!
There is still one more night of the festival left!
The moment I entered the massive cavern, whose ceiling dripped slowly from the ocean floor that rested above, my little brother ran up to me with a look of pure excitement on his face.
“Big D! Big D,” he cried.
Big D is what he likes to call me and if you haven’t figured out why, I can explain. My name is Damien and, as I said earlier, his is Devon. I’m older and I’m also bigger. So it really is not that complicated, if you think about it.
All right, back to my story.
“Big D! Big D,” he cried. “You almost missed the festival.”
“I know, little man.” I ruffled his hair with one hand as we walked together into the massive crowd of zombies, spiders, skeletons, endermen, and even a few witches. “I’m here now.”
“Was it that mean daywalker?” Devon attempted to make his voice sounded confident but I could hear the note of fear that quivered on its edge. “Did that Barron get you?”
I nodded. “Yeah, he got me, but I made it back just the same. Just like I promised you.”
“I’m glad because mama said it could take weeks for you to make it home.” Devon’s lower lip jutted out. He was not old enough to venture out on his own. Instead, the younger zombies often stayed around their parents, or hidden in caves for safekeeping. “When I’m big like you, I’m going to be able to get home fast too.”
I laughed and guided him through the heavy crowd.
“When you are older,” I told him, “you can do anything you set your mind to.”
“What are you going to be now that you are grown-up?” He asked.
I shrugged my shoulders. My father always said that every zombie has a purpose. That we all have something that drives us. I had yet to discover what my driving force was but I knew, without a doubt, that one day I would find it.
The festival last night was amazing. Magical. Almost beyond words.
I cannot believe that I am telling you this so soon, but I have found it! I have found my drive! That one thing, that one goal, that every zombie has to work toward.
Every year at the end of the festival the oldest, wisest Enderman tells a tale that he thinks is important to our history. Every year the tale is different, or at least it has been for the 3 years that I have been present at the festival.
This year, we have a new Elder and he had a new story.
The words that he used were magical and I felt as if I could not stop listening. It was as if, what he was saying was meant for me to hear. Was meant for me, and me alone.
Of course I cannot remember the exact words that he used, but I will try to repeat his tail as closely as possible.
This is what the Enderman said:
A long time ago, so long that history has forgotten, there existed a daywalker named Herobrine.
Nobody knows if Herobrine really existed, or if he was made up as a tale to help little monsters sleep at night, but we Endermen believe that he did.
To truly understand Herobrine, we must first understand where he came from.
Every creature in this world knows that the first daywalker was named Steve. What many do not know is that Steve had a brother.
Nobody knows his true name and nobody knows exactly how it was that the brothers began to argue, but they did. It is likely that their argument started from some simple brotherly issue, but over time the issue grew so that there was very little that they agreed upon.
The brothers, who had once loved each other, grew to have a fierce war. A war that would take over our world.
Steve, was fascinated with collecting treasures and gathering items that would make him the wealthiest and most powerful daywalker in the world, even if that meant battling the creatures that lived in it.
His brother, on the other hand, had dreamed of something more peaceful. He wanted to create an alliance with the monsters. He was the first, and only, true friend of our people.
Steve banished his brother. He told him never to return and, though deep down they loved each other, the brothers never spoke again.
When this happened, the brother took a new name. He began to call himself, as we know him now, Herobrine.
Many of the daywalkers will tell you that there is no truth in the story. That Herobrine does not exist, and never has, in our world.
We Endermen believe otherwise. We believe that he was a great hero who wanted to build a peace between the monsters and those who walk in the daylight. We believe that he had the power to build this friendship. We believe that there are signs that he does, or did, exist.
He is the only daywalker who can also be considered a monster. Legend says that when he took his new name he joined our forces and vowed to help us in our battle against the enemy.
It is said that Herobrine himself will track daywalkers and purposely try to confuse or frustrate them. He does this because he wants them to see that even creatures of their sort can cause problems. Can be villains.
We monsters believe that he is one of the greatest heroes of our world. That he believes in protecting and defending all species of monster even though he was not a monster himself.
While those who came into our world after Steve have followed in his footsteps we, the monsters of this world, follow Herobrine.
I had never heard of this creature before and, I must tell you, I have never been more excited my life. I cannot explain why, but I know that this story means something. I do not yet fully understand it, but I can feel it in my very bones that this is my purpose.
I woke up this morning with a ringing in my ears that I can only explain as excitement. I rushed through my morning chores and raced out into the village hoping to find an Enderman that could answer my questions.
Most of the city had already emptied. The festival was over and some monsters had a very long way to go on their journeys home. The Endermen could teleport though, so I hoped that that would mean that one or two of them would stick around a little longer.
As luck would have it, I was not disappointed.
I rushed up to the first one that I saw and tugged impatiently at his sleeve. I never understood why daywalkers are so cautious to approach an Enderman. They are extremely friendly creatures. Much more friendly than the creatures that live in the Nether. Even those of us in the Overworld have trouble dealing with them sometimes.
Anyway, the Enderman turned to me with his happily glowing eyes and smiled.
“May I help you?” he asked.
I nodded. “I wanted to know more about the story from last night,” I explained.
The Enderman made a sound that expressed his understanding. “It is a very lovely story,” he said.
“Was Herobrine real?” I asked.
“I cannot say for sure, but I like to think so.”
“What sorts of things did he do that made him so good?” I needed to know as much about him as possible. If I wanted to understand how this tale would shape my life, I needed as much information as I could get.
“Well…” the Enderman turned and began walking slowly toward a lava pit on the far side of the cavern, “he defended the monsters when no one else would. He saw the good in us and did his best to protect us from those who might cause us harm.”
“I don’t understand. The daywalkers do not really harm us. They are not as strong as they think they are,” I said.
“No, they do not harm us physically but they steal our resources, destroy our homes, and worst of all treat us as if we are a great evil in this world.” The enderman let out a deep breath before continuing. “We have been roaming this world for much longer than any of these adventurers and Herobrine wanted to make certain that we can enjoy this world together. Instead, we have been all but banished from their company.”
“In the stories, what sort of deeds did he do to defend the monsters?” What I really wanted to know was how Herobrine had succeeded in challenging his brother.
“He was a great leader of peace,” the Enderman told me. “He did not believe in violence or destruction. Instead, he thwarted his brother’s every move with simple acts that were meant to distract and frustrate him without actually causing harm.”
“How did he do that?” I asked. “We have always fought the daywalkers. Every time we are near them it turns into a battle.”
“Herobrine was nobler than that. He took the time to plan and approach his enemies in secret. He rarely, if ever, faced them directly.” The Enderman swung his arms lazily at his sides and stared into the boiling lava. “He built structures that were meant to confuse and frustrate them, tunnels that led nowhere, or alter the landscape in a way that was obviously unnatural. He would prune the trees of all their leaves or move items around within his enemies home in order to confuse them. But he never stole, he never harmed, and he never destroyed anything that was not his.”
“If he did all of this in secret,” I asked, “how do we know that it was him?”
“Because after a time when his enemy began to think that they themselves might be going crazy, he would show himself to them, and they would know.” The tall, willowy creature stared down at me. “He learned this trick from the Endermen. He would watch them from a distance, or follow them, until they noticed his presence. He stayed far enough to avoid a battle, but at that point they would understand that all of the strange things that have been happening around them had been done by him.”
I thought about his words for a long while in silence. I did not truly understand why Herobrine would not simply speak to the others like him and let them know how he felt.
The Enderman seemed to understand my thoughts because he responded before I even said a single word aloud.
“You see, he wanted to show them what it felt like to live life as we do. To have your world suddenly altered, to have entire landscapes changed, to have your precious belongings moved, and most importantly, to not understand how or why,” he explained.
“But we know when Barron has been building or mining,” I argued. “We can tell when a tunnel was formed naturally or dug by him. He might not be the nicest person, but we have learned to live around him.”
“Now you have, but in the beginning it was not so. In the beginning monsters were just as confused and disturbed by the daywalkers as they are by this Herobrine. He made it his mission to show them what it felt like to live with such fear and confusion.”
“Where is he now?” I asked.
The Enderman shrugged. “No one knows.”
And with that, he disappeared.
Today, we began the journey back to the surface. There is a lot of walking involved and my parents needed help keeping my brothers and sisters from wandering off.
Keeping a pack of zombie children together is like trying to herd a group of wild rabbits into a pen. It is practically impossible, especially since you cannot lure a zombie with flowers or food.
We have reached the surface.
It feels good to be home. To our regular home, that is.
All zombies call the underwater village home, but we also have individual homes where we stay with our families while searching for beets and carrots above ground.
My family has a small cave that is hidden behind the trunk of a wide tree. Unless you knew it was there, it would be nearly impossible to find the entrance.
This is where we stay during the daytime. Mom restores our health with potions from the witch’s guild, while Dad prepares rotten meat from the animals that he slaughtered the night before. Sometimes, when he has enough leather, he and Mom will sit down and craft some basic armor for us children.
We are not a mining family, so leather armor is the best that we can make on our own. Mining families trade carrots and beets for armor. Then, if you are lucky, you can take that armor down to the village and trade the witches apples and watermelon to have the armor enchanted.
This is what Devon plans to do. He and I have been collecting all of the necessary trading items for several years. Even so, I am not certain that we have enough.
Tonight I looked all around for Barron but he was nowhere to be found. I have decided that I want to talk to him about this Herobrine. He is, after all, a daywalker.
Whether or not the tale is true, or if this being still exists, I have decided that I want to continue his mission. I want to attempt to forge a peace between the adventurers in the monsters. I want to see if we truly can work together. I want to see if there is a way to stop the fighting.
Another night without a siting. I am hopeful that tomorrow he will return to our forest.
All of the zombies are surprised by the length of Barron’s absence. He has never been gone this long before. We hope that it does not mean that he is up to something.
Devon keeps saying that he thinks Barron is out gathering an army of adventurers to defeat us. I hope that this is not true. Devon does have a very active imagination.
Today one of our neighbors rushed over with some news. A portal to the Nether has been found not too far away.
All of the adults seemed very agitated by this news. When I asked why they seemed worried they said that when an adventurer starts to travel to the Nether it will not be long before they begin the process of brewing potions that will make them nearly impossible to defeat.
This information was new to me. I had not previously known that anyone other than a witch could brew potions. If Barron was now able to travel between worlds, then he must be much stronger than I had realized.
This made it even more important that I be able to speak with him in order to come to some form of agreement of peace.
Barron returned from the Nether today, but did not leave his house the entire night. Several of our fellow zombies attempted to break down the door to see what he was up to but he fought them off.
We could see him walking around inside, the light from his torches shining out into the darkness of the night.
It makes my eyes sore. I do not know if you know this, but zombies see much better in the darkness.
Devon told me that he saw Barron outside of his home just before nightfall. I do not know what my little brother was doing outside during the daylight hours, but I am glad that he returned home safely.
Tonight is the night, I decided.
I was going to speak with Barron. I was going to continue the work of Herobrine. I was going to find a way to work together.
I found Barron collecting vegetables from his garden.
“Excuse me,” I said as I approached him with caution.
He turned around in one swift motion, drawing his sword and pointing toward me.
“Do not come one step closer,” he shouted.
“Excuse me, sir,” I continued to speak but moved no further. “I was hoping that we could talk.”
“I don’t want to talk to any of you filthy monsters,” he growled. “I want you all off my land.”
“Your land?” I asked. “What do you mean your land?”
Barron stared at me with a look of pure hatred in his eyes.
“I mean that this is my land. I built my house here. I claimed it.” Again he pointed his sword in my direction. “All of the other adventurers know that this is my area, and to stay out of it. Any of the treasures mined or collected here belong to me. The resources are mine. The animals are mine. And you monsters don’t seem to respect the fact that this is my property.”
I stared at Barron in confusion. What was he talking about? This land did not belong to him. This land belonged to all of us. Monster and adventurer alike. We all lived here. Also, if I were being perfectly honest, I knew for a fact that the monsters had been here long before Barron had ever found the area.
“The zombies have been here for seven generations, and the skeletons and spiders even longer than that,” I argued. I did my best to keep the anger out of my voice. I did not want to fight with Barron but had never occurred to me that he thought that none of the monsters belonged here.
“That doesn’t matter,” he exclaimed. “When I built my house on the edge of this forest I posted signs all around the area telling everyone to stay out. But none of you will listen. You just keep coming back.”
I felt myself begin to blush. The truth was I did not know how to read Barron’s language. The zombies write with a different set of letters and symbols and, though we had seen his signs, there was not a single one of us that knew what they said.
I thought about stammering an apology but then I decided against it. Even if we had been able to read the signs, he had no right to make us leave our homes just because he decided that this land was his. Why should one adventurer get control of the land when hundreds of monsters were currently living in it peacefully?
While I was contemplating my response, something unexpected happened. You see, I had this idea in my head that if I remained peaceful, like Herobrine, that Barron would be nice enough to treat me with respect.
I could not have been more wrong. I had not expressed more than three sentences trying to explain my wish that we could live in peace, when he lunged at me with his sword.
He gave no warning, made no comment, simply struck me down with the same fierce anger he would have shown if I had attacked him.
The world went dark and I disappeared.
I do not know that it is true for all adventurers, but last night made me realize that I would never be able to talk sense into Barron. I now understood why Herobrine felt the need to teach his foes what it felt like to be treated as if their home did not belong to them alone.
This is how we zombies have been made to feel for ages.
Once I find my way home, I intend to consult with the rest of the zombies to try to convince them that we need to show the adventurers, the daywalkers, that this land does not belong only to them.
I feel as if I have respawned on the other side of the planet. Though I follow the moon, I have been forced to take a longer route around the massive desert.
If I were to attempt to cross it and found myself caught in the open during the daytime, who knows where I might show up next?
I have reached a jungle.
My father once told me that there was a jungle on the far edge of our forest and, though I have never seen it with my own eyes, I can only hope that this is the one he was talking about.
I will continue to follow the moon, but I have yet to see anything that looks familiar.
Tonight I passed one of Barron’s signs that mark the boundaries of his land. I know that this means that I still have a long ways to walk, for he has claimed a massive area for himself, but at least I can be certain that I am going in the right direction.
My arrival home this evening was nothing like I had expected.
I found my family huddled in the darkness of our cave even though it was the middle of the night.
My mother threw her arms around me as soon as I entered the cave and she cried out that she was so happy that I was safe.
I asked her what she was talking about. Why would I not be safe? I might have appeared further away from home than usual, but it was not as if I would not have been able to find my way eventually.
She told me that since my disappearance Barron has been worse than ever. He has been actively hunting all monsters night and day, but especially zombies. She told me that he wants us all off the land and that some of the monsters were seriously considering leaving.
I could not believe this.
“This is our home,” I cried. “Why would anyone leave?” Though I asked the question, I already knew the answer. Apparently, my conversation with Barron had enraged him. He had begun to make it perfectly clear that we were not welcome.
I could not, I would not allow it.
I asked my father to call a meeting of the monsters. On special occasions, monsters will gather together to make a plan or discuss their options.
He looked at me with a sad expression and nodded. Without a word, he slipped out into the night to spread the news.
I spent the entire daytime pacing our cave and trying to plan exactly what I wanted to say to our neighbors.
The truth is, I am not a leader. I’m not a hero. I am not Herobrine.
I told myself that this did not matter. I told myself that I needed to focus on doing what was best for all of the creatures in our world.
I did not want to harm Barron, or make him leave. However, I was certain that we must fight for our right to stay. We must defend our right to live in this forest with our families and our friends.
If Barron was able to drive us away from this place, what would stop the other adventurers from doing the same thing in another?
When night finally fell we sent a contingent of zombie children, including all of my siblings, to distract Barron.
The children were very excited for their first true battle, but before they left we tested each of them to ensure that they understood the rules of finding their way home.
Devon seem determined to respawn. He had never experienced it before and he was certain that it would be a great adventure. I did not want to break the news to him that it was more inconvenient, and annoying, than anything else.
Once the children were out causing mischief, the remaining adults met in our cave for a serious discussion.
It seemed as if they were all looking to me to begin. I was, after all, the one who had called the meeting.
“This is our home. We have every right to be here and not a single monster should have to leave,” I began.
“What are we supposed to do,” the gravelly voice of the skeleton came from the back of the room, “when Barron is hunting us as if we are animals?”
“Yeah. I know that respawning doesn’t actually cause us any harm, but if my entire family is spending most of their time finding their way home then when am I ever going to get to spend time with them?” This statement came from a young female zombie who was standing near the doorway.
“I am not suggesting that we need to allow his hunting of our families to continue,” I explained. “What I think we might be able to do, is show him that we will not allow him to push us around. We can all live in this area, we have been doing it for many years without ever having problems before.”
“That was before Barron arrived,” someone shouted.
I took a deep breath. I was about to say something that I knew would be upsetting to all of them.
“I understand that,” I spoke slowly with the hope that everyone would remain calm, “but, if we are being fair, then Barron has a right to live here too.”
The room erupted with cries of anger.
“He will never allow us to live here in peace,” the skeleton raised his bony arm in anger.
“Either he leaves, or we all leave.”
I did not see who said it, but it did not matter. Instantly, everyone in the room seems to be shaking their heads in agreement.
“Wait! Please, wait.” I held my arms out in an attempt to block the doorway through which everyone was attempting to leave. It was clear that I would not be able to convince them with words that Barron could be dealt with. “We need to try! We cannot give up this easily. We need to try.”
The elderly skeleton, whom I did not recognize but everyone else seemed to have a great deal of respect for, came to stand with his nose almost touching my own.
He narrowed his beady black eyes at me and stared into my face for what felt like hours.
“You think there is a solution?” He asked. “You think there is a way?”
I nodded. “I do,” I said.
“Well, I do not believe you,” I felt my heart began to sink to my knees, but then he continued, “but if you are so certain, then you handle it. My family and I will wait for a little bit longer, but if you cannot find a solution then we will leave.”
He held his hand out to me and I shook it. With that, the entire neighborhood seemed to be in agreement.
They would not leave. Not yet, at least. But one thing had been made perfectly clear.
I was on my own when it came to finding a solution for Barron.
The following night I spent watching Barron and planning.
I have decided, especially after the result of my last conversation with Barron, that I wanted to approach this issue in the same way as the great Herobrine.
I wanted to make my point. I wanted to teach him a lesson. At the same time, I was determined to avoid any open battle or warfare. Still, by the time the sun rose in the morning and I returned to my family’s cave, I was not sure that my plan would work.
I was told by a spider that Barron had been seen entering his portal to the Nether just before darkness fell.
This made me very excited because it meant that I could work on my plan without being interrupted, or harmed, by Barron.
I sent Devon to watch the portal and to inform me the moment that Barron returned.
I did not know how long I would have, so I was determined to work quickly.
The first thing that I did was move a few fence posts that enclosed Barron’s collections of animals.
Somehow, he had managed to capture sheep, cows, and chickens.
The moment I removed a single post the animals started rushing from their pen. I panicked and replaced the post quickly, though a few did escape.
I wanted to confuse him, frustrate him, and send a message. I did not, however, want to make him angry by releasing all of his precious animals.
After a long while, I found a solution.
I removed the single fence post, but replaced it only one block away so that, while the fence appeared to be broken, the animals were unable to escape.
I will not pretend that I was not extremely pleased with the solution. I repeated the process in many spots along his fence and, when I was finished, the fence appeared to be in complete disarray.
I had successfully achieved the appearance of chaos without actually ruining anything. I knew at that moment that this is exactly the sort of thing that Herobrine would do.
I was so excited with how quickly this task of moving items around could be completed that I decided to move as many items of Barron’s as I could in what seemed like a completely random, and pointless, way.
I removed jack-o’-lantern heads from their lampposts and placed them on the ground.
I harvested all of his fruits and vegetables, but made sure to replant the seeds so that they would continue to grow. Then, I took everything that remained and stacked each and every piece neatly in a chest on the edge of the gardens.
I built an intersecting road to the path that led up to his house. The road that I built led nowhere.
I planted yellow poppies in a neat line all of the way around the edge of his house. Though this was a dramatic change to the appearance of his home, I secretly hoped that he would leave them because they did look very beautiful.
I was in the process of dying the wool of his sheep bright and unnatural colors, when Devon came running up to me. He was short of breath, as if he had been running.
“He’s on his way,” my little brother gasped. “He just exited the portal and he will be here any minute.”
Devon looked around and his face instantly changed to an expression of confusion.
“What is this? It looks good,” his eyebrows drew together and it was clear to me that he thought I had lost my mind. “I thought you were going to teach him a lesson? I thought you were going to destroy his stuff, or set traps, or something.”
“This will teach him a lesson,” I laughed. We slipped silently off into the forest to hide before Barron returned home. “Trust me.”
I desperately wanted to stay and see Barron’s reaction to my changes, but I thought that it would be best if there were no monsters present for him to blame the activity on.
I did not want him to know that it was a zombie who had done all of this. I had decided that I wanted to convince Barron that Herobrine was defending us. If the monsters knew the story of our great defender, then the daywalkers must too.
I was counting on it.
I heard rumors that Barron was in an uproar the following day.
The spiders came to report to us that he had been seen walking in circles muttering to himself, clearly confused as to what had happened.
According to one observer, he seemed more embarrassed than anything. As if perhaps some glitch in our world had caused the alterations. Or, as if he might have had something to do with it but did not remember.
I laughed when I heard the story. This was exactly the sort of response that I had been hoping for.
He had no reason to suspect a zombie, or any monster for that matter. We had never done such a thing before and, without proof, could not be held accountable.
On the second night, Barron was much more watchful. It is for this reason that I had to choose a task that was more covert. Preferably something underground.
Every monster knew where the entrance to Barron’s mines were. We all avoided them because he had filled them with so many torches that it was nearly blinding for us to walk around.
I made my way carefully into the tunnels and began to dig my own network of passageways off of his main shaft.
I dug perfect 2 × 2 square tunnels straight along a single path. Their perfect structure made it clear that they were not natural, while their small size meant that they would stand out to Barron immediately.
With Devon guarding the entrance to the tunnel, I continued to dig into the early morning hours. By the time I was finished I would have created at least 15 individual tunnels of this type.
Each one was connected to Barron’s own mining route, and each one obviously did not belong.
I cannot deny that a part of me was afraid to be down in those tunnels. Barron knew his way around with ease and I, who had never been in a professionally created mineshaft before, was afraid of getting lost or trapped inside.
Another thought that occurred to me was what might happen if Barron wandered down to the tunnels and found me. I would have nowhere to run.
Despite my fears I continued to dig through the night. It was important that I stay focused and completed my tasks. I did not know how long I could convince my neighbors to stay in the area. I needed to work as quickly as possible. I had no time to waste.
My sudden appearance out of the mine scared Devon so badly that he jumped straight up in the air. He had been watching Barron so closely that he had been unprepared for anyone to approach from behind.
We made our way back home before daylight. I could hardly contain my excitement as I imagined Barron’s reaction.
The neighborhood is abuzz with excitement at Barron’s confusion. While they do not understand how it will aid in our ability to share the neighborhood, they are pleased to find that his confusion has distracted him from hunting monsters.
For the first time in many years all monsters were safe to move freely around the forest. Barron was too busy chasing what he thought was another adventurer who was intentionally causing him grief.
When I stepped out into the darkness that evening I could not help but laugh at what I saw.
Barron had posted dozens more of those signs that he had told me about. The ones that we could not read. I can only assume that they were meant to scare away whatever intruder he thought had entered the area.
His signs meant nothing to me.
On this third night of activity I decided to take a childhood game of the zombies and use it to confuse Barron even further.
Zombies spend a lot of time waiting. Since we must avoid the sunlight, and do not sleep or eat, we often play games to occupy our time while we wait for nightfall.
A favorite game of mine as a child was one in which you use a certain number of blocks of dirt to create shapes for a friend or sibling to identify.
This game was obviously limited by the size of the cave that your family called home. Ours, being relatively small, meant that we were only able to build the most basic of shapes while indoors.
I enlisted the help of Devon, as well as some of our friends, to play this game outside at night.
We had to be very careful this time to make sure that Barron did not see us. Instead of building shapes around his home, where he could see us, we decided to build them up on the hill so that when the morning sun rose it would appear as if the strange creations were looking down on him.
Some of the formations were as simple as a square or triangle. Others, from far away, might resemble the massive form of an Iron Golem. While still more were meant to resemble tiny houses, bridges, and smiling faces.
None of the creations had any use at all. Each was crafted simply of dirt or wood. They would cause no harm. They were not technically in Barron’s way. The only thing that was significant about them was that it was clear that they did not belong.
I returned to my cave that morning knowing exactly what would happen.
I had been correct!
Barron saw the structures that we had created and was immediately determined to destroy them.
He spent the better part of that morning, so I was told, tearing down every last block that we had laid.
I knew that my plan was working. I knew that Barron was getting close to the point of understanding that if he simply accepted our presence in the neighborhood, all of the silly tricks and games would stop.
Whatever tasks he had been working on prior to these events, he abandoned completely. He now shuffled around the forest muttering to himself with the determination of a man who needed to find a solution that was just out of reach.
I enlisted the help of two Enderman for my next project.
I donned a set of enchanted golden armor that I borrowed from one of my father’s friends and paced in the field a short way from Barron’s home. I knew that he could not resist the draw of winning the armor. It lured him away from his home and I could see the Enderman set to work in the distance.
Their task was simple. It was difficult for zombie or skeleton to enter the home of a daywalker. Barron’s home had iron doors that would be impossible for us to break down.
Endermen, on the other hand, can simply teleport in and out of whatever structure they please.
It is for this reason that I needed their help.
While I was off distracting Barron, forcing him to chase me through the forest, the Endermen were free to roam his home.
Endermen have this funny little trait that everybody loves. They like to move things. Anything. Sometimes for no reason at all. It is not uncommon to see an Enderman carrying a single block around as if he cannot decide the perfect place to set it down.
Tonight my Ender friends were given the task of moving around as many items inside of Barron’s home as they possibly could.
When he returned, he would find many of his belongings in seemingly random places, though none will have left his house.
He could not suspect anyone of theft. He will not have lost a single item. Additionally, all of his doors will remain intact. As far as he will be able to tell, it will appear as if his items have moved on their own. One of the Enderman told me that this was a very common trick of Herobrine himself.
When they had finished the task, an Endermen teleported himself to where Barron and I were engaged in a fearsome battle.
He appeared just in time to allow me to escape without losing the armor that I had borrowed from my father’s friend. I rushed home and waited for daylight, hoping that Barron had not followed me.
It is clear that I’m nearing the end of my project. My intention is not to drive Barron insane, though I believe that I have come very close.
For the time being, I have given him an imaginary foe that is far greater than any of the monsters that live in our area.
All of the local monsters seem to be realizing the success of my mission because many of them have now offered to participate. This is excellent because for my last project I am going to need everyone’s help.
My goal for tonight is simple.
There is one thing that Herobrine is particularly well known for. One thing that will force Barron to conclude that the legendary hero is here to protect the monsters that he is trying to banish.
It is a task that will take all of our hard work to complete in a single night.
It is one that we must be sure that Barron does not catch us doing.
Our first issue was to find a way to distract Barron. We needed to draw him, not only away from his home, but entirely outside of the neighborhood.
It is here that our skeleton friends were able to provide us with the solution.
A long time ago, before they rode spiders, skeletons used to ride horses. It has been a long time since they have chosen these steeds, but the local skeletons still remember where there is a herd nearby.
During the hours just before sunset a group of skeletons, with armor that would protect them from the light of the sun, lured a single horse to the edge of Barron’s land.
As soon as he saw the creature he became very excited. In order to ensure that the horse made its way back to its family, a group of young zombies encouraged the animal to follow them by offering it an endless supply of apples. As you know, zombies collect carrots and beets, but sometimes we come across apples too.
Barron fell for the bait. He chased that horse off into the horizon determined to catch and tame the elusive creature.
It was then that our work began.
With a group of nearly thirty monsters we set about the act of removing every single leaf, from every single tree, that surrounded Barron’s home.
We started with Barron’s home at the center and worked our way outward. The trick was to destroy all of the vines and leaves, while leaving all of the wood intact.
This, was something Herobrine was known for doing. Though, he would have been forced to complete the task on his own over many nights.
With a forest of empty tree trunks, it would be clear that something was wrong. However, Barron could not blame the sight on a fire, because that would have destroyed all of the wood as well. The fact that all of the greens had been stripped from the plants, yet the strong trunk remained, would be very confusing to the adventurer.
I was certain that he would have never seen anything like it in all of his travels.
The task was tedious but I was glad to have so much help. We cleared an enormous area and even succeeded in collecting a massive amount of apples. The witches would make good trades for them.
By the time we had finished there was not a single green plant as far as the eye could see. Only a barren landscape of tree trunks that stood like lonely pillars in the night.
I knew that it would be the most successful night yet. Barron would certainly question his rule over this area now. Perhaps he might grow to understand what it felt like for someone to claim they had the right to do whatever they wanted to the land. That it belonged to them alone.
We had shown him, I hope, the difference between the simplicity of living in peace with us, and the chaos that might result if he refused to admit that it was our home too.
We all returned home that morning with a great sense of accomplishment.
Barron was beside himself with worry today.
The sheering of the trees had exactly the effect that I had hoped for. He returned to the area with a newly-captured horse on a lead and stood frozen in shock as he looked out upon the landscape.
I had instructed all of the other monsters to stay home. There was practically no shaded area for us to hide. Barron was forced to stare at the empty landscape that surrounded his home.
That was when I did it.
On the hill opposite where Barron was standing, I climbed to the very top and stood looking down at him.
The witches had provided me with a rare set of diamond armor. With its enchantments and protections I could easily stand under the heat of the sun.
As long as I stayed far away from Barron, he would have no way of identifying me as a zombie.
That was when I heard it.
“HEROBRINE!” he shouted across the valley.
I did not respond. My voice would give away the act. Instead, I simply stared at him without moving a single muscle in my body.
“HEROBRINE,” he shouted again. “WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME?”
Slowly, I raised my arms so that they pointed at all of the land around us. Still, I remained silent. I gestured at the land, at the chaos and confusion that I had caused, I wanted him to understand that he was not in control of it.
I wanted him to believe that Herobrine would protect us.
I could tell that Barron wanted to follow me, but thankfully the horse that he was leading prevented him from coming any nearer.
Finally, Barron nodded.
“FINE,” his voice sounded tired and perhaps a bit worried, “YOU WIN! WHAT DO YOU WANT?”
I turned away from him and took several steps along the top of the hill.
There, stood one of Barron’s many signs that claimed this land for his own. I turned back to ensure that he was watching. He was.
Then, I destroyed the sign.
He understood the message. I could see it in his face, in the tense way that he was standing, even from this far away.
Slowly, Barron nodded his head. He was defeated.
I climbed down the far side of the hill and found a quiet place to hide until nightfall.
Tomorrow, we would see if Barron would keep his word.
The monsters are abuzz with news this evening.
The spiders came rushing in to tell us that Barron has removed every wooden sign from the land surrounding his home. They said that he even asked to speak with the leader of the zombies.
We do not have a leader but, since this entire charade was my idea, it was decided that I would go to speak with him.
I could hardly wait for night to fall. This meeting would determine whether or not we monsters could remain in the neighborhood.
I could not stand the idea of all of our friends having to find new homes and new communities to live in. This was our home. This IS our home, I reminded myself.
When the moon had reached the highest point in the sky, I knocked on the door to Barron’s home.
He opened the door and stepped out into the night beside me. For a long while we stared at each other, both unsure of what the other might do. In the past, we would have fought. We would have battled until one of us respawned.
Finally, he led out his hand. In his grasp was a single golden carrot.
“This is for you. As a sign of peace,” he waited for me to take the item, “I know that you, and your people, collect carrots. This one is special.”
I smiled and tried not to laugh.
Of course we collected carrots, but they really meant nothing to us. We collected them to keep them away from Barron, not because we needed them for ourselves.
Still, the gesture was sweet. He had noticed what he thought was our love for carrots, and he had given us the best gift that he could think of along those lines.
I accepted the gift. Never before has a carrot meant so much to me. This one, I would keep forever.
I gestured for him to wait a moment while I went in search of a gift of my own.
He waited nervously by the door to his home.
I returned several minutes later with a gift for Barron. A single beet. I knew, we all knew, that it was the one item that he had searched for far and wide. Adventurers used to be able to till the ground to find them, but now only we zombies knew the secret to gathering beets.
His eyes welled up with tears and he accepted the gift with many words of thanks.
It was in that way that a new pact of peace had been formed.
Legend would tell that Herobrine had convinced Barron to befriend us, but there were some of us who would always know the truth.
Devon thinks that I should go to help other monster communities but I know that I do not have the skill to complete that mission on my own. They would want the REAL Herobrine. Not me, a plain, no-nonsense zombie.
I spoke to my father about this and what he said was simple, “This task is too big for a young zombie like you, Damien. Helping the other communities should fall on the shoulders of the REAL Herobrine. What you did was a great feat, but we do not have the powers that the legends of old possessed.”
“What if he never comes?” I asked. I needed to know that the other monsters would be helped. I needed to be certain that the hero would come, that he would save the day, defend the weak, teach the adventurers to live in harmony. How could I be certain?
“Then you must find him and remind him of his mission,” my father said with a smile. “That is a task fit for a young zombie. That is the way that you can help the world, my son.”
“But I do not know where to even begin looking for him,” I groaned.
“I’ve heard rumors that he lives in the Nether.” Father smiled.
“Where did you learn that?” I asked.
My father laughed with a slow rhythm. “I may have asked the Enderman that I met the other day. Just in case,” he smiled.
I thought about this for a long while. The Nether was a dark and dismal place that only the meanest of zombies traveled to. However, my father seemed certain that this was the solution.
If I could convince Herobrine to jump back into the action, perhaps many communities could find peace. Maybe even the entire world.
I had to admit that I thought Herobrine was much more likely to be able to save the world than a lone zombie such as myself. With a sigh I nodded and steeled myself for the journey ahead.
I was going to the Nether.
About the Author
Mark Mulle is a passionate Minecraft gamer who writes game guides, short stories, and novels about the Minecraft universe. He has been exploring, building, and fighting in the game ever since its launch, and he often uses in-game experiences for inspiration on creating the best fiction for fellow fans of the game. He works as a professional writer and splits his time between gaming, reading, and storytelling, three hobbies and lifelong passions that he attributes to a love of roleplaying, a pursuit of challenging new perspectives, and a visceral enjoyment the vast worlds that imagination has to offer. His favorite thing to do, after a long day of creating worlds both on and off the online gaming community, is to relax with his dog, Herobrine, and to unwind with a good book. His favorite authors include Stephen King, Richard A. Knaak, George R. R. Martin, and R. A. Salvatore, whose fantasy works he grew up reading or is currently reading. Just like in Minecraft, Mark always strives to level up, so to speak, so that he can improve his skills and continue to surprise his audience. He prefers to play massive multiplayer online games but often spends time in those games fighting monsters one on one and going solo against the toughest mobs and bosses he can manage to topple. In every game, his signature character build is a male who focuses mostly on crafting weapons and enchanting, and in every battle, he always brings a one hander sword and a shield with as much magical attributes as he can pour into them. Because he always plays alone, he likes to use his game guides to share all the secrets and knowledge he gains, and who know—he may have snuck some information into his fiction as well. Keep an eye out for his next book!
Other books by this author
Please visit your favorite eBook retailer to discover other books by Mark Mulle
Diary of a Brave Iron Golem
Book 1: The Village Protector
Book 2: Attacked by the Wither
Diary of Jake and His Zombie Pigman
Book 1: The Creature from the Nether
Book 2: The Spiders Show the Way
The White Eyed Ghost’s Promise
Book 1: Herobrine Lives
Book 2: Herobrine’s Manor
Diary of a Hero Zombie
Book 1: Herobrine’s Gauntlet
Book 2: The Cult of Herobrine
Book 3: Into the Nether Portal
Diary of Erik Enderman
Book 1: Block Thief
Book 2: Adventures with Steve
Book 3: The Legend of the Endermen’s Treasure
Diary of a Valiant Wolf
Book 1: Steve’s Wolves
Book 2: Zombie Horde
Book 3: Defeating the Dragon
Diary of a Mob – Bony the Skeleton,
Book 1: Where the Block is My Bow?
Book 2: Where the Block is My Dad?
Diary of a Mob – Sebastian the Gutsy Sheep
Book 1: No Ordinary Sheep
Book 2: Sebastian Seeks Revenge
Rise of the Wither, Book 1: New Danger
Books in the Carnival of Doom series
Book One: The Angry Ghost
Book Two: To the Nether Portal
Book Three: Trapped
Books in the Diary of a Crafty Player Series
Book One: Blocky World
Book Two: The Fort Keepers
Book Three: The Search for the Dragon
Diary of Reg the Villager,
Book One: In Search of the Creative Mode
Book Two: Nether Here Nor There
Book Three: The Wolfdog and the Dragon
Diary of Steve the Explorer, The Cube World Chronicles
Book One: The Unknown Enemy
Book Two: Diary of the Curious Creeper
Book Three: Diary of an Enderman, the Game Keeper
Diary of Steve the Adventurer,
Book One: In the Lair of Herobrine
Book Two: To the Nether Portal
Diary of a Zombie Hunter,
Book One: The Zombie Specialist
Book Two: Zombie or Griefers
Book Three: The Captain of Overwatch
Diary of a Mob – Rowley the Rabbit,
Book One: The Runaway Rabbit
Books in the Diary of an Adventurous Creeper Series
Book One: Creeper Chronicles
Book Two: Journey to the End
Book Three: Dragon Savior
Books in the Adventures Through the Over World Trilogy
Book One: Creeping Transformation
Book Two: Steven and the Island of Bones
Book Three: The Zoo in Jericho City
The Quest: The Untold Story of Steve Trilogy
Book One: The Tale of a Hero
Book Two: The Unfinished Game
Book Three: The Endings and Beginnings of a Legend
The Obsidian Chronicles Trilogy
The Obsidian Chronicles, Book One: Ender Rain
The Obsidian Chronicles, Book Two: Hell and Back
The Obsidian Chronicles, Book Three: Of Dragons and Demons
The Doppelganger Trilogy
The Doppelganger, Book One: Steve’s Chance
The Doppelganger, Book Two: Steve vs. Herobrine
The Doppelganger, Book Three: The Ender Dragon Reborn
The Cult Trilogy
The Cult, Part One
The Cult, Part Two
The Cult, Part Three
The Legend: The Mystery of Herobrine Trilogy
Book One: The Start of the Quest
Book Two: The Truth about the Myth
Book Three: Herobrine versus the World
The Dragon’s Mountain Trilogy
Book One: Attacked by the Griefers
Book Two: The Hidden Village
Book Three: The White Mobs
The Temple of Destruction Trilogy
Book One: The Lost Treasures
Book Two: The Curse
Book Three: Notch versus Herobrine
Books in The Enemy’s Revenge Trilogy
Book One: Ghost Sightings
Book Two: Kidnapped
Book Three: To The End World
Attack of the Overworld Trilogy
Book One: Finding Herobrine
Book Two: Finding Steve
Book Three: The Final Mine
GENRE: Childrenâ€™s Adventure (An Unofficial Minecraft Book for Kids Ages 9 - 12 (Preteen) Damien is a zombie who is searching for a purpose in his life. After hearing the enchanting tale of Herobrine, he decides that he too wants to help the monster community to find a way to live in peace with the adventurers, or daywalkers as they are called. When a local daywalker tries to drive the local monsters out of the area, Damien decides that someone needs to stand up to their enemy. Not strong enough to fight Barron himself, Damien comes up with a plan to convince Barron that Herobrine is wreaking havoc in the area. By pretending to be the fabled hero, can Damien and the local monsters find a way to reclaim their home and forge a peace with their grumpy neighbor? Authorâ€™s Note: This short story is for your reading pleasure. The characters in this "Minecraft Adventure Series" such as Steve, Endermen, Creeper or Herobrine...etc are based on the Minecraft Game coming from Minecraft Â®/TM & Â© 2009-2013 Mojang / Notch