• 14 Sep - 20 Sep, 2019
  • Mag The Weekly
  • Fiction

A branch cracked in the near distance, slightly broken from my dream, I returned rapidly. The sky was grey, overcast, the wind forced the clouds still. The day prior, a heavy snow blanketed the forest floor. I sat, and enjoyed my visuals. Calming – little sparkles of snow cascaded from the bare, lifeless branches. I sank deeper into my frosty seat upon a great hemlock. Though the floor was white, the hemlock’s shadowed the earth as if to create a dimming effect. Brightness is overpowering, I would choose a slightly dimmer, shaded world over this current one. Though coincidentally, the world in my head has been naturally dimmed.

I am not your typical person; typical at best would be the ninety per cent conforming to all the media junk. If not so, than focus tends to deviate toward an array of unrealistic expectations derived from over-privileged upbringings. I consider myself of the lower percentile, I guess, the one where I focus on what I am doing, and what I am doing for myself. Things that make me happy not someone else.

I once had multiple friend groups, but in all cases no more than a few people from those groups knew I existed. As a result, I chose meaningful relationships, not ones that were sparked by a momentary common interest like partying. When I went to parties, I was the awkward guy in the corner. Eventually, as my comments fell upon deaf ears, I began seeking in depth moments with the others similar to me. When I found someone we enjoyed our short moment of compassion for similarly dissimilar topics. We expressed our views through civil debate, and used fact not rumour to drive our opinions. I knew my downfall, I seen everything the universe has to offer.

I have this oddness about me. When I was with other people I have seen them, in most cases deeper than they’ve ever seen anyone. Deeper than they’ve seen themselves. Though opaque, my eyes seared through their skin as if translucent. I could see the inner workings, beyond the flesh, nerves, and marrow. I have seen their emotions, their brain light up or dim out. I have seen them – their lingering shadow.

In their darkness a soul broken and lost trapped by the confines of a society more broken than them.

I tried to get one-0n-one with the ninety per cent. When I did, they liked me; I grabbed their interest by knowing their interests. I conversed, and controlled it just enough so it remained about them. They ate it up, and the once quiet guy who they were unsure of, is now accepted in their mind. That’s all it took. Their shadow screaming at me.

In my thoughts of the past, I sink to a frequency deeper than all that. What about my inner working, my flesh, my bone, and my marrow. Who am I? I am a hermit crab and this forest is my shell. All one thousand acres of it. I haven’t left humanity, for it is just merely a half day journey away. I am not good for humanity, because if you see, I see further.

Again, a branch cracked, this time closer behind me. I spun a near perfect one-hundred-eighty degrees in a delayed panic. Nothing. I decided I had overstayed my welcome among the hemlock’s and arose from my La-Z-Boy in the snow. I stretched, and immediately began searching for my footprints. Though not in sight, I questioned how long I had been day-dreaming and if it had snowed. With the canopy over head, and overcast skies, I could not predict the time. My thoughts raced, jumping through scenario after scenario, I began to feel sick. I was lost. I have no idea where I am. Not typically direction challenged; I did not recall any of my surroundings. I stood there like a scarecrow in a cornfield attempting to compose myself.

After some thought, and a thorough investigative look at the landscape, I concluded I had no idea what to do. So I walked, used the moss on the granite stone to determine a rough direction. After some distance travelled, I felt a light breeze, and recalled it was suppose to blow a north-northwest wind later today. Perfect. It was probably around 1400h and I was heading… south? Baffled, I stopped. Went prone, fingers to forehead. Suddenly, I punched the ground with all the force I could muster. My arm kept sinking, it felt like a thousand needles were piercing my entire body at once. I ripped my hand out of the snow. I was soaked, I looked up, the trees were gone, vast terrain. Nothing in sight. I looked up further, the sun shown, but it did not have colour. My eyes now descending downward to a puddle. I was on a frozen lake, I stood up, like a lightning strike the earth around me shook. I immediately dropped. Before I could even begin to process why I was on a lake. Fight set in, I began crawling. With visibility less than 50 meters, I chose a direction and proceeded. Choosing not to care, I stood up and ran as fast as I could. Visibility now zero I was running endlessly, no form. Each step felt heavy, I felt lost. I felt miserable, I was not in control. I stopped. Prone again, fingers to forehead. I screamed in self-agony. A finger tapped my shoulder. I turned astonished. Looking upwards, the deepest serenity encompassed every piece of me. A man taller than I’ve ever seen looked down upon me.

His hair blacker than night, his skin the softest brown I’ve ever seen. As we looked into each others eyes he seen me. I have seen him. I pierced through his skin and saw his flesh, his nerves, his marrow. He was green inside, the nerves a faint brown, his marrow blue. I believed that I was looking at a greater me. I analysed him, I did what I knew how to. But I could not find his emotion. His brain had no light, no darkness. He bent down, his hand reaching for me. It felt like hours had passed before he grabbed me and lifted me upwards. My perspective changing, the forest was now below me. I see my cabin. He pointed in the distance. Towards humanity. They were bustling, laughing, spending. He then lifted me higher, as high as he could reach. My eyes rushed downward, the ground coming at me, I was falling. He was gone. It was just me, I closed my eyes and accepted my fate.

A moment had passed, I opened my eyes and I was sitting upon my La-Z-Boy. I felt warm, at ease, happy to be in a familiar surrounding. I was home. I got up, heard a click and a clack. Looked down, I was wearing brown dress shoes, the softest brown I’d almost ever seen. My tie green, and my suit a picturesque blue. I opened the blinds, a city encompassed me. I ran down my stairs opened the door to horn beeping, laughter, and people spending.

I closed my door, took a deep breathe then smirked. I pulled out a stool, sat at my island, and began designing my getaway cabin.