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These past two months have been insane. It's been a whirlwind of confessions, papers signed, crying, laughing, packing, moving, and saying goodbye. I thought I would feel a little different than I feel now. I thought it would ache more or feel sharper than it does. But it really doesn't. I feel like I'm going a million miles an hour and for the first time, in a long time, that's okay. It doesn't feel out of control or completely and utterly restless. This feeling inside is what it's supposed to be. I know I'm not making sense. But that's okay.
I have so many ideas for the future. What I want to do in regards to my job, my schooling, and my future relationships. As corny as it sounds, I have a really positive outlook on everything. I don't think the depression and anxiety is gone. I think it's currently dormant. But I have a goal. And even though the anxiety will probably return, bringing along its friend depression, I know that I'll be okay. I'm still going to see someone for help. I'm going to open my eyes. And I'm going to just cross my fingers for everything else.
The nightmare had returned. Jack didn't know what to do or who to see about these dreams. These wisps of reality that stuck with him throughout the day, taunting and slowly marking him. They were a part of him now. And he didn't like it at all. He got up out of bed, shoving the sheets down to the edge of the bed. The sweat started to cool on his forehead and neck. All he wanted was a hot shower and a way to scrub these images out of his head. Instead he got a cold shower and no respite.
Dubbing tapes for someone is a difficult process. I've never done it before, much less an entire season of episodes. I had to ask my father for help connecting the two VCRs. I started the process too late at night and I stayed up until three in the morning. This is a show I love, a show I became a fan of within the past year. I adore these episodes. At three o'clock in the morning I was this close to throwing the tapes out the window. But I'm doing this because other fans have done the same for me.
I make up stories inside my head when I'm in the middle of a conversation with someone. It's not that I'm ignoring them or not following what they're saying, but that I just end up thinking about something else. It could be a person I saw at the mall, a remembered bit of dialogue, a picture of a famous person I like. A bit of plot develops, dialogue is formed and suddenly a story takes hold. It holds my interest so that I'm never bored. And sometimes the stories inside my head are better than the ones down on paper.
We were supposed to go to Sea World today, but we didn't. Instead I'm doing the final adjustments to my resume and hopefully I'll be taking it to the places listed on the piece of paper my sister gave me. It's helpful to have someone who knows other people, other contacts. There are no guarantees. This economy is not so good right now and I still have another semester and a half to finish at college. But I'm hopeful. I know I'll get a job somewhere. I'm willing to do whatever it takes. Taking care of myself is worth it.
The fantasy world is so enticing. I get wrapped up in it. Inside my head. Inside books. Inside movies. Inside everything. The idea of magic, faraway places, olden times, and whispers of everything associated with those things fascinates me. It always has. I don't necessarily believe in things like fairies, elves, or other such fantastical creatures, but I do love the idea of them. The idea conjures images of something removed from our everyday lives. Something bigger than us. Something that can't really be explained. It doesn't matter if it actually exists. The idea is out there. Running madly about.
It's finally complete. The margins match up, the sentences are straight and the colors stand out. My resume is done. For now. I now have to deliver it to the four potential places of employment tomorrow. This is a little nerve wracking at best. I've never actually handed in my resume to a place of business before. I'm just going to keep my fingers crossed and hope that all goes well. I really need a job. So do a lot of people. Money, unfortunately, allows for things like food, rent and clothes. And a job definitely provides the needed money.
He sat on the worn down bleachers with his requisite shorts and tennis shoes on. That lost, shuttered look was back in his eyes. She knew it well. Her observations of his everyday patterns, emotions and such had been going on for two years now. Her fingers itched to straighten the curls that fell on to his forehead. Her fingers itched to smooth out the frown lines appearing in the middle of his forehead. Her fingers itched to wrap themselves around his shoulders and squeeze a little warmth back into his body. She had always wished for these hopeless things.
I remember the tone in his voice when I made the inappropriate joke. It was a reflex, a thing I had always done when conversations got tense. It took my brain a minute to realize how what I said could be interpreted. How completely out of place the statement had been. But I couldn't take the words back. They were out there, swirling in the air, making their way into his ears. I wounded him without any intention of doing so. We had all been on edge for days. He had seemed calm. When he was actually far from it.
The tears always come when I'm angry. I'll be having an argument with someone, trying to make my case, and I'll start crying. It's embarrassing and difficult to control. I hold my emotions in so much that when I do let them out; they come out at full steam. I'm not used to being angry. So when it does happen, my body and mind aren't used to it. There is always a part of myself that understands the anger, but it is rarely heard. The screaming, yelling and crying are all part of the package. An out of control package.
The field appeared to be filled with thousands of daffodils. The sun shone through the branches of the ancient trees and the light fell upon the soft ground. The nearby stream gurgled and made its way past the field towards the sea. Nothing was out of place. Everything was quiet. No birds flew about in the sky. No insects chirped among the grasses. And there were no people lounging near the stream, eating lunch and playing games. It was as if something or someone had a hold over this place. And soon it would be coming to change it all.
Nerves are stretched taut in my body. My stomach clenches in knots and I get irritated anytime someone speaks. I'm PMSing and I'm worrying about what is going to happen tonight. A blind date. The first date in a few years. I know his name, where he went to college, and not much else. I fret over my hair, my clothes, my shoes, and my makeup. I hate the fussing and different opinions. I hate that I'm anxious at all. But I'm determined. I said yes. It's done. I'm going forward. It's all part of my "just do it" attitude.
It happened so quickly. I got the email with the details and I made the phone call. She said, "Can you call back at 1:30?" I said yes and then I panicked. I rushed to look up the information on the internet. I planned out my questions and checked them twice. It was my first real interview. My first real freelance writing assignment. I called back and I talked to the little girl and her mother. I asked the questions and I tried to get all the answers down as quickly as possible. Now I cross my fingers and hope.
How do you comfort a friend who believes in love so much, but is always thwarted by it? How do you convincingly tell her that it won't hurt for long, that the pain will pass eventually? How do you sit there, on her old bed, and say the right words? She's always been insecure. She's always connected her worth with the guy she loves. And she knows it. She knows that never works. That she always gets hurt. But it's hard to change. And still harder to not open up your heart when that's all you know how to do.
"Baby, what's wrong?" He had hated it when she would ask him that question. There was never an easy answer. An answer that would satisfy her worries and fear. And in the end, after she left for good, he knew that he never really had an answer to begin with. He knew it was because of the darkness. But how did you explain that to someone who had never experienced it? It was hard to describe and yet so vivid and real when it appeared. It would creep into his insides, into his heart, and nest. It would spread its...
long fingers and burrow into the small crevices of his body. His mind. Oh dear God, his mind. The nightmares that came in the dead of night when the darkness resided inside him were terrible. He would always wake suddenly, breathing hard and sweating profusely, trying to grasp the remaining wisps of the nightmare before it disappeared. Because as much as he hated them, they also provided clues to what the darkness was. Tantalizing, just out of reach clues, but clues nonetheless. Jack's life was normal, almost bland really, except for when the darkness arrived. Then strange things would happen.
He would black out and end up in strange places, in strange clothes, and with strange marks on his body. Sometimes the marks were just words, like "bless" and "sanction", and other times the marks were symbols. Lines of dark blue and black, that would criss-cross up his arms or legs, as if a vine were climbing a trellis. They would throb in pain for the rest of that day, but by the next, they had always disappeared. Until the next time. And then the whole process would start over again. He didn't know what to make of all this.
It had been happening ever since he was fifteen years old. The first time he had woken up a mile from his house, in the downtown park. He had been lying on a bench, wrapped in a torn red blanket. The clothes he had been wearing when he went to bed the night before were gone and replaced by loose fitting pants, a white linen shirt and a robe. There had been a mark on his right arm, just above his elbow, a slash of midnight blue, curling up toward his shoulder. It had throbbed and pulsed viciously and he...
couldn't help but cry out in pain as a result. Jack remembered pushing himself up into a sitting position, but not being able to stand right away. He had been so weak and dizzy that he dared not try it. After he felt a little less woozy, he had placed one hand on the bench and stood up. It took him two tries to get it right, but finally he had been able to stand. He remembered being confused at the blanket wrapped around his shoulders, wondered what had happened to his other clothes, and how in the hell he...
had ended up in the park in the first place. He had slowly trudged home and wondered what his parents would say when he knocked on the door. But when he had arrived back at his house, his parents weren't there. It was strange because it was a Saturday and they usually were up and about, cleaning and making repairs to the house. But the house had been silent. The door had been unlocked and he had made his way upstairs to his bedroom. It looked exactly the same as when he had gone to bed. Nothing was out of...
place. He had sat down on his bed and tried to remember what happened the night before. But every time he tried to recall what had happened, it seemed even harder to pull the memory out. Something was blocking him. Something was stopping him from remembering the previous night. And even though Jack had known that none of it made any sense and that he was more confused than ever, he was certain of one thing. Something dark, something that was not his friend, something that only intended harm was near him now. He hadn't known then how close or...
how integral a part of himself it would become, but the seeds had been planted then. Jack shivered at the memories, as he sat in his favorite chair, facing the sliding glass door that overlooked his backyard. He twisted his hands together, clenching the fingers until they ached. It had happened again last night. Even as he sat there, his left arm pained him. There was another symbol of blue and green this time. Another set of lines that circled his elbow and reached down to his wrist. The skin around the lines was red and scratched. Traces of blood...
still remained behind, changing the colors, darkening the lines. He hadn't bothered to wash the blood off. It would just be gone tomorrow, as if nothing had been there to begin with. This frustrated him beyond belief. He had contemplated, many times before, of telling people he knew about the darkness. But every time he tried to show someone the symbol, tried to explain about the darkness, he was stopped. The symbol would disappear in someone else's presence, only to return after the person would leave. And since it only lasted for one day, in the end it didn't matter...
anyway. He had tried to talk about the darkness though. It was difficult to explain, but he had tried to talk about it with her. But the words would not leave his mouth. He would open his lips and his throat would close up. The air in his lungs would constrict and his tongue would freeze. She would always become even more frustrated and angry with him when he would do this. And it was never his fault. Something always stopped him from telling the truth. It was that same presence he had felt when was fifteen, sitting on his...
bed, on that early Saturday morning when his life had changed. Jack continued to sit in his chair, stewing and mulling over these thoughts. This morning he had woken up, curled up in a ball, outside Cassie's house, next to her rock garden in the backyard. He had been wearing a navy blue robe, torn at the hem and with tattered sleeves, and nothing else. His head had throbbed and his left arm was on fire. Of all places to turn up, it would have to be in Cassie's backyard. The woman hated him. She had hated him ever since...
he had started working at her father's business. She had never trusted him. She found him strange and did everything within her power to make his life hell while he was at work. He had never done anything to offend her, but that didn't matter. She had been determined since the first moment she met him to despise him and everything he did. Most of the time he ignored her. He did this anyway with the rest of his co-workers. He had never been very successful at casual conversations before he was fifteen and he certainly had not improved much...
since then either. He didn't have many friends outside of work either. He kept to himself and thus when he did experience his "spells", there weren't a lot of people asking questions and wondering what the hell happened to him. There had really been no one he was close to, in the past ten years, except for her. But Jack didn't want to think about her. She was the past. A vicious, painful part of his past and that's where she must stay. He thought back to what happened after he woke up that morning, lying in Cassie's freshly mown...
grass. He had tried to sit up and almost threw up as a result of the dizziness that had spread through him all of a sudden. He had pressed his cheek to the cool blades of grass and tried to control his breaths. If he could just calm down, wait for the dizziness to pass, then he could stand. And leave before Cassie ever found out he was here. But just as the throbbing behind his eyes was starting to fade, he heard a noise coming from the house in front of him. The creak of hinges on a screen...
door and then the soft footsteps of a person approaching him reached his ears. He closed his eyes and pretended to be asleep. Of all the luck, of all the damned luck, he had remembered thinking. He had waited, knots growing in his stomach and the throbbing returning to that particular spot behind his eyes. He had expected yelling, curses thrown at him from the queen herself. What are you doing asleep in my backyard? What sort of strange things have you been up to? Why do you have to make me a part of it? He had expected these...
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