Saturday, May 12, 2012

Medicated [Short story]

(Note: This is a work of fiction, based off of the two flash games, “The Company of Myself,” and “Fixation,” by 2DArray. This short story takes place between the two games. Playing them will definitely help to make sense of  this writing, but you may enjoy it anyway.)

A week later, the men in coats broke down my door. They escorted me out, not kindly, but not unkindly. They were only doing their duty, and one can hardly blame a man that does honest work. Their sudden appearance made me happy, and the change in routine made me ecstatic. Is that the right word? I believe it is, but I’m not sure if I’m using it right… All emotion started failing me when I started having the dreams.

A week ago is when they started. I’d dream of meeting a girl, lost in the cave of her own subconscious. We met in the shadows. I was strolling around people’s minds, safely tucked away in a balanced place. Where the rights and wrongs, the goods and the bads, all balance out. My medication certainly helped.

She was quite the opposite at the time. Her friend was in a bad place, prone to get hurt by a man who was careless with her feelings. If anyone can respect the value of a friend, it would be me. I’ve lived alone since my accident… A good friend can save a life.

I told her everything would be alright. She took my hand. We left the cave of her mind. I woke up.

It was the first dream of many, but it felt quite real. As if it was a latent memory. All I could do was continue taking my medication. It was the only thing keeping me safe at the time. So I upped the dosage. It kept me in the Meadow longer, the place of balance. I believe I can recall a girl calling me the ‘Zen Master’ for this reason. What a strange girl…

My medicine keeps me here. It’s good. Sometimes, it’s better to forget than to remember. In one dream, I told her about this. About how sometimes, I do things I wouldn’t normally do. Other times, I’d completely forget things.

Sometimes both.

A few days later, I met this girl in my dreams again. We’d been meeting regularly, but this was unique. It was powerful. Emotional. I took her to my Meadow. She smiled. She was happy. Our meeting had very few words. Only emotions. I had made a new friend. More than a friend, really. She was the greatest friend I had ever made.

I woke up in tears. Alone. And that was how things would always be: Alone. This girl only lived in my dreams, in memories of things that hadn’t happened. This girl was my one and only friend. She would always be my only friend.

The dreams stopped coming as regularly after that. But I needed her. And she needed me. So I increased my dose again. And that night, I saw her again. But it was different. She had a sad happiness to her, as if she was back in the cave. Yet we were in the Meadow. How could that be?

I didn’t understand it then, but I understand it now. She had left me. She was gone. I wasn’t going to see her again.

And I didn’t. My Kathryn was gone. The girl in my dreams was no more. Her name was Kathryn…

When the men came to my door, I was so delighted at the idea of making new friends. I went with them. Where would they take me? Would I remember where I ended up? I was now taking four times the medication I had when the dreams started, increased again and again, hoping I would see my Kathryn again.

There was a skip in my memory. I was in a cell. There was a man in there with me. He asked how I got my scar… My scar? What scar? The scar across my face. I don’t have any scars… Was my memory really failing me this greatly? Was he toying with me? I didn’t like him. I couldn’t trust him.

It was that night, my first night in my new home, when I had my last dream. I was with Kathryn, and… myself. Hundreds of myself. Kathryn faded quickly, but I stayed. I woke up in a sweat. I saw myself standing over me. Smiling. And then he vanished in a puff of smoke. Gone.

It was during my stay there that I started talking to myself. Not crazy, no. To this other ‘me.’ To all the other ‘me’s. I learned so much there. The other people didn’t bother me much. I don’t recall anyone else. The cell was filled with me, and only me. And so, I learned to work with myself. To talk to myself, and enjoy myself. To be entertained by the company of myself, and only myself. It was all I had left.

I had no more medication. I was off it for a month. The effects were coming in. I forgot where I was. Who I was talking to. When I was. Was Kathryn coming to visit me here? No, just someone else. Perhaps they could help me. If they heard my story, maybe they could help me find her. Find my missing Kathryn.

It was all I had left. All I had was myself, and my Kathryn. These two traits defined me.

I’m in a room with white walls now. Nothing else. Was I moved from that cell? Was I ever in a cell? All I know is I’m alone again. Sometimes, a man comes in. And I tell him my story. But he knows nothing about my Kathryn. I tell him that I can multitask pretty well. That I can help people. He only nods and writes things down on his pad of paper.

I want nothing more than this man to be my friend. I can’t talk to myself in this room. I’m not in here. And Kathryn is fading… I don’t remember where we met, anymore. I need this man to be my friend.

If I can just tell him my story… Maybe he’ll be my friend.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


Everyone claims that they know everything, or at least, more than they should. Later in life, we claim we know what we need to, and by late age, we know that we know nothing. This is regarded as true wisdom, but that isn’t the topic of this discussion.

Everyone has their own set of solid, unwavering beliefs, formed through their younger years, solidified in their young adult years, and tried and tested throughout the rest of their life. The points of creation, solidification, and trial may differ from person to person, but by a certain age, we all know what we believe, and we are unwavering on that belief.

Everyone has opinions, both gained through experience and told to us by family and friends. In most cases, told by others and refined through experience. Therefore, none of our opinions are entirely their own, and yet, we stand by them as if they are.

Everyone defends their opinions, their beliefs, and the knowledge, and most people will carry their beliefs to the grave. Who are you to tell me what to believe? Why should I change how I live when all of my evidence backs me up? People assume that defending their beliefs means standing firm, unmovable. A good handful of people think it is to attack the “intruder,” as we’ll call such a person. But why? Why is change so bad that you should defend against it? Why is it so terrible?

It may be an elementary point, but everyone fears change. Every time their beliefs and morals are challenged, they grow stiff and cautious. They harden themselves against any concept that might, just might, alter their views on life. How terrible it must be to find a better, happier way to live. How terrible it must be to learn that the last x amount of years were wasted.

Maybe that’s what everyone is thinking. Maybe I put too much into this lifestyle. To change it now, all of that would have been in vain. Well, no. All of that led up to this revolution, this idea, this new way to live. And all of it is propelling you closer to the concept of pure happiness.

But here, we have the fundamental problem: Everyone does all of this. We all criticize other ways of living, other religions (especially religions), while being completely immovable ourselves. And you may think “No, my way truly is the best way I know to live. I can change other people, and they’ll be happier.” Or maybe you think that this is your way, and no one will change this, and others will just have to find their own ways to be happy.

People say they’re willing to change, that if someone tries to show them a way they can be happier, that they will take that chance. We all tell ourselves this, but would we really? If we saw something better than what we had, would we even notice? And if we did, would we really be willing to take that chance, that maybe it won’t work for us?

Most people say yes. The ones who know themselves say no, just as everyone should say no. The problem is that we won’t change. Once our beliefs are cemented in our minds, there is no changing. No matter how much we claim we want to, we never really want to change. And this brings us around to the point of this discussion: How are you any different?

Well, I’ve had different experiences- Sure. Everyone has different experiences. But I’ve done things other people wouldn’t- Everyone has their crazy stories. I almost killed myself onc- Of course you have, it’s called being a depressed teenager.

You don’t fit into any stereotypes? That’s great and all, but everyone strives for that.

You think in ways no one else does? No one thinks the same way.

You are not different.

So what happens when someone knows they aren’t any different? Well, it’s the ones that aren’t caught up in this self-denial that will say that. They know that, fundamentally, they are no different from anyone else. So maybe this makes them different, but they won’t try to stick out in a crowd if they actually believe those words: “I am not different.” They’ll fall into all of the aforementioned patterns, because they won’t try not to. And if being different by claiming you’re not different means you give up, is that really different at all? Everyone else has given up, at one time or another.

You could argue that it is our personalities and hobbies that set us apart, but those both stem from the way we live, the way we’ve learned to live. And we all believe the same things, in the same ways, when we get down below the surface. Our personalities are essentially masks, and I could write an entire other post on how someone’s personality means nothing. In fact, I intend to.

So I ask you: How are you different?