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Oct 05, 10 at 1:47am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
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|Im NOT insane||
Oct 05, 10 at 9:33pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Wonderful!!! Thank you so much. So, Nineteen controls her voice? Awesome. Thank you, Harvest Hunny. Thank you.
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Oct 06, 10 at 3:32pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
I love this. Want to read more, can't wait for the climax ^^
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Oct 07, 10 at 12:13am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
This has made me more in tune with myself, I believe. I'm only up to page 5 as of this post, but it would seem that Alyx so far needed to just achieve victory over these voices. Something easier observed and said than done, of course.
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Oct 09, 10 at 8:04am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
This is getting so crazy.
The suspence is really getting to me! I'm so anxious for the next post.
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Oct 15, 10 at 3:03am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
OK, SO AFTER LIKE A ONE/TWO MONTH BREAK...
I came back to this amazing...something, for lack of a better term. =w=;;
I had to play catch-up, so it took a while to get up to current, though it was well worth it. *O*
But seriously, this is so well-written [[like your other stories which I always forget to comment on]], and a lot of people I know would give anything to be able to write so much, and so accurately, on a topic like this.
Me being one of those people. XD;;
Homestuck | Tumblr | deviantART | Okami
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Oct 17, 10 at 4:51am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
OH. MY. GOD.
I LOVE YOU SO MUCH FOR HAVING SUCH WONDERFUL SKILL!!! >.<
seriously you need to write faster though so i can get my fix of your work... lol
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Oct 17, 10 at 5:36pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Classical: Thank you!
Im Not Insane: Yep. Thank you
Neon Rainbow: The climax will be pretty interesting, I can assure you. It will come after the next chapter (The one after this one).
DC Sniper: thank you, and just to make everything clear, Schizophreak is NOT a pity story! You know, a story where every sentence makes you feel sorry for the main character. This is NOT a pity story! I'm writing schizophreak to make the readers more aware of mental illnesses among society, to let the readers know what goes on in a schizophreak's head! THIS IS NOT A PITY STORY.
Alex: Anxiety no more!
Creulean: Baw, shut up you're too kind XD
Leotaylor92: Thank you, and sorry for the wait. I kinda had writer's block for a bit, but I managed to finish up the chapter =D
And thank you, every single person that has posted in this thread. Your comments mean so much to me. Writing is my getaway from life, and your comments just make me feel so happy, so appreciated! <3 I wish I could give all of you something awesome, like a puppy or something, but I can't. ;-; I can't thank you guys enough! Schizophreak is getting so much more attention than it deserves, more attention that I thought! I've got over 100 comments from you guys, and...wow. That's just so amazing. Thank you all so much, every single one of you.
edit: Hey guys! If you love me, click here, join DeviantART and comment on it! It's not mine, it's Anime Gurl's.
twenty-five ~ a taste of my own medicine? indeed.
credit to xXbloodyXromanceXx from deviantArt.
The next day, right after Valentine's Day, I come to school expecting Collin at my locker, greeting me excitedly like he does every day. But when I reach my locker, he is not there. Frowning, I open up my locker. I check behind me. No Collin anywhere. Not near the water fountain, not in the sea of freshmen that inhabit this hallway, not by the door that leads to the stairwell.
Maybe he's absent? Sick? He did sound a bit nasally yesterday, like he had a cold or something. No, that can't be right. Collin hasn't been absent from school one day this year. I think he's going for the perfect attendance award at the end of the year.
We have Psychology first period together, so maybe I'll see him there. I take my Psychology and French books, and I head for Ms. Carmona's room. I am the second one there; a person I've never seen before and a secretary are talking to Ms. Carmona. Ah, a new student. Ms. Carmona looks over the secretary's shoulder and gives me a nod as a greeting. I walk over to the book racks and find my paper bag. There is one note in it. I unfold it and read it.
“I really like your hair. I've always wanted to grow out my hair like your so I can donate it to kids who have cancer and need wigs. Are you going to do the same? ”
I smile and put the note in my pocket. They didn't leave a name, so I can't really leave a note in reply. I don't know what anybody's handwriting in this class looks like, either. Except Collin's, and this is not his handwriting. The handwriting is kind of girly, anyways; the Is are dotted with hearts.
I make my way to my desk and sit. The secretary leaves, and the new student looks at me. I can't tell whether it's a boy or a girl. No, really. Their hair is medium-length, their face has pretty eyes but looks manly. The body is like a girl's, but there are no boobs. The person is wearing skinny jeans, a Disturbed shirt, and (black) high-top sneakers.
“You can have a seat over here,” Ms. Carmona says. She moves an extra desk to the end of my table group that I share with Ashley, Bruce and Collin. The student says thank you and sits down.
“Hi,” they say. “I'm Cameron.” Well, that will help me know if you're male or female!
“Hello,” I answer. “I'm Alyx.”
Cameron nods. “Cool. I moved here from Tacoma.”
“That's interesting,” I reply. I can't help staring at Cameron. His/her face has a square jaw, too. I can see he/she shaved this morning.
“And just so you know, I'm a guy,” Cameron says. Ah.
“I, uh, I didn't say that I thought you were a girl,” I say. “Sorry.”
He smirks. “I know. I just thought you should know. I don't really appreciate people staring at me.”
“Sorry,” I repeat.
“It's okay. So your name's Alyx? With a Y?”
“Cool.” He takes out a pencil and I hear people coming into the room. I look towards the door and I do not see Collin yet. The people entering the classroom head towards the racks where the paper bags are. Someone squeals in excitement. Ashley arrives at our table, as does Bruce. They both start talking to Cameron. Collin finally arrives as the warning bell rings. He ignores me.
We stand up for the national anthem. Collin looks at the desk, away from me, so I look at him. His eyes are like stone. He's wearing a Seattle Pacific sweatshirt, probably from his brother, and jeans. He feels me looking at him, and gives me a stare. I force my eyes to look at the floor. The anthem ends, so we all sit down. The announcements come on next, and when they finish, Collin looks at Cameron and they start up a conversation.
Ms. Carmona starts talking. She says we are finally finished our schizophrenia unit and now we can write an essay on schizophrenia, right here in class. We can write about what we've learned, how we will use our new knowledge in the future, blah blah blah. She tells us to get out our notebooks or a sheet of lined paper and a writing utensil. Also, since this is independent work, we can listen to our iPod, but we can't blast them at high volume. As we take out what we will need, Ms. Carmona walks over to Jamie and says something but I don't pay attention.
I have my notebook out, a plain (blue) 200 page Hilroy. I take out a ballpoint pen and listen to the near-silence in the room. Cameron tells Ms. Carmona he'll write an essay on schizophrenia anyways, because he wants to. I look at Collin, who is starting to write. I poke his shoulder with my pencil.
“What?” he asks. He's pissed at me.
I frown. “Bipolar, much?”
Collin turns away from me. Ashley looks at us and raises an eyebrow at me. I mouth to her, I'll tell you later, which I probably won't do. I take out my iPod from my pocket and put the earbuds in my ears. I turn on the iPod and start playing
* * *
After French class with Madame LaBlanche (and Cameron, who, for some reason, decided to sit with me since I sit by myself at the back of the room.), it is lunch time. I go to my locker and take out my stuff. I head to the cafeteria, alone. I stand by the door and look around for somebody to sit with. Collin and his friend Jacob from the chess team are sitting by themselves. At our table. Disgusted, I head out of the cafeteria. I walk until I find an exit that leads me outside to the back, where the track and football field is.
I sit on the cold bleachers, not paying attention to the sudden cold on my butt. I pull out my iPod again. I listen to music while I eat my pizza pocket and drink my ginger ale. When I'm done, I lean back, close my eyes and reach my head up towards the sky. I listen to Marilyn Manson's voice echoing in my ears. A pill to make you numb, a pill to make you dumb, a pill to make you anybody else...but all the drugs in this world won't save her from herself.
What would happen if I took all the drugs in the world? What if I took all the medication possible for fellow phreaks? Would that finally make Them go away? Would I stop talking to myself, stop acting like such a little girl? Would people stop staring at me? Would I still be in Seattle, still be Autumn's best friend? Would I stop making myself bleed?
I pull up my sweater, then my undershirt, since nobody is around. I look at the band aids on my stomach, near my private parts. There are a few blood stains here and there; I should change the band aids. I'll do that when I get home. I pull down my undershirt and sweater, and stare up at the clouds in the sky.
“Hey!” I hear someone yelling in a faint voice. I pause my music,take out my earbuds and look. I see someone at the bottom of the bleachers. He's wearing a button-down coat, the kind that you find at H&M. I recognize his skinny jeans. It's Cameron. “I've been looking everywhere for you. Come here for a minute.”
“Just come here for a minute!”
I put my iPod in my pocket and carefully walk down the bleacher steps. He starts walking, which means I have to follow him. “What the hell is going on?” I ask.
“Just come with me. Alyx, right? I'll explain everything in two minutes.”
Two minutes later, we are at the car. It's a crappy two-door car, and it has a Washington license plate. I am now sitting in Jamie's car, which smells like cigarettes, in the front passenger seat. He is in the driver's seat, and is shoving a key into the ignition. I stay in the car, but I don't put on my seatbelt yet. He pulls out of the school parking lot, onto the road, and starts driving somewhere. He keeps his eyes on the road. He's speeding.
“Why the hell am I in here?” I ask.
“I'll explain when we reach our destination.”
“Are you crazy or something?” My stomach churns at my hypocrisy and the fact he's driving too fast. He makes a sharp turn and I flop against the door. I should have put the seatbelt on. We are soon in near a hiking trail. There is only one car here in the dirt parking lot. I look at Cameron. “So?” I say. “Why the f-ck am I in your car?”
He takes a deep breath. He stares right out of the window, not looking at me. His hands are gripped tight on the steering wheel. He looks at me, right in my eyes. I notice his eyes are (grey). “Alyx,” he says. “I'm going to ask you something, and I want you to answer it in all honesty.”
“Do you have a mental illness? Or something wrong with you?”
I stare at him. “Why the—”
“Just say yes or no.”
I look out of my window. A squirrel runs by the car. “Yeah. There is something wrong with me. But why do you want to know? You're new to Coldgrove High. You don't know anything about me except my name, so how are you able to judge someone so quickly?”
“I'm not judging you, Alice,” he says.
“Alyx,” I correct.
“Alyx.” He nods. “I'm not judging you. I can...well, I can tell if there's something wrong with a person just by looking at them.”
“Can you, now?” I ask. I roll my eyes.
“I'm not bluffing.”
“All right, then. So you can tell what's wrong with me?”
He nods again. “Can I tell you what I think?”
“I think you're a fellow phreak.” He even pronounces phreak correctly. Like he knows about the word Schizophreak, like he knows I call myself that. “Do you know what a phreak is?”
My heart stops, then beats again. “How...the...heck...do... you..know...these...things?”
“Don't worry, Alyx. Let me tell you something.” He touches my arm gently; I don't smack it away. “I know how you feel, because I'm a phreak, too. Disorganized schizophrenia.”
For some reason, my whole body is shaking. Someoneknowssomeoneknowsohmygod. I stare at Cameron. “You can't tell these kinds of things when you have disorganized schizophrenia. What in the world are you talking about?”
“I know a phreak when I see one, Alyx. Oh, dear God, why are you shaking? Here, this'll calm you down.” He reaches over and opens up the glove box. Inside, there are a few boxes of cheap-looking cigarettes and a couple of lighters. He fishes a cigarette out of an open box, and a lighter. He lights it up and hands it to me. I stick the (orange) end in my mouth and close my eyes. I hear him rolling down my window.
I exhale smoke out of the window, and open my eyes again. Cameron blinks at me. “You all right now, Alyx?”
“You startled me!” I tell him. “Dragging me to your car like that, driving like a maniac into an abandoned parking lot...then confronting me, asking me straight up if I'm a phreak.” I shake my head and inhale smoke. I exhale a few seconds later. “I'm sorry. You just scared me.”
He shakes his head and lights up a cigarette for himself. His window rolls down and cold air blows in from outside. “No, don't apologize. I deserve it. I haven't found many phreaks since my last visit to a hospital.” He inhales carbon monoxide, and a few seconds later he exhales out the window. I flick the ashes piling up on my own cigarette into oblivion. “I had a roommate back when I was under supervision at a crazy house. He had catatonic schizophrenia, too.”
“I haven't met any phreaks yet,” I say. “Not since I came to Coldgrove, anyways.”
“Sucks being alone, doesn't it?” Cameron smirks.
“Yes, it does. Why are you smirking?”
“I don't know. I felt like it.” He snorts this time and inhales poison. I do the same thing, while looking out the window. “So...what kind of meds do you take?”
“A bunch of shit. Morning pills, afternoon pills, night pills, anti-psychotics. There's bottles of pills all over the house and they don't work at all. It's so stupid.”
Cameron closes his eyes for a second. “That can't be true, Alyx.”
“It is,” I say. “The evilness of my Voices should be compared to a doctor that performs abortions. They've managed to make me do things against my will.”
“Cut myself. Say things to myself that I really shouldn't be saying. Sixty-nine—I number my voices—says he's the one blocking out my meds. Nineteen says she can control my voice. Seven wants me to kill people.”
Cameron nods, slowly, indicating he understands. “Wait, what? Sixty-nine? How many voices do you have?”
“Two-hundred-five, apparently. What about you?”
“Ten, maybe. Most of them have disappeared.”
“On the contrary, Miss Alyx, my meds work. Kind of.”
“Lucky you.” I scowl and toss my finished cigarette out the window.
“Need another one?” Cameron cracks a smile and hands me another cigarette and the lighter. I light it up and stick it in my mouth. I look out the window again. That lucky bastard; his meds work while mine don't. He only has ten voices, I have over two hundred which are bothering me once again.
Four: His dosages are smaller than yours, Alyx. How the hell does that work?
Sixteen: You are so crazy that your medicine doesn't work? Wow.
Thirteen: Belongs in a nuthouse, doesn't she?
I growl. “Shut up.”
Cameron raises an eyebrow. “Voices?”
“Can you start driving back to school?” I ask, shutting my eyes tight and clenching my jaw. “And talk to me about whatever the hell you want? They'll only go away when someone is talking to me and there's lots of noise.”
Cameron starts the car, which roars to life. I pop the cigarette back in my mouth and inhale carbon monoxide. “Should I turn on the radio?” Cameron asks.
The talk shows will probably make me want to kill myself, but “Sure.”
He presses a button and screamo music makes the car nearly explode. “Don't turn it down!” I yell to Cameron.
“DON'T TURN IT DOWN!” I yell, louder than The Faceless, whose screaming is better than the kind I listen to. I make a mental note to myself to download this band from iTunes.
Cameron nods and lets out a warrior cry. “Yeaaaah!” he speeds off, opposite of the way we came to this parking lot. We get a few honks form cars that are passing by. I start laughing, and They disappear. They always hibernate in the spaces in My Brain, hidden from me. They do this when They are angry with me, especially if I am having fun.
A minute later, we make a sharp turn into the school parking lot. I toss my cigarette out the window and Cameron pulls into a free parking space. He shuts off the music and laughs. His laugh makes me laugh, which makes both of us laugh even harder. We head out of the car and head into school.
“Where's your locker?” Cameron asks.
“Upstairs, right by the Languages hallway,” I say.
“Mine is in there, too. Coincidence, isn't it?”
I roll my eyes and we head up the nearest stairway. We have five minutes before the first warning bell, which gives us enough time to reach the other end of the school. “What class do you have next?” I ask Cameron.
“Art with a Mr. Jackson, then Computer Science with Ms. Manson,” he answers. I guess he's memorized his schedule.
“I have Art with you. What about tomorrow, on a day One?”
“I'm not too sure. My schedule is in my locker.”
I nod. We pass by people sitting against the lockers, trying to finish homework that they didn't bother to do beforehand. I hear someone laughing, the most obnoxious, nerdy laugh possible. The guy snorts and giggles and snorts and pushes up his glasses. He's wearing a checkered shirt tucked into khaki pants, and ugly shoes. It's Jacob, Collin's friend from the chess team. Beside him is Collin, laughing his ass off.
He looks up, still gasping for air. Then he stops. He looks right at me, and the light in his eyes fades. My face hardens, and I continue walking along with Cameron, who is starting to laugh quietly. The farther we get away from Jacob and Collin, he laughs more. “What's so funny?” I ask.
“That guy...with the glasses...” Cameron wheezes. He has to hold on to a locker to keep himself from falling over. He pulls an inhaler out of his pocket and takes a breath. He puts it back in his pocket and continues laughing like a total lunatic. “His laugh...was so...pathetic.”
I giggle. Cameron clutches his stomach and falls down, laughing. This makes make laugh even harder. I lean against the lockers and nearly pee myself. “You're making me pee!” I exclaim. He calms down and wipes his eyes. He stands up and reaches out one of his hands to help me up. I take it, he pulls me up, and I run to the nearest bathroom.
When I come back, Cameron is leaning against the wall, arms crossed innocently over his chest. “You good now?” he asks.
I nod. We continue the journey to our lockers. We go to mine first, where I take out my art things and my gym clothes. It turns out Cameron's locker is ten away from mine. He takes out a binder, his schedule and a box of pencils. “Where's the art room?” he asks.
“Downstairs, near the cafeteria. Follow me.”
We walk together down the stairs and the hurry-up music plays, the type of music I don't listen to. A freshman dances down the hallway and greets someone by grabbing their butt.
“Bet the security cameras are getting a load of that,” Cameron snorts as we round a corner.
“Nothing ever happens at this school, I don't know why they have the camera everywhere.”
“After there was a shooting at my old school, they added security cameras,” he muses.
My eyes widen. “Is that why you moved here?”
He laughs. “No. Mom got a job offer with some kind of law firm.”
I nod. We enter the art room, and Mr. Jackson is sitting on a stool, working on a pot, since this is a pottery unit. He spots us and waves. “Hello, Alyx. Hello, student I haven't seen before.” he smiles, gets up, and heads toward the sink to wash his hands. He dries them off with a paper towel. I head to the back of the room to find my pot, and sit down in my usual seat.
Mr. Jackson explains a bunch of things to Cameron, and since nobody sits on my left, he sits with me. Collin comes in, armed with his art supplies. He takes his usual seat on my right. I can feel him staring at me as I make my clay wet so I can spin it on the spinner. “Alyx?” he says. “Where did you go at lunch?”
I don't respond. I put my pot on the plate, dip my hands in my bowl of water, and start spinning my pot around. Collin pokes my shoulder. “Alyx?”
Cameron sits beside me, armed with a big block of clay. He sits beside me and begins molding. The bell has already rung, so Mr. Jackson instructs us to begin after introducing Cameron to the class. Mr. Jackson turns on the radio, makes the volume louder. He likes to listen to classical music while he works, so he passed the tradition onto his students at the beginning of the school year. He wants us to listen to the music, wants the music to inspire us.
On my left, Cameron is headbanging as he molds out a pot with his clay. Collin is making his pot wet enough to continue molding. I don't mind getting my hands dirty in Art, so I start molding my pot. I think when I'm finished this thing, I'll paint it and give it to Lynda or something, for her birthday next month. My paints from Collin should work on clay.
“Alyx?” Cameron asks.
“Hmm?” I look at him.
“What do I do next?”
“Go ask Mr. Jackson.”
“You're helpful.” He rolls his eyes, takes his pot, and stands up.
I hear Collin making a noise under his breath. I look at him and he's glaring angrily at his pot. “Alyx,” he says. “Giving me the silent treatment isn't going to do you any good.”
“I could say the same thing to you,” I reply.
“I wasn't giving you the silent treatment!” he says. “I responded to you!”
“And what am I doing now, Collin? Responding to you. And don't tell me I'm being rude or some other bullshit, because you were being equally rude this morning, and also ignoring me at lunch and sitting beside that loser, Jacob.” I roll my eyes.
“You didn't sit with us!” Collin says.
“I'm not the type to invite myself to lunch tables,” I tell him.
“It was our lunch table, Alyx! You could have sat down if you wanted to!”
“Oh, shut up, will you?” I look at my pot and spin it around on the plate again.
“So who did you hang out with at lunch, Alyx?” Collin asks, trying to be sarcastic.
“Cameron, and why do you care?”
“I didn't see you guys in the cafeteria.”
“Are you accusing me of something?” I stand up, towering over him.
“No.” I sit back down. “Did you guys go off school property?”
“No, we hid in a janitors closet and had sex even though we barely know each other.” I roll my eyes, which are staring at my desk again.
“Yeah, we drove around in his car for a bit, then we came back at laughed at how much of a loser your friend Jacob is.”
Collin says nothing for a few seconds. Then, “He's not a loser!”
I snort and return back to my pot. Cameron returns with a plate with his pot and a bowl of water. He sits down and his pot begins to spin. I work on my pot in silence for a long time. When I think it looks good enough, I take a pin and carve my name into the bottom on the pot, being careful not to re-mold it with my fingers.
“All right, everyone,” Mr. Jackson says, looking at us while his pot spins in his hands. “There are ten minutes before the bell, so let's clean up. Good work today, guys.”
I clean up after myself, walking over to the sinks and umping my bowl of water into the stainless steel. I walk over to my desk, pick up my plate with my pot on it, and carry it to the cabinets. I clean my desk with wet paper towels like a good girl.
* * *
As I exit out of the girls' changeroom when the final bell of the day rings, Collin is waiting against the wall. I ignore him, but he follows me all the way to my locker. He tries to talk to me while I twist the dial to open up my locker, but I drown him out with the music playing in my head. I put on my hat, sling my backpack strap over my right shoulder, and slam the locker shut.
I head down the stairwell that has an exit, and Collin continues to follow me. “Alyx,” he says.
I turn around. “What?!”
“Why are you so mad at me? Did I do anything to make you upset?”
I sigh, close my eyes. “Why are you trying to be my friend again, Collin?”
“I forgive you, Alyx. I forgive you for laughing at me about what I was telling you yesterday.” Collin looks right at me.
I blink. “Why?”
“I can't hold grudges, Alyx, especially against you. You're my best friend, and your condition is to blame for you laughing at me. I know you wouldn't laugh at me if I told you I kind of love you.” Collin smiles.
I sigh and close my eyes again, pinching the bridge of my nose with two fingers. I look right at Collin. “My voices weren't the ones who made me laugh at you, Collin. I laughed. I laughed because I thought it was hilarious, and it is.”
He stares at me, shocked at my harsh words. “But...but why, Alyx?”
“Do I even have to explain?” I push the door open and walk outside into the light rain.
“Can you?” Collin asks. “Because I can never tell anything with you.”
“I can't take people seriously when they tell me they love me,” I say, irritated. “This screwed up brain of mine” I tap my head “Can't register certain things properly, like compliments. It perceives those things as lies. And when you first wanted to be my friend, Collin? My brain and They knew you were trouble. Now They think you're even more trouble because of the bullshit you told me yesterday.”
“I wasn't bullshitting you!” Collin exclaims. “I was being totally honest! Didn't you see me blushing, freaking out?”
“Yes, I did,” I reply. “Are you planning to be an actor?”
Collin smacks his palm against his face.
“So you are?”
Collin just shakes his head. “Fine then, Alyx, don't believe me. Where are you going to go now, huh? Home? So you can sit in your room all night in the corner hugging your knees like the little freak you are? So you can beat yourself up and cut yourself when you should be doing something fun?”
I feel my face redden in anger.
“I guess so, huh? Well, then, Alyx...” He trails off, not sure what to say.
“Well then what?” I retort.
“I don't know. I can't think of a comeback.” He stuffs his hands in his pockets and looks at the wet concrete.
“Because you're such a loser?” I suggest.
Collin glares at me. I smirk, and before I can stop myself, I slap him across the face with as much force as I can. His mouth pops open in shock, and I walk away. My feet don't take me to the buses at the front of the school; they take me off school property, to a nearby plaza: a KFC, a laundromat, a flower shop, a dentist's office, a Blockbuster, and a walk-in hair salon. My feet take me to the hair salon, and my eyes see a sign. “Donate your virgin hair to the Washington Childrens' Cancer Society for children in need of wigs!”
The salon is empty except for two women behind the counter, chatting quietly. They see me and the (blonde) one asks, “Do you need any help, Miss? Would you like your hair done?”
I point to the Washington Childrens' Cancer Society sign. “I'd like to donate my hair to the cancer society,” I tell her.
“Really? Great! Have a seat right here.” She leads me to a chair and her nametag says Hayley. I sit down in the chair and Hayley drapes a (black) thing over me, covering my sweater. She plays with my hair for a few seconds. “Have you ever dyed your hair before?” she asks. I shake my head no. “Uh-huh. So, how much of it would you like chopped off?”
“Most of it,” I say. “And is it possible to have a haircut, too? I have a style in mind I want to try out.”
“Sure thing. The hair donation is free, but a haircut will be twenty-five bucks. Is that okay?”
Hayley leaves for a few seconds and returns with a rubber band. She ties up most of my hair and reaches over to get a pair of scissors. “You ready?” she says.
“Yep.” I close my eyes and I hear the snip of the scissors and Halyley cuts my hair off.
Twelve: What the hell did you just do, Alyx?
One Hundred Thirteen: That's MY hair, Alyx! What the hell did you just do to MY hair? I own you, I own this hair! Ahhh!
Ninety-five: Oh. My. God.
They are all freaking out. In my head, I hear screams and shrieks and growls and slaps and punches. My sense of self-recognition is restored and I see myself in the mirror. The hair that was once nearly down to my waist is now just below my ears. Hayley whistles. “Wow. Your hair is so great!”
“Thanks,” I say. “Um, do you have a magazine so I can find the style I want? I had a picture, but I think I left it at home.”
“Sure thing.” Hayley brings me a magazine, and in the mirror I see her giving the other woman my hair, held together by the rubber band. The other woman marvels at my hair and winks at me in the mirror. I flip through the magazine and find the style I want—incredibly short hair, a pixie cut.
Hayley returns and I tell her I want this haircut. She nods. “Your hair is clean enough, so I won't wash it.” She starts snipping at what's left of my hair and tries to make small-talk with me. I answer her with one or two word answers. Since my hair is short, the haircut doesn't take too long. We finish in fifteen minutes.
When I go to pay for the haircut, the woman behind the counter, Lila, grins at me. “You'll make a child very happy with hair like that!” she says. “It'll be an amazing wig!” I pay up, thank Hayley and Lila for the great service, and head back outside. I jog all the way home through the light rain, not caring if people are staring at me. I make it home in seven minutes, and let myself in through the front door. When I enter the kitchen after taking off my boots, Lynda drops her magazine onto the floor in awe.
“Alyx, your hair!” she exclaims.
“I donated it to the state's cancer society,” I reply, getting myself a glass of water. “So a girl with cancer can have a wig instead of having to be bald.”
She blinks, still in shock. She looks like she wants to scream at me for cutting my hair without her permission, but she says nothing.
“It's my hair, Mom,” I remind her.
At last, she sighs. “You're right, Alyx. It's your hair. You needed a haircut, anyways. You look pretty cute, with short hair.”
Mod Edit: Oct 17, 10 by harvest hunny
|posts in thread|
Oct 17, 10 at 6:06pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Awesome, I loved it.
Would the climax have something to do with:
quote Name Undisclosed
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Oct 17, 10 at 6:27pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
LOL, catch up for this story is hellish since I read kinda slowly... :X
BUT DAMN WORTH IT.
*starts reading and inserts serious face here*
Homestuck | Tumblr | deviantART | Okami
|posts in thread|
Oct 17, 10 at 7:15pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
OMG!!! i feel like squealing like a little girl because she found someone like her!!!
I'm kinda sad that she did that to Collin though... he's such a good kid *cry*
Hey i wonder how the Voices are gonna start reacting (besides all the screaming and wailing) and what about the people at school!?!?
>.< I'M SO EXCITED FOR THE NEXT INSTALLMENT >.<
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Oct 22, 10 at 11:18pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Neon Rainbow: No.
Cerulean: On the contrary, I'm a faster reader
leotaylor92: EXCITED NO MORE! XD
also...maybe no one really cares...BUT SCHIZOPHREAK IS 100,000 WORDS!!!!! WOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!
music is art that we're afraid to enjoy
Credit to Creatureofgod from deviantART.
I take out the folded piece of paper from the smallest pocket of my backpack, and unfold it. Jessica Varner PhD smiles. “Did you bring in a song you wanted to play today, Alyx?” she asks.
I nod and I give her the piece of paper. I'm not sure whether she can read guitar tabs or not, but I sure can. Dad taught me guitar basics when I was ten and into Green Day. The only thing I wanted back then was to learn how to play the guitar, and maybe start my own band. I went as far as to get guitar lessons from Dad and played with his guitar a few times, but I didn't go out and buy my own.
Here, in the Music Room of Jessica Varner PhD's office, there is an acoustic guitar, a simple electric guitar, tambourines, bongo drums, a violin case, and a harp. When we first started the music therapy tactic, I mostly sang and played the bongos. But last week when I got home from Psycho Therapy, I had an epiphany. I Googled the guitar tabs to one of my favorite songs and printed them out. I tried to play them a few times with Dad's guitar, but he and Lynda got way too excited and suggested I take music lessons again, so I just put it away.
“This looks like a pretty long song,” Jessica Varner PhD says, looking at me from over the sheet.
“I went through about three-quarters of it last week,” I tell her. “I think I can play it. I even brought the CD so you can listen to the song.” I reach into my backpack and take out the CD—Good Apollo I'm Burning Star IV: Volume One: Through the Eyes of Madness, by Coheed and Cambria. “The last song,” I say as I hand the CD to my Psycho Therapist. “The Final Cut.”
“Can I see the lyrics?”
Jessica Varner PhD cracks the CD case open and takes out the little booklet that contains lyrics to all of the songs. She flips to the end of the book and looks at the lyrics. Her eyes widen a bit, but she nods and gives me the case and the booklet. I slide the booklet into the case and close it. “It sounds like a very, uh, interesting song,” she says.
“It is,” I assure her. I walk over to the table with the CD player. I open up the top, place the CD inside, and press the Play button. I sit down in the wicker chair, and Jessica Varner PhD sits across from me. I press the Forward button fifteen times so we can get to the last song. The song starts—a short guitar solo, first. “The lead singer of the band is a guy,” I inform my Psycho Therapist. “His vocal range tends to get really high, but I can assure you it won't be annoying.”
Jessica Varner PhD nods, and the vocals of Claudio Sanchez fill our ears.
“In the final curtain call, you left me here with the coldest of feelings. Weight, kind depression, blessing the floor with the places you've stepped in. Will they ever measure up to the way you left me here by the roadside? The bloodiest cadaver; marked in your words, 'I'm the joke, I'm the bastard.' Hey, wait—so I guess that you know that you're the selfish little whore? I'm the selfish little whore? If I had my way, I'd crush your face in the door! This is no beginning, this is the final cut, open up. This is no beginning, this is the final cut, oh, I'm in love.”
A long, beautiful solo explodes in our ears. I close my eyes and nod my head to the beat. The solo has always been my favorite part of the song. I was listening to this in bed one night when I couldn't sleep, the music on top volume. It was so beautiful that tears came to my eyes. These kinds of solos can really make you think, especially when they're on top volume and you can really hear the music, you can really appreciate it.
The song finishes and I press the Stop button. Jessica Varner PhD looked dazed. “That was beautiful,” she says. “Your music taste is amazing, Alyx. Better than some of my patients.” She cracks a smile. “That song was so moving. The song is about an angry individual whose partner was cheating, am I right?”
“I see. That solo was...was...beyond words.”
“I know.” I give a small smile. “Can I play it for you now?”
“Of course you can. Which guitar would you like to use today?”
“I think I'll try out the electric guitar today,” I say.
Jessica Varner PhD nods. “Good choice.” She walks to the other end of the room, takes the guitar, and hands it to me. She goes into a closet and drags an amplifier towards me. I plug everything in and cradle the guitar properly. I'm not sure what color it is, but the guitar sure is pretty. It's metallic and shiny, that's all I can tell. Jessica Varner PhD hands me a guitar pick and drags her chair so it is a few feet across from me.
I do a simple warmup for half a minute so I can get used to the guitar. I find the tabs for The Final Cut and place them in front of me on the little stand. I lower it, so Jessica Varner PhD can see my face. I start with the opening, which is simple enough. The music comes out a bit too loud, so I turn down the volume on the amp and start over. I make it through the opening without any mistakes, as far as I know. I flow into the song, where the vocals come in, and I make one mistake, though it doesn't make too much of a difference. I eventually make my way to the solo. There is one solo for Guitar 1 and another for Guitar 2.
I decide to play Guitar One. The solo isn't as difficult to play than it was when I first printed out the tabs; I've gotten used to the notes and where my fingers need to go and which strings I need to pluck. I finish up the song and look at my Psycho Therapist. She claps, grinning. “That was beautiful, Alyx!” she says.
I blush. “Thanks.”
“What would you like to do now, Alyx? Play another instrument? Sing?”
I shrug. “I want to listen to the CD,” I say.
“How long is it?”
“A little over an hour.”
Jessica Varner PhD thinks it over. Our session today is an hour an a half, so we have time. She nods. “Sure. I'd like to know what kind of music you listen to. This band—what're they called, again?”
“Coheed and Cambria.”
“Coheed and Cambria, yeah, they sound pretty interesting, as far as I can tell.”
I wander over to the CD player again and press the Play button as Jessica Varner PhD scoots over in her chair to sit beside me. We listen to the first song, Keeping the Blade, which is just instrumentals, but still as beautiful as a blind man seeing the sun for the first time. The next song comes in, simple acoustics but amazing vocals (Author's note: 100,000TH WORD! I was counting down and when I did the 100k word I screamed out loud in excitement! <3). The song after that has an epic opening and ending. The vocals are a bit high, but I've listened to this CD about a thousand times, so I've learned how to drown out the vocals and concentrate on the instrumentals.
The rest of the CD is just as epic/amazing/beautiful. The last song finishes, as this time I let the CD go on so we can hear the random banjo solo after a minute of silence. The CD player makes a noise that indicates the CD is over and we should play it again. But we don't. I take the CD out and place it in the case where it belongs. Jessica Varner PhD looks at me when I sit back down, and places her hands in her lap.
“So,” she says.
“Well,” I agree.
“Would you like to know what I think of this session?”
I shrug. I don't really care what she thinks.
“I think you really enjoyed this session, and I think you did an amazing job with the guitar. You really have a knack with music, you know that?” Jessica Varner PhD smiles. I shrug again, but don't say anything, so she continues. “I'm not sure whether this band is a concept band or something, but the CD revolved around feelings about revenge and a bunch of characters.”
I interrupt her. “They are a concept band,” I inform her.
“Ah.” She nods. “Well, anyways, I think you chose this CD for a reason. We're out of time right now, but keep this in mind for next week when I see you and we'll continue this conversation. You can bring in a new CD if you'd like to, Alyx, or you can decide what you'd like to do next week.” She scribbles in her notebook. “Four o'clock next Tuesday, all right?”
I nod. “I'll see you then. Have a great day.” I pick up my bag and head out the door.
I turn around.
“Have you considered creating a band of your own, or trying to start a music career? I think you'd be really good at that.”
There are so many things everybody (except Them) thinks I'm good at or could explore for a career. Music, Art, English, French. Writing, painting, drawing, pottery, sculpting, oral communication. Cooking, cleaning, sitting in a corner rocking myself back and forth. I could become a doctor, a teacher, an astronaut, a brain surgeon. I can ace the SATs and get into Harvard law school. But I don't want to, mostly because I'd probably fail if I tried to do these things. I haven't even thought about college or anything.
Why can't I do what everybody wants me to, just to please my parents? They won't let me.
|posts in thread|
Oct 23, 10 at 12:08am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
quote harvest hunnyI'm going to play devil's advocate here... Unless you yourself are a schizophrenic, you don't really know what goes on in a schizophrenic's head, do you?
I am aware you said your brother or sibling had schizophrenia but, in all honesty, experiencing something from an outside perspective is not the same as a personal, or internal perspective, in my opinion. Take this advice however you want, I am not looking to offend anyone, obviously but, it is something that I am curious about.
|posts in thread|
Oct 24, 10 at 6:14am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
DC Sniper: Responded to you via PM
All right guys...a climax! woot! I'm so excited! I worked on this chapter ALL day and it's like 17 pages! Pretty long, huh? But yeah, enjoy. I personally just finished it like two minutes ago so yeah. <3 Scroll up if you haven't read "music is art that we're afraid to enjoy."
twenty-six ~ i give up
credit to Noasharvit from deviantART. What a BEAUTIFUL picture.
School. When I hop on the morning bus, I sit beside Ashley, who stares at me with wide eyes. “Your hair!” she says. “You...cut...you cut it!” She touches my new 'do, awestruck. “Wow!”
I shrug. “I just needed a change, I guess. It was getting too long.”
“So what'd you do with it?”
“I went to the walk-in salon near school, and they had this sign that said virgin hair is welcome to be donated to the state's cancer society to make wigs, for kids with cancer.”
“Wow, that's such a neat idea! My cousin had cancer a few years ago and my other cousin grew her hair out for a few months, so after chemo, my cousin that had cancer got a wig made out of my other cousin's hair! I mean, I would love to do such a good thing! It'd make the person so happy, don't you think? But my hair is so short, and I really don't like having it long, so I just keep it like this.” She shrugs. “But your head'll be so cold, Alyx!”
“I'll wear a hat,” I say.
“True.” Ashley nods. “Hey, why were you and Collin giving each other the silent treatment in class yesterday? That's pretty unusual, for you guys, I mean. Especially after Monday being Valentine's day.”
I sigh. “I don't really want to talk about it, but if you really wanna know, fine.” I explain to Ashley about Collin's love confession for me, and how I started laughing like a total lunatic when he finished.
“Why the hell did you do that?” Ashley asks.
“Hellooooo?” I stare her down, my nose millimeters away from hers. “I'm a phreak, Ashley! Phreaks like me tend to laugh at the most inappropriate times!”
“Oh,” she says quietly, looking down. “So he's mad at you and you're mad at him for whatever reason?”
“I suppose you could say that,” I reply. “Yesterday in Art class we started talking again, even though we kind of had a fight. After school he tried to follow me, but he was pissing me off at that point so I just hit him and walked away. Then, I got my hair cut.”
“Why'd you hit him?”
“He was pissing me off!”
Ashley blinks, confused with my non-logic. “I hate to say this, Alyx, but this whole beef with Collin seems to be your fault. Well, not totally, but you have a part in it.”
“Thanks for the support,” I say, sarcastic.
“Maybe you two should apologize to each other,” she suggests, “kind of like a compromise. You apologize for hitting him, he apologizes for pissing you off. Maybe then you'll be friends again. Maybe even boyf—”
I cover my ears. “No!”
“Why not? You two are so cute together when you're not fighting!”
“If you two have managed to be friends since September, he's used to you and your ways by now,” Ashley insists. “I mean, I don't know what kind of shit you've been through—we've all been through something in our life, obviously—and if you're still traumatized by it, Collin could help you through it. Bruce is helping me, and I'm helping him. That's what friends do. Bruce if my best friend. Collin is your best friend. The happiest couples are also best friends.”
I close my eyes and lean my head against the seat in front of us. The bus drives along a bumpy road. “We're not best friends anymore, Ashley. He has Asperger's. He acts like a freaking kid. What could he possibly do to help me with the shit I've had to pull myself through all my life?”
Ashley sighs. “You're so stubborn, Alyx!”
“I don't want a freaking boyfriend, Ashley!” I throw my hands up in the air. “How hard is that to understand?!”
“All right, all right!” Ashley puts her hands up in mock surrender. “Fine, do what you want. Say, what did you do at lunch yesterday? You always sit with Collin, but since you two are in that fight—”
“I hung out with Cameron,” I tell her.
“Oh, that new kid in our Psych group? He's pretty weird, don't you think?”
I shrug. “Not really, no. He needs better cigarettes and a better car, but he's pretty cool.”
“You hung out with him in his car?” Ashley's eyes boggle.
“What? He's my friend. He's in most of my classes, as far as I know. We bonded yesterday.”
“Okay, so, what if you and Collin make up? Is Cameron going to hang out with you two, then?”
“Why do you care?” I laugh.
“I don't know. He just seems like a creep. He looks like a girl. Like, one of those female-to-male transgenders. Like Adam from Degrassi—do you watch Degrassi?”
The bus pulls up to the front of the school. “No. I don't watch much TV.”
We walk out of the bus together, and we part our separate ways because we will not see each other until History class. As she runs into Bruce's arms, I hear a horn honking. I don't think much of it, because I'm not sexy enough to get honked at, until I hear someone yelling “Alyx!” I look towards the Student Parking, and see Cameron's head sticking out of the driver's window. I shuffle over to his car.
“What?” I greet.
“Hey,” he greets me. “Nice hair. Want to chill with me for a morning smoke?”
“Thanks. It's illegal to smoke on school property,” I say.
“I'll close the windows.”
I roll my eyes and make my way to the front passenger seat of the car. Cameron rolls up the windows and hands me one of his cheap cigarettes. The music in the car today is cool jazz, station 99.3. It still smells like smoke in here. Also, some air freshener. I light myself up and give the lighter to Cameron, who lights himself one.
“Why'd you cut your hair?” he asks.
“Felt like it,” I reply. “Donated it to the cancer society, actually. So it'll be a wig for a kid who needs one.”
“What kind of kid, a black, bangin' Shaniqua who wants something other than a weave, or a kid with cancer and lost all her hair?”
I snort. “A kid with cancer, obviously. The girl at the salon said I had great hair.”
“It's still nice,” he says.
“Right.” I exhale smoke and it trails into the heating vents. The smoke from Cameron's nostrils circles around the steering wheel. “Don't your parents care that you smoke?”
“Nah,” he says. “This is my car. Even though my ma and I just moved into a house, I want to get my own apartment, but she doesn't think I'm stable enough to live on my own.” He snorts, inhales, exhales. “I'm looking around for a job, just in case.”
“How old are you, again?”
“Eighteen. I got held back in kindergarten, flunked the eighth grade.”
“Is that why your mother thinks you're unstable to live on your own? Because you failed a couple of grades?” I exhale carbon monoxide.
“That, and because I'm a Phreak.” he rolls his eyes. “I take my meds, every day. My doctors say I'm closer to normal than a Phreak, and they took away a few of my meds. Ma still thinks I need to stay with her until I graduate.”
“Oh.” I pause. “What about your dad? What does he think?”
“He's in jail,” Cameron replies.
I blink. “What did he do?”
I say nothing.
“Yep. So, you planning to live on your own?”
I stare at the airbag. “I wasn't exactly planning to live past graduating,” I mutter.
“Suicidal?” he asks.
I shrug. “Ever since the docs told me I'm a Phreak, all of my thoughts went to waste. I used to want to be a doctor, but now I don't even know what college I want to go to. I don't think I want to go to college. I know I'll graduate high school and everybody will be so proud of me, but what if I *bleep* up again and land my ass in a hospital or something?”
“What d'you mean, everybody will be proud of you?”
“You know what I mean.” I inhale. Exhale. “My parents thought I'd grow up and do amazing things and give them cute grandchildren, but when I was fifteen everything just shut down and I *bleep*ed everything up.”
“Alyx, you did not *bleep* everything up,” Cameron says.
“Don't give me that bull. Two of my grandparents are Phreaks and I guess it skips generations or something, because look where I am! I was supposed to please everybody and do what they wanted me to do, but then I started hearing The Voices and stopped eating drinking sleeping.”
“Just like that?”
I pause, for a very long time. Two minutes tick by on the radio's clock. “No.”
“Did something happen? A traumatic experience? I had to watch my best friend get hit by a freakin' train! What about you? Death in the family? Ra—?”
I smush my cigarette where the other cigarettes have been smushed, in a cup holder. I open the door, take my backpack, get out of the shitty car, slam the door, and walk towards the building. I exhale the last of the smoke inside of me. I hear a car door opening, the little beep of the lock, and footsteps following behind me.
“Alyx, wait,” Cameron says. “I'm sorry, you didn't need to answer that.”
“Get the *bleep* away from me.” I turn around and punch him in the face. He doesn't even flinch. “I said, get the f—”
“Alyx, calm down! I'm sorry, all right? I didn't mean to offend you or anything, I was just curious!”
“Curious of what?” I snarl. Then it hits me. “Wait, no, don't answer that. Somebody sent you, didn't they? Someone sent you here to set me up and try to hit on me and make me feel better about myself by telling me you're one of me, just so you can hurt me in the end! But hey, Cameron—if that's your real name—I'm not stupid, you know! I know what you're going to do to me and I will not allow it!”
“I never said you're stupid,” he says. People are crowding around. “And what the hell are you talking about?”
Seventeen: You're making a scene, you little phreak. Stop it.
I don't stop it. “I'm talking about rape, you stupid-ass!”
Cameron stares at me. Everyone else is staring at me. I turn around and silently stomp to the building, trying to ignore the whispers. What the hell was that? Who's that guy? Is that Alyx? The freak? Yeah, her. Guess she got a haircut. It looks nice.
I run up the stairs that lead to the Languages department. I run into the nearest bathroom, which is empty, except that I can hear someone throwing up in the farthest stall. I choose the stall beside that one and let my backpack drop to the floor. I sit on the toilet, the part that you use to flush your messes down the drain. I put my head in my hands.
Thirty-three: Rape. Rape. Rape. Rape. Rape.
Forty: Tyler raped you Tyler raped you Tyler raped you and you let him you liked it Alyx don't deny it.
Nineteen: Should I remind Alyx about that night? She gives an evil smile, her (ruby) eyes gleaming in delight at the thought of torturing my insides.
Me: No no no no no! Please don't! Pleasepleaseplease don't do it!
Nineteen snorts. She appears in front of me, right in front of the (gray) bathroom stall door. She's wearing jeans, a cashmere sweater, and boots with fluff on the insides. Her curly (red) hair hangs down her shoulders. I cover my mouth to hold back a shriek.
Nineteen: What the hell are you so surprised for? You know what I look like, idiot!
Thirteen: You look like her ex-best friend. That's why she's so freaked out.
Nineteen: Oh, that Autumn chick? Huh. I never thought of it that way. This makes everything perfect! She turns to face me. So, Alyxandra. Since that friend of yours wasn't around after Tyler raped you, and since I apparently look like her, this just makes it harder for you and more amusing for me! She cackles.
I hop off the toilet, push her against the stall door. I turn around and throw up into the toilet, mostly water, but I can spot some of my breakfast from earlier this morning. Nineteen mutters something to herself and leaves. I puke three more times and wipe my mouth with a wad of toilet paper from the roll. I flush, grab my backpack and exit the stall, heading for the sinks. Another toilet flushes, but I don't look; I rinse out my mouth several times, spitting into the sink after each swish of water in my mouth.
The other girl, the one who was puking, looks at me with watery eyes. I think she's in my French class, but I can't be too sure. I think her name is Angela. She recognizes me. “Alyx?” she asks.
I spit into the sink, water and bits of food. “Hello, Angela,” I reply pleasantly.
“Are you all right?” Angela looks at me again, up and down.
She looks down at the floor for a minute, then back at me. “I'm...uh...pregnant.”
I blink. “I'm not. I just felt sick, that's all.”
“I don't know how to tell my boyfriend,” Angela whispers.
So why are you telling me? “I see.”
“Should I get an abortion?”
I blink again. “Uh...honestly, Angela? You should be telling your mother about this. I don't know what you should do. Sorry.” I wipe my mouth with a paper towel, then I dry my hands and toss the paper in the trash bin. “Good luck, though,” I add, trying to make Angela feel better.
“Thanks,” she says. I hear her stomach contracting. She moans and bolts for the toilet.
I exit the bathroom and the warning bell rings. The girl who does the announcements follows two seconds after it stops ringing. “All right, Coldgrove! You now have five minutes to get to class!”
I stop at my locker to get my English and Math books. I head to English, walking to the beat of the hurry-up song. I make it to my destination with two minutes to spare. I sit down in my usual seat and Mr. Lenhart smiles at me. “Do we have a new student?” he asks in a jokey tone.
I smile at him. “I donated my hair to make a wig for a kid with cancer,” I explain.
“Well, that was thoughtful of you!” He grins. “To the state's cancer society?”
I nod. Mr. Lenhart nods, and walks off to his desk. The girl in front of me turns around. “Nice haircut,” she says.
“Thank you,” I reply.
The final bell rings and someone slides into the room just as the bell finishes ringing. As we do every morning, we stand up for the national anthem and listen to the announcements, or pretend to, as nobody really listens to them. In middle school, the teachers would give you a detention if you as much as whispered during the announcements. But once I got to high school, you could talk as much as you wanted.
Class goes by slowly. We have a pop quiz about literary devices, whatever the heck those are. After everyone finishes, we have a discussion on the most recent book we've read as a class, To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. When I first read the book, I didn't understand shit from it. I tried to read the first three pages but all the southern slang really annoyed me. So I asked Brian about it and he spoiled the whole story for me.
Finally, the bell rings, and our homework is to read chapters 15-20 and fill out our reading response booklet. I probably won't do it. I leave the classroom and head for Math, which I am not too excited about. I enter the room, and Ms. Carter is writing a bunch of equations on the chalkboard. I take my seat near the wall and lean my head against it, closing my eyes.
I hear the clunk of someone's butt sitting in their chair, so I open my eyes to see Collin staring at me. He blinks, like he's trying to make sure it's really me sitting beside him. “Alyx, is that you?” he asks.
“Wow, you look pretty!” he smiles. “I like your haircut. Why'd you get it so short, though?”
It's like he has no idea we got into a fight and I hit him yesterday. “I felt like it.”
“Did you donate it to cancer or somethin'?”
“Yes, that's exactly what I did,” I reply. “So a kid with cancer can have a wig and it'll save the embarrassment of walking around bald.”
Collin nods, his face thoughtful. “That's great, Alyx,” he says.
“Uh-huh.” The bell rings, which means Ms. Carter will lecture us about her week and that means we all have to shut up.
Ms. Carter grunts and crosses her arms over her non-boobs. She starts screaming. “The goddamn gym was goddamn closed and I couldn't do my goddamn daily sixty minutes of exercise and goddamnit so I ate five mini-cupcakes and there were a hundred calories each and now I'm friggin fat and goddamnit!” She goes on and on. Collin sighs and takes out his homework from his first period class so he can get a head start.
Eventually, our anorexic teacher shuts up and makes up do the questions on the board. I don't do them; I take out the book we're supposed to read for English and I try to make sense of it. I make it through the first three chapters, after struggling to understand the southern slang and what this book is actually about. Brian told me this book is about rape, which almost gave me a heart attack when he told me. But in the first three chapters is all slang and y'all and yee-haw. Nothing interesting yet.
The lunch bell rings. Ms. Carter grunts to us to have a good day while she munches on her granola bar. I collect my things and head out of the room to find my locker. I don't think Lynda bothered packing me a lunch today, so I find a five dollar bill from my wallet, put it in my pocket, and head for the cafeteria so I can buy something. The line in the serving area is never very long, so I don't have to stand there for too long. I pick out a roast beef sandwich and a 591 mL bottle of Coke. And a cookie. The total is four dollars.
The cafeteria has a quiet buzz. The table full of Asians laughs at something. The Shaniqualeishakeishaniquas are talking about getting a group discount on weaves at the sa-lawn. Collin is standing at one of the entrances, looking lost. I walk towards him, though I will be heading out.
“Alyx!” he waves. “Want to sit with me?”
I shake my head and don't answer him with anything else. I leave the caf, head down the halls until I find a bathroom. I eat my lunch in a stall, hiding. Girls come in and out, and I can catch up on the juiciest gossip that everybody just needs to know: I heard Angela's ego is preggo. Do you think she's gonna keep it? Girl, she comes from a troubled background! She can't keep a baby! I wonder if Joshua knows about this? He obviously should, he's her BOYFRIEND.
They leave and two freshmen come in. God, don't you think Samantha is just a little bitch? Thank God she's a senior. I haven't done ANYTHING to her and whenever I pass her in the halls she's always giving me dirty looks. What a slut! I know, right? Ugh. Shit, is someone in here? I hear someone breathing! Helllooooo?
I don't answer, so they keep talking. One of them goes on about Samantha, the other is attempting to be sympathetic. Eventually, they leave, too. Two minutes later, someone comes in and takes a huge shit, like she thinks no one else is in here. I have to plug my nose for five minutes. Finally, she leaves after flushing the toilet about three times and washing her hands.
A bell rings. I leave the bathroom after tossing the plastic sandwich wrapper and the Coke bottle in the trash. I wave my nose in my face as I exit, and a girl is about to go in. “Someone took a huge shit in there,” I warm her.
Her eyes widen. “Ew! Which stall?”
“The last one. Ugh.”
“Yeah, I'm going upstairs!”
I go to my locker and get out what I will need for History and Business. When I get to History, Cameron is in there. Whoop-de-doo.
* * *
The final bell of the day rings, causing me to wake up with a start in boring ol' Business class. Mr. Desai hasn't noticed me sleeping, so I can head out of the room in peace. Cameron is in Business, too, but thankfully he didn't sit beside me. Unlike Collin, he leaves me alone after I yell at him.
I put on my hat and put my homework and To Kill a Mockingbird in my backpack. I head out of the hallway, down the stairs, out of the exit. I hear footsteps behind me, but I think this is a popular exit so it doesn't really matter. “Alyx!” someone says. I turn around and see none other than Collin. Oh, boy.
“Alyx, hey,” he says, panting, like he's been running after me.
“Hello, Collin,” I say, stopping.
“So, uh, want to ride home on the bus with me?” he asks.
“I guess not.” Collin sighs, looks down at the concrete, then back up at me again. “Okay, Alyx, I know you hate it when I give you a huge speech about something and never get to the point, so I'm not going to do that.”
“You're kind of doing that now.” I roll my eyes, but I feel my lips turning up a bit at the corners. We start walking, though I don't know where we're heading.
Collin laughs. “I know. Sorry.” He pauses. “And that's what I wanted to say; I'm sorry, Alyx. I was being such a jerk to you and it wasn't right. And it's not your fault—I'm not going to blame you for bursting out laughing during what I was telling you the other day. I'm sorry for being mad at you, honest. I really shouldn't have done that and I really really really want to be your friend again, Alyx.”
I stop walking. I look at him. Collin smiles at me, like he thinks by looking at him I have accepted the apology. “Collin, you can't mean that.”
“I do mean this, Alyx. I was practicing this speech all day.”
I sigh, close my eyes.
“Aly, say something. Please.” Collin takes one of my hands in both of his, and he's probably looking at me with pleading puppy eyes.
“Collin.” I open my eyes. “I'll forgive you, but only if you answer me something, and answer it with the most serious response you can think of. No stupid excuses, nothing like 'Why not?', okay?”
“Okay.” Collin nods.
“All right. My question is, why?”
“Why? Why are you so determined to stick to me and be my best friend forever? Why do you even like or love me in the first place? Why do you keep hanging around me when I blow you off? Why do you insist on being my friend?”
“Because I love you, Alyx!” Collin exclaims. He throws his hands up.
Collin sighs in exasperation. “I have a list of reasons why I love you, Alyx. Do you want to hear it?”
“What, it's not on a piece of paper?” I roll my eyes, though on the inside, my heart is pounding like one of those amazing drummers that appear number one in the “World's Best Drummers” list that comes out at the end of every year.
“I don't need a piece of paper, Alyx.”
“W-what's that supposed to mean?”
Collin smiles. He doesn't answer.
I narrow my eyes, step over to him, and push him by the shoulders. “What's it supposed to mean, huh?”
Collin laughs. “Figure it out, Alyx. I don't even need a piece of paper because it'd get to long. Every day I add to the list in my head the reasons why I love you and always will.”
“You're crazy.” I shake my head in dismay. He laughs again and tries to hug me, but I push him again. “No, wait, scratch that. I'm the crazy one. Pardon me for that, Collin.”
“You're not crazy, Alyx,” Collin says. “You're just unique.”
I stare at him. I take a step back. I roll up the sleeve of my sweater and shove the pale side of my arm in his face. “Does this look unique to you?” I explode. “You think I'm unique because I'm a Phreak? Huh? Is that what you think, Collin?”
Thirty-five: Beef! BEEF!
“Alyx, calm down!” Collin says, trying to hug me again. I take another step back.
“Don't even think about trying to touch me! You know me well enough, Collin! You should know by now that I can't trust anybody! For anything!”
“But Alyx, remember last month when you told me what happened to you? Why you're so afraid of everybody? That Tyler guy?” Collin takes a step towards me, and I've stopped moving. “Remember how you told me everything, Alyx, and asked me not to tell anybody? I'm not going to tell anybody, Alyx, because I keep promises. Look, I'm just trying to help you. I know you're scared of guys, but I'm not like Tyler. You know that.”
“Collin, shut up. Please.”
Nineteen: YOU shut up, Alyxandra! I want to hear this!
“No. You need to hear this, Alyx.” Collin takes another step towards me, a nice, gentle step. “You need to stop being so afraid. I know I'm just a wimp, but I would never let anyone hurt you again like Tyler did. You don't deserve that. I'm just trying to help you, Alyx. Now, don't get the wrong idea—I'm not saying I love you because the only thing I want to do is help you—best friends help each other out. And that's what I'm doing. You help me out all the time, Alyx, you're the only person who's ever been so nice to me and keeps me around.”
“Collin, shut up.” I shut my eyes tight and put my hands over my ears. He keeps talking.
On and on and on, “Just trying to help, I love you, please, listen to me, Alyx, Alyxalyxalyx.”
Alyxalyxalyx you suck you're a whore he just wants to get laid he doesn't have Asperger Syndrome he was sent by Satan who hates you so much and you're going to end up in hell when you die this is all a game don't trust Collin Alyxalyxalyxalyxalyx
“SHUT UP!” I scream.
Everybody shuts up. The birds that have been sitting in trees have flown away into the distance. Collin stares at me.
“Holy *bleep*, just shut up, Collin!” I explode. I should have been born a volcano. “You're a lying, no-good punk and you were sent here by Satan or something and he's paying you to lie to me and make me believe only to get hurt in the end! But you know what? I'm not going to let this shit happen to me again!”
“Alyx, calm down!” Collin says. “I swear to God—I swear on my mother's grave, I was not sent by anybody to pretend to be your friend! I'm not even pretending anything!”
I slap him. “Shut up!” I slapslapslap him and keep screaming. I don't think I'm screaming words anymore. I must sound like a wild animal. Nineteen takes over. “I need an asylum! That's how crazy I am! Stay the hell away from me! You don't deserve me as a friend! I will kill you! I WILL KILL YOU ALL!”
“Stop it!” Collin yells. He yells the loudest I've ever heard him, so I shut up. Nineteen shuts up, too. “Alyx, please, stop it. I'll take you home so you can take your medicine and be you again.”
I blink, then my eyes narrow. “Are you saying I'm not me without my medication?”
Nineteen: Can't have medication without the 'me.' Oh, boy, I'm so smart!
“No, I'm just saying--”
I growl and punch him in the face. He screams out and I pick up my backpack and leave. Not even ten steps later, a car honks at me. I look up, and of course, it's Cameron's shitty, two-door wonder car. “Get in,” Cameron says, cigarette in hand. “Now.”
“Get in, Alyx.”
“Ugh.” Rolling my eyes, I hop in to the front passenger seat and help myself to a cigarette. I really should get some of my own. I inhale poison and gulp it down instead of exhaling. I cough a few times and Cameron slaps me on the back. We haven't moved yet. “Ugh,” I mutter again.
“What's your address? I'm taking you home.”
“Seven-nine-eight Hillcrest drive,” I say, staring at the glove compartment filled with cigarettes.
“Okay.” He revs the engine, which makes a very loud growl. He starts driving, still like a maniac. We soon pull into a 7-11, since the guy drives at a hundred miles an hour.
“Why are we here?”
“I need to get gas and a slurpee. Want to come with me?”
“All right. You want me to get you a slurpee, or something else?”
“All the more for me!”
Cameron gets out, shuts the door. I wait while he gets some gas, and heads into the store. He returns two minutes later with a ginormous slurpee. He sets it in the extra cup holder and revs the engine again. We start driving again, and the music this time is opera. Seriously. I say nothing, Cameron says nothing. He just slurps away at his drink.
We pull into the same parking lot from yesterday, the one near the hiking trail. The car shuts up and we stay there for a long time, just sitting. I finish my cigarette and toss it out the window. Cameron slurps his drink; he's already finished half of it. I put my head in my hands and lean forward, the backs of my hands resting on the airbag.
“Alyx?” Cameron says. “Are you all right?”
I think I answer him, but my throat has tightened up so much I can barely breath. Sobs escape my mouth, past my lips. Tears form in my eyes and spill down my cheeks. I pound my fists on the airbag, screaming vulgar language that would definitely be bleeped out if my life was a movie. I bury my face in my hands again and keep crying.
Twenty: Oh, god. You're such a baby.
Twenty-one: I think we've done the job—making Alyx have a mental breakdown. Group hug!
I hear slaps, indicating all two-hundred-five bastards are high-fiving each other.
One-hundred-fifty-six: She doesn't like this. Let's do something worse. The S stretches out on the last word.
I try to block Them out. I continue breaking down like a total I-don't-know-what until I can't breathe. It's probably been ten minutes.
I lean back, hands still over my flaming hot face. I pant, trying to catch my breath. I feel Cameron staring at me, but I don't do anything for a full two minutes except sniff and hiccup, like the baby I am.
Eventually I hear shuffling in the car. I remove my hands from my face, and Cameron is holding out a bunch of napkins, an expression of total confusion on his face. I take them wipe my eyes and blow my nose several times. I don't know what to do with the napkins, so I stuff them and the rest in my backpack.
“God, damn it,” I murmur.
“I'm sorry, Cameron. Don't forgive me. Ugh. I'm sorry I'm sorry I'm sorry.” I shake my head and stare down at my lap. “I'm so screwed up. Don't listen to anything I say.”
“I'm sorry.” He stares at the dashboard. “God.”
“What are you apologizing for?”
“I don't know. Everything.”
“You—there's nothing to apologize for, Cameron.”
“You have a bunch of shit going on in your head, Alyx,” he says. “And I can't help you. I thought, since you're like me, we could help each other out or something, because I seriously hate support groups, but I can't help you. I don't blame you for what happened this morning, but...ugh.” He bangs his fists against the wheel, causing the horn to blare. I jump. He screams out the F word a bunch of times. Then he stops and stares at the dashboard again.
After a moment of silence to honor those killed on 9/11, he speaks again. “Sorry. Ugh. Let me take you home.” He turns the key in the ignition and the engine growls. He dangerously backs out of the parking space, zooms out of the parking lot, and speeds down the roads. He's new to Coldgrove, but I guess he's had time to explore this shithole because we find my street in three minutes.
Cameron pulls into my driveway, and turns off the car. We sit there in silence for half a minute before he breaks it. “See you later,” he says.
“Bye,” I reply. “Thanks for the ride.”
I get out of the car, grab my bag, shut the door. Cameron waits until I get inside the house before he pulls out of the driveway and down the street. I'm home alone, which is unusual. I make myself some popcorn and plop myself on the couch, but don't turn on the TV. I stare at nothing, eating popcorn at the same time, until somebody comes home and steals my popcorn. Probably Robyn, I can't tell. My vision is blurring.
* * *
It's two in the morning. My headphones are over my ears, calming music blaring through my eardrums. It's a wonder I'm not deaf yet. It's very dark in my room, and I guess it's quiet in the hallway. Brian is probably snoring, Lynda is probably sleeping beside him. Robyn is in her room, either on her computer or sleeping or something. And here I am, laying in my bed, listening to music; an insomniac.
I close my eyes and concentrate on the music. It's from some relaxation CD I stole from Lynda and Brian's room when she was obsessed with yoga. The music is kind of relaxing, but this is the last song and I haven't fallen asleep yet.
I pick up my iPod from its position at my side, and go back to the Music menu. I scroll through my 850+ songs, and finally pick out a song, kind of a part two to the song about pills to make you numb/dumb/anybody else. This one is about killing myself to make everybody pay.
One hundred: Of course you listen to this kind of music, you emo freak.
Two-hundred-five: Because she wants to kill herself, obviously.
I can't believe I can hear Them over the music. I pause it, sit up, and hang my headphones around my neck. They no longer tug out strands of my hair because it's so freaking short. “Since when can I hear you bastards over my music?”
Eighty: Because we can, Alyxandra.
Nineteen: (Files her nails)
With the exception of Nineteen filing her nails, it's suddenly quiet in my room. No wind blowing outside, not the heater making scary noises. Nothing. I am surrounded by nothing, I hear something, I see nothing, I smell nothing, I feel nothing, I taste nothing. I am nothing.
Nineteen: (Looks up, stops filing nails) What, can't sleep, Ugly?
“No, Nineteen, I can not sleep.” I roll my eyes. “What do you suggest I do, o wise one?”
Ninety-five: Sleeping pills.
Nineteen: (Looks thoughtful, smiles to herself) Huh, there's an idea. She still has more than half a bottle left, from last year when the docs told her she was one of us, except alive. You should put them to good use, Alyxandra.
Sleeping pills. That's...interesting. I do remember eating a sleeping pill the night I came home from my very last hospital visit at a normal person, and the first time as a Phreak. I slept like a baby that night—those little things could knock you out for six hours. I took them the first week, but after that They forced me to stop taking the pills and deal with the consequences of being a Phreak.
I lay back down, put the headphones back over my ears, and press the Play button. Marilyn Manson sings into my eardrums. The Voices are scary enough to begin with, but this guy can scare off anybody with one glance. The Voices shut up in my head and I can concentrate on this song for the remainder of it. This was never my world, you took the angel away.
Yes, Voices Controlled by Satan. They took away my youth. They robbed me of my friends, my life. I would have gotten over Tyler raping me—well, no, not completely, but it wouldn't bother me as much—if They hadn't suddenly taken over. Maybe Tyler left Them with me—there must have been something in his sperm. Maybe he had the kind of cooties that screwed you up in the head. Yeah, that must have been it. Tyler's cooties must have caused him to do what he did, and he passed on the curse to me. I guess I'd better not have any kids, don't want them to end up like their mommy.
I didn't go to the same elementary school as that bastard, but I sure hope girls chased him around on the playground screaming “You have cooties! Tyler has cooties!”
And now, I'm the lucky one with his cooties. I sure hope he didn't give them to another girl.
Nineteen hears my thoughts. From my desk chair, she looks at me, her face thoughtful. Huh, she says. You thinking about Tyler? That night he raped you? Let me remind you of it in great detail. She jumps out of my chair, walks over to me, places her hands on either side of my skull and presses, hard, like she's trying to push something into me. I gasp, because she's applying too much pressure, but then she lets go and I fall backwards, head hitting the pillow.
Tyler looked at my boobs and let out a whistle. “Hot damn!” he exclaimed. I tried to pull away from him, and managed to do so. I opened up the door, stuck my head out into the hallway and screamed for help. There was somebody smoking something—cigarettes? Weed? I couldn't tell—and didn't respond to me in any way.
He pulled me back into his room, shut the door, and locked it. “Tyler, stop it!” I cried. “What the hell are you doing?”
“Something I should have done a long time ago.” He glared at me in the darkness. I felt my eyes widening in terror. He pushed me onto the bed, and started taking off my pants and underwear, leaving me completely naked.
“That's not fair!” I exclaimed. “I'm fully naked and you still have your clothes off!”
“Oh, that's right, sorry, Alyx.” He stepped away and started taking off his clothes—every single article of clothing. When he was done with himself, he slipped the underwear off my feet, pushed me so I was laying down, and straddled himself on top of me. I tried to punch him in the face but he dodged my weak attempts.
I tried to scream, but he covered my mouth as he went in and out in and out panting hard hard hard. I tried screaming No over and over under his hand, but he kept saying No shut up you'll like it see you like it stop it shut up. I was screaming under his hand which had no intentions of leaving my mouth, but it was useless. No one would hear me over the bass thumping throughout the house.
Nineteen grins. My eyes feel like they're as wide as plates. My back is thumping against my headboard, my body curled up in a sitting fetal position. My hands are over my ears, my headphones and iPod long forgotten on my bed. I can still hear the music blaring, but only slightly, as I am thumpthumping against the headboard.
Nineteen smiles even harder. She laughs, a cold, low laugh from a ghost in a haunted house. I feel hot tears spilling down my cheeks; I want to scream at Her for making me re-live that horrible scene, but my throat is closed too tightly. But apparently, not tight enough, because a sob escapes and my hands move to cover my face. Nineteen keeps laughing, she laughs like a hyena, and is probably rolling around on my floor like a total loon.
“Stop it,” I choke out in a whisper. “Stop it stop it stop it. This isn't funny, you psychobitch!”
Nineteen: Oh, stop being such a baby. This is hilarious, watching you in pain.
“If I become a ghost like you and have to haunt a poor, young Phreak, I will never speak! I would never try to hurt them like you hurt me every day!”
Nineteen: What, is that supposed to make me feel bad about myself?
Somebody else laughs—I can't tell who it is because most of Them enjoy seeing me fight with a Voice.
Nineteen: Come on, Alyx. If you hate me hurting you so much and you want to go to sleep, take a sleeping pill. That thing'll knock you out for a few hours; don't you want a moment of peace? She smiles at me, like she wants to seduce me or something.
“It sounds a bit tempting,” I agree, “but I'd rather stay up all night than have you guys give me another nightmare.”
Nineteen sighs. She grabs my hand, drags me out of bed, out of my room, through the hallway, down the stairs, and into the kitchen. She rummages around in the cabinets for a few seconds until she finds what she's looking for—a small (white) bottle of pills. She hands it to me, and through the moonlight coming in from the kitchen window I can see my name—Sawhill, Alyxandra. Taken one pill in the evening when needed. Take with water. Do not chew or crush. Side effects include drowsiness, constipation and headache. DO NOT OVERDOSE!
Nineteen fills up a glass of water for me. I feel bodies of Everybody Else in the kitchen with us, watching, like this is something you just can't miss. I pop a pill in my mouth and swallow the water; the pill is washed down my throat, splashes into my stomach. Nineteen leads me upstairs, the Others follow. I lay back down in my bed and pick up my iPod and headphones, but Nineteen stops me.
Nineteen: Wait about half an hour, then the pill should kick in. You're welcome, whore. She disappears under a rock.
I put my headphones back on and listen to relatively calming music. I count down the minutes until 1800 seconds have passed. When they have passed, I wait a few more minutes, but my eyes only close to blink. Nineteen appears, her face confused. “That pill should have worked,” she mutters to herself. “Wait. I'll be right back. Alyx, don't move.”
I sit up and wait. A minute later, Nineteen returns, the pills in one hand, and a one-liter bottle of water in the other. She hands me the pills. “Since one doesn't work, take all of them.” She smiles.
“But Nineteen,” I say, “the label says not to overdose. Just give it another half-hour.”
“Alyx,” Nineteen says, her voice silky and sweet, “the label is lying. The dosage of these pills are very, very small. You're tired, it's nearly three in the morning. In the small print it says overdosing is an option if one pill doesn't work. Take them all.” She smiles again, and I hear laughter coming from the background. Some Voices nudge Each Other, smile amongst Themselves.
“Nineteen, are you sure?” I ask. I look at the bottle of pills, but it's too dark for me to see any writing on the label.
Nineteen sighs. “I'm not the pathological liar, Twelve is. Just take the pills—do you want to sleep or not?”
“Fine.” I open up the top, and place a pill in my palm. I pop the pill in my mouth, and drink the water. I take pill after pill after pill—Nineteen forcing me to do so, holding a knife from the kitchen, sharp end pointed in my direction. Pill pill pill pill pill. I glug down all the water and I need more. Nineteen runs down the stairs and returns with another water bottle. I finish the rest of the pills and half of that water bottle.
“Good girl,” Nineteen says, patting me on the head like I'm a dog or something. “I'll put these back in the kitchen, and you try to sleep. Sweet dreams, whore.” Nineteen leaves, and I lay down in my bed. I turn off my iPod, place the headphones on the floor next to the bed, and wait. I close my eyes.
* * *
My eyes burst open and the smell of puke is filling my nose. Somebody pulls me out of bed and drags me to the bathroom. I can't see or hear anything because I feel so heavy, but I puke into something several times. I can sort of hear a hollow flushing sound, like someone is flushing a toilet.
Wait, what? Where am I?
Someone slaps me across the face a few times, which, for some reason, makes me puke into the bowl again. I puke and I puke and I puke. Someone flushes and flushes and flushes. I fall to my knees, forehead leaning against the toilet seat. Someone whispers gibberish into my ear. I think I moan. I can't tell what's going on. The only thing I know, is someone is stabbing my stomach with a very sharp knife, my heart is pounding like crazy, and I am about to die.
I puke once again, the toilet flushes again. Someone picks me up, walks me to another bowl, and helps me rinse out my mouth. I fall down to my knees again, put my head on the bath mat. I can feel my heart expanding like a balloon being blown up, taking up my entire upper body, the thudding making my whole body thud along with it.
Pretty soon, I'm shaking all over. I must be. I can't tell what I'm doing. I fall to the floor, on my side, shaking and convulsing and dying dying dying. Everything hurts. My body bangs against the hard, cold floor, probably bruising. I shake and shake and my eyes are rolling back into my head. I hear hollow screams in My Brain, someone screaming Code Red! Over and over again. I have no idea what it's supposed to mean, but it must mean leave me alone because nobody is helping me.
The shaking finally, finally stops. My heart is still racing, and cold sweat is now pouring from my hairline. I think I must be gasping for air because I think that I just might not be able to breathe anymore. Somebody—two somebodies, actually—grab my hands, help me up, and drag me out of the room with the cold, hard floor. Somebody throws me onto something comfortable, with something soft to support my head and something warm to cover me with.
I must have opened my eyes because I see what I think is moonlight in my room, going through the newspapers taped to the windows. I breathe—I think—in, out, in, out, through my mouth. My heart is shaking violently like I must have been doing a few minutes ago. I close my eyes and try to stop everything, but my whole world is spinning. My head, especially. I feel like I'm in a merry-go-round roller coaster—up and down, up and down, spinspinspin. I feel like I've been on that, and the spinning teacups right afterwards. No lineups—the dizzy rides are reserved for me.
Wait—who the heck am I?
Oh, that's right. Alyxandra Leigh Sawhill. Born April 1st 1994, Seattle, WA, USA, North American, Earth. Born to Lynda and Brian. Hair—dark brown. Eyes—blue. Race—Caucasian. Height—5'2. Weight—120 lbs.
I feel like I have a gas mask on my face. Whenever I breathe through my mouth it makes a really weird, hollow sound.
The pounding of my heart is slowing down. 140 beats per minute. 120 beats per minute. 100...80...60. 60 beats per minute, one slow thud every second. It's like I'm in slow motion, like I'm in a movie with special effects. My spinning teacups are slower now, and it feels like a very strong force is pulling me in circles—spiiiiiiiin. Spiiiiin. Spiiiiin. My breathing is slowing down, too. The voices in my head are quieting down.
No—they're actually disappearing! It's like they are all being sucked into a black hole, sans the screaming. They're falling down the hole slowly, so I can count them all. I count two hundred five of them all slipping away from me. Gone! They're gone! Nineteen was right—the medicine works. They're all gone, even Nineteen. I should have thanked her before we had to part.
My eyes close. Then they open. I am surrounded by nothing. I have nothing. I want nothing. I need nothing. There is nothing to harm me, nothing to gain, I am nothing. Nothing to worry about. I also have nobody, either. Not Brain, not naggy old Lynda, not Robyn, not Collin who insists on fighting for my love despite I am asylum-crazy, not Cameron with the shitty car and cheap cigarettes.
I am stopping. My heart is slowing down even more, and I'm onto fifteen breaths a minute. I am pinned down to this bed or whatever I am laying on. I weigh five million pounds and I can't move. No, maybe I'm not that heavy, I think I must be paralyzed. I can't move and I never will move.
My mind is slipping away from me. I can't remember who I am anymore, where I am, what just happened. My eyes flutter openclosedopenclosed. I think I'm trying to stay alive. I want to give in, Alyx wants to give in and fall asleep forever. But my brain doesn't—it still has something in it, but it's dripping out of my skull and leaving me. The willpower is going...going...going...gone.
My heart is tired of pumping. It's been pumping for almost seventeen years and it wants to take a break. And you know what? I want to take a break, too.
I fade. Forever.
|posts in thread|
|BJ McDonald 19||
Oct 24, 10 at 11:31am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Wow, I have read this from the start, but haven't really commented.
This story was *bleep*ing brilliant, loved every chapter and was beautifully written.
I look foreward to your next story.
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