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Apr 09, 10 at 7:28am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
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quote harvest hunnyI KNEW IT WAS OFF OF COLD CASE. But uh, Collin off of Cold Case was so sweet. Reading this, and watching that episode before makes me like, tear up 3: . And when you said that some douche was beating the shit out of him for talking to his girlfriend, I knew for sure that it was from Cold Case.
Plus I just watched a movie about split-personalities. It's not the same, but it reminds me of it. But in short, I don't understand how you can write about all of these things that you don't have, expierence, or know anyone that has them. /Jealousyyyyyy.
You'll so be published someday.
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Apr 15, 10 at 9:17pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
@ Anime Ashley: Thank you! I plan to be somewhere in the psychology field for a career, and I'm considering a mental health nurse, a nurse in a mental hospital who deals with schizophrenics and "crazy people." I understand the disease, but I don't understand everything, of course. I haven't met a schizophrenic at all though. I'm still learning about schziophrenia, especially the different types. I know that if I ever end up working in the psychiatric ward of a hospital, my knowledge will be greater than the knowledge I have now.
@Kaiti: HOLY CRAP IT'S KAITI! I haven't seen you in so long! XD Yes. I got the idea of Collin from the cold case episode, but instead of Collin having, like, no friends, I decided to place that character into this story so he wouldn't feel so alone, lol . What was the movie you watched, like what was it called? It sounds interesting. And noooo I never plan on publishing myself. Writing is just a hobby.
So, like, sorry for the long wait guys. I was on vacation for a week and I had to catch up on school. But this chapter is kind of long, so hopefully that makes up for the wait. :3
thirteen ~ hi, this is alyx from your grade eleven ____ class. I am currently suspended and was wondering if there are any assignments I should do before I return to school on monday. Thanks.
credit to ME.
When Daddy and I arrive home just after three in the afternoon, he suggests that I should start emailing my teachers about assignments and homework I may miss during my suspension. I tell him okay, even though I barely use the computer anymore. Robyn is already home, but she is upstairs practicing her clarinet. She's in the school band. I ignore her, and wander into the living room to the computer.
I've forgotten how to turn it on, so I sit in the office chair, feeling like a blonde. I press a button and the computer begins to hum, so I guess that's how you turn it on. I sit there and the wallpaper pops us, along with the icons. I haven't even touched this computer in so long, that I don't know where to go to send an email. I do recall having an email address that I used when I was a normal girl, but I am not normal anymore and have forgotten how to do simple tasks.
Frustrated, I double-click on what I guess is the internet. It quickly pops up, and, satisfied, I type my way to my email address so I can email the teachers I respect the most. I am not even thinking about sending an email to
I type in my password slowly, with two fingers. I've always typed with two fingers because no one has ever given me typing lessons, but I used to be a very fast typer until I was diagnosed with a disease that makes my motor skills worse than they used to be. Miraculously, the password works. I have over two hundred emails from websites I haven't visited in so long. I delete them all one by one until I see emails from actual people.
There is one from a girl from my old high school.
Omfg! Alyx! Alyx Sawhill! I haven't seen u in so long! What skool do u go to now?? dude hows life every1 misses u!! email me back ok xxx I miss u =D
What. The. Hell. This message was sent a month ago. I think some chick named Amy sent it. I do not remember an Amy. I delete the message, and just delete my whole inbox. I don't want to read anything else. None of the whole missing me business could be true. I worked on the newspaper at my old school, but I was never popular. I do not remember an Amy, therefore there is no way she could miss me.
Once my inbox is cleaned out, I press the compose button and start sending out emails. My first email is sent to Ms. Carmona.
Hi Ms. Carmona, this is Alyx Sawhill from your grade eleven Psychology class. The principal of Coldgrove High gave me your email so I could receive some homework and assignments I may miss during my three-day absence. My absence is due to a suspension I have receive for reasons I'm not going to explain. Thanks.
I press the send button and send out another email to Mr. Lenhart.
Hi Mr. Lenhart, this is Alyx Sawhill from your grade eleven Advanced English class. The principal of Coldgrove High gave me your email so I could receive some homework and assignments I may miss during my three-day absence. My absence is due to a suspension I have receive for reasons I'm not going to explain. Thanks.
I send the same thing to the other teachers who I have decided to email. I shut down the computer and stand up. I'm not too sure what to do with myself, so I sit on the couch and stare at the TV. I don't reach for the remote. Suddenly, a noise makes me nearly jump out of my skin; the telephone.
Eleven: Don't pick that shit up. It's your mother.
Nine: (rolls eyes) It's not her mother, you idiot. It's Collin. But you'd better not pick that shit up.
The phone rings again. I look at it.
Three: Just let the bitch pick the phone up. Y'all are so stupid.
“Alyx, could you pick up the frickin' phone already?” I hear Robyn shout from upstairs.
With trembling hands and my ears filling with Voices, I pick up the phone. They vanish. “Hello?” the voice on the other end asks.
I don't respond.
“Hello? Is Alyx there?”
“Yeah. This is Alyx. Who's this?” Don'tbeItdon'tbeItdon'tbeIt.
“It's Collin, silly! Don't you remember my voice?”
Thank God. “Um, it s-sounds different over the ph-phone.”
“Really? I sound different over the phone?” Collin is appalled.
“Yeah. You sound like a girl. I thought you were someone else for a minute there.”
Collin laughs. “I know you're suspended, but that doesn't mean you're grounded, right?”
“I'm not grounded,” I say. I've never been grounded in my life. Brian and Lynda do not believe in grounding. They think it does no good, and I agree. Besides, I never go anywhere, I don't do anything, and I rarely talk on the phone.
“Good! Do you want to do something with me today? I have a great idea for us! I can pick you up!” he is getting excited, but I have no ideas what he wants to do with me.
“What? You want to...do something with me?”
“Yeah! I want to show you a place I go a lot!”
“Why?” I ask. “Why the hell do you want to pick me up and how me something?”
“I miss you, Aly!” Collin says.
I growl over the phone. “Don't call me that.”
“I'll be there in ten minutes!” Collin hangs up, and I stare at the phone in my hand. Idiot. I never implied I wanted to go anywhere with him. Sighing, because there is no way out of this, I put the phone back in its cradle and go upstairs to find Daddy and ask him if I can go.
I knock on the door to his office, and I get no answer. I knock again, then open the door. I see Daddy sitting at his desk, his headphones on, and he is rocking out in his own little world. “Dad!” I yell. He doesn't even see me; his eyes are squeezed shut and he looks like he's in a mosh pit.
I walk over, rip the headphones off and screech in his ear “DAD!”
“Whoa!” he exclaims. He nearly falls out of the chair, then looks at me. “Sorry, Aly. Did you need something?”
“Am I grounded?” I ask.
“No, why? You and your sister know I don't believe in grounding.”
“Well, Collin just called me, and he wants to pick me up and hang out,” I tell him.
Daddy stares at me. I would be staring at me, too, because this is the first time in months I've said something like this. “Really?” he asks. I nod. “Sure, go ahead. Just come back home before it starts getting dark, though. Take my phone. Call the house.” He gives me his Blackberry, which I put into the pocket of my sweatshirt. “If anyone, even Collin, makes you feel uncomfortable, you know what to do, right? Kick 'em in the balls and run!”
“I know, Dad,” I say, getting annoyed. “I'm not twelve, jeez.”
He chuckles and nods. “Right. But just in case.”
“Well, I'll be waiting on the porch.” I leave Daddy's office and go downstairs. Robyn is at the computer, typing at the speed of light, probably on MSN. She laughs at something and types. I tiptoe behind her and see what she's doing, and this is what I see.
Robyn on a rainy day says: Holy crap my *bleep*ing sister is such a retard.
Kiki Katastrophe says: Omfg doesn't she have like autism or something?
Robyn on a rainy day says: No she has this friggin disease called schizophrenia.
Kiki Katastrophe says: OMFG. IS IT CONTAGIOUS?
Robyn on a rainy day says: No, it's this disease of the mind. I can't *bleep*ing stand that retard. She acts like a little kid, and she's sixteen!!! She screams at the most random times and once, she tried to kill me.
Kiki Katastrophe says: HOLY CRAP ARE YOU SERIOUS?
My eyes narrow, and I stand behind my idiot sister for another minute until I can think of a response. She continues bitching about me to Kiki Katastrophe. I grab Robyn by the neck and throw her to the floor. She screams.
“You frickin' idiot!” I scream. “Do I ever talk shit about you to my friends? Huh? Do I? You think you can do that to me, f-cker?”
“You don't have any friends, you freak!” Robyn screeches back. She tries hitting me, but I put my hand up, catch her fist and try to twist her arm. She shrieks and starts to cry. I guess I'm really scaring her, but the little bitch deserves this.
“I have friends!” I explode. “If I catch you talking shit about me anymore, I'm going to f-cking kill you, you understand, bitch? HUH? DO. YOU. UNDER. STAND? You'd better be taking me seriously, because you know you would be dead by now if it wasn't for Brian and Lynda! You're this close to being murdered, you little whore! Do you hear me?” My last words are as loud as the front row of a heavy metal concert.
I stand up, grab Robyn and slam her against the wall because she isn't answering me. “DO YOU F-CKING HEAR ME?”
“Yes! I'm sorry, Aly! Let me go!”
“No!” I give her the hardest punch ever, right in the eye. Robyn shrieks, and I turn the computer off. I take out a bunch of wires, so I can make sure the idiot doesn't talk about me ever again. I glare at her, and run out the front door to the porch. I hear her sobbing like crazy and running up the stairs. Right now, I couldn't care any less about being in trouble.
Eleven: Good girl, Alyx. I'd be giving you a treat right now if you were a dog. Good girl. Good, good, good girl, Alyx. He smiles.
I smile back at him. “We're a team now.”
Eleven: You're going to kill her one day, right, babe? You'll do the world so much good if you just killed her off. Kill off a bunch of people, ones that you hate, one by one. I think the person you hate the most should be killed off last. Give them the most painful death you can think of.
“I will, Eleven,” I assure him, grinning. “I will kill her so hard she will die to death.”
Everyone laughs, and I smile. I sit on the porch swing and wait for Collin. I rock myself back and forth, staring absently into the sky. There are clouds, and it's probably going to rain, but I don't care. We get about 360 days of rain in Coldgrove, apparently, so I'm okay with it. It was rainy in Seattle, too. The only sunny days happened once a week, and those days were the good old summer days.
It was a summer morning, and it was sunny and warm. I could feel the sun's rays coming in through the glass of the windows, and the rays gently hit my face. I was expecting her to call me, like she did every morning. “Aly!” she'd say when I asked Hello? Then she'd say, “Want to come over? Want to go to the creek?” sometimes, we'd go other places, but most of the time we'd go to the creek. The creek had a river that was full of ducks and their babies, which mean we had to bring bread.
That morning, the phone in my room began to ring. I rolled over to pick it up. “Hey there,” I said into the voice using my sexy voice.
“Oh hi, Al. Want to go to the creek today? Bring some bread! My mom gave me half the bag, but it's a nice day so there's gonna be a truckload of cute little ducks there!”
I laughed. “Sure. Let me get dressed and stuff.”
“I'm coming over!” she hung up, and I rolled my eyes. She lived less than a block away, so I had to get dressed and ready fast. I jumped out of bed and stripped out of my tank top and sleep shorts into denim capris, a bra and my favorite pink shirt. I quickly out on ankle socks, ran a comb through my long, soft hair a few times, and ran down the stairs into the kitchen.
“Going to the creek?” Lynda asked. She put a plate of bacon, scrambled eggs and toast in front of me.
I nodded. Lynda smiled. “You and—”
“Alyx!” I hear Collin exclaiming front the sidewalk in front of the lawn. I blink in surprise and see him standing there. He waves me over, which forces me to stand up and walk over to him.
“Hi,” I say. “Where are we going today?” Don'tbeacreekdon'tbeacreek.
“I'll show you when we get there,” Collin says. “But you've gotta close your eyes. It's a surprise.”
“I'll get hit by a car if I walk around closing my eyes,” I point out.
He laughs. “I'll guide you,” he assures me. He takes my hand and starts walking. I close my eyes, even though I don't exactly trust him completely yet.
“Is this place a creek?” I ask, the worry in my voice obvious.
“No,” he says. He notices my worry. “Are you afraid of creeks?”
“I fell into a river once,” I lie. “My, um, friend and I were hanging around the creek once and we were walking beside it. I tripped over a rock, fell sideways into the water. I was soaking wet until I went home to shower and change.” I shudder at the pretend memory. I imagine myself pushing It into a river, which makes me want to laugh.
I have a feeling Collin has that weird look on his face, where his eyebrows scrunch together and his mouth is trying to smile. He probably shakes his head and we continue walking. “I missed you,” he said. “I missed you, like, today. In school.”
“You don't know what it's like to really miss somebody.”
“Yes, I do, Aly. I—”
“Don't call me Aly.”
“Okay, Alyx. I really did miss you today. It was lonely without you in Psychology and Art class. I had to sit with my other friends at lunch today, and it was really boring without you there. In Psychology, we started the ADHD unit. After that we're moving on to—”
“I don't care what we're doing in Psychology class,” I say, my eyes still closed. “And you don't know what it's like to really miss somebody. I've been gone for only one day. You don't know what missing is.”
“Alyx, I can assure you that this whole school day, I've missed you like crazy,” Collin says. He sounds sure, but I can't tell what his face looks like because I promised to close my eyes. “Open your eyes. Look at me. You have to believe a face like this. This face doesn't lie.”
I open my eyes to see Collin making puppy eyes at me, but his mouth is twisted around like he's trying not to smile. For once, he doesn't look childish. He finally looks like a teenager. He still holds Peter in one arm, though, which takes away from the manliness I've never seen. I also notice his voice is getting slightly deeper. It still has that awkward wheeze to it, which all the boys had in the seventh grade before we all went to junior high.
I remember the first day of junior high.
The eight grade. It was time to prepare for high school and try to find your true self so you wouldn't be an awkward geek in high school. Makeup was important. Short skirts were important. Lip gloss was a necessity. The only thing I did to prepare for the eight grade? I just cut my hair. The first morning was when everyone found out which classes they were in. The class lists were posted outside on the front brick wall on the school. The seventh-grade lists were below us, the sixth-grade lists below theirs.
“Dude,” I said, adjusting the straps on my backpack, “check what class we're in. It's too high up for me to see.”
Rolling Its eyes, It nodded and pushed through the crowd to see the lists. I could see It scanning the lists and I heard It say “Ah!” when It found the right list. Its last name starts with an A, so It was at the top of the list. It scanned the list and screeched when It saw my name near the bottom.
“We're in the same class!” It screamed to me, jumping up and down. Its necklaces bounced with It; Its hair bouncing along, too. “We're in 8A! With Tyler Richmand!”
“Oh my god, Tyler Richmand!” I screamed. I bounced along with It, then It shushed us.
“Oh my god, he's coming! Shh!”
I immediately stopped bouncing and looked over my shoulder as Tyler Richmand, the sexiest teenage boy alive, walked across the school lawn and over to the class lists. His homeboys greeted them, all of them with their pants on the ground. Tyler, being the only civilized young man out of the group, did not have his pants on the ground, but he was wearing his baseball cap backward.
I was sure I had a girlgasm into my jeans. “Look at his hat,” I sighed to It.
“Oh my god. Look at David. He totally changed over the summer. Dude, look! He has biceps!”
“Holy crap, he does!” I agreed. “But Tyler is still the hottest guy ever. I can't believe he's in our class! I hope the seating plan goes in alphabetical order so we can sit beside each other!”
“If that happens, you're a lucky hoe,” It joked.
“Why are you staring at me?” Collin asks.
“Huh?” I blink. “Oh.”
Collin raises an eyebrow.
“I get flashbacks in black and white,” I say suddenly. “But I can never see my face. I can't see any colors. I don't know what I look like.”
“That's not good,” Collin says.
“It actually is really g—”
“Because you're actually...um...really, um, pretty.” Collin blushes.
I feel my face harden. My jaw tightens. “Shut up.” He stares at me. “Shut. Up.”
Blood rushes up to my neck and my hands feel like they're going to grab Collin's throat, through him to the ground and kill him. My hands reach for his throat and the they tighten around it. Collin gasps and grabs my shoulders and pushes me away. I stumble backward and fall on my butt right onto someone's lawn. I'm the one gasping this time, and I stare up at Collin in utter disbelief.
“What the hell?” I ask.
“I'm not going to let you kill me,” Collin says. “I mean, I will, if you catch me!” He bursts into laughter and begins to run. My jaw drops open, but my brain registers the fact I have to chase him, so I stand up and start sprinting. Collin is still laughing his head off, and I do not find this funny. I have to run across the street to catch Collin, which means I almost get hit by a car, but I pay no attention.
I have never been to this side of town, and there's what looks like a forest nearby. There are colorful leaves, but I can't identify the colors. I mean, I can see them, but I can't remember the last time I've really seen them. My brain seems to be telling me I'm colorblind, even though I'm not. Maybe that's why I see flashbacks in black and white. I guess I'm trying to tell myself something.
“Collin!” I scream. He's starting to laugh and he makes a turn. I'm ten yards behind him, so I run after him and see an abandoned train station. The grass here is brown and there are leaves from those trees everywhere, but I manage not to trip or get myself killed. Collin, however, trips and falls, so I end up tripping over him. “Ow!” I hiss.
“You okay?” Collin asks. He dusts off Peter and gives him a kiss on the head. “Aww, man! Peter fell with me and I squished him. Sorry, little buddy.” I smile at this. “So? Are you still going to beat me up?” Collin asks me, grinning.
“Yes!” I say, not smiling. I punch Collin in the arm as hard as I can because I don't want to be like Ricky and give him another bloody nose. Collin grins.
“I guess I deserved that,” he says.
“You sure did.” I roll my eyes. “Why are we here anyways? Are we on some kind of suicide pact you never told me about? Are we going to jump in front of a train?”
He laughs. “No, Alyx, trains come here, like, once a week. We're not on a suicide pact. I just like to come here a lot with Peter. Isn't it nice here?”
“I guess so,” I say. I stand up and look around to see what else is here. Near the station, which looks like it's falling apart, there is a group of gangstas smoking something that I guess is cigarettes or weed. They're all wearing huge coats with furry hoots and big baseball caps. The train tracks stretch for miles both ways. I start walking along the tracks, wondering if there's anything dead here. Collin starts to follow me, but I ignore him. I see the corpse of a dead squirrel and I grimace. “Look,” I say, “a dead squirrel.”
“Eww,” Collin agrees. We keep walking, and we walk in silence for so long, and I have switched to walking on the tracks. Collin is right behind me, but we won't talk. I stare at the forest as we walk beside it. The forest is a never-ending line of trees with leaves that fly into the wind every few seconds. The trees are slowly becoming even more bare, and this scares me. Snow will be coming soon, which means Christmas. This will be my first Christmas with a disease. I wonder what I'll do. I wonder if I have to go shopping for everybody's presents like I did last year. I wonder what presents I'll get. Will It mail me a present? Maybe I'll mail It some daisies.
The train tracks begin to rattle. I turn around and look at Collin, who turns around and lets out a shriek. “Alyx! Get off the tracks!” Collin runs and jumps off the tracks. I stand there, watching the train come closer. I smile. Collin is freaking out, and I decide to play the best prank ever. I wave to him as if I'm saying goodbye. “NO!” Collin screams. He starts waving me over frantically. “ALYX! GET! OFF! THE! TRACKS!”
I grin. The train is getting closer, and when it's twenty yards away, I jump backwards and tumble into a ditch. I let out a very loud, dramatic scream, making it sound like it's going on in the distance. The train is very long, which is good, so I can scream more.
The train rumbles away and I can see Collin but he can't see me. I can hear him hyperventilating and I laugh to myself, laying there in the dirt. “Alyx?” I can hear his voice breaking. “Alyx? ALYX! Oh my God, Alyx!” I can hear him running after the train. “STOP! STOP! YOU'VE RUN OVER MY BEST FRIEND!” He's starting to run faster.
Deciding this is enough, and Collin sounds like he's in serious emotional pain, I get up and start running swiftly in his direction. I can hear him panicking. I stop running and walk quietly behind him, trying not to crunch the leaves. “Alyx?” he calls out, like he thinks I'm still alive.
“Yes?” I say. I smile and Collin turns around and shrieks.
“DON'T EVER DO THAT TO ME AGAIN!” he screams. He tries to give me the biggest hug in the world, but before he can, I push him away. “You scared me, Alyx!” I grin and laugh, even clutching my sides. I found it quite funny, but Collin was frowning. “You could have been killed!” he explodes. “Do you know what I would have done if you were killed?”
“Do you know what you would have done?” I asked, feeling as if annoying the crap out of him would get him to shut up.
“I would have waited for the next train and killed myself just to be with you,” he answers, sure of himself. “And we could be together in heaven. Forever.”
“Collin,” I say, sighing and shaking my head, “shut up. Don't feed me bullshit. And by the way, I'm going to hell.” I turn around and start walking back the way we came to this train station. I put my hands in the pocket of my sweatshirt and feel Daddy's phone. He told me to call him, which I haven't done yet. Oh well.
“Alyx,” Collin calls from many light years away. I can feel him running after me. He catches up with me and his steps match mine. I shake my head and ignore him. I walk faster. “Alyx, listen to me. Please? Peter wants you to listen, too.”
“I don't care what your rabbit wants.”
“Alyx, you're not going to hell. You're going to heaven. With everyone else. Except for the bad people.”
“You don't know what it's like to walk in my shoes, do you? You don't know what it's like to be a freak, Collin.” I've been through this with him so many times, but Collin just never understands anything. He functions like a child, like I do, so I guess I shouldn't be talking. “I've almost killed my own sister, Collin, and by then time I'm twenty years old, I'll probably be put into jail for life because I'm a freak. People who kill go to hell. I'm not going to heaven, and I'm definitely not going to heaven with you.” Damn, that was bitchy.
“Aly, don't say that!” Collin says. He grabs for my hand, but I slap his wrist away. “You'll go to heaven with everyone else. Don't be so negative! Please? Just be happy for once, Alyx. Even ask your pastor. You trust your pastor, don't you?”
“Well, pastors are smart. I'm sure he's going to tell you you're going to heaven. You'll be an angel, but you won't be as beautiful—”
My teeth clench and my hands turn into fists. My knuckles turn white and I'm shaking all over. I raise my right arm, pull it back and throw a punch, right at Collin's head. He gasps and drops Peter, which makes him freak out even more. I shut my eyes, open them, and keep walking. I walk until I reach a street. Suddenly realizing what I have just done, I turn around, expecting Collin.
He isn't there.
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Apr 16, 10 at 3:31am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
quote harvest hunnySybil. It was on the Lifetime Movie Network, I dont know if you have it up in Mooseland. But it's based on an actual case of a girl in the '20s who had like, 16 different personalities, and they didn't believe it, thought it was female hysteria.
But you're such a good writer. ): Like I said, I doubt you have half of the things you write about, but it you know so much about it and it makes it so much better. <3
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Apr 16, 10 at 9:39am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
I won't sweat it on the wait. Sometimes it best to take our time as a writer. I think I should start doing that. Often I write my 1st-drafts right on the threads here, later to find enormous errors and wondering if I should of waited and made sure I wanted to push plot points in these directions... its doesn't pay to be a quick draw sometimes.
So trains huh, you must of felt something deeply profound with this character? It's always a good writers trait to write about what close to our heart. Anyways, this chapter has taken on a ugly twist in their friendship. Good on Collin, he should take that abuse. I hope this doesn't hurt Alyx in the long run, she needs a good friend like him. I was worried you might kill a character rather than a voice (well I think they are characters too). Friends are important as your significant others, I think so anyways.
Patiently awaiting your next submission
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Apr 21, 10 at 9:58pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
@ Kaiti: We had that channel a long time ago, well I did, when we had Dish network...now we have plain cable and we don't have the channel anymore. I used to love watching the Lifetime network, actually. XD I've seen many LMN movies, but not Sybil. Maybe I'll look it up, because it sounds pretty interesting. And, I'm looking into schizophreakia even more now. I've been trying to look for music regarding schizophrenia or other mental disorders, and at Deviantart where I get the pictures for my chapters, there's a *bleep*ing shitload of amazing pictures!
@ Alex: Yes. The episode has scarred me for life. I'm terrified of trains and train tracks now. A lot of the things I listen to and watch seem to just stick with me for a while. This story is inspired on my favorite book of all time, Speak. The images I see when looking for the appropriate ones for my chapter are just like...amazing. They inspire me so much and I can't get them out of my head. Some things are really powerful. I see this world as a beautiful place, but schizophrenics see this world as a scary place. I'm trying to put myself in the POV of a schizophrenic. Really, I try. I want to be a mental health nurse when I'm older. A nurse that works in a mental hospital, or in a regular hospital but in the psychiatric unit. By the time I get to that point in life, I'll actually SEE and MEET a person with this disease. I don't know anybody that has it, I don't have it...but, one of my grandma's brothers died a month or so back, and apparently he was paranoid--I don't know whether it was just paranoia or paranoid schizophrenia. He died, though, and even if he was alive, I don't know him nor would he even appreciate me asking. I mean, I don't mean to go and insult him now or something, but he'd probably hurt me, judging from things I've read and Alyx's own behaviour.
Schizophrenia is actually a really serious condition. Alyx's case is indeed severe, but I've been watching videos where the patient talks so much gibberish and everybody has abandoned them. Schizophrenia is not just hearing voices and seeing things and hallucinating; there's many other things that others don't even realize. The patient feels such loneliness, abandonment, because they feel nobody is trying enough to help them. You cannot cure schizophrenia completely. yeah, there's medication and psychotherapy, but the patient will still experience several of the things they already are experiencing. There's so much loneliness they feel and nobody realizes it. They're families and friends are probably like, "Oh, what a crazy bitch," because catatonic behaviour, for example, exhibits talking in gibberish, showing obscure postures and sometimes becoming extremely mute. But really, the patient is probably screaming their head off on the inside, praying for help. They're the ones who have to live with this, and they hate it. This will be mentioned in the next update.
Okay...wow. That was informative. XD So anyways, sorry for the long wait. This chapter is kind of short. The next update will exhibit feelings that haven't exactly been expressed by Alyx in everything I've written so far, and I'm very excited to write it. For now, though, here we are...
fourteen ~ I guess you psychos have magical powers that automatically make me pour everything out, huh?
credit to hiimlucifer @ Deviantart. What a beautiful image.
“Suspended?” Jessica Varner, PhD asks, appalled. “Alyx, what could you have possible done?”
“I beat up this moron named Ricky,” I answer, crossing my arms. “He was messing with Collin. Punching him in the face. Killing him. Trying to, at least. Ricky gave Collin a bloody nose and was screaming at him for talking to this chick named Adriana. It was probably about homework or something. I don't know.” I stare at the carpet. I see the color, but my brain does not register what color it is. Same with Jessica's blouse. I can see the zebra stripes and the black and white, but I don't know what shades, tints or colors are. I'm going to fail art.
“How long is your suspension?” my Psycho Therapist asks.
“Three days. I go back on Monday, I think. It's the first time I've ever been suspended. It felt good, knowing I protected Collin. I mean, I have Ricky a broken nose and another facial fracture, I think, and I bet his face will be one giant blueberry. Bruised beyond recognition.” I s*bleep*, and it comes out in a retarded way. I sound like someone with some kind of crazy syndrome.
“Alyx, we've talked about this before!” Jessica says, firmly but softly. “You cannot hit people. There are other ways to deal with people that bother you. You could do it verbally. In a nice, calm tone.”
“I don't know how to be nice anymore.” I pull my legs up and rest my chin on my knees. “Ever since Dr. Marshall and the people at the crazy house announced it, I've been this crazy, psycho bitch.”
Jessica frowns at me. “Alyx, you are not the B-word.”
“You're too much of a pussy to even say the word, aren't you?” I snarl. “Bitchbitchbitchbitchbitch.”
With her PhD in psychology and a bunch of other university crap, my Psycho Therapist knows how to handle this. She treats patients from crazy houses. She treats people who scream at her and throw vases and the other valuable artifacts in this office at her head. Compared to my swearing, this is nothing.
“Okay, Alyx, you are not a bitch.” Psycho Therapist, PhD smiles at me. Her smile fades as soon as she sees my face. I don't know what it looks like, but I guess it must look like I am about to kill somebody. “Alyx?”
“Jessica,” I say, “what do I look like?”
She blinks. “You don't kn—Oh. Are you not allowed to look in a mirror because the voices tell you not to?”
“Finally, somebody understands!” My mouth pulls into a smile. “But really. What do I look like?”
“Well, your hair is dadadadodododadum.”
“I said, your hair is dadadalalalala.”
I blink. “GOD DAMN IT!” I grab a pillow, bury my face in it and scream. I let out the loudest scream I can manage. I bet if I stood on top of a mountain, the whole world could hear me. Everybody would hear me and realize this freakin' agony I'm going through. My fingers clutch at the pillow so hard they might break and I don't care. I don't care how much the psychical pain will hurt.
Nothing can beat the emotional pain of living with this kind of disease.
When I throw the pillow back where I picked it up, Jessica “Psycho” Varner is staring at me. “Alyx? Is there anything you need to tell me?”
My hands start shaking. I grab fistfuls of my hair and I don't even see the color. However, it looks like I need a shower. “You. Don't. Know.”
“What don't I know?”
“You don't know what it's like to live with a disease like this, do you?” I ask, calming down. “Yeah, you've probably done a truckload if research, but you still don't know how it feels, do you?”
“I'm sorry, but I don't, Alyx. You know, they have support groups for friends and family of those with schizo—”
“Yeah, yeah, but I'm not looking for that kind of crap. I'm not looking for anything. Except someone that understands. I want to find someone who will switch bodies with me. For one hour. They have to experience the psychosis I go through, like, every day.”
“Your psychotic episodes happen every day now?” An eyebrow is raised, and a pen begins to scribble in the notebook. “Are you still taking two doses of your medication?”
“Yes, every day.”
Jessica looks at me. My stomach rumbles, loud. Seven tells it to shut up. “Are you taking your medications with food and water?”
She frowns. “You have to take the medication with food and water in order for it to work. Even just a glass of orange juice would work.”
“I've taken the meds without food and water before, like, after I was diagnosed with this,” I reply. “Now, it doesn't seem to work. I think I need a higher dose.”
“Do you? Thirty-milligrams isn't enough?”
“I think I need, like, a hundred milligrams.”
“Alyx, you're sixteen years old. I can't allow you doses that exceed sixty milligrams. A middle-aged man with severe schizophrenia takes sixty milligrams! You're a teenage girl, Alyx! I'm sorry, but I can't let you exceed such a high dose. What about forty milligrams?”
“Oh, so I guess you don't understand!” I say. I cross my arms. “If you really cared about me, you would talk to my doctor and let me get a higher dose of my meds!”
“Alyx, I'm willing to talk to your doctor about forty milligram doses, but we're not going any higher than that!”
“Why the hell not?!”
“High doses for someone your size could kill you!”
“Ugh!” I grab the pillow and bury my face in it again. I know my voice is muffled, but I say “Ah, just forget it. Nobody's ever going to listen to me, so what's the point?”
“Alyx,” Psycho makes her voice all soft and motherly, “I'm listening to you.”
“Yeah, my ass!” I stand up, ready to throw something at her. “You're not letting me get my medication! I need my medication! And it's not working, so I need a higher dose!”
Jessica sighs. She is used to me arguing with her, but now it's over medication. Jessica Varner, PhD is a registered doctor, a mind doctor, a shrink, but she is not a doctor that you go to for check-ups. This doctor is apparently supposed to shrink the problems out of your mind, but my problems seem to be getting gradually larger every day.
“Alyx, sit down.” I sit. “Breathe.”
“Now tell me. Did something happen this week that's making you like this? Are you on your period?”
“I'm not on my period,” I mutter. I haven't gotten the damn thing in months. Maybe I'm pregnant. Ooo. “But...I did something the other day...and it was really stupid of me.”
“What exactly did you do?” Jessica asks.
“Well, the other day, my dad had to take me with him to work because of my suspension and the fact I can't stay home alone. We had to go to Seattle because he had to go to court today to defend a client against a murder case. When he went into the courtroom, I chatted with some lady and then headed out to the truck. For some reason, I'm going crazy over the truck, and I'm starting to consider starting a driving course so I can get my own permit or something.
“Anyways, I had the keys with me, and I went to the truck. I got in, and started driving, until some creep decided to hit on me. I then drove for a bit until I got into the outskirts. I just had this crazy idea to...to get flowers...” My hands start shaking and I clutch my pillow to my chest. My teeth bite into my lower lip, then let go. “Flowers...daisies...”
Jessica hands over the box of tissues. I set it beside me. “Daisies...because she always liked daisies...”
“Who is she?” Jessica asks in a soft voice.
“I was in the neighborhood. I wanted to say hi. So I passed my old high school. I passed the pizza store. The Blockbuster. The little plaza. Then I came to the flower shop. I bought a bouquet of daisies because...she always liked daisies...” My bottom lip quivers and my eyes burn. “I drove to her house and parked the truck on the street. I also wrote her a note with the little piece of paper that came with the flowers.
“She skipped school a lot. Back when we were friends. Sometimes I even skipped with her. I thought she would be skipping that day. Which is why I bought the flowers. I rang the bell and no one answered. I rang it again, still no answer. I was so pissed off that she wasn't answering, so I just threw the flowers at the door and ran back to the truck.” I take a deep breath.
“Maybe Autumn was at school,” Jessica says, trying to assure me. “Even if she weren't, she wouldn't have ignored you.”
“Yeah, I know, that's what I was thinking, the school thing,” I say. “But she...she actually hates me.”
“Did she tell you that?”
“Yes. Well, not directly, but she implied it when I told her I have to move here because it's better for me. She told me...”
Her green eyes stared at my face in disbelief. I stared at the ground. “Are you serious?” she asked. “You...for sure have the...disease?” Her pretty face twisted with disgust.
“Yes,” I murmured. “And we have to move. Seattle's just too loud and busy. I'll probably kill somebody if we stay here. Plus, schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by abnormalities in the perception of reality.”
She stared at me. “What?”
Damn it. “Dad. New. Job.” The words had to come out one by one, because who knew what I was going to come up with next? Talking about something even more ridiculous, like how Jesus was going to save me? Yeah, right, he made me like this. He died so I could be cursed with a disease you can't cure.
“Oh. Your dad has a new job. Guess that's convenient, huh? For you, I mean.” She rolled her eyes and looked at the ground. I tried to touch her arm, but she slapped it away. “Don't freaking touch me,” she snarled. My eyes widened. “You're contagious! You're...you're a freak!”
“Autumn,” I whispered. I tried to touch her arm again. “I'm not contagious. Please. Just...just call me sometimes. I'm sorry. I can't...I can't help it, Autumn. I'm sorry I'm like this. I'm...I'm still the same person. But...just different. I'll need medications. We're moving on Saturday. I'm sorry we had to start Summer like this.” I grabbed my face with my fingers and let out a noise that belonged to some kind of animal. Or maybe I was trying to breathe.
She sighed and slapped my hand away once again. I looked up at her with a look that belonged to a spanked puppy. Was she going to abandon me? No, please, you're my best friend! Autumn, please, I'll give you my new phone number. We're moving to a small town. I can try to visit. Please—All those thoughts ran in my head. I felt like a lost animal, an animal its owner had abandoned.
“So you went to a crazy house?” she asked. “You went to a crazy house where they had cameras to spy on you, and doctors with tazers and all that shit? You're not going to be the same person, Aly. You're going to be much different. Look at you. Your hair's a mess. It's all greasy. You look like you haven't slept in days. You're wearing jeans and a sweatshirt when it's ninety degrees out. On the last day of school when the principal was giving the goodbye speech, you burst out laughing like some kind of retard.
“You're never going to be the same person.”
“Autumn, stop saying that!” I grabbed her hand and fell to my knees. I was begging her just to stay my best friend. “I love you, Autumn. Please, just...just don't do this to me.”
“Don't do this to me!” This time, instead of slapping me away, she threw me onto the concrete in a fit of rage. “You're a freak! Get away from me!” She started running. “Schizophrenia my ass!” she yelled, and turned around to face me. “You probably have something worse than that!”
“I actually have the catatonic type,” I called after her, feeling sobs building up in my throat.
“I don't care! You're still sick! You're never getting better! I'm never going to call you again in my life! God knows how you'll be in the next year! I'll see you by then and I'll probably want to kill myself! This disease is turning you ugly!”
“Look who's talking!” I yelled back.
She gave me the finger, and started running again. She was gone. No more...no more...I have nothing.
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Apr 22, 10 at 6:21am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Where's Collin? ): I like, hope you didn't kill him off, especially after telling us how her last friend was. She can't lose anything.
And for music regarding mental disorders, if you like industrial, you can try Skinny Little Bitch by Angelspit. It's about anorexia. It's kind of a more shallow look at it, though, but still. Or All The Madmen by David Bowie if you like Gaga, and if you like emo/whateveritis, Bleeds No More by Silverstein and Breakdown by Breaking Benjamin. Not all about schizophrenia, but still mental illnesses. I have a list of songs through a-z on them if you'd like. <3
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Apr 22, 10 at 6:04pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
I like the photos you post at each chapter. very unique and awesome! Consider me your groupie! Want to read more... take as much time as you need by the way.
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Apr 24, 10 at 3:35am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
OMG that bitch!! Autum that fugging bitch!!! O my gawd!! Ahhh damn can she understand it's not her fuggin fault?!
Sorry I get bad when I am mad
I love you. You love me. Together, let's love the world. In fact, we have so much love, we can remove the hate.
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Apr 25, 10 at 5:48pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
depression (not a chapter)
Credit to karlneo @ DeviantArt. This picture is beautiful.
“Is the curtain over the mirror?” I ask, protectively clutching the towel around my body. I don't want Robyn to see anything. There are many scars and healing cuts there, which I can't let her see. Plus, They keep telling me I'm fat. I can't let anyone see. It will be embarrassing. My whole body is embarrassing. My attitude is embarrassing. Stupid Alyx. You're sixteen, not six. Grow the hell up.
Robyn rolls her eyes. I can't see their color any more. What did they used to be? Green? Are my eyes green? Whatever. I guess it doesn't matter. “Yes, you don't even need to ask. Idiot.”
I walk into the bathroom, carefully, and check to make sure the black curtain is covering the mirror. It is. “Thanks.” I hear Robyn's door closing, and I hope she hears me. Even if she doesn't, whatever. I close the bathroom door and let the towel drop around my feet. I stare down at my breasts. They're getting bigger, and I must be a C cup now. I hope that I won't have to go bra-shopping with anyone. That would be kind of embarrassing. I cup my hands around my little girls and squeeze. They both smash against each other, and they spring back into place.
I move to the shower, and pull back the curtain. The shower is only a big stall, there's no bathtub. The other bathroom, in Brian and Lynda's room, has a bathtub, but I bet they have sex in it, so I'm never going to go in there. I turn the tap on and watch the water pour out of the shower head like a rainstorm. I watch it for about a minute, climb into the stall, pull the curtain to hide me from anything that might be looking, and I sit down.
The water is hotter than lava, and it burns the skin of my feet, but I sit there, the steam making sweat pour from my hairline. I close my eyes and put my hands on my legs. They feel hairy, like a gorilla's legs. It's as hot in here as that day. The day when I told It I have this disease that no one can cure. The day I told It, I'm still going to be the same person, the same person the same person the same person.
It doubted me. It thought I was a freakshow. I laughed at the assembly on the last day of school. I kept getting sent out into the hall because my laughter over nothing was so uncontrollable. Our friends, the newspaper crew, gave me weird looks at lunch because I wouldn't eat my food. I'd stare at it and sit in the chair with my legs crossed funny, the way yogis sit. Samantha kept raising eyebrows at me. Mark would say something about the newspaper and I would repeat it in a robot voice.
In class, I'd see things in the corner of the room. My fingers would clutch at my head and I'd make noises that belonged to a caged baboon.
Nurse's office. Loneliness. Guidance counselor. Therapist. Doctor. Depression. Crazy house. Depression. Tests. Security cameras. Tests. Medications. Doctor. Everything slipping away. Last day of school. I have to move. I'm hated. I'm sorry we had to start summer like this, Autumn. Depression. Regret. I'm sorry. Lonely. I love you. You're like my other sister. Regret. Hatred.
I think you're crazy! You went to a crazy house? Freak. I hate you. You're embarrassing me. We're not going shopping this weekend. “Good?” what the hell do you mean? What? Your...voices? Voices? You're crazy. Freak. I hate you. You act like a little kid. Want to feed the ducks? No? You're too scared to go to a creek? Pussy. You're a pussy willow. Child. Freak. You want to go meet Jesus? Aly, he's up in—No, I'm not going to let you kill yourself.
I move myself closer to the taps and turn on the cold water until the water reaches a normal temperature. I push my self back to where I was, pull my knees to my gigantic boobs and stare at the water hitting the tiles. My lips tremble at the memories. I can still hear her voice screaming profanities at me. Her eyes, rimmed with eyeliner, flashed in shock, anger, disbelief, anger, shock, everything. Her best friend. Disease. Freak. Moving. New house. Small town. Icanstillvisitright? Noyou'retoocrazytovisitmeIhateyou. Whywhywhywhywhy? You'llkillmewon'tyou, you'llbreakallthevasesyou'llscreamyou'reafreak. I'mnotafreakpleasepleasecallmesometimesplease.
We move to Coldgrove. Onehourfifteenminuteshighwayhereweare. Unload the furniture. Three hours. Pay the movers. One minute. Organize boxes. Days. Everything organized. One week. Phone, TV, computer set up. One hour. Waiting for her to call. Weeks. Nothing. She's not calling. Wait patiently. Nightmares. Nothing. Lonely. Want friends. Need her. Needneedneed. Imissyou. I decide to call. Ringringringringringansweringmachine. Try again. RingringringringringHello? Hi. Who is this? I hate you. Hang up.
I hate her I hate her I hate her I hate her I'm going to kill her she hates me she made everyone come after me because she doesn't understand no one does I'm lonely I'm scared the world hates me everything is my fault the economy the fact we have a black president the recession everything.
Tears spill down my cheeks. I spot my razor that I use to shave my legs. I take off the cap and start trying to poke out a blade from the razor. Just one, single blade. All I need. The blade falls and I pick it up between my thumb and forefinger. Blood drops dissolve into the water. The edge of the blade cuts deep into the skin of my arm.
I've done this so many times that it doesn't even hurt. I cut into my arm, horizontal lines, vertical lines, and I try to carve my name. It's easy, I just need to make lines for the A, a single ling for the L, two lines for the Y, and two lines for the X. The blood pools around the cuts, the water from the shower stings into the wounds, making the blood drop to the tiles and down the drain. Alyx. Cutcutcut. Slicesliceslice. My arm is going to look screwed up after this. Whatever. The blood runs down my arm like Niagara Falls. I throw the single razor down the drain. I hear it clanking until I can't hear it anymore. I suck the blood around my arm, and it's salty. My saliva stings the wounds. I feel like dumping a huge bag of salt over the cuts just so I have an excuse to let out a scream a woman lets out when she's giving birth. People tell me, You have no excuse to scream! Stop screaming! You're going to make the neighbors think your father is a rapist! Shut up!
No. You shut up. I have all the right in the world to scream. I have every right to be psychotic and throw myself against the walls and scream like some angry monkey. I have every right to kill every single doctor on the planet. I have the right to kill because God has betrayed me. I should stop going to church. He cursed my family with this disease. He cursed me with it because He made this disease hereditary. Spirituality my ass. I'm never going to church again. I do not have to obey the ten commandments. Thou shalt kill. I shall kill the doctors because they aren't coming up with a cure for this disease.
Two percent of this population has schizophrenia. Two percent of six billion people. That's a lot. Too many people have an incurable disease. All of us will live the rest of our lives like this. Medicationscrazyhousedoctorspsychosishelphelphelp. We need help, you assholes aren't giving it to us. If there was a God, he'd help me. He'd help us. Are we getting the help we need? No. Psychiatric units in the hospital are some help, though. We need free health care like Canada does. I'll spend the rest of my life in a psychiatric unit and I'll get a tad bit better, I promise. Don't freaks who enter the hospital with a disease like this get better, eventually? Yeah? God damn you, government. Families with freaks can't afford treatment in a hospital. Think, government, think!
Okay. My arm, my whole arm is bleeding now. I'm exploding blood. I'm going to die of blood loss. I can't wash my hair now unless I can endure the pain of soap entering my blood. I've endured broken bones and a broken mind, can I endure this? No. Screw this shower thing. I'll sit here and watch my arm bleed until I die of blood loss. I'll die, someone will call CSI, and they'll find me laying here, blood all over the tiles and my arm cut up like a dinosaur has taken a huge bite through my flesh.
I reach over and turn off the water. My arm continues to bleed. I try to cover it up, but it only results in more stinging. I wipe my hand on the tiles, stand up and find a towel. The towel doesn't look white, so I press it against my arm a few times. I remove the towel and see the cuts. They're going to make cool scars. I drydrydry the cuts and wrap the towel around my wet body. I look in the cabinet under the sink and find gauze. I wrap them around my arm like I'm a mummy, and make sure there are two layers. I don't see anymore blood seeping through the fabric, so I stand there in my towel, making a wet mess on the floor.
Self mutilation is a cry for help.
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May 09, 10 at 12:00am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Long wait. Oops. I planned to write out this huge dramatic scene in the end but my writer's block is getting so bad, that I was physically unable to write it out without it sounding really retarded. Oh well. :3
fifteen ~ back to hell
Credit to 573ph4n13 at DeviantArt.
I enter the building, backpack over one shoulder, sweatshirt covering the arm wrapped in white. People stare at me. A girl walks up to me and asks, “Are you the one that was suspended for beating--?” I walk past her. The whispers ring in my ears, just forcing me to stare at everyone with the look on my face that means I need to get back to preschool. Now.
“Hey, good going,” a jock says, football helmet and all. “Did you see Ricky yet?”
“Wow, never thought a shrimp like you would beat up a two-hundred pound dude,” his buddy adds.
Shut up, I say in my mind. I hurry to my locker and remember the combination with shaking hands. I put my backpack inside, and remember it is Day 2, so I take my things out for Psychology and French. I stare inside my locker for another minute before I feel hands on my shoulders. My eyes widen, then I remember Collin does this almost every day, so I turn around and see his grinning face.
“Alyx!” he shouts. “You're back! Give me a hug!” he pulls me into a hug, but I push him away.
“Collin, you know what I said about hugging,” I tell him.
“Forget about that! Please, just for right now? I missed you!” Collin ignores my wishes and wraps his arms around me. He nuzzles his face into the material of my sweatshirt like I've just come home from the army. “ImissedyouImissedyousomuch!”
What, has he completely forgotten about a few days ago at the train station? I guess so. I pat him on the back and gently push him away. “I, uh, missed you too. Let's go to Psychology. Fast. I need to get away from all these people.” I shut my locker and put the lock back in place, and start walking to Psychology.
“Why? Is everyone staring at you?” Collin asks. He cuddles his books and Peter to his chest as we walk.
“Obviously, Collin. It's...uncomfortable.”
“I wouldn't really know how you feel,” he says, “'cause no one really stares at me. I've never came back from school after a suspension. The first day of yours, though, the whole school knew about the fight. Everyone was on my side.” he grins, on top of the world.
“Yeah, well, you're not the freak around here. You don't get stared at on a daily basis, do you?” I ask, looking at him. He starts to answer, but I cut him off. “I don't know what I look like, but there must be something wrong with my appearance or my face because everyone stares at me. You look like any guy you'd see walking down the street. They don't know you have Asperger's. Sure, you carry Peter around with you, but still. They probably think you're carrying that for your girlfriend or something. The point is, they can't tell what's wrong with you by just looking at you, but with me, they all know there's something wrong with me.”
“It's not nice to stare,” Collin says. “I knew a guy in elementary school who broke his nose once and everyone stared at him because his face looked really weird for a long time.”
“Collin,” I look at him, “that's not the point. People are going to stare at me all my life. And what am I going to do? You know me. You know my condition. I don't know what I'm going to do with myself. What am I going to do when people stare at me for the rest of my life?” We enter the Psychology room. Ms. Carmona waves at us, we wave back.
“Well, um...” Collin is stumped.
“Exactly. You don't know how to handle situations like this. You know what? Forget it. You're no help at all.” I sit down and let out a sigh. Ms. Carmona raises an eyebrow, but says nothing.
“Well, I can help you if you let me help!” Collin says. Ashley and Ashleigh walk into the classroom. “You keep telling me you need all this help and I offer it to you, but you don't take it.”
“Because you don't know how to help me!” I throw my hands up. “No one knows how to help me!”
“Do you know what kind of help you want?” Collin asks.
Collin laughs, and I shake my head. I put a finger to my lips because we are in a classroom and class is about to start. Ashleigh takes her seat beside Collin, and Bruce comes in, sitting beside me. The rest of the class piles in, seconds before the first bell. It rings, and the sounds of students running to their first classes echoes through the hallways.
“Good morning, everyone!” Ms. Carmona greets us.
“Good morning, Ms. C,” we all chant.
“Since we have ended our ADHD unit, we're not going to have a party or anything, but our next unit is going to be very interesting and will take longer than the ADHD unit did,” she says. “Instead of writing essays about the mental conditions, this new unit will require a video that you and your table group will make together. There has to be a minimum of one actor. You can decide on your positions—director, script writer—there doesn't exactly need to be a script for this unit—camera person, whatever.”
“What is the new unit?” Gina Ng (Nig? Nug? How do you pronounce it?) asks.
My heart stops. Collin looks at me. “Yessss!” I scream out. The whole class stares at me; I don't see them. “I can ace this! I! CAN! ACE! THIS! UNIT! YESSS! SCORE FOR ALYX! SCOOOORE!” I laugh like a lunatic and fall backward in my chair.
“Alyx? Are you all right?” Ms. Carmona asks. I feel everybody peering over their desks to stare at me. I laugh and laugh and laugh like the phreak I am.
“Thank you!” I scream to the ceiling. “I'm going to get an A+! Ha!”
Collin stands up and walks around the tables to help me up. Still laughing, but laughing so hard no sound is coming out, I sit at my desk, but my head in my arms and laugh until I feel I've died and gone to hell. Finally done, my face probably as red as my blood, I sit like the good girl I am supposed to be, like my—as Jessica Varner, PhD would say—“catatonic behavior” never happened.
“Um, anyways, you'll be making a shirt video—no more than five minutes—with your groups demonstrating a schizophrenic's psychotic episode. You can add words to it, like a powerpoint presentation with video clips. You can choose which type of schizophrenia you want to demonstrate. We're going to start the video making after the new year, so for today, I'm just going to give you guys an opening lesson on schizophrenia and the five categories.”
Ms. Carmona smiles and walks over to her desk where the computer is. Lisa Nixon takes her cue to turn on the LCD projector. She pulls down the white screen, which covers the board. The things that are on the computer show up on the white, and everybody gets out their Psychology notebooks. Ms. Carmona opens up a Word document and tells us to copy the words down. We do this whenever we start a new unit.
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by abnormalities in the perception or expression of reality. It most commonly manifests as auditory hallucinations, paranoid or bizarre delusions, or disorganized speech and thinking.
True. We copy down all three pages of information Ms. Carmona has put for us, and when we are all finished copying, she shuts off the projector and stands at the front of the room. “Okay,” she says, “who can tell me the five types of schizophrenia?”
Before anybody can raise a hand, I shout out, “Residual, catatonic, paranoid, disorganized and and undifferentiated.”
“Thank you, Alyx. Now, who can tell me what auditory hallucinations are?”
“The state of hearing one or more talking voices,” I respond, as if I am the only person in the room.
Ms. Carmona, with her never-ending patience, responds with a smile and, “Alyx, raise your hand next time. And let's give others a chance at answering, okay?”
“Okay. What would you call a patient who shows signs of schizophrenia for less than six months—the required time period before a doctor can determine schizophrenia?”
Ashley Cabot raises her hand. “Umm...schizo...affective...disorder?”
“Yes!” Ms. Carmona nods. She continues with a bunch of questions that I know the answers to. I am dying to scream out, “ASYLUM!” “LONELINESS!” “DEPRESSION!” and “I HAVE SCHIZOPHRENIA, I KNOW EVERYTHING, YOU LOSERS!” but I shouldn't do that. Everyone will think I'm some sort of...freak. There are no other words to describe me. Freak does the job.
After Collin answers the last question—Is schizophrenia genetic or can it be caused by childhood trauma? (The answer is both), the bell rings. Everyone gets up except for me. Collin looks at me, as he usually walks me to French class after Psych.
Ms. Carmona frowns and goes to the desk, as if she seems to have forgotten something. We don't have any homework today, but she mutters, “Aw, dang. I forgot the homework. Oh well.” She sees me. “Hi there, Alyx. Did you need something?”
I stand up and walk over to her. “I'm sorry for not raising my hand and acting like a know-it-all. I shouldn't have done that.”
She smiles. “It's all right, Alyx. I know sometimes you just can't help answering as much as you can because you know so much. It happens all the time, don't worry about it.”
“Okay. Still, I'm sorry. I don't really do those kinds of things that much, but it's 'cause I know so much about schizophrenia, and I feel like if someone gets the wrong answer about something I know so much about, I just feel really annoyed.”
“It happens to me all the time,” Ms. Carmona says with a little laugh. “Look, I have a class coming in soon, so if you need to talk to me about anything, you can come in at lunch or after school, or you can even email me.”
“Okay. Thanks, Ms. C,” I say. I pick up my books and wave to her before heading out the door to French. I see people heading towards the room, so I quickly head to the Languages hallway. I have to take the stairs, so I quickly run up before bumping into somebody. She smiles, apologizes and goes on, even though I'm the one who bumped into her.
* * *
The last bell of the day, Gym, rings. I have finished changing into my school clothes. All we did in gym was volleyball, which I guess I'm pretty good at. We played against the guys and we took up the whole gym. I am officially our server, as I can smack the ball far over the net and make the boys dive into the floor to try and hit it over the net.
I take my Art book and my gym clothes with me as I head out of the change room. I hate changing with the rest of my gym class because it always results in this:
Britney: “Jesus Christ, I'm fat. Look at this.” (Pokes thigh, it does not jiggle) “It jiggles! It jiggles, Lindsey!”
Lindsey: “It's not jiggling, idiot. Oh my god. Look at my boobs. They're huge. I just bought a D cup last weekend and now I think I need a double D.”
Britney: “Linds, are you stupid? You're a B. And a half.” (Whispers) “Look at that girl Alyx's boobs. Jesus Christ.”
Me: “I'm a C. Just a C.” (Covers up boobs with my gym shirt) “Can you stop looking at me? Please?”
Other times, I glare/yell/givethefinger/growl/threatentothrowmybooks. I have never thought girls would be jealous of my boobs. No one really looks at them, except in here, where secrets are revealed and boyfriends are being texted. Lip gloss, eyeliner and eye shadow are being re-applied, even though it's gym class.
I run to my locker, running past everyone and a teacher yelling at me to slow down. Slow down? I can't do that. I open up the locker, stuff my Art things inside, and put my History books in my backpack because we have homework tonight. Write an essay about Christopher Columbus and his discovery of America.
I wonder if Christopher Columbus knows that every day in a History classroom, he is being talked about. He's famous. Lots of people are famous. I'd hate to be famous. People will talk about you all the time. Look at those girls over there, standing by the vending machines. They're looking at me. I bet they're talking about me. Look at that girl over there. I heard her boobs are huge.
Gossip spreads around here like the swine flu.
I try to walk past them. I push the door so I can catch the bus. The weather is disgusting. It's raining and snowing at the same time and there's slush everywhere. This is a typical December in the state of Washington. I don't see my bus yet, but I hear Collin calling my name from a short distance. “Alyx! Alyx!” he runs over, smiling and holding an umbrella and Peter. “Hey!”
“My brother's supposed to pick me up today,” he says excitedly. “Look! He's right over there! With the Hyundai Elantra! The black one!” He grins and drags me over to where the car has stopped in the Kiss N' Ride lane. He opens up the back door. I see Collin's brother, Michael, in the front seat.
“Hey, bro,” he says to Collin. Collin hops in. Michael sees me. “Hey,” he says. “Collin's friend. Alice, right? Need a lift?”
“My name is Alyx.” I clutch my backpack straps. “And I don't need a lift. I'm taking the bus.”
“Alyx, you'll get wet if you wait for the bus,” Collin says. He scoots over and pats the seat next to him. “Michael's been driving for three years now. Right?”
Michael nods and smiles at me. He looks at my chest. “Yeah. Three years. Just tell me the address and I'll find it.”
“I'm good with just the bus.” I narrow my eyes. “Quit looking at my chest, pervert.” I slam the car door and walk off towards the buses. I have a feeling Collin is yelling at him. Unlike most of the guys here at Coldgrove, who are horny and want their bitches to Make Them Sandwiches, Collin just wants friendship. Plus, he never stares at my chest. The only sexual thing he's ever done was hug me this morning.
“Alyx! Wait!” I hear a car door slam, and see Collin running towards me. He still has Peter, his books and his umbrella. “If Michael's not going to be nice to you, I'm going to ride the bus home.”
“You don't have to do that,” I say. “I'm fine waiting out here for my bus. Plus, yours isn't here yet. Just go, Collin. Really. I don't think you want to be on the bus anyways.”
“I'm going on my bus whether you like it or not,” he states in a firm voice. “I don't want to be in my brother's car right now. I saw the way he looked at your chest. That wasn't nice. He's a nice guy. He has a girlfriend, Maria. She's Italian. He thinks she's hot. Plus, she has double Ds.” The way he says this is so monotone, unlike any other guy, who gets all excited and their pupils dilate.
“That's great to know,” I say. A splash of slush from the sky lands on my head.
“Where the heck are the buses?” Collin asks. He sounds worried. I see my bus rolling along the wet road. There are no signs of Collin's bus anywhere.
“Um, you can ride on my bus with me,” I tell him. “Do you have, um, homework? We can do homework together, Collin. Right? Did you have history today? Do you have any homework for history?” I sound hysterical.
“I had history yesterday, and I did my homework yesterday, too,” Collin tells me. “But if it's the same assignment I had, I can help you. But I'm not doing it for you.” he winks.
“Of course not,” I agree. We step into the bus and I take my usual front seat. Collin sits with me. “Maybe when we're done, we can run. We can run away together. Just get our running shoes and go.”
“W-what are you talking about?” Collin asks.
“We can run! Run all the way to Seattle! Have you ever been to Seattle? Of course you have. Baseball games. Duh. Seattle isn't that far. I could run there. Are you fast? Are you a fast runner, Collin?” I'm talking so fast I'm wheezing. The bus roars to life and begins to roll out of the school parking lot.
“Um, not really, but I like running,” Collin tells me. He sounds confused and is not used to my sudden excitement. “I don't think I should be running off to Seattle today. The weather is really bad, Alyx.”
“You're no fun at all!” I exclaim. “Okay. Maybe not Seattle. Not today. But we really should go to Seattle one day, you know? Maybe today we could run until we find a forest? Until we find a creek? We could go find some ducks, Collin! But first, we have to stop at my house and get some bread. So we can feed them.” My face feels like it's going to break, which implies I must be smiling like a lunatic.
“In this weather?”
“Yes! It's beautiful! The ducks just love rain, don't they, Collin?”
“It's December, Alyx. It's too cold for the ducks to swim in the water.”
I sigh. “You're really no fun, you know that?”
“I'm sorry. Maybe when it's not so rainy? The water levels get really high when it rains, you know. You could fall in and drown and your body would be carried over some waterfall in, like, South America.”
I roll my eyes. The bus stops, and my stop is the first stop. We get off and Collin opens up his umbrella. He attempts to move closer to me so I can stand under his umbrella, but I shove him away so hard that he stumbles and almost lands in the wet, brown grass. I laugh, Collin frowns at me. “That wasn't nice, Alyx,” he says, not smiling. He looks mad, so I take this as a cue to run all the way home.
“Alyx!” Collin yells. He runs after me, and we race to my house. I spot the silver car in the driveway that can only mean one thing: Lynda.
I stop in my tracks and stare at the car. The car is not supposed to be here. It is supposed to be in Seattle, at Aunt Lizzie and Uncle Jimmy's house. Lynda is supposed to be gone. I cannot believe she came back. She was supposed to be gone forever and never come back. What's going to happen to me now? I was fine without her in my life. Two weeks isn't enough.
Or maybe, this is just The Voices playing a trick on me. It should be a trick. Lynda is at her sister's.
Collin touches my shoulder like we're playing tag. I continue to stand there, a disgusted look on my face. “You're it!” he says happily, forgetting about the fact I practically shoved him into the grass. He taps my shoulder again. “Alyx? You're it!”
He stands beside me, looks at the car. “What?”
“You see this? You see this car?”
“Yeah. What about it?”
“Oh. You see it, too. Okay.” I blink. The car is still there. “It's Lynda's car.”
“Oh.” This is one of the very few things Collin actually understands about me. “Do you still want to go inside?”
“I'll see if I can. If I can't, let's just go into my room. We can't go into the living room with Lynda hovering around us.” I take a deep breath and start walking up towards the porch. When we get there, Collin closes his umbrella, shakes the drops of rain off. The raindrops land on the concrete porch and stay there since there's no heat to make them evaporate.
I remember when it was a very hot summer day. It was sunny, too, a miracle. We decided to have a water fight with the hose in the backyard. The fight was in the driveway, too, and when the water sprayed the cement, steam rose into the air, evaporating. It looked like the fog you'd see on stage at a concert. It was so beautiful.
I touch the doorknob and twist it open. Collin follows me inside. I tell him to put the umbrella in the closet. I take our jackets and toss them in. I kick my shoes off and head into the kitchen. I hear coffee brewing, and I see Lynda and Daddy sitting at the tables, hands clutching the mugs to warm up. Lynda looks at me. Her hair is shorter. I guess Lizzie cut it. Or a hairdresser did.
“Alyx,” she said, surprised.
“Hey there,” Daddy says.
“Hi!” Collin says. He runs over and sticks out his hand to shake it. Lynda smiles and shakes his hand. “I'm Collin! You must be Mrs. Sawhill!” He does the same thing with Daddy.
“Nice to meet you, Collin,” Daddy and Lynda say at the same time. Lynda says. “You can call me Lynda, though.” She looks at me. “Hi, honey. How was school?”
“I thought you'd still be at Aunt Lizzie's,” I say, frowning.
“No, I decided to come home today.”
We stare at each other. Daddy gives me the look that means I'm supposed to say something nice, but I turn around and start walking upstairs. Collin follows me.
“You should have been nicer to your mom, Aly,” he says when we get onto the second floor.
“Shut up, Collin.” I lead the way to my room. “I'm never going to be nice to someone I hate.”
“Hate is a strong word, you know,” Collin says.
“I know that. In fact, I hate two people.”
“Two?!” he is appalled.
“Yes. But I'll tell you about the other person another time.”
Robyn's door is closed, but it opens when she hears us talking. She peeks out, then opens it wider.
“Hi! I'm Collin!” Collin shakes Robyn's hand and I smack my palm against my face.
“Collin, please,” I mutter.
“I'm Robyn,” my sister responds. She puts on an awkward smile, closes the door and heads down the stairs.
Collin looks at me and grins. “Your sister is pretty nice. I don't see why you'd want to fight with her all the time.”
“You really don't know me, do you?” I ask. “Come on. Let's go into my room. And don't make a big deal out of what you're about to see. Have you ever seen a schizophrenic's bedroom before?”
“No,” he replies. “I've seen the psychiatric unit in a hospital on TV before, though. Is it similar to that?”
“Not really.” I open my door and let Collin see. I close it behind myself, and shove a folding chair underneath the knob, which I turn so it locks.
My windows are covered in newspapers where the black curtains can't block out the light front outside. I have mannequins facing the walls, naked and white, their hands on their hips and their blank expressions enduring the whiteness of the wall. One of them has a knife in her hand. My bed isn't made. My desk is covered in papers and textbooks I should return to school. My teddy bear is sitting in my chair. There are papers all over the floor. My stereo rests on the floor, CDs scattered all around it; mostly classical music.
No posters or paint is on the wall, except for a few stains and drawings I have made near my bed. Collin looks at the drawings: A stick figure killing another stick figure, two dead sticks, a unicorn and something I probably drew in my sleep. Collin walks over to my closet.
“Don't open the door!” I gasp.
He opens it anyway. I place my hands over my eyes, but Collin doesn't make a noise. I bet he's looking at all my bras. But he wouldn't do that. He isn't that horny. He finds a pocketknife and picks it up. “Yours?” he asks.
He shakes his head and closes the closet door. “Your room...is doesn't make you seem like a schizophrenic, but someone who has serious mental issues.”
“Schizophreaks have serious mental health issues.”
“Never mind.” I sigh and sit on my bed. Collin joins me and sets Peter between us, then gives Peter to me. I hold him in my lap. “Do you want to go outside now? I want to find a creek.”
“Why?” Collin asks. “We just got here!”
“I want to go outside with some bread to feed some ducks. Now.”
“I already told you, the weather isn't good for ducks and it's not good for you, either. You'll get sick.”
“Okay. Fine. You win.” I sigh.
“Why do you have mannequins in your room?” Collin asks. “Did you buy them? And why are they naked?”
“I don't know why I have them in here,” I say. “And yes, I bought them. They're naked because I've never got around to dressing them. I don't...I don't really mind their naked bodies.”
Collin looks at my mannequins again. I have two females, and one male, which is in the middle. “So you're, like, a lesbian? You don't mind looking at the girls' butts and boobs?”
“I'm not a lesbian,” I say. “I just don't have a problem with naked bodies. I find them really beautiful. I think I'm going to draw one of the females for art class and give it to Mr. Jackson.”
“Do you think he'd appreciate that?” he asks, laughing.
“I don't know.”
We sit there in silence. “Why do you have knives in your room?” he asks.
“I don't know,” I answer.
“You should really clean your room.”
“You seem mad about something, Aly,” he says.
“Don't call me that. I've told you a hundred times not to call me that.”
“Why don't you want me to call you Aly?”
I sigh through my nose and stare at one of my mannequins. I look at him. “It was a nickname that my...ex...best...best friend gave to me.”
“Ex best friend?”
“Oh. Do you...want to tell me about it?”
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May 10, 10 at 12:42am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Collin is so sweet! He really cares about Alyx. X3
Ĵσκɛя! Δ ɢιяℓ σи тнɛ ʌιяɢɛ σғ тɛαяƨ
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May 13, 10 at 3:31am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Yay for Collin he's awesome...
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Jun 02, 10 at 11:17pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
sixteen ~ mommy and me
credit to B-F-G at Deviantart.
I am about to go to bed, but Lynda knocks on my door twice, then lets herself in because I haven't locked it yet. I look up at her and she sits on my bed, holding a glass of water in one hand and a bottle of my pills in the other. I say nothing, so she starts the conversation.
“Did you take them yet?” she asks.
I pull my knees to my chest and wrap my arms around them. The cotton from my pajama bottoms tickles my cold skin. I stare at the plaid pattern and feel Lynda looking at me. I stare back. She doesn't look much different since she ran off to her sister's house to get away from her, her freakshow of a daughter.
“You look good,” she says, breaking the silence. “How's school?”
“Today was my first day back from a suspension,” I reply. “Got suspended for beating up a guy who decided to mess with Collin.”
She blinks. “Brian never told me. How long was it?”
Lynda shakes her head and laughs a little. “Aly, it's wonderful that you stood up for Collin, but a suspension is a little bit...disappointing. You know that violence never solves anything.”
While she rambles, I think Yes it does, idiot. Violence is the key to set people straight. I try to block Lynda out and stare at the wall behind her. I don't even see her there, and her voice feels as if it's echoing through my room. I watch the slush outside turn from slush to actual snow, and realize this hasn't happened in a while.
“So, about Christmas,” Lynda says.
“Christmas. When do you think you're gonna go shopping? And what do you want?”
“I don't know and I don't know or care.”
Lynda blinks. “Okay. We'll go to Seattle next weekend and go shopping, as a family. We can split up when we get there and meet at the food court or something for lunch.”
“Whatever.” I cross my legs.
There's another awkward silence between us. IhateLynda. IhatehatehateLynda. Whyisshehere? Lyndagetthehelloutofmyroom. Lyndagetoutyou'renotsorry. Ihatehatehateyou. IhateyouasmuchasIhate—
“Honey, I'm sorry,” she says. “I'm so sorry. I shouldn't have been such a horrible mother. I'm sorry I hit you, I'm sorry I couldn't be there for you when Dr. Marshall told us you have schizophrenia...I'm so sorry, baby.” she gives me a sad smile. I feel like punching her in the face.
I cross my arms over my chest and give her a bitter stare. “You don't know what sorry is. Don't even bother...Mom.” The word tastes like my mouth when I wake up—Bitter. This apology is ridiculous and sounds like an apology a Movie Mom would make to her messed up, angsty, teenage kid. This is staged, anyways. She's trying to con me into something other than shopping, which I despise.
Lynda sighs through her nose, but doesn't say anything for a few seconds. “Alyx, please,” she says. She's begging me. “I want to help you. You need the help. Aly, you're unwell. You're...mentally...sick. I'm going back to work on Monday. I'm decorating a new school. We're going to get better health insurance, for us. For you. You have to trust me.”
No answer comes from my mouth, which is clamped shut. I frown. “No.”
“I'm not going to trust you. No.”
“...Duh, of course not,” she says, giving a laugh and then smacking herself in the forehead. She smiles. “Sorry. Of course you're not going to trust me. Trust takes a long time to build, and seconds to break.”
Lynda shifts her weight on the bed and crosses her legs. This is what she used to do when I used to bring It home after school. Lynda would act our age and try to be a Cool Mom, failing every time and embarrassing the crap out of me. “So, it was great that you brought Collin over after school today,” she tells me, smiling again. “You haven't brought someone home in a long time.”
“He's my friend. I've been to his house, so he should come here. It's only fair. And his bus was late. The weather was disgusting. Since mine was there, I just invited him.”
“That was nice of you. He's a pretty nice kid. He's a bit odd, though,” Lynda looks thoughtful. “Does he have Asperger's?”
“Oh. He just seems a bit excitable, like a puppy.”
“Do you like him?”
“Nothing more than that?”
I shake my head no. “No. We promised each other just friends. I don't love him and he doesn't love me, only as a friend. I don't want him that way.”
“Are there any cute guys at your school?” Lynda asks.
“Not really? Alyx, that can't be true! There must be someone you have your eyes on.”
“There isn't, Mom, okay? Just shut up.” I roll my eyes. “You can't take no for an answer, can you? Jesus!” I contemplate throwing a textbook at her, but I don't.
“Okay,” she says, blinking. “So, how about we go shopping tomorrow, just you and me? You look like you need more clothes. Maybe a new bra?”
“We can go to Seattle, to the big mall,” she continues.
“We can also go out to lunch, if you want,” Lynda goes on. She must be bribing me. “Anywhere you want. My treat.”
“Why?” I ask. “Are you bribing me or something? Because if you are, I'm not going anywhere with you for the rest of my life.”
“I'm not bribing you. Don't you think we need some girl time together? I'll take Robyn on Sunday. What, is it illegal for a mother to take her own kid out for shopping and lunch?”
“Whatever. I'll go with you. Happy now? Get out.”
Lynda nods. “Great! We'll leave around ten tomorrow morning.”
I nod. I shoo her out of the room. “Night.” I turn off my lamp and pull my blanket over my head and pretend to be falling asleep even though it normally takes me four hours to do so. I hear Lynda stepping into the hallway and her hand is holding on to the doorknob.
“Sleep tight, honey,” she says softly. “I love you. Don't let the bedbugs bite.”
* * *
Lynda and her daughter are in her car, driving on the highway. They are on their way to Seattle where they will spent several hours shopping and having Girl Time. Before getting out of their habitat, Coldgrove, WA, they stop at Starbucks to pick up drinks (Lynda: Coffee; Alyx (Daughter): Medium java chip frappucino). They sit in the car and head off.
Alyx, born Alyxandra Leigh, sits in the front passenger seat, arms crossed over her chest, frappucino sitting in the drink holder near the radio of the car. She stares out of the window and notices the mirror attached to the door. Wanting to know what she looks like, Alyxandra takes a closer look, attempting to get a glimpse and see what the color of her hair is. It is _____, ______ ____. Because Alyxandra is being controlled by delusions, who, on a consistent basis tell her she is ugly, she cannot hear or see anything that has to do with her appearance.
Her eyes used to be _____, but Alyxandra has no idea what _____ is any more. Alyxandra has gone mind-color-blind, meaning her brain cannot function properly and cannot identify colors like a normal person's brain does. Alyxandra is brain-dead. Alyxandra's voices control her. They take care of what goes on inside her brain, and they control whether her medication can go through or not. Alyxandra has to please the voices in order to have a good day.
Now, how exactly does a schizophreak please her voices? We're not too sure about you, but Alyxandra here has to agree with us when we call her ugly, fat, stupid, a whore, useless, worthless, a waste of space, a homewrecker, a bitch, a freak, ugly, shouldbeinthecircus, nevergoingtolivepast20 and finally, trash. Alyxandra is an ugly fat stupid whore who is uselessworthless a waste of space an ugly bitchy homewrecking trashy cricus freak worthless piece of shit.
Yes, I am.
Lynda turns on the radio. I reach for my frappucino and take a sip of it and a chocolate chip finds its way into my mouth. The song is something really simple and mellow, so I don't turn it off just yet. I look out the window and a giant SUV speeds by us. The highway is busy today, probably with a bunch of teenagers taking advantage of the cloudy weather to take their lovers to cheap motels and get abortions within the next two months.
“And all of the mothers raise their babies to stay away from you, freak,” the man on the radio sings. The song cuts off and the announcer says, “That was a song just dedicated to you, Alyx! It suits you so well, doesn't it? The mothers these days should raise their kids to stay away from schizophrenic whackjobs, huh, Tom?”
My eyes widen and my hand turns off the radio, faster than you can say “freak.” Lynda looks at me, but doesn't say anything. She doesn't turn the radio back on either. I curl up in a ball and place my hands over my ears. My teeth bite down on my lower lip and my eyes stray to the window where I watch the cars we pass.
“Did the radio scare you?” Lynda asks.
Oh, is that all you have to say? Oh? I see how it is,
“So, um, I was thinking, you need a couple more bras,” she says. I roll my eyes. “You can never have enough.”
“Maybe a new pair of jeans? You also need a couple more sweaters, because it's December now and it's going to be a cold winter.”
“Then again, maybe a water-proof winter coat, because it rains every day, huh? Do your boots from last year still fit?”
“Okay.” She waits two seconds before adding, “You know, you really need to say something other than 'Yeah.' It's getting annoying, Alyx.”
“Music is an art form whose medium is sound,” I respond in a robot voice. “To many people in many cultures, music is an important in the way of their life. Music is art that we're afraid to enjoy.”
“Would you like me to put the radio on again?” Lynda asks.
“But if you're going to talk about music like that, you must want the radio on,” she says. “If you like music, then—”
“I said no!” I yell.
“Okay! Jeez.” Lynda finally shuts up and continues driving. I see buildings about a mile away, so we must be getting close to our destination. I hear raindrops pounding onto the car, which satisfies me. If it's raining the roads will be slippery and less people will be at the mall. I think I have claustrophobia.
After a few more silent minutes, Lynda makes a turn and we are in the city. I see the Space Needle and suddenly we are in traffic. Great. Cars with angry people honk at each other and the horn of the car beside ours is honking like crazy. I roll down the window and shout, “SHUT UP!”
I roll the window back up and expect Lynda to scold me, or just give me a Look, but she laughs. “Alyx!” she exclaims while giggling. “Don't do that!”
I don't laugh with her because I am incredibly annoyed. I just hope we don't have to sit here long.
* * *
“Finally!” Lynda exclaims. “How about we look for a bra first? Which store do you want to go to?”
“I don't care.”
“I don't care.”
We start walking towards the store, walking past all of the mall-goers. I don't recognize anybody, but I guess it's because A) I don't even remember anybody, and B) Seattle's population is way more than my old school is. Cheery holiday music is playing somewhere, and the store windows are lined with blinking lights which hurt my eyes.
We get to La Senza and in the window is a woman with fishnet knee-high leggings on, wearing lingerie and sucking on a lollipop. I have no idea whether this is supposed to attract people into the store, but we go in anyways. There are some ladies in the store, one with a daughter who looks Robyn's age.
I wander to the bra shelves where the regular bras are. I have no use for lingerie and thongs. Colors that I don't see are all around me, vibrant and bright, but I can't identify them. I see a bra that doesn't look too dark, so I wander over to the shelf and find my size—C 36. I take the hanger and the bra and look around to see where Lynda is. She is by the thong section, which makes me want to laugh, but I've forgotten how to do that without sounding like a robot.
One of the ladies with a name tag walks over to me, fake smile and a pound of makeup. “Hi!” she greets me. “Do you need any help? Would you like a change room? Do you need help finding your right bra size? Did you know we have a discount on thongs? Twenty-five percent off! We also have—”
“No!” I shout. Oops, I'm not supposed to shout. “No thank you,” I say in a calmer voice. “But, um, a change room would be wonderful.”
“Great! How many items do you have? One? Follow me!” I follow the lady, Donna, into a separate area. She knocks on a door, no one answers, and the opens the door with a key. I see a mirror, and Iclenchmyjawsohardatoothchips. Ican'tscreamnoscreamingholyholyholyholy.
“Thank you,” I whisper. I step into the change room and close the door. To prevent myself from letting out glass-shattering screams, I put my hand over my mouth and I dare to turn around and look at myself. It takes a turn of one degree before I start crying. I drop the bra and cover my face with my hands.
Ugly. Fat. Stupid. Whore. Skank. Uglyuglyuglynopeekingnopeekingugly. Do you really think we're going to let you look in the mirror?
Seven: “Let her see. If she sees how ugly she is, maybe she'll kill herself.”
Eleven: “YES!!! LET'S DO IT! Let her see let her see!”
I remove my hands form my face and my vision becomes clear. I rub my sleeve across my eyes and slowly, slowly turn to face the mirror. I close my eyes before even sneaking a peek, and I cross my fingers behind my back, hoping I don't look like someone whose face has been burned off from a fire or something. I open my eyes and gasp. The girl in the mirror is wearing my jeans and my sweater, but has a face and hair I don't recognize. Maybe this is my fraternal twin. Or maybe...Maybe it is me. I can't remember what I used to look like at all.
I do not remember having long, dark hair that needs to be washed, and bangs that need to be cut. I do not remember my eyes being... “Blue,” They tell me.
“What is blue?” I ask.
“Idiot,” They whisper. “We'd better restore your sense of color-recognition.”
Now I know what blue is. I do not thank Them; I continue staring at the girl in the mirror. She stares back. Her skin is pale and there are impurities everywhere. Discoloration, acne, scars. Her lips are plump, but they look like they've been chewed. The nose is a little bit crooked from being broken during a softball game when she was twelve. Her team won the game, though.
She isn't thin nor is she obese. She looks average. She takes off the sweater and the shirt and the bra that is falling apart. She takes it off and I take a step forward. She walks towards me. “I bet you grab those when you have to run down the stairs,” she says.
“Bitch!” I whisper. She mouths the word as I say it. We raise our fists. I demand that she stops mocking me.
“You idiot,” Eighteen says. “It's a mirror. It's your reflection. You're so stupid sometimes, Alyxandra.”
“She's stupid all the time,” Thirty mutters.
I ignore them and look at the girl in the mirror again. She looks at me and raises an eyebrow at the same time I do. I reach for the bra and start putting it on. I finally understand that the bra is white. I guess this is good, in case I wear a white shirt. It'd be quite embarrassing to have a bra with little cherries all over it showing through a shirt.
I am finished putting the bra on and I look up at the mirror. The girl looks at me. I like the bra, and it seems that She likes it, too. Her lips curl upwards in an attempt to smile, right as mine attempt one. For once, I like something.
“It looks terrible on you,” They all say, except for Three.
“I think it looks nice,” Three says.
“Get out of our club, idiot,” Seventy-five says.
“Say goodbye to your vision when you look in a mirror, Alyx,” Zero says. “And to your sense of color-recognition.”
“Good—” Before I can finish, it's gone. I am blinded by darkness. I turn around and I can see. It's as if I am blind when I see a mirror. I just hope I can remember this. I want to remember what I look like. Knowing myself, I probably won't.
“Alyx? Are you okay in there?” I hear Lynda asking from the other side of the door. Her voice startles me.
“We're fine,” we answer.
I know she is thinking, “We?” but Lynda is probably nodding and sitting down on the available seats where you can wait for someone to get out of the change room. I take off the bra and replace it with my own clothes. When I feel like I am ready, I step out of the change room with the (white) bra.
“I, um, I like the bra,” I say. “I think we should buy it.”
“Okay,” Lynda agrees. “Does it fit okay?”
“Yeah, it fits great,” I reply.
“Do you want another one? Or maybe even a thong?” she gives a laugh. I stare at her. “Maybe not.”
We walk over to the cash register and Lynda takes out her wallet. The total is $30.67. I thank Lynda when we walk out of the store.
* * *
We pass by La Senza once again, when we are done shopping. Lynda, me, and Them. We have had lunch (sushi and some egg rolls and iced tea) two hours ago and have shopped all day since then. It's a pretty good day for us. The store has a few more people in it than it did when I was there (of course), and It—
I stop walking.
The bags in my hands drop to the floor.
My jaw drops with it.
I let out the loudest scream I've ever screamed in my life. Everyone stops and stares at me, including It. It turns around and sees me. It's eyebrows meet together, like they always did when It was confused. It's eyes widen and It's mouth opens a little.
My heart races. My fingers clutch at my head and I let out another scream. My knees fail me and I fall to the floor. My head goes between my knees and I screamscreamscream. I am shaking all over. They are laughing. They are only making it worse. Everyone laughs at me. All the people have stopped walking and someone calls for security. Lynda rushes over to me, having walked about a mile without noticing my absence.
“Alyx,” she says. She takes a bottle of meds out of her purse and the bottle of iced tea I didn't finish.
“DON'T CALL ME ALYX!” I screech. IfeellikeI'mgoingtodiediediedie.
It starts to walk towards the scene. It wants to know what's going on. People are crowding around me. Ican'tbreatheIcan'tfreakin'breathe. My hands grab my head and rip my hair out. It is getting closer. I can see It's shoes. The high-top sneakers. I can't believe It still wears them. Before anyone can say something, I jump up and run as fast as I can out of the mall. I need the nearest exit. My heart leaps out of my chest and bounces on the floor.
I push the doors open and stand outside, leaning against a wall, hyperventilating. I bet I look like someone just tried to shoot me. Two pre-pubescent girls walk by and stare at me. I slide down until I am sitting. I put my head in my hands and let out a screamsob. I hear Lynda.
“Honey! Oh my god, what happened? You need your medication! Now!” she stuffs a pill into my mouth and forces me to swallow it down with the iced tea. I start crying for the second time today. “Alyx, what happened? Did you see something that scared you?”
“SHE WAS THERE!” I screech.
“Who was there?”
“I c-can't...” I choke on something that doesn't exist. “I can't t-t-tell you...”
“Was it somebody you're scared of? Someone you hate?”
“Was it Au—?”
“DON'T SAY HER NAME!” I explode.
“Oh,” she says quietly. She looks around, as if It might be there. “Do you want to go home now, Aly? It's too crowded here, anyways. I'm claustrophobic.”
“Yes, please. Pleasepleasepleaseplease—”
Next thing I know, we're in the car and my hands are covering my ears. I need to block out every sound in the world. I need to close my eyes and block out everything I see. I wish I were blind and deaf at the same time. Then, it would be easier to go ahead and kill myself.
...But there is nothing worse than living with a disease like this.
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Jun 07, 10 at 7:51pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
don't be sorry. What you delivered was perfect! I was actually aching to have them meet again. It wasn't what I thought it'd be cause I figured Autumn would say something... Is Alyx stalking this girl?
Glad your writing again.
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Jun 14, 10 at 1:25am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
haha, i was apologising for the long wait time between updates. but this chapter is pretty good, i guess. it's pretty much ALL dialogue, which was intended. it's kind of short, but it's still a chapter, so enjoy.
seventeen ~ stalker
credit to midnightxrain13 @ Deviantart.
555-2327. 555-2327. Ringring.
I shut the door of the telephone booth, lean the phone against my ear with my shoulder and blow on my fingers to keep them warm. I take hold of the phone again and take deep breaths. The wind outside is blowing like it does in the horror movies, and it it so strong the phone booth shakes a little.
Ringringringring. I expect the voicemail to answer me.
“Hello?” she asks.
“Hi,” I reply, monotone.
“Uh, who is this?” she asks. I can hear her chomping on gum.
“Who is this?” I ask. I might have the wrong number, after all.
“My name is Autumn, now who the hell is this?”
“Oh. I've got the right number. Autumn Anderson, right?”
“Great. My name is Zenobia Hilton. Remember me?”
“What the f-ck? What kind of a name is that? Are you some kind of telemarketer trying to sell me condoms? Me and my boyfriend are just fine, thank you very much!” I bet she's going to hang up soon.
“Okay, okay, wait,” I say. “My name isn't Zenobia Hilton. It's Amy.”
“I know about fifty Amys.”
“Whatever. It's been a while, hasn't it? What did you get for Christmas?”
“It's the 20th, dumbass,” she tells me. “It's not Christmas yet.”
“Right. I knew that. What did you do this weekend?”
“Well, on Saturday I went to the biggest mall in this state, which is in Seattle. I was buying lingerie and I saw this chick having a panic attack right outside the store. It was kind of ridiculous, really. She fell to the ground and started screaming like she was being shot, but I knew it was a panic attack.”
My heart is pounding so much I can feel it in my throat. Blood is rushing up into my face; it does that when I'm about to have a panic attack. “Oh. Did you know the girl?”
“I kind of recognized her, and at first I thought she was someone that I knew before she moved, but if it were her, she looks so different now.” She sounds a bit confused. I bet she's biting the nail of her thumb now. “She was with her mom, who I totally recognized, though. So I guess the freak was who I thought it was.”
“Who was it?” I ask, trying to sound as innocent as can be. “I might know her, too.”
“Her name's Alyx, but she's one of those people who have a bunch of personalities at the same time, so I guess she goes by some weird name like...I don't know, Amanda or something.” She snorts.
“I think she had schizophrenia, but that and multiple personalities, well, same shit, right?” She snaps her gum.
“First of all, stop swearing so much, and second of all, those two are actually very different,” I reply. “Schizophrenia is a disease of the mind, and multiple—”
“Yeah! Yeah! That's what Alyx told me when she said she was diagnosed with schizophrenia!” She is getting all excited now. “She was like, 'It's a disease of the mind, and it affects me, you, my family, and everyone I've ever talked to and will talk to,' or something like that! Yeah! You're smart, Amy!”
“Yep, a disease is definitely worth getting excited over,” I mutter. “Tell me more about Alyx. I want to know what it's really like to be schizophrenic. I, um, I actually dream of having it.”
“You dream of having that?” She asks. “I don't really think you want schizophrenia, Amy. It's not as great as you think it is. You're going to freak people out like Alyx freaked me out.”
Oh, did I? Good. “She freaked you out? How?”
“She'd always, like, say things that I didn't understand,”
“She started acting like that at the beginning of the tenth grade. She started going to the doctors after new year's. She kept telling me 'I have to go to the doctor's, something's wrong with me, I have to get shots, I have to take tests, help me!' But I couldn't help her. I didn't know how. What was I supposed to do, agree with her on everything?”
“That would have been a start,” I reply in my Amy voice, which really, isn't a certain voice at all; it's my normal voice, which I drop so it sounds mysterious. “Hey. Autumn.” The name sounds funny. “I lied, you know. I know a lot about Alyx. Just so you know.”
“You lie a lot, Amy.”
“I know. The doctors told me I'm a pathological liar. I don't know what that is, and I don't know why I lie,” I tell her. “I've been in a nuthouse before, you know.”
“If you're a pathological liar, then I don't think you want to have schizophrenia on top of that,” she says in a voice that she used when she was going to warn me about doing something dangerous when we were kids. “You'd be locked up in a hospital for the rest of your life.”
“I've already been locked up for two years in some kind of institution in Pennsylvania,” I lie.
“Yeah, that's nice, but I don't think you'd like to be locked up again. It'll just make you want to kill yourself even more than you'd already want to.”
“What do you mean, kill myself?”
“...She tried to kill herself once.”
“Alyx.” her voice is getting quiet. I clench my jaw because I know she's going to tell me story They never shut up about. “When she told me she had schizophrenia, she wouldn't shut up for two weeks about wanting to kill herself. My dad's a cop, and she kept begging me to give her his gun so she could kill herself. At school she was a little bit crazy, but I bet at home was when she was really crazy, if you know what I mean. So, I emptied Dad's gun before I gave it to her—Hey, she wouldn't shut up for two weeks, so she came over to my house when my parents were out shopping—and she didn't know it was empty at the time. So I gave it to her—”
“And told her to pull the trigger in front of you, she did, and nothing happened,” I finish for her. My eyes widen when I realize what I have just done and I clamp my hand over my mouth. Shitshitshit.
“...Yeah. How did you know?”
“I guessed. Same thing's happened to me when I was locked up. My cell mate managed to sneak into the staff room and found a gun, but I was the only one that knew the officers empty their guns at night. Katie—my cell mate—was suffering from bipolar disorder and severe depression. I told her to pull the trigger in front of me and nothing happened. I was actually scared for a second there, because I was worrying the owner of the gun didn't empty it. I was scared because I've never seen anything like that in my life before.” I take a breath. I haven't talked this much since the other night when I told Collin everything about It.
“Wow. Yeah, it was pretty intense when Alyx did it, for her, I mean. I guess she thought she was really going to die, because she didn't know that I emptied the gun. I just can't believe she was really going to do it. Like, whenever you tell a suicidal person to kill themselves in front of you, they don't do it, right? It's just kind of weird how Alyx was so serious about it.” I bet she's chewing on the inside of her cheek now.
“Hey. I saw you guys kissing at Tyler Richmand's party when you were in the ninth grade,” I say. My intestines squeeze everything tight inside my body. “You and Alyx. Kissing. Were you two girlfriends? Not that that's a problem, I'm a lesbian, myself.”
Autumn is silent for half a minute. “...What the hell did you just say?”
“I said I saw you and Alyx kissing at Tyler Richmand's house party in the ninth grade.” I think I have a smug look on my face. This is starting to get more fun by the minute. “I was there, at the party. So were about seventy other people. Party got out of hand, huh? You were dating Joshua Skinner at the time, thank God he was outside by the pool, huh? He broke up with you a few days later, but it would have been bad if he saw you kissing her.”
“Who. Are. You.” She is seething. I hold back a laugh.
“I told you, my name is Amy,” I tell her happily. “Amy Walsh.”
“I don't know a freaking Amy Walsh.”
“I went to your school until I got locked up in the nuthouse,” I say. “I'm a senior, and I was invited to that party. But I'm home schooled now, I can't really be around people because I'm still considered unfit to be around a large group of people.”
Autumn is freaking out on the other line. “How many people know about this?”
“I don't know. Whoever witnessed you and Alyx kissing at the party, I guess.”
“Don't tell anyone! Please!”
“Why? Because you don't want to be known as that girl who made out with Alyx? Because Alyx has schizophrenia? You want to push her out of your life and forget about her and think of your life as if she never happened in it? Are you really that much of a bitch, Autumn?” I frown. “Do you really hate her that much? Is there something wrong with her? I bet when she moved away you never bothered to call her when she gave you her number. She's probably really depressed. You guys were best friends! What the hell is wrong with you? You had so much together, now you're just leaving her? If she kills herself, it's going to be your fault, Autumn!”
Autumn is silent on the other line, but I can hear breathing. I bet she's going to cry now. Good.
“You are terrible!” I continue. “She needs you! And you probably need her, too. You have a boyfriend, huh? You can't forget about your best friends now that you have him. I bet you guys have had sex. You promised her you'd stay a virgin until marriage and when you got married to that Mr. Perfect, she'd be the maid of honor and plan your whole damn wedding. Who's going to do that now, hmm? Your new best friend?”
“Amy, answer me. How the hell do you know all this?” I hear her voice shaking.
“I've been through this shit before. You'd better call Alyx. Trust me. You don't want her to die, do you? Oh wait, you probably do. You didn't help her when she had a panic attack at the mall. You didn't help her when she was with you in school and she was doing her schizophrenic stuff. You didn't call her. She gave you her number and you never called.” I choke back a sob. I am not longer Amy/strong. I am Alyx/weak/breakingdown/Ineedher.
Autumn is still silent, but I can hear quiet sobs.
“She needs you,” I whisper. “Call her. Please.”
“Don't do this to me, Amy,” she whispers back.
“I have to go. Please call her.” I hang up the payphone and stare at it for a long time, silent tears spilling down my cheeks. I hope she listens to Amystrong and calls Meweak.
* * *
Alyxandra sits on her bed the rest of the night, cordless phone cradled in her hands. Two hours after she left the telephone booth, the phone rings. Alyxandra presses the talk button and holds the phone to her ear, but not words come from her mouth.
“Hello?” the voice (Broken, sounds like it's been crying for a long time) on the other line says.
Breathbreathbreath Alyxandra responds. Her lips quiver and tears roll down her face all over again. It's really happening. The voice on the other end is really Her. She finally called back.
“Alyx? Please, whoever this is, I need to talk to her.” The voice shatters and breaks into sobs. “Please. I need to talk to her, right this second.”
Alyxandra closes her eyes, takes a deep breath and replies, “She's not here right now.” Alyxandra presses the End button and holds the phone in her hands. “Alyx is dead.”[color=#eef0f9][size=1]
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