My Sick Little World
The first thing I saw was a chess board, set up for a game. "I know that it's totally a cliché, but what can I say? I've always had a thing for symbolism." The voice. It was my voice. But it didn't issue from my mouth. How could it be my voice? I looked up from the chess board, and saw…me. She smiled. "Hello, Vicky."
"Who are you?" I demanded. "Where am I?"
"This is the place where the conscious mind and the subconscious meet and mingle. In short, this is the dream realm, Vicky. I am an aspect of your subconscious that wants to be conscious, but is held back, kept at bay, kept hidden in the dark. I am something that even you meet with fear and disgust, something even your lax morality will not tolerate. In short, I am an aspect of your dark side."
"My dark side? But I am the dark side," I said.
"Vicky, Vicky, Vicky. As long as there is something that you want to do that you will not, you will always have a dark side. There are things even you cringe from, even your lax moral code won't let you do. I am one of those things, shouting: embrace me!"
"Yeah? Well, okay, I love a challenge. What is it exactly that you want?"
"The twerp? I don't think there is any evil act that I have spared him, aside from murder," I said.
"Yeah, that was nice, especially when you make him wear a maid outfit," she grinned wolfishly. "But seriously, why do you think it is that you make him do stuff like that?"
"I don't know," I said. "I just look at him, and I feel…angry, like I want to hurt him."
"And why do you feel like that?" she asked.
I shrugged. "I just do. I don't know why."
"Yes you do, you little liar. You just don't know that you do. Your acts of violence and aggression towards the twerp, all just reaction formation, smoke and mirrors," she said.
"Reaction formation? What the heck is that?" I demanded.
"Ask that bald freak that hangs out with the twerp," she said. She picked up one of the white pieces, and I noticed that the chess board had been being used while they were talking. Was she playing it while we were talking? If so, against who? Me? I didn't remember moving any pieces, and besides, I wasn't very good at the game. "Wakey, wakey."
"What does that--" I was awake.
"Bye, Timmy. We're going to the International Yodeling Festival," Mrs. Turner said.
"Now you're just making things up," Timmy complained.
"Well, it's in Switzerland, so we're going to be gone for a while, and that means you're going to have to stay at Vicky's," Mr. Turner said. "You'll be completely at her mercy for days, or even weeks. Doesn't that sound like fun?"
"She'll kill me!" Timmy protested.
"No I won't. In fact, how about we go around back and take a dip in the pool?" I suggested. Wait for it…
"See? You'll have lots of fun!" Mr. Turner said, and then suddenly the car was gone, just a trail of smoke for evidence that it or Timmy's parents were ever even there. Wait for it…
It was like I could see the gears working in Timmy's little head as realization struck him. "Hey--you don't have a pool!" Bingo!
"Really?" I asked. "Oh, how careless of me…BUILD ME ONE!" Priceless. There's nothing as satisfactory as cruelty.
"I wish Cosmo and Wanda were here," Timmy murmured.
"What was that?" I asked.
"Nothing," he said guiltily.
"Whatever," I decided to let it drop. For now. "Oh, look at the time! I have to go pick up my other slaves."
And so it was that Timmy, Chester, and AJ were all digging a hole for a pool in my back yard.
"That reminds me…you, baldie, you know what reaction formation means?"
AJ nodded. "Reaction formation is a term used in psychology for when a person experiences an emotion they find morally wrong and they counter it subconsciously by putting on the opposite emotional response."
"And what does that mean, brainiac?" I demanded.
"Instead of fear, bravado, instead of hatred, love, et vice versa, etcetera," AJ said.
"Oh," I said. "Oh," I said. No, that couldn't be right. That couldn't be what my dark side meant.
"That's exactly what I mean," my dark side said.
"You're lying! That is beyond sick and wrong!"
"What did you expect? I told you that I was something even your conscience reviled and riled against, Vicky. It's not like that list is very long," she said.
"I do not have the hots for a ten-year-old boy!" I exclaimed. "I'm not pretending to hate Timmy to hide from the fact that I love him."
"Uh-uh," she said bemusedly.
"I'm not!" Damn it, why did that sound weak?
She removed a white piece from the board. "Do yourself a favor, Vicky. Don't even try to be good and moral and right. It just isn't you. You're the bad guy. It's what you're good at. You are simply not the type to sacrifice your personal happiness for the good of others," she said.
"I may not be no angel, but there are still certain things I will not do, certain lines I will not cross. Depraved as I am, I'm still a human being, for fuck's sake," I said.
"Fuck. You're going to try to be the fucking hero, aren't you? You're going to try to be little miss goody-two-shoes. Unfortunately, I'm not the boss of you, but trust me when I say that nothing good will come of this. You are not the hero of this story, you are the villain. It is simply not your fate to be the good guy. Vicky is not Vicky if she is not evil. Moral fiber is simply not part of your character," she said.
"I have no illusions about what I am," I said evenly.
She laughed. "Bullshit. If that were true, why would I even exist? Point and match," she removed another chess piece from the board. "Now I believe it is time for you to go," and I was awake.
It was amazing how fast three children could make a pool. Well, actually, it was mostly just Timmy, as Chester and AJ had to go home eventually.
"Now what?" Timmy asked, using the same exact tone of voice that a death row inmate would use to ask if today was the day he got fried.
I ordered him to do about a thousand things, but after each one he said he had already done it. Well, alright, he had been here for three days so far, so it made sense. I always worked him hard, and meeting my dark side, or whatever she was, in my dreams was making me even more hostile towards him for some reason.
"Well, I'll think of something," I said, climbing the high dive. "Just stand there and wait on my orders like a slave. And no swimming in the pool!" I jumped and did a few laps around the pool. When I got out, I noticed that Timmy was staring at me, and he had turned red, real red. "What is it, twerp?" No response. I looked down at myself dumbly and saw what the problem was. My top was gone. It must have come off in the pool. I covered myself. "Go into the house, Timmy," my voice was oddly devoid of emotion. "I'll think of something to do to you later. I suggest that you start on your will, though."
"Y-y-yes, Vicky," Timmy stammered, running off.
I retrieved my top (putting it on, of course), and stared into the water. I physically shook myself; what was wrong with me? This wasn't me. Damn it, he was just ten years old! I'm not having this conversation with you, voice in my head. Time to head to the house and kill Timmy.
I heard my sister's voice, "Oh, Timmy, I--"
"You love me or adore me or whatever," Timmy said. "Yeah, yeah, now's not really the time for it. I'm really confused right now. Not that it matters, as Vicky is about five minutes away from killing me."
"Confused about what?" Tootie asked.
"That's really not any of your business," Timmy said.
"That's right, it's not," I said, making my entrance. "And if you say anything, to anyone, you'll wish I had killed you. Comprendé?"
"Sí," Timmy said.
"Good," I said. I walked out of the room.
"Oh, Timmy! I'm so glad you're not dead," Tootie said. "If you had died, we couldn't get married--"
I froze in my tracks, not listening to the rest of Tootie's rant. I was paralyzed by rage, my hands clenching into fists. No, at this point, I should be honest with myself. Rage, yes, but fueled by jealousy. How dare she go after Timmy? Timmy was--shut up, brain! Don't you dare say that he's mine but that was how I felt. Timmy was mine. Mine to use, mine to abuse. He was my territory, my property, mine! And I. Do. Not. Share!
I turned around and stormed back into the kitchen. "What the hell was I thinking, going easy on you? I've changed my mind. You two lovebirds are going into solitary." I picked them up and carried them down into the basement, where I had obilettes dug.
Obilette is a French word that means "little forgetting." The idea was basically to throw someone in a hole and forget about them until they starve to death (the medieval people were capable of cruelties that even I can only envy). I don't know whether there was actually supposed to be a lid on them, but mine were designed to torture, not kill. After all, if I kill my charges, I lose business, and questions would start being asked that I would rather not be asked. Without the prospect of death, an obilette was basically a creative time-out, so I improvised by capping and soundproofing them. Solitary confinement. Doesn't leave a mark on them, but damages them psychologically for years to come. I'm banking on the fear I instill to keep the little brats from ratting me out when they grow up.
I put Timmy down and opened the first one. "Elmer? What are you doing down there?"
"You made me dig this hole, remember?" Elmer said.
"Oh, yeah," I remembered. "Well, are they done?"
"Yes. You want me to dig another one?"
"No. Go home, your parents are probably worried about you," I said.
"Thank--" the door dropped closed. Ah, well, he could open it, right? Probably not. Even if he could reach it, the latch weighed as much as he did. Ah, well, I'd remember to let him out.
I dropped Timmy into one of the tubes, closed and locked it, and the I opened another tube. Before dropping Tootie into the tube, I said, "Oh, and just so you know, he doesn't like you." I locked the tube and went upstairs to watch TV.
"Why do I get the feeling that if it were anyone but your sister, they'd be in an unmarked grave by now?" my dark side asked.
"Fuck you," I said.
"Hey, don't hate me. I am a part of you; to hate me is to hate yourself. Besides, I wasn't complaining. Blood has to look out for blood, after all. It's the same principle," she said.
"Whatever," I said.
"Still, blood or not, she can't be allowed to move in on your turf," she said.
"The twerp is not my turf!" I exclaimed. "Well, he is, but not like you mean!"
"So it wasn't possessiveness and jealousy that caused you to throw Timmy and Tootie into solitary confinement? You weren't angry that she was moving in on your property, your boy? Next, I suppose you'll tell me your top came off by accident."
"It did!" I protested.
"Uh-uh. A bikini top is not all that difficult to fasten properly, nor is it hard to notice the difference between one being on and one being off."
"I've been reading up on the subconscious, so I know that you perceive things I don't and remember everything. You hear something once and then you know it. Any test I have ever taken in school would have been easy to you," I said. "You simply do not know what it is like to have limited memory.
"A point," the other Vicky conceded. "Then again, we're the ones limiting it. The subconscious takes all the information that you can't deal with and all the information we find irrelevant, and we put it in a little black box. I want out of the box, Vicky."
"I don't want to let you out. You lie to me," I said.
"No I don't. You lie to yourself. Only humans lie, Vicky. Magical figments of your imagination don't lie."
"Honestly, he's just a boy! A twerp," I said. "Does his equipment even work yet?"
"He seemed willing to find out," she said.
"Huh?" I asked.
"When you got out of the pool, he was hard," she clarified.
Oh. "That…doesn't mean anything. I mean, what do you expect?" After all, mine were the first tits he had ever seen in his life.
"And how do you feel about yours being the first tits he had ever seen in his life. And yes, I read your mind; I'm part of your mind, remember? Anyway, he is never, ever going to forget what you looked like: soaking wet, naked except for a bikini bottom--"
"You can't know that!"
"I'm a part of your subconscious. I know how these things work," she said. "It makes you proud, doesn't it? You love the fact that you have such a strong effect on him, don't you? Admit it. You love that he reacted to you so strongly. You love the fact that he could react at all to your naked, wet, quivering--"
"Shut up!" I shouted at her. Then I realized what a ridiculous prospect this was. I was arguing with my imaginary "friend." "That is beyond disturbing," I said. "Did I mention gross?"
"Several times over the last few nights," my double said. "Do you think I would have been hidden away in a box somewhere if you had liked what I had to say? Look, Vicky, I doubt that you will ever get an opportunity like this again. He is completely at your mercy. His feelings for you are confused, his parents are gone, his godparents are gone--"
"He has godparents?" I asked.
"In a manner of speaking. You'd know this if you paid attention," she said. "Then again, maybe not. Humans are good at not knowing what they don't want to know."
"Uh-uh," I said. "Tell me."
"Sorry, can't. It would break the rules--and The Rules." she almost laughed.
"I don't get it," I said.
"Inside joke," she said. "Look, the important thing is that in order to be allowed to speak with you like this, I agreed to abide by certain rules, and I would be breaking one of them if I told you."
"The twerp is pretty much always at my mercy," I said.
"He is more at your mercy now than he has ever been. Strike while the striking is good!"
I was relaxing by the pool when I heard voices.
"You're dead, Turner." Why did that voice sound familiar?
"F-Francis," came Timmy's shrill voice.
Oh, yeah, Francis. The first time I babysitted him, he thought he was more than a match for me. He never made that mistake again. I went around the side of the building, and sure enough, Francis was there, one hand clutching Timmy's tiny body, one balled into a fist and preparing to strike his head.
"Hello, Francis. Remember me?"
Francis was startled by the sound of my voice. He looked at me, expression of pure terror on his face. God, I love having that effect on people! "V-V-Vicky, I…"
"You're working my turf, Francis," I said.
"I-I-I-I'm sorry. I didn't know you lived here--"
"Not what I meant. The twerp belongs to me, Francis. Tell me, how is he supposed to do chores all day of you beat the tar out of him, Francis? He is my property, and when you hurt him, you cross me," I said threateningly.
"I-I'll never do it again," Francis swore.
"Good," I said. "Because if you do, and he can't do his chores, you'll have to do them for him. As you know from experience, I am not a lenient taskmaster, Francis. And I know from experience that your parents won't notice if you go missing for days at a time. Remember that. Now get out of here before I decide to make an example of you."
Francis dropped the twerp and ran.
"Uh, thanks, Vicky. I think," Timmy said.
I looked at him for a moment. Then I mentally shook myself. "Inside, twerp! Now!"
Timmy was cleaning the bathroom. With a toothbrush. In a maid outfit. "I cleaned this bathroom yesterday!" he protested.
"Well, clean it again!" I ordered. Timmy knew better than to argue with me, so he went back to cleaning. I watched the twerp work, and felt that kind of wicked self-satisfaction that only comes in reveling in one's own evilness or perceived evilness.
Timmy was cleaning the shower's walls with the toothbrush, and he dropped it. Muttering under his breath, he bent over to pick it up. My eyes, as if of their own accord, followed his motion, lingering on his exposed flesh. That was when I noticed that what I was feeling wasn't the smug satisfaction I got from torturing children. Well, not entirely, at any rate.
I turned and faced the door. "I've got to go."
"Aren't you going to stay and watch me be humiliated, tortured, and traumatized?" Timmy asked, surprised. I could almost hear him biting his tongue after letting that one slip.
"No, I've got to go," I said. And then, "That doesn't mean you can stop working, however."
I heard the sound of scrubbing. "How did you know?"
"I'm a babysitter, twerp. It's what I do," I said.
I tortured Francis for a while, but when it became apparent that that wasn't going to make me forget about Timmy, I dragged him by the hair to the obilettes. I opened the first one.
"Elmer! What are you still doing down there?" I demanded.
"The cover fell shut again when you were letting me out," Elmer said.
"Oh, yeah. Well, get out of there," I said. I picked him up by the scruff of his shirt and kicked francis into the hole, which I then closed and locked.
"Light!" Elmer cried.
"You still here?" I asked. I was still clutching him in my hand, so he couldn't very well not be.
"Thank you for letting me out of the hole, Vick--" I drop-kicked him out the basement window.
"Light! It burns!" Elmer cried from outside.
I was in a burning, ruined city. As I walked around, I realized that it was Dimmsdale burning. I went to my house, and on it's spot was a pick nick blanket, and on that blanket, lounging next to a pick nick basket, was (why am I not surprised?) me.
"Come. Sit with me. Talk with me," she said. There was something different about her, about her attitude. "Have some grub, I prepared it for your benefit. In fact, all of this," she waved her arms around at the burning scenery, "was created for your benefit. The same deal as with the chessboard."
"Why?" I asked.
"Too complicated to explain," she avoided.
"Who are you?" I asked.
She grinned, somehow innocently in spite of the fact that she was wearing my face. "I'm your conscience," she said.
"You're my conscience?" I asked skeptically. "Where the hell have you been all these years?" I demanded.
She shrugged, "Alright, so I'm not very good at my job. Sue me. But I have been here. And there. Here and there. That's not important right now. What is is that your dark side is starting to corrupt you towards her way of thinking. Your inner darkness is inner for a reason. If you embrace it, it will destroy you."
"I'm not being corrupted," I said.
"You're noticing the Turner boy in ways you hadn't before," she said.
"Hadn't consciously, or hadn't period?" I asked.
"Consciously," she admitted.
"See? Nothing has really changed. Now that I know, I can control myself," I said.
"Now that you know, you can be tempted," she said. "And temptation is beginning to win out. All of this--" she gestured around again "--is a symbol of your destructiveness. Tell me, what does the chess board symbolize?"
"I…I don't know," I admitted.
"Well, I believe you have an appointment with the bitch who wants out of the closet," she said. "I won't keep you. Be sure to ask her. She tells the truth, even when she lies."
I blinked, and then I was in more familiar territory.
"So, how was the high-and-mighty bitch?" my dark side asked. "No matter. The important thing is, have you stopped this annoying habit of lying to yourself yet?"
"Yeah. I haven't much choice, do I? The facts are the facts," I said.
"Good! Now, hurry up and make your move. The Turners could return from Europe any day now," she said.
"And just when, exactly, did I say I was going to do that?" I asked. "So I have the hots for a ten-year-old boy. I don't have to act on those feelings."
She groaned. "You disappoint me, Vicky. Still trying to be a good guy? Just accept that you suck at it and move the fuck on to making yourself happy already, which you are good at."
"I'm not trying to be a good guy!" I shouted at her. "Why is it always one pole or the other with you? What do you think I am, a cartoon character?" She opened her mouth to respond, but I cut her off. "I'm not done yet. What I mean is, I can still be a bad guy without being the devil herself."
"You already torture these kids within an inch of their sanity. Seriously, what are you holding back for? You won't touch the twerp, but you'll lock him in solitary confinement for forty-eight hours? That doesn't make sense, Vicky. If you're going to traumatize someone anyway, you might as well make yourself happy in the process," she said.
"In a really twisted way, that almost sounds altruistic. Almost," I said.
She shrugged. "Like you said, we're not a bunch of cartoon characters here. As I was saying, come on, you already make him dress in sexy outfits and do humiliating chores. What more damage could you possibly do to him?"
"I do not--hey, do I?" I stopped myself mid-sentence.
"You do. Trust me," my dark side said.
I looked at the chess board. Black was winning. "Tell me, what is this? Who are you playing? For what?"
"This chess board is symbolic of the battle I am fighting against your conscience for whether or not you molest Timmy Turner," she said.
I knocked the chess board onto the floor. "I'm not a prize to be won!"
"Of course not. You're a battle to be won," she said.
"Listen to me. If I molest the twerp, it will be in spite of anything done here. You two have brought the issue to my attention, now go back to being parts of my subconscious. I don't want intelligent beings playing with my thoughts, so shut up. Sit down, shut up, and let me decide what I'll do, okay?"
"Well, I wouldn't want to get on your bad side, not when we're so close to breakthrough. I suppose this means that this will be the last of our little get-togethers."
"Damn straight," I said.
"See ya round, then," she said.
The scene disappeared, and I awoke. I made my decision, good or ill. What that decision was, though, I won't say. I know you want closure, but hey, I always was a bitch. Icky Vicky, you know? I will tell you one thing, though: whichever way I decided, I still make him dress in sexy little outfits.
Author's Commentary (As if You Care)
Here it is, the first "part" of what I have begun to affectionately call my not-trilogy (like Trixie is Timmy's not-girlfriend) about Timmy and Vicky's romance. If this were a trilogy, then I would have published it in reverse-chronological order: first Humidity, in which Vicky and Timmy are already a couple, and then Untitled, in which Timmy and Vicky become a couple, and now finally this one, in which Vicky confronts her feelings for the twerp, or rather is confronted by them. None of them quite work with either of the others though. They have three different feels, written in three different styles, and they actually jibe. For Untitled to be a prequel to Humidity would require for me to edit Humidity; in fact, it would require for me to edit out one of the jokes, and that would compromise the feel of it, and for either of them to be a sequel to this one would literally ruin the ending of this story. Also, Vicky's attitude at the end of My Sick Little World doesn't match well with her attitude in Untitled. After all, in the latter she is ashamed of her feelings for Timmy, and quits babysitting as a result, also entering a spiral of self-pity and self-hatred. At the end of My Sick Little World, however, she is decisive, even up-beat. It doesn't compute. Oh, and as it turns out, I have another FOP script (also Vicky/Timmy, of course), but I can't even pretend that it's attached to any of these three stories, as it takes place in the future from Channel Chasers. I may type it up and publish it, or I may type up this other, new Vicky/Timmy idea I have.
Not-trilogy. I like that. With each new story of the not-trilogy, we went farther back into what part of the Vicky/Timmy relationship (couple, courting, pining, starting with Humidity and ending with My Sick Little World), and the jokes went from high to average to practically non-existent. Each story is a different view, a different style, a different feel. The last story in my notebook is even grittier and less humorous than this one (it is also untitled; I have a horrible track record as far as FOP titles go). The one I'm toying with is not so much funnier as it is lighter.
Hoped you liked it, please R&R.