Minor edits -29/9/08
This was not something unfamiliar.
The question triggered a vague, distorted memory of a memory which struggled to explain, promising understanding if only it could be recalled, but it kept getting lost in the static and was therefore discarded. There was nothing here but static, and for that reason, it was deafening. It made thinking laborious –concentrating near impossible. There was nothing to focus on except that constant buzz and hiss and crackle that came from everywhere and nowhere at all. But, like the repetitive ticking of a clock, perhaps one would cease to hear it after time passed. Perhaps then it would be easier to concentrate.
Nothing here…where was here? How could anything feel so familiar, yet so alien, at the same time? After all, the initial, subconscious instinct was of recognition.
Meant to be here.
Was it like this before?
Before…here before?…Is that why? Like waking from a dream. Was it a dream? Was what a dream? There must have been something before this…before this void, this nothingness…for it to feel like waking up.
No, there was nothing. It's just an illusion, something fabricated. Cold didn't - couldn't - exist here, just the same as light or darkness. It was simply space completely lacking anything whatsoever; no matter, no energy, no life. In a horribly beautiful way, that made it perfect, although when perfection came into this equation was uncertain. It seemed correct though, and required being consciously acknowledged as anything slightly important did; nothing could spoil it purely because nothing existed.
Does time exist?
Do I exist?
I. Self awareness. Does self awareness determine existence? It didn't matter here. Logic was apparently little more than a novelty, a quaint idea that had next to no use at all; the effects being more important than the causes.
Surely this is existence- or a figment of it at least.
Mentally Being in this place was almost certain ("almost" as merely Being was still undetermined), however as far as physically went, there was no evidence of that. But how can a mind survive alone without the anchor of a body?
…am I the void?
As warped as things were, that seemed too surreal, even for this place. The thought was discarded quickly.
Even though the amount of time elapsed since being here was uncertain, that is if time actually did exist. It appeared that the longer one existed in this void, the more it felt like waking from a long sleep. The drowsy, dreamlike feeling gave way to something clearer, and rational thought returned to take its place.
I couldn't have been dreaming
Existing only mentally allowed every direction to be visible at once, seeing as there wasn't any physical barriers to prevent it, but even then, the surroundings didn't give any clue to the location. Black stretched for immeasurable distances, only it wasn't shadow as there was no light source. It was just space devoid of light. Another scope of the bleak landscape just confirmed what had already been established; that it wasn't willing to surrender any answers, and even then it would take great effort to determine what they were answering anyway. The rapidly multiplying questions were becoming increasingly difficult to extract and separate, causing them to blur and tangle into meaningless noise.
The only option that seemed open, or of any use whatsoever, was to figure out how this could have possibly happened; there was no telling if this place was now a permanent residence, and that wasn't bearable to think about. There must have been something before this…this…emptiness. But it all seemed too familiar, leading to the conclusion that whatever existence came before this could have just been one wonderful dream. Reality was hard to define. Before seemed real, but Now seemed equally so – but it was impossible that both could co-exist as the differences were just too extensive, and the possibility of parallel dimensions ("or whatever") was too complex a concept to grasp. It had to be one or the other…right? Choose…
If it was a dream…
The easiest explanation so far.
...did I ever leave?
However, something contradicting stirred, hope perhaps, which pointed out that a mind could not possibly sleep. Only physical bodies need sleep, and it was apparent such things did not exist here. So the previous theory of having dreamt the previous occurrences was abandoned, almost regretfully as it would have been so much simpler to accept. Now came the arduous task of selecting a starting point from the vast emptiness and static and hazy memories and gradually build up understanding. What to do with this information if or when it was found could be decided upon after reaching said conclusion.
So what did come before this?
It was the only logical thing to do, as finding a way out was impossible.
Something must have existed before this nothingness, otherwise I wouldn't be aware anything was wrong. It all seems so familiar…fuck, why can't I remember?
A memory broke free defiantly from the static. As the mind is responsible for mental images, the memory was displayed in the void three-dimensionally with ethereal luminescence, shimmering and waving like ripples in a puddle. The images flickered and grew heavy with white-noise when parts became too indistinct to remember, much like a television losing signal. The soundless image was of a wall, cracks blossoming in the plaster on an eternal loop of forming and growing, forming and growing –although the motion was jerky; a scratched record. The memory crackled from view after repeating itself around a dozen times, and the static was present again, seemingly louder than before. Though, it was hard to tell whether it just felt that way because of the return in awareness of it. Meanwhile, the memory of the wall failed to stir any sense of importance whatsoever; it was probably just something plucked at random. But it was a memory of something other than the void nonetheless, and that was the crucial detail. After deciding a mind could not dream, the memory could only support the theory that there was an alternative existence before this one.
So then, where am I, and how did I get here? The last thing I -
My name…surely I had a name…
I know it I know it it's who I am, I just…Shit! Fucking shit! How can anyone forget their own fucking name!?
Any tired, half-consciousness was completely lost, and rational, "eloquent" thought had replaced it. Funny how expletives, as crude as they are, could be the elusive start to unravel the yarn ball; to find the end housed securely in the middle. Or was it the end to find the start? Beginning, middle, end. Eh. Although the sense of belonging in the void was still dominant, there was the almost definite knowledge that, some other reality existed, something better – if only because anything was better than this nothingness. That had not been there before…hard conviction had replied vague feeling.
…I was here before. I can't say that based on facts, because there are none. Facts aren't in their abundance here, but I just know, and that holds more value here anyway...But then…where did I go? Why? Through deduction I know I went somewhere. God damn, what is my name!? It's not like I can ask anyone-
I wasn't alone the first time. I remember now. There was someone else. Not separate.
We were made together in the beginning…made…by who? Not important. No not now. We were together we…we.
Not together now. Why? Alone. Not complete, not whole. We were separated…separated…existed on our own- without the other- apart, separate- control. To control. Us? Us…
That's when we left here. When we were separated
Rapid thoughts hurtled past after the first memory to begin the unraveling process was found. It was the key to unlock the torrent of memories which had been concealed. Images vortexed round and crashed into one another, sometimes merging completely to play overlapping, to form a violent visual display of restless light and pictures on fast-forward. It could be safe to assume the static had been used to prevent anything being remembered, interfere with carrier signals, distort them, scramble them; explaining the difficulty of recalling any memories. Anything here seemed plausible. But why try to hide them? It was hardly a breakthrough as there was still no apparent means of escaping to that forgotten reality. Then again, there was no hard evidence to suggest that past memories had been hidden. It could just be the effect of switching realities, or the effect of the void itself.
Just like waking from a dream and not being able to recall it until an event triggered a memory of it later on.
But the memory had been triggered, the path through the static clear, and not so invincible any more.
There was something else to consider now, after the flood of recent revelations. If there had been, indeed, another being here the first time, there was the possibility they were here again.
That's if they left in the first place…
…did they come with me…when we were separated? Separated to control…control us. But why? I can't think! Fuck, I don't know what to do! I'm not any closer to understanding than when I first…
"Woke up here" didn't seem like the right phrase to use. It had to be more complex than that. Desperately, any trace of a memory was chased in hope the fragments would amount to something that would make sense. More was beginning to push through the hazy barrier and become clearer, but the feeling many things were being blocked by something greater was hard to get rid of. A challenge, perhaps? Who could say.
…think. There was the wall…someone else…separated. Controlled.
Another significant word allowed more memories to escape, and with such ease they found themselves home in the mind. They belonged there, like one enormous jigsaw where the pieces all fit neatly into place. The holes were now visible and could be filled in with little effort. Just start with the edge pieces and work inwards.
We were together all the way
With me before, with me after, and then…? Insert disk two. Press next to continue.
Created for a purpose- both of us. Our purpose…opposite. Conflicting.
Any preliminary hold the static, or anything else for that matter, had, was now severed. The ties holding back the memories had been cut loose, allowing them to find their appropriate places amongst each other. The regained knowledge brought with it a sense of security, and strangely the void didn't feel so overwhelming anymore. It was still endless, and confusion still prevailing, but maybe with the newly salvaged memories, an answer might be waiting to be found.
We weren't Real.
The final restraints were destroyed.
Installation finished. User online.
…we were never Real. Figments. Voices. Created to be controlled by something bigger. Created for their purpose.
…destruction. Self-destruction. I was the Voice of Self-Destruction.…to who? Nny. Nny, that little shit. He separated us. Made us easier to control. Arguing with each other meant we wouldn't concentrate on him so much…no free will. No such thing! At least I've got that here…to an extent.
There was no stopping the memories now. The whole time spent in the other reality ("fucking Earth") sped past like a movie watched on fast forward. Nny, the Wall Monster, countless suicide attempts by his host, when his host wasn't trying to commit suicide, fucking Nailbunny, that nice neighbour boy with the creepy teddy bear, not being a refrigerator, Devi, the moon, the stars, watching small children drop their ice-creams, Happy Noodle Boy for Christ's sake, the collapse, the reclaim. Only, they weren't showed in 3-D anymore. Nothing could be identified; the images played at too high a speed. But they had been remembered and would be there waiting should they need to be remembered again. Something that hadn't returned, however, was the memory of a name, which was probably the most sorely missed. When the show of sorts had ended, it was almost disheartening to realize that's all they were; memories. Reality was now the Void.
How long had that speck been there in the distance? Through the dramas of remembering a whole lifetime, it had not been noticed sooner. It was the only inconsistent thing in the great span of the void; just a small, light-coloured speck. It seemed that the laws of light had no meaning in this place.
Am I moving?
As if the thought had in fact stimulated movement, the dot began to grow rapidly, and it was undoubtedly clear that the distance between them was decreasing, rather than the object simply gaining in size. The features became more defined on the being as it drew closer. Short arms and legs protruded from a figureless body, and the colour a consistent white. It didn't need to get any closer to be recognized; there are more effective senses than sight. As the being was propelled forward by an unknown force, the tall shape of a chef's hat was visible atop a perfectly rounded head. The first glimpses of black paint markings, breaking the uniform white figure, accompanied shortly after. The being only stopped advancing until it was possible to reach out and touch it with an identically shaped white hand, attached to an identically shaped white body. It didn't even seem remarkable that a body had suddenly materialized.
My name is Psychodoughboy.