Hi. My name is Sybil. And well…I'm not really sure if I'm real. I mean, you know…I might be. Then again, I might be all in Nnys head. I am a product of his imagination, I'm the last one…all the others are gone. I'm the only one. I'm flesh and blood, but I started in Nnys imagination... I didn't even know if Nny liked me at first, really. All I know is that one day, I was just here. I had no name or anything. Nny was sitting on the couch, and then I was just there. And Nny didn't see me. It took close to a month before he did…I felt so alone, I really did. I tried everything. I broke things, and I yelled, and I talked, and I wrote on walls…he didn't see a thing. Then one day, I sang for him. I knew he couldn't see or hear me, and while that made me feel lonely, it also gave me the ability to take down any walls I would have otherwise had. He was asleep (a very, VERY rare thing, I think I'd only seen it once in that whole long month). And he started whimpering. He covered his ears, and cried a bit, and rolled about fitfully on the ragged "mattress". For the first time, I actually tried to touch him. I found that I could. I Lay down beside him and wrapped my arms around him. He didn't wake up, but I didn't mind that, my holding him in place made him stop flipping out. But he was still crying. Then I got an idea. When he was awake, he didn't notice me, but when he was asleep, he felt my embrace…maybe he could hear me in his sleep too? I held him tight to me and began to sing, a quiet, careful melody.
'' He wears his heart safety-pinned to his backpack
His backpack is all that he knows
Shot down by strangers whose glances can cripple
The heart and devour the soul
All alone he turns to stone
While holding his breath half to death
Terrified of what's inside to save his life
He crawls like a worm from a bird
Crawls like a worm from a bird
Out of his mind, the way pushes him whispering
Must have been out of his mind
Midday delusions of pushing this out of his head
Make him out of his mind"
I trailed off as he began to stir. He rolled over and saw me. I was overjoyed. He SAW me! He really, really SAW me! My joy was short lived though, because then Nny grabbed the knife he keeps in his boot. He lunged for me, missing my leg by a mere centimeter. I jumped up and ran, feeling my heart pump in my chest (that's got to be proof I'm real, right?). He chased me through the house, and a campy tune sprang up in my mind. I ignored it and kept running, but he caught me. Of course he would, he's NNY, why did I think I could escape? I flattened myself against the nearest wall. His hand wrapped around my throat, those wide, impossibly bright eyes trained on me. I was scared, of course, but I didn't fight it.
"Who are you?" he ground out, his teeth clashing against each other.
"I don't know," I wheezed out. "I don't have a name yet!" Nny looked at me curiously. I shuddered as he ran the knife along my cheek.
"What do you mean?" he asked.
"I don't have a name…you haven't named me yet…" I said quietly.
"WHAT THE FUCK DOES THAT MEAN?!'' he shouted. I flinched as his grip tightened on my throat.
"You created me! I, I came from you, from your mind, a month ago! I don't have a name until you give me one!" I was beginning to panic. I knew for sure that he had created me, but I didn't know how, or anything!
"Hmm…" Nny looked me right in the eye. Those large emerald green orbs searching for evidence of a lie in my soft blue ones. I guess he believed me, because he let me go. I fell to the ground and coughed as Nny walked in the direction of the living room. I made to follow him, and found myself pinned against the wall again. "What do you think you're doing?" he growled, the knife held level with my left eye.
"I was following you, I'm sorry, I don't know any better yet, and I haven't had time to learn! I'll stay here until I'm told to go elsewhere," I said. He released me and I slumped to the floor and sat, waiting for instructions. Nny stood there scowling at me.
"Get up," he growled. I jumped to my feet, but didn't move. I didn't want to take a knife to the eye. Nny was still scowling at me. "So, what, I have to train you? Like a dog?" he snarled.
I nodded. "Yes, sir," I said quietly. "I already know some things, but you'll have to teach me the rules, and how to interact with other people."
Nnys eyes suddenly softened. "You're really more like a kid than a dog, aren't you?"
"Yes, sir," I said. "Like maybe a really intelligent but homeschooled 8 year old."
"How old would you say you are, physically?" He asked.
"22," I answered automatically. I had no idea why but that age felt completely right.
"Well, we're the same age. I would think I would have created someone younger, or older. Or a dog. I like dogs." Nny looked at me carefully. "Stay here." He walked off. I stood in the hallway, waiting. I was jittery. His house (our house?) creeped me out, so I started singing again.
You lived your life like a sleeping swan
Your time has come
To go deeper
Your final journey has just begun
Your destiny chose the reaper
"What are you doing?" Nny asked. I hadn't even heard him walking back this way.
"Singing, sir," I said. "I'll stop if you don't like it."
"No, No…its fine…I'm just wondering where you learned that song. That's not my style of music, although it works well for your voice, really." He looked at me. "Well? Where did you learn that song?"
"I…I don't know," I replied. "There are a lot of songs just in my head…some are about me, and some are about you, and some are about people I don't know yet, and some are about…what you do…in the basements. I don't know where they came from," I knew I was rambling but I didn't want him to think I was lying earlier about not knowing much.
"That's…odd." Nny waved his hand. "That's not important right now. You need a name. You can't just run around without a name. It's rude to people who might want to talk to you. Like me, maybe, if you're worth talking too."
"Well, ok, um…what do you want to name me?" I asked.
"Why should I have to name you? Too stupid to name yourself? I don't like stupid people!" He brandished his boot knife at me menacingly.
"No, Sir! I'm just, um, it would be improper! A child cannot name itself! Nor can a dog! Or, or a painting! You created me, you're the only one who can really name me!" I said frantically, fighting back tears. I finally became real, and I was going to die because of my naivety.
"Oh, right. I forgot for a moment I created you. Ok…well then how about Sybil?" Nny said musingly.
"I like that," I said softly. I smiled a little, and a large grin swept over Nnys face.
"Well, now that you have a name, proper introductions can be made. Hello, my name is Johnny C., but you can call me Nny, for short." He bowed low, his hair tickling his face a little.
I curtsied. "Hello, Nny," I said happily. "My name is Sybil. I am very pleased to make your acquaintance."
This is the beginning of my story. My first real interaction with Nny, and the gaining of my name.