I was already different in my early childhood; I did not see what others saw. – EDGAR ALLAN POE
I stumble and fall to the ground. These damned rocks. My lungs burn, I can hardly breathe. I don’t turn around. Why look horror in the face when it is beyond doubt. I know that she is behind me. The musty stench assails my nostrils. It fills my lungs with its foul breath. Disgust rises up within me, and takes possession of my whole body. I want to get out. Out of myself. Everything in me resists. I no longer want to battle the inevitable. It would be an easy finish. It would only be a brief moment. Only the blink of an eye and everything would be forgotten. Basically so simple.
Nevertheless I get up and my legs begin to walk again, driven by the elemental instinct that dwells within all of us living things. I have walked for hours across these deserts, composed of sand and grit. Rocks and small boulders make my way more difficult. The heat of the sun tries diligently to bring the stones to the point of melting. But my skin will sooner fall victim to the heat. I’m burning. My lungs and now my skin. It will become charred. I hear it ignite. I don’t want to walk any farther. I want to be able to choose my own death.
My eyes, they’re apparently playing a trick on me. A white house. It is the white house in my dreams. Is death only a singular dream? Is that all? Only a dream? A house. Is he waiting inside? I want to go in, yes. Please wait for me. I’ll hurry. My legs won’t go any faster. I’ll be right there. The stairs up to the veranda.
Don’t trip. The gigantic shadow looming over me. The mouth opens. It wants to devour me, but it is especially its revolting breath
that gives me strength. I pull the door open. It closes behind me. I press against it. But all remains quiet. Does she give up so easily? Am I worth nothing to her? Am I only one catch among many. A strange feeling of jealousy comes over me.
“Did you see her?”
“Only her shadow.”
“I’m glad you made it. Not everyone does.”
“What do you mean?”
“Here, to me. They don’t make it. They fail. They fail
because of their own comprehension, or better stated, what’s left of it. Didn’t you turn around at all?”
“No, but I knew she was there. Could sense it. Felt her breath on my skin. I know about her lustful eyes without ever having looked into them.”
“Come, sit down. You must be exhausted. I don’t have many visitors. Not that I appreciate a great number of guests. But loneliness is not a stranger, even to me.”
… to be continued.