|Alex is just (thekidwhodies) wrote in repose,|
@ 2019-08-03 09:17:00
|Entry tags:||*narrative, alex white|
Narrative: The Morning After
Who: Alex White
What: Waking up
Where: His trailer
When: The morning following this
Warnings/Rating: Mentions of character death
It isn't blackness that greets him. It's not a darkness, or purgatory, or a heaven or hell. It isn't an anything. The pain doesn't leave Alex's body because he is simply no longer part of said body. He is nowhere, he is nothing, not even the cosmic idea of an "Alex" – all those parts which make him him, separated from pain and body and cast into the nothing, blending with it. A hundred times, he's visited this place, but it can't even be said to be a place, as it has no beginning, no end, no boundaries, landmarks, anything. No light, no dark.
A void: empty nothingness, beyond description. He is one with it.
If Alex could have, he would carry over the thoughts from his last moments, the scattered thoughts that always bounce and jitter in his mind as the electrical impulses of his brain fade and die. This time: Will he return again, or is this it? Will the man with the knife and the boy with the bow remember? Only, he is the void, lacking neurons and synapses to form these thoughts, a million trillion little bits of what once was him, drifting. The essences of those things are mixed into the void like the rest of him. Like making a cake, where once the flour is mixed in, it can't be picked out, piece by piece. Like a cloud of electrons: infinitesimally small and far away, their colliding interactions both measured on the scale of, and as likely as, the collision of galaxies. Which is to say, once in a never.
And then, like every time before, he is shunted back into his body all at once, like an extremely swole and brutish toddler slamming a square peg into a round hole with a fifteen-pound sledgehammer.
Alex bolts upright in bed, gasping in an overly dramatic reaction the likes of which the creators of Dark only wish they could catch on film. Or maybe, not too dramatic; how dramatic were you allowed to be when you died? He shakes violently, arms wrapped around himself, rocking back and forth for a few minutes, mind only full of emotions: terror and wonder and relief and sorrow, as his body remembers how it's supposed to work, how to follow actual commands from his brain, and everything isn't just an instinctive reaction.
Finally, slowly, he comes back to himself, to a tinny noise just tickling the edges of his hearing. It's just loud enough to make out the words:
And once we start
The meter clicks
And it goes running all through the night.
Until it ends
There is no end.
The Cyndi Lauper tape. It's still going, the foam headphones still looped around his neck by their thin metal band. He finds the stop button on the Walkman and growls out a noise – speech will come – that can be loosely translated as "eat a bag of dicks, cosmic irony." He pulls off the headphones, followed by his shirt. He probes his thin, sweat-slick chest, where the knife had gone in. His stomach, recently home to an arrow. He's whole, unblemished. He sighs out in relief. His very cells can remember the pain, something that hovers at the edge of his awareness like a far-off echo down a canyon, but physically, in reality, it's as if it never was.
He picks up his shirt, and experiences another delightful little shock. Delightful, if you like finding roaches in the bed, or something. There's nothing where the knife went in, of course. The things that kill him never leave a mark. There's no dried blood, no stains on the bed, nothing to say he'd been stabbed through the heart by a big fucking hunting knife the night before. (Not fair - that was a mercy. He's grateful, honestly.)
But there's a ragged, uneven hole where the arrow had gone in. He fingers the torn fabric, disbelieving, then realizes he's learned something very important: The arrow didn't kill him, the knife did. No blood, because blood is blood, he figures. It's all back in him, somehow, however this works. (Shiver.) But the arrow left a trace. Fuck. He likes this shirt.
Alex sets the it aside and fishes his phone from his pocket. 6:08 a.m. He decides he's going to make some coffee, smoke about half a pack to calm his nerves, and then get in the shower. He still has story time at Mainchance this morning. He likes those kids, and he isn't going to let a stupid thing like dying get in the way of story time.