The Wake Pt. I
It’s a truly strange feeling, waking up, and not being sure if you actually opened your eyes or not, the overwhelming darkness being equal in both situations. Or, if you are lying on your back or standing on your feet, your body so numb that you wouldn’t feel a needle sliding into your gut. That’s how I awoke, not sure where I was, or if a darkness that thick was even possible.
Sitting up, realizing that I was in fact on my back, I rubbed my eyes, but to prevail did the darkness lessen, still shrouding everything around me, including me. I couldn’t see anything, and worst, I couldn’t remember anything. Not even my name.
Standing, or attempting to, my legs were wet noodle, not having the strength on that first attempt to hold me up. Quickly falling back down, I landed hard on my ass, but my body was still numb, so there was no feeling. But stranger than that, there was no noise. No thud of my ass coming back down to meet the ground.
Yelling, trying to figure out what was going on, my voice had escaped my lips as no more than a whisper, though in my mind I had spoke in a nervous yell, my nervousness brought on by the unfamiliarity of my own voice. Raspy, it sounded as though I had gargles rusty screws, then chased them with four bottles of flaming whiskey.
Sitting, knees to my chest, trying to catch my breath and calm down, I clutched my eyes shut, though it didn’t matter if I did or not, the darkness would have been the same if I left them open, but I was wishing that when I reopened them, there would be a light.
Who am I? Where am I? These questions ran through my mind over and over, and each time the disappointment of no answer was all that came. Coming to terms that I wouldn’t get the answers I wanted sitting there, losing my mind a bit at a time, I again stood up, this time holding my balance, feeling as a toddler walking for the first time, only, this toddler is blind.
Turning slowly, there was nothing but the dark. Nothing at all, but that darkness. Looking down, I couldn’t tell you what I was standing on. Stone, didn’t know. Dirt, again, not sure. It could have been the mortified remains of dead babies and I still wouldn’t have known. Thinking back now, I really hope that wasn’t what it was, since I had been laying on it.
Looking around again, knowing nothing had changed, but hoping that maybe something had, a glint of something from above caught my eye. Looking up, in that darkness that my eyes had grown accustomed to, there was a light. Small, but even as tiny as it was, to my eyes, it burned like the sun. Looking away, rubbing my eyes, I looked back up slowly, the light still burning bright.
Staring up, wondering how I would get to the light, and what was making it, my thoughts were answered when suddenly, as though gravity had decided to change it physics, I fell quickly and violently to my side, slamming into a wall that I hadn’t known was there. My body not so numb, I felt the pain of the collision, and was quickly confused, when, just a moment prior I had been on my feet, and then, was lying down on the floor.
I knew I hadn’t fallen, and quickly getting to my feet, the light was no longer above me, but rather in front of me. A simple what the hell is going on went through my thoughts, my arms outstretched fully trying to feel for any other strange walls that could be around, but none were there.
Finally coming to a decision, I began to slowly walk towards the light. Still a painful brightness, I never looked directly at it at first, squinting, trying to figure out what it was as I approached, my steps a very cautious, slow pace. The closer I grew to the light, the more confused I became, and even more so did my questions grow, one in particularly, Where was I?
Upon the light in minutes, I was at a loss about the source. A lantern, a Victorian era street lamp looking lantern, with a candle burning inside, the light was bright and powerful, I could feel the heat feet away. What was odd about it, though the light was bright and warm, it lit nothing around it but myself. Knowing that was merely inches away, I still could not see myself or anything around me. Reaching towards it, the light did nothing to shed away the darkness, giving a clue away about my identity. Dumbfounded, I just looked into the light, watching the candle dance inside that lantern.
Finally giving up on ratiolization, I again reached out, but this time, I reached completely to the light, my hands touching the lantern, and more strange than anything, feeling a bitter coldness on my fingertips. But it didn’t last long, for within seconds of touching that lantern, my body felt as if it had been torn apart and put back together, then my eyes burned worse than ever before, the sudden shock of light hitting them.
Falling to my knees, I was in too much pain to scream or even breathe. Catching my breathe and the pain fading quickly, my eyes opened to a fading blurriness, my new surroundings coming to view. Trees, a light grey clouded sky, no sun. And what looked like a funeral, a group of people gathered around a casket as it was preparing to be lowered into the ground forever. As strange as my sudden appearance was, what was more strange was that there was no other headstones, it simply looking like a field with now a lonely grave. But more mind blowing than that, everyone at that funeral was the same man. And for some reason, I could swear I knew him.