I know the look. The desperation in bloodshot eyes, the look of the coward. Of the liar. It burns, stings. It sickens me, because it's like looking into a mirror of my own ineptitude. It makes me want to die and I can't have that, oh no. He's still laughing. Laughing at everything I do, everything I try, it's just not good enough. There's the pounding of my heart in my chest, the pounding of the drums in my ears, counting every step I take
One, two, three, four, five, six...
Something has changed, something in the air, and I can feel myself perking, aware, awake. I know they're bad, that they're evil; I can taste it, taste how afraid they are, the uncertainty in their minds, the sweat that rolls down their foreheads.
TRUE! nervous, very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am; but why WILL you say that I am mad? The disease had sharpened my senses, not destroyed, not dulled them...
I haven't changed, oh no, aside from for the better; the sickness has made everything sharper and crisper than it's ever been. I'm whole for the first time in a long, long time; here truly and fully; not an impression, not a ghost. Everywhere and nowhere all at once. I'm there as they whip their heads around to hear a twig that's snapped, a rustle in the forest. I'm there, but
They never see me
that's part of the rules, after all.
And so the Game begins.
They barely notice at first until they realize it's their blood dripping on the hard and cracked ground. And then they start to run again and the panic sets in and it dawns on them that they're not immune, that they're going to die too. Breathe in, breathe out. Slow steps turn to a hurried frenzy as they realize they're being followed. Quickened breath, faster, faster! The pounding grows in my head and the need grows in my chest, a knowledge that the monster will roar in triumph once I play the piano keys at my fingertips. But I wait. I wait because it will be so much sweeter that way.
I'm going to destroy you and everything you are, I'm going to chase and when you stop, I'll make you run some more. You won't stop you won't ever stop. I'll wake you up just as you fall asleep. You'll never know what's real and what's not, aside from the hunter...
Sixteen, seventeen, eighteen, nineteen...
Because it's then that you can start building worlds. Cogwheels and gears, lattice and tree branches. Bodies twisting into manikins of bone and nails. Dreams and nightmares mixing together like oil and water. Circus rings and skyscrapers going in all the wrong directions. Stumble and trip and forget which way is up. Sidewalks that end in abysses that have eyes, that gaze into your own and start to giggle.
It just takes one little push then.
You should hear how they all scream, Writer. Forced to stare into something that just mocks them. Forced to hear all the little voices inside their head while they face the darkness they were always so terrified to face. Some of them break right there. But some, oh, some, they hit the ground running. Fire and pits and brimstone. Panting, desperate assertions that this can't be happening. Chessboards and rivers of ink and ichor. Somewhere, the faint sounds of static and strings. Discord and order in a patchwork sky.
They bite their lips to keep from making noise until they bleed.
Sharp edges and spiders webs. It goes on forever, stretching out on lighten pathways to eternity. Stop to rest, and I just let them know I'm behind them. They take one second to catch their breath, and I'm there in their shadow. They open their mouths to scream, and I cut at their tongues. Bits and pieces of them start to vanish.
First, a finger. Then, a chunk of flesh; a flash of pain and silver, and then the slow drip. I wish you could see it~! The slow realization flashing across scarred features; then the nightmare truly begins.
Watching them lose hope is the best part.
Some of them renounce god. Some of them renounce Him. Thunder and snowdrifts. It doesn't matter. Once they're in my world, I'm their new ruler. The new master of their destiny. Everything, slowly being wrenched away from their grasping fingertips.
twenty three, twenty four
I hear it now. See it; words and phrases, black on the corners of my vision; swarms of letters, because the music comes from everything. Footprints and bloody viscera. The beat. The rhythm. Louder, LOUDER. Lace and velvet, ashes as rain. Nothing is better than making a move to the cacophonous melody of last breaths and strained heartbeats. Glasswork and drops of mercury. In my world, there is only my order. My chaos. I take everything from them, like how you took everything from me. And that gives me pleasure. I laugh. I laugh at them as they beg for it all to stop.
The Game continues on.
I'm hunting the villains. I'm hunting the evil. And I'm taking everything from them before I kill them. I'm playing and toying and destroying. I'm destroying souls. I'm destroying something beautiful
I own this
and can crush heads with my fingertips and rip joints out of their sockets and dig my wrists into bone and muscle and peel skin back and make everything into a work of art. Paint pictures with a well placed word. See the world bustle at my feet.
And I can do it
Until there's no one left to ruin. No Game left to play.
But for now, there's plenty of players.
The wicked get a head start.