thing

Feb 14 2014

after i went away from people i had to ask them to stop calling me. stop calling me stop calling me. eventually they stopped. i had something important to take care of i said and i can only do it alone. then i disconnected the phone and threw it away but they stopped coming to see me too. i dont think they ever came to see me in the first place, i dont think they cared that much. i took out the mailbox at the road, i just pulled it out of the ground and demolished it so it looked nothing like a mailbox just old rubbish and i tossed the rubbish around. they left the mail on the road but it rotted and i closed all of my accounts and no one wanted to write to me anymore anyway. it took years for the grass to grow but not as long as i had thought. it grew over the dirt drive to the house so it looked like it had never been there. from the road it looked like there was no place to live in there. so no one could know that there was someone living there because they couldnt see the house from the road so it just looked like part of the neighbouring properties. the grass grew up around my truck and between the parts. i thought i might need the truck but i knew i wouldnt. i thought itd still work if i needed it but it didnt matter to me if i did or not. i had no reason to need it.

i threw all the objects out of the house. i buried them. i put them out in the sun and rain to let them get destroyed. i didnt need them. if i could do without plumbing and electricity i could do without other stuff too. i came to know that the house was just shelter, not a possession, and shelter was enough. i sat outside the back door and watched the sun set over the river. the river rushed and it made a good sound. i ate eggs from my hens and vegetables from my gardens and also fruits. i knew i was getting Closer.

but i was aware that something was wrong and i wasnt Alone in the house. i wasnt sure what It was but i knew It was there, It was in the cupboard where my possessions had been. It came with me and It had been hiding, somewhere, under the house. or It had been attached to my possessions and when i got rid of them It had been left by them like dust that they had shed off them. but i think some other people who dont know what i knew might think that it was a sort of fantastical imagining of mine, or that it was ridiculous that such a large Thing would be able to hide between and behind the small spaces surrounding multiple inanimate material things. well, none of us can know everything, and we dont all spend our time learning the same things as each other, so maybe i know Things that you dont. dont you admit Its possible?

i didnt know what to do. i paced around inside the house at night. the wind howled outside and the outside seemed dangerous but somehow safer. the Thing made noises in the cupboard. at first they were noises just to let me know that It was there, and i lay awake listening to those noises all night. as i lay awake, i felt changes begin to take place in my body. it seemed that my hands and feet were growing further and further away from the centre of my awareness, but before long i understood that they were becoming unstuck from my flesh. i was trying to remove them further, but i was unable to control the adhesion; in most places things were fixed so securely as to be completely integrated, enmeshed with me, and i could not tell the difference between the two.

during the day i dozed on the porch, wishing that the Thing would leave. but It wouldnt leave, and It started to make cries. Its cries were more penetrating, and i felt that the intention of the cries was to pierce my mind and break it into pieces. the main problem was that i didnt know what to do with the chickens. should i set them free? if i did, then foxes or the Thing would only eat them anyway, so I might as well eat them myself. i killed one of them and tried to eat it but i was disgusted and unable to eat it, so i set the others free and hoped they would become feral.

i went to the river and i took my clothes off and walked into the water. it was biting cold and i felt that it thrilled me. the presence of the Thing in the house behind me was stronger than ever, like an overpowering odour, and i began to wash it off. from behind me came the noises of the Thing screeching and banging against the door of the cupboard. but i was beginning to feel all things slip away as i scrubbed my body with earth and rocks from in the river bed. i knew that i was becoming completely clean, and that this process was what i had come here for in the first place, and that it was all happening the way that it was supposed to, perhaps even the Thing. i went further into the water so that i was swimming in order to resist the current and i submerged my head so that i could only hear the noises of the underwater in my head and my fingernails vigorously scratching my scalp. when i came out of the water and walked onto the other bank, the side of my home appeared to be a dream from a previous night, faded and indistinct. although i could tell that the Thing was still there, It did not bother me. It was part of another world. i wondered whether It would follow me? i would sense It if It did.

i was walking further from the places where people lived and further into the wilderness. my body was naked and i tried not to pay attention to it, but it was fastened to the natural surroundings, and they pulled at it. i remembered the dangerous howling of the wind and i thought that although there was no wind now that the nature was howling. but then i became confused; i could not tell whether the noises and calls were from the forest, or whether they were from the Thing chasing me. they sounded very like the thing, and now that i was paying attention once more, i knew that the Thing had broken free from the house, crossed the river, and was in pursuit of me. i could not be certain of what i felt, or whether i felt anything at all; perhaps fear, or perhaps the pumping of adrenaline. i began to run in terror or excitement. the branches of the trees were reaching out for me, and the long grasses were clinging and clutching and cutting at my legs which were becoming bloody with the slices of the long grasses.

the river wound all through these places, sometimes faster and sometimes slower, and i felt my thirst and that i might drink from it. but when i bent down and put my hands to the waters, i saw my reflection in the surface and it was laughing at me, and i could no longer move my hands. the reflection was holding onto my hands and grasping them with its own, and it was laughing at me. but i was adept beyond its knowledge, and i beat my head against its head and shattered its image into unlimited tinkling fragments. I would never be seen in reflection again, and I could be called invisible now. My arms were free and I came to my feet, but the thing was still following me. It was in the trees behind me, I could hear its rasping breath, and as I looked back I could see the steam of its lungs. I ran onward and heard it burst through the foliage. It would attempt to capture and eat me, kill me and tear my body apart like a chicken and consume it. But I knew the way now. I heard the roaring of a falls and I followed it until I came to a precipice where rapids ran over treacherous and sharp stones below.

When I came to the precipice I took my body off. I peeled it off my face first, and that was the most difficult part, because I had been wearing it so intimately for so long that it had become uncomfortable enough for the removal to be painful. But this happened in a fraction of a moment, in a flash of agony, and the rest of my body slid very easily down my neck and off my shoulders, arms, fingers, trunk, thights, calves, and toes. As the thing caught up to me I swiftly kicked my body over the edge so that it fell and was smashed below, and I leapt to the boughs of a nearby tree.

The thing howled in the rage and frustration for its thwarted hunt, and I began to laugh. It could no longer see me, but it turned to where my laughter originated, and it knew that I was there. And it started into space and made its noises. Its snout and jaws dribbled with strings of mucous and its enormous eyes wept, and I suddenly understood that it had not wanted to eat me, or attack me, or hurt me. It had tried to protect me, and now it was mourning.

But it was wrong. And none of that mattered now. Nothing could stop my laughter. I ran onward and left it all behind.

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