To Dia: The test is to make sure I'm aware when I start going off the deep end, or that someone else can catch it early, without me fudging the details. That was always the intent, although I suppose I've had difficulty keeping people updated outside of it; the test is the priority though, and I cannot be allowed to slip up.
That said, sorry about not having many posts as I've basically been under siege on and off by (I assume) Proxies. It happens often enough anyone I tell probably thinks I'm undergoing some form of PTSD after the first couple of break-ins, and I guess the series of random contraptions and gimmicks I've left lying around don't hurt their case of paranoid delusions. Sly devils are usually waiting till I'm isolated, naturally, and disappear before help can arrive. Admittedly, I'm a bit impressed with their parkour...
I know what you're probably thinking. I'm not crazy, they were here. The vaguely head-shaped dent in my broom has confirmed at least once more than before.
BUT I'm getting off topic, because we're all here for the recurring nightmare. Except it's not exactly recurring, cause it's always different. I'm explaining this wrong, lemme try again.
Darren... oi vey. It's about him.
I think it's about the day he killed himself. I don't know if any of it's true though. It's confusing.
See, I'm basically following him throughout his day, although it jumps around, never linear. I'm not sure if he knows I'm there for most of it, though I feel like he's at least conscious of the whole time. I'm not following up close like I'm looking over his shoulder either, just kinda... there.
Before you ask, it makes about as much sense to me.
It's getting dark outside, though the streets are well-illuminated with lamps and the brights of cars. Darren is coming down the hill towards me on his longboard. The board rolls into something moving in the street, halting the board and sending him flying. He skids down the street on his side, bloodying up his arm and leg. He picks himself up, kicks the board up, and proceeds walking as if nothing happened, despite the blood dripping down his sleeve.
The lights disappear from the scene. It's pitch black, but then a white light comes out of the sky, bringing me to a new destination.
Darren is returning home, wearing a suit- uncharacteristic attire
for him. He takes a key out from under the doormat, unlocks the door,
enters, and returns minutes later with more casual wear and his
Fade to black. Bright light.
I guess it's a few hours later when it picks back up. I'm in an alleyway, the sun's shining, the courthouse is a ways away. Darren's walking away from the courthouse wearing that suit still. He gets into the back of a van and comes back out a couple minutes later. He looks both ways down the street, not looking at me, and walks down the plaza.
Fade to black. I can hear some rustling in the darkness. Bright light.
Darren is walking backwards out the door of a hospital room, the windows obscured. He pauses before completely exiting the door, as if savoring the view. Tears begin to roll down his face, but he doesn't make a sound. He dries his eyes and turns to look down the hallway.
Fade to black. Bright light.
I'm just watching him through a window for what feels like hours. He's eating lunch in a cafe I recognize, wearing his normal clothes again. Some guys I didn't recognize sit down in front of him and start chatting him up. I don't understand what they're saying but I feel like it's nothing good. There's an obnoxiously loud siren as a police car drives by. Darren shudders and turns away from the window as it passes.
Fade to black. The noises in the darkness sound familiar, though I can't quite place them. Bright light.
It's dark outside again, even darker than before. There's a chirping of crickets despite the industrial surroundings. There's a long wait, and I feel as though nothing is going to happen. I even turn to leave, before Darren arrives at the hospital on his longboard. He stops at the steps to take a deep breath, mutters something to himself for a minute and steps inside.
Fade to black. Bright light again.
He's in a jail cell, just waking up. He sits up in bed and turns his
head to face me. He takes a look at me, then looks down to the floor,
starts shaking his head a little before covering his face. I think he's
trying to hold back tears, but it skips at this point.
black. The rustling sounds something like a soft rain on glass, or trees swaying in the wind, or maybe even a card pyramid collapsing across the room. Bright light.
This is where things start getting scary, honestly, because even though all of the 'clips' before now are usually in a random order... this is always the part it ends on, without fail, although the details of it vary.
It's probably around midnight. Darren's on a bridge, wearing the scarf I gave him on the last Christmas of his life.
The bridge. The one we met on. Darren is leaning on the supports, as if waiting for something to arrive. He's playing with his bowie knife, cleaning out from under his fingernails or shaving his arm hairs as usual... and then looks as though he's about to cut himself, causing me to cringe. Before he goes through with it, something catches the corner of his eye. I'm relieved, until he looks directly towards me with a look of sheer malice across his face. He walks towards me, screaming angrily at the top of his lungs at me (I can't hear the words, it sounds kinda like we're conversing underwater), pointing at me in case I couldn't tell who he meant. He makes a number of gestures toward his arm- which I notice is now healed- as well as towards his stomach, all the while bouncing around and fidgeting uncontrollably. He brandishes the knife once more and makes a motion like he's about to stab me, but stops in the air- sometimes it seems like he stopped himself, others like something stopped him. He slowly released the knife from his hands, a look of defeat upon his face. He turns away and leans on the railing, saying something else, although I feel like he was asking rhetorical question. He turned his head to look at me one more time, a smile on his face.
Before I could react, he kicked off of the railing and descended towards the water. I reach out for him, but to no avail. A white-hot flash of light and I wake up with a pounding in my head.
That has, more or less, been how the dream has gone for months.
But you want to know why I bring special concern to it now?
For the past week, that final image- Darren's descent- has had an additional split second, like deleted footage... one extra feature that confuses, sickens and most importantly horrifies me.
I did reach out successfully.
I don't know what actually grabbed him- and I don't think I ever want to know- but those weren't human hands.