Masks to cover their mouths, and scrubs to protect their garments, doctors and nurses hovered over me. The doctor to my left had released a liquid from the IV.
This white liquid pinned up my vein and spread through my body. My mouth grew dry and I could taste the liquid. I felt a new-found sense of relaxation consuming my body. The drugs were strong, and I was being sent into a forced sleep. My skin felt as if an army of red ants had clung to each dermis, peeling back each layer and digging themselves deeper into me. I felt the sting resonate through my fingers, up my arm, and pound through my body. My face had finally gone numb and my eyes began to close. One final stream of light made its way through my lids before I fell into a deep sleep.
I was alone in my mind, but I was greeted by shadows and foreign images that were brought forward by a Nitric oxide dream. I was thrust into an empty space, received by blankness and strange visions. A figure appeared, a foreign apparition that seemed to walk towards me.
The apparition was a foreign figure, with dark eyes and a fair complexion, he held vagueness of familiarity. His light hair shifted in front of his brow as he moved, and he watched me. It felt as if he were an omnipresent being, sent to observe me and to take note of who I was and who I had become. It felt as if he could read my mind, and somehow know my thoughts before I would think them. A sense of unsteadiness began to stir in my stomach. Pushing aside his current appearance, I connected the pieces and realized that I had known him. He was not an arbitrary vision but he was planned and waiting for me. He was an apparition of the boy that I had killed, the boy I had once known and resented and tried so desperately to remove. He was a blackened being that filled each pool of light with darkness. I wanted to reach out and explain myself, and I wanted to take hold of him and show him places that he had not yet explored. I desperately wanted to taste his heart and bask in the familiarity of a darkened soul. He would not speak to reason, and he would have not understood my decision. He was 19, he was unexpected and untainted, and he was me.
I woke to the sound of mechanical beeping. Lights flashed around me as I opened my eyes. Slowly coming into focus, I noted the beige wall and glanced upwards toward the ceiling. I was laying in a hospital bed – arse bare and my front covered by a blanket. Doctors roamed about the hallway glancing inside the room every now and then. The intravenous in my hand, I fell back to sleep.
I could not forget the dream that I had during surgery. Why had I dreamt of the past? It had been years since the thought had crossed my mind, and it had been time since that part of my life was active. As we age, we shed the parts we no longer need. Removing the skin of past atrocities we molt into a new form, a clean being untarnished by past history and a readiness for new light and change. I saw a part of me that I had left to die and until now, I thought it had.
I was jolted by the sudden shift of the metro tram, we had come to a stop. The blackness of the tunnel reflected my image onto the glass window. Foreign colored lights created a mysterious radiance along the side of the train, and the conductor interjects from an overhead speaker. “Attention passengers, we have come to a stop because of a delay at a further station”. “Fantastic,” I think to myself, I will most definitely be late for work. I look around at the affected passengers. Distracted by novels, music, or their phones, dozens of commuters occupy their delay with distraction.
Leaning my head against the metro divider, I shut my eyes. I could not turn it off, I could not stop my mind from wandering and thinking about the boy I had left behind.
The scent of smoke and bergamot has clung to my skin, and I breathed in the foreign smell and let it take effect. The purple bruise on the nape of my neck tingles at the slight brush of my scarf. We pride ourselves on the glamour of social stability – The regulation built in a heteronormative landscape that others had longed to achieve. It is often found that deviation from the norm, brought forward judgement and ridicule, and it is through these negative actions that we inspire others to follow in tow and attain a false sense of security. Thrust back into a memory that I had avoided, I began to think of the people in my surroundings. Had these people let go of pieces they no longer needed? had they killed off a part of themselves that they no longer wanted to become?
There comes a time in which we aim to avoid our demons and to pass off innate hatred as growth, and to the point where we become the ghosts that we have desperately tried to avoid.
That boy was a demon. He held the pieces of me that pushed me into a mental status separate from reality. Acting on emotion, he built walls that could not be taken down. With anxieties and contusions in the mind, he was rash and made decisions with permanent consequences. With time, I had separated myself from him. I could stare into his black eyes and note the similarities but understand the differences. He was the Mr. Hyde to my Dr. Jeckyll, and I refused to let him come back.
I was looking for a reflection in a city of brick walls. I could not see myself. It was as if we lived in a city of angels, but all we could find at every corner was the devils. With torn wings and tarnished halos, these dissident beings were left to fend or to die. I was in a mood, tired and exhausted it had seemed like every smile and laugh sent me closer to the edge of insanity.
I did not know what that dream meant, and I was not ready to find out.