Tag Archives: afraid

The Beasts from the Shadows

29 Aug

I thought I was safe. I thought the monsters from my past had stayed behind as I embarked on my college adventure.

I thought wrong.

Somewhere, in my heart of hearts, I knew the beasts were there. They were lurking in the shadows. Waiting. Mocking. Laughing at the false sense of security their temporary absence was filling me with.

They were waiting to fill my soul with dread. And I was foolish enough to think that I had escaped them.

No one escapes the beasts of their past. The timeline, after all, is continuous in both directions. I couldn’t have a future at all without having a past (although, I could run out of time ahead without losing time behind. That is the definition of Death). I couldn’t move forward without acknowledging these creatures I feared so much. I thought that I was just limited to acknowledgement. I wouldn’t have to face them anymore, I had done so for eleven years.

God, that’s how long it was, wasn’t it? Eleven years since the nightmare. Eleven years since it all began. It was incredible to think that it had been that long. Fear made it feel shorter.

You may have heard otherwise. Fear is supposed to elongate time. Yes, in small qualities. Sometimes, the adrenaline rush will allow time to freeze, hummingbirds’ wings to materialize, and bullets to sit still in the air. But life works on a system of equality and balance. Gain time to fear, lose it to paranoia. I have lost many hours.

Can I be blamed? Even now I hear them, sense them, fuckin’ feel them outside the comforts of my immediate presence. Taunting me, laughing at my fear. Those conniving little bastards are just waiting now that I know they have returned. Since the nightmares, I’ve been afraid of the waking world. They manifest themselves plentifully back home in Oviedo. My salvation was in dreams. At best, I could survive if they confronted me in the presence of another person. Others don’t fear my demons. They brush them off, step over them, treat them like they’re diminutive, and continue on with their day. I wish I had their strength. I wish the nightmares weren’t becoming realized in reality.

But I can hope, I can dream, that my fear won’t fracture me. I know better. The presence of the beasts leaves me mentally shattered and physically petrified. Especially when they’re big.

See, like normal animals, they come in many sizes, colors, hues, and potencies. I consider it Hells consortium. But I’ve managed to make my peace with the smaller ones. But this is mostly out of necessity. If I didn’t, then I wouldn’t be aware of the bigger ones. Those monsters, those slimy, disgusting creatures emerging from the swampy waters of the damned!

I learned that I couldn’t avoid them any longer, for I had seen a little one today. I was stepping off the track and from the unseen depths of the shadows, it bolted in front of me. My heart jumped. I knew conflict with my fears were to be inevitable.

“So then,” I said, “I see that you are here after all.”

It looked up at me in silence. It’s eyes staring into my soul. Those empty, glistening eyes; like glossed glass refracting my own likeness. Reflecting my fears.  It just sat and stared. My heart quickened and dove from my throat into my stomach at each rapid beat. I started to shake. The air around me seemed to thicken and darkness was closing in. It still just stared with its soulless eyes until I shattered the silence.

“Answer me! Where are the rest of you?! Why won’t you leave me alone?!”

And then, from the depths of its hellish throat, came its sole response before departing again into the darkness:

“Ribbit!”

“Seriously man, fuck frogs” I swore as I departed to my room.

I know these damnable amphibians are out there now. Maybe this time, when they emerge from the shadows, I will conquer the beasts and leave my fear with them as broken as their will to terrorize me.