“I know yor in there an’ I know yor thinkin’, I can hear ya. Tho’ I must ammit that I’m not shore why ya been thinkin’ so clearly. Ya shuldn’ have s’much contr’l over ya min’…”
I didn’t know where I was, nor where the man’s (I don’t know what to call him yet), voice was coming from. As far as I could tell I was walking—not shuffling—unaccompanied down the paved sidewalk. I glanced down at my hands; they weren’t rotten, lacking color, yes, but no visible bones or festering lesions or peeling skin. Hands. I had two. How long ago was this memory? Memory? Is this a memory or has everything else been prescience?
“Reach out your hands,” I tell myself, “there is another world there, hidden behind this veneer of reality.” But my hands don’t lift, and that man’s voice continues in my head.
“Wha’ are ya doin’ jus’ starin’ at yor hans for?” Gedda move on t’ that store before i’dup an’ closes.”
A strange sensation washed through my body, almost like pain, then in an instant, like flipping on the lights, the library man was standing there before me, and behind him staggered a few undead abominations, and behind them, rising up out of the cold concrete were equally lifeless architectural failures—a crow landed on the head of one of undead. Befitting décor?
“Yes, I know,” I thought telepathically to it, hoping it would actually hear my words. It cocked its head and then took off again. The sun’s light shined dimly between the negative spaces.
I wonder if this story is where I end up when that man shuts me out of my own mind, as though this place is my ravished mind’s subconscious. My decaying id?
The library man; my hands are holding his face between them. “Oh, I did lift my hands,” I thought worriedly for a moment, but he did nothing. I am nothing to him, and after gazing into his clouded over eyes I realized there was nothing in him. An anger began to well in me. Why were we so different? Yesterday, air careened through is lungs; fear ran rampant through his heart; frantic thoughts of death plagued his mind. And now? Nothing. Empty, but somehow still capable of committing some instinctual act of murder and cannibalism. I? Though exteriorly dead, below I--
“What wor ya thinkin’?” the man bellowed at me, violently waving a bag of bread in my face. “This’s discount brea’, discount brea’ ya fool! There’re gonna think we’re commies now. An’ sommin followed ya here too! There’re gonna be snoopin’ aroun’ the place now.”
He raised his hand to back-hand me, but stopped. His eyes bore deep into me.
“I think this man murdered me,” I thought.
“Ya’ll never know wi’ya? Ya’ll never know. Know this ya cretin, I will make ya mine wholly, an’ when I do, I never lettin’ ya go. Never.”
I guess he held true to his threat.