I am split.
There are two of me.
I can feel, see, hear from both of me.
It is a strange sensation. I cannot fully explain it. It’s not a clean split, sensations from both of me blend and merge, but they are still distinct.
It happened gradually. I collapsed crying, and as my vision was blurred by the tears and the world swam away, things were as normal as they ever are in these places. But when the world swam back, both of me was in a new place.
I’m in a tank. A water tank or a fuel tank or a bunker, I’m not sure. It’s disused, converted. It’s painted a vivid blue that reminds me of an egg I saw once in another life. There is a window, but on the other side is just darkness. There is a microphone, but it does not appear to be connected to anything. There isn’t a door. Perhaps there is a hatch in the roof but I cannot see one, and there’s no way to get up there.
I’m in a car. It drives itself. It is a sunny day, and this is a coastal road. I can feel the wind in my hair and smell the salt breeze. It is a convertible. My speed is not appreciable, it is a leisurely pace. A Sunday drive.
I am in the tank and also in the car.
I am in the car and also in the tank.
I am in both places.
I am in neither place.
The world makes no sense and I don’t know what is even going on anymore. I flip through my journal (both of me has it, it is the same in both places) and find no mention of splitting in this manner. It must be new.
I wonder what She will have to say this time when She appears. I wonder if She’ll pay me notice. I wonder if She’ll have answers. I wonder if we may speak this time. But perhaps not. If I am in two places at once, surely I must be some sort of spectral manifestation of a once-living but now-dead soul, travelling the planes of existence in search of a final resting place, and surely such a being must be invisible most of the time and completely incapable of interaction with those that inhabit the planes of the living which he treads.
But nothing is sure, is it? Nothing ever is. Sure is a lie, and maybe never dies.
She is here.
Suddenly, with no fanfare, with no whisper of opening doors or displaced air, She is here.
She is in my blue tank, at the microphone.
She is in my car, driving it.
She is in both places. I am in both places.
She is both places. She is all places. She is all. She is.
I reach toward She timidly in the hope that I may feel her warmth, if only for a moment. If only to reassure myself that She and the Me’s are real.
I cannot reach.
I cannot reach.
I cannot move closer.
She sings of fated lovers connected by the red string of love. She and Me? She doesn’t believe in such nonsense. The world doesn’t work in that way and to worry about such things will surely tire you out before your time.
She sings of the day She’ll meet the fated lover, if such a thing exists. From that day, She will never feel weak again, and strongly go forward towards any challenge that may come. She will conquer worlds from that day forward. Will She be a saviour or a destroyer? A light for all or a dark-winged harbinger of ends? I wonder, and I am afraid.
Both of She looks towards both of Me. Not towards. Through. The face seems to suggest that She knows what it is I saw. There is a darkness in the eyes. On that day, I now know, all will love She and despair.
She sings of being kissed. She was seen being kissed. She demanded to never be kissed again.
She sings of lingering on the event horizon of a kiss for eternity, forever together, never alone again. Her motives are as confusing and terrifying as this place in which I find myselves.
Love does not end, She sings. Even when an end appears to have come, the love continues, the moment of the final kiss lasts for eternity and if you choose to, She sings, you can remain in that event horizon forever, never aging, never dying, never moving on. Stopping time. Ending universes. A love worthy of that is something I cannot fathom.
Should you choose to advance, however, She sings, the long dark night will not last so long, and soon a new dawn will break. Belief in oneself will release you from your prison, She sings.
The past is a burden, it blocks us from becoming what we truly ought to be, it is like a straitjacket firmly locked to a sinking ship, She sings, and only by exploding the past and taking the critical step into the future can we survive that which is to come.
I do not follow. I cannot understand. I feel that there is a profound truth in her words but I cannot suss it out, it does not present itself to my feeble minds. I am hit by a wall of silence.
I focus again, push aside my thoughts for the moment. She remains with both of Me but she is silent. In the tank, she grips the microphone with all her might. In the car, she holds the steering wheel so hard her knuckles are white.
She closes her eyes.
The car is on a straight bit of the coastal road. There is no traffic. Why not close one’s eyes for a moment?
The tank groans. From above, water starts to flow in at an alarming rate. Before long, She and Me are up to our waists in water. She makes no move to escape and I can see no means of escape.
She disappears. She is gone.
The water continues to flow into the tank.
The car continues to drive, but now it does not steer itself. It hits a bump and veers towards the sea. I plummet with the car as it falls to the crashing waves below. In the tank, the water is up to my nose. I do not float. I cannot swim. Both of Me sink beneath the waves. I gasp. I drown. I die.