The Headache at the Edge of Yesterday

I’m doing away with the rules of my flash pieces for now. Been off track for far too long. Lots going on, but here’s a new something. Time to get back on track. Time to share something again. I’ll post here when I can.

-WR


I can’t sleep tonight. Been awhile, really, but I don’t count the nights anymore. Lost track somewhere around 742. It is what it is. I still see it out of the corner of my eye. The doctors said it would linger for awhile. Possibly forever. Forever.

I seem to pick up parasites like hitchhikers when I’m out there. Maybe it just feels like it. This one was different. Left its mark. Burrowed deep into my thoughts and planted itself in memories. A whisper across all my past. No one knows why they do it, but they’ve been latching onto us for as long as we’ve been venturing out into the cold. As long as we’ve been wandering the new wilderness. The Desolation is anything but.

It teems with life living in a spectrum of reality we can’t seem to pin down. It can see us. Touch us. Smell us. We are powerless to reciprocate. Sometimes it chooses an anchor point in one of us. A means of coming through to our side. Its only reference in our reality is our memories. A parasite riding on the back of the past and feeding off the passage of time.

On this side of things, we can interact with them. Like living our memories all over again, we find them and see them out of the corner of our eyes at all times across our past. Amorphous. Cold. Unsuited to our perception.

They remind us of things. Amazing and awful alike. Making us a feedbag of energy based on emotions multiplied by time. I never understood the math, but it’s some function of the strength of our emotional response and the distance in our linear concept of time from the event. Like a tick, they grow fat from gorging on our spent time. Or maybe they’re more like dung beetles. Feeding of our waste. Feeding off the shit we leave behind.

A pest when we deal with them early. World enders when we let them fester. A scalpel and a fistful of pills gets the job done. Like taking antibiotics when those still worked. Not a big deal unless you ignore it.

I ignored mine for awhile. Ended up inhaling half a star system. They got it out before the body count got too high though. It just…lingers a bit.

Keeps me awake.

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