Wed. Dec 8th, 2021
Dan Debuque
Assistant Arts & Entertainment Editor | DD717545@wcupa.edu | + posts

Dan Debuque is a fifth-year English major with a minor in Film Criticism.

I awaken in the same room the presence overcame me. No, not in. Above. 

Orienting myself, I realize I am suspended in the air, as if I’ve been affixed into the ceiling. I attempt to move, but none of my limbs respond. In fact, nothing responds. Running down the checklist, I find my sight is the only sense that hasn’t left me. So this is what I am now? A pair of eyes? Before the absurd panic of that idea sets in, I notice something on the bed below me. It’s… me.

Or my body, at least. It/me lays splayed out face down on the bed. My brain begins to fire off a barrage of attempts to explain what I’m seeing. Perhaps it’s astral projection? Lucid dreaming? I hardly begin to sort through my half-remembered sleep terminology, when my attention darts back to the bed. At some point, my body had sat upright.

Overwhelmed by the disorientating sight of my body’s sudden independence, I attempt to call out through some sort of yelp, only to be reminded that no sound escapes my mouth. My former body doesn’t respond regardless, its back turned towards me. I examine it, hoping through pure sight, I can form some sort of rational explanation. Instead, the body sits nearly motionless, starting at the far wall ahead of it. I watch. I lose sense of time. And when it speaks, I hardly register it as reality.

“I know you’re there. Back there.”

I jolt at the sound of my own voice, the dissonance suddenly causing me to feel a deep wave of dysphoria. The voice continues, unsympathetic to my attempts to process, “I cannot give you back your — my body. I’ve been where you are now for… too long. That’s too much time for anyone to handle. Too much time. I am… sorry.”

And it does sound sorry. But it does nothing to comfort me as I watch it stand and walk away from me. I attempt to follow, just as I was once followed, but nothing responds. Instead, I feel myself pulled away from my room, further and further from the familiar, and into an endless white void. Looking around, I realize my room is the only tangible structure in the expanse. And yet, I still am moving through it. I watch my room grow smaller. I watch my body shrink away into a white canvas. I watch everything turn into nothing.

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