The Oracle: Chapter 1

He stood before the open door leading into his bedroom. He had been walking with intent to retire into sleep when a sudden peculiarity had reverberated through his mind. He had stopped to try to make sense of the strange not-rightness of the feeling, and when he could not manifest its source he began to challenge out its essence. The intangibility of the imposition had a certain flavor, a crushing, smearing, nauseating, yet somehow sweet suggestion of sensation. Try as he might he could not understand what was happening. He felt ill and started toward his bed again. The orders to commence flowed to his body, and he felt for a moment the illusion of movement. It made no sense; he felt unimpeded, he felt motion, but he did not move. The doorframe seemed to be pulling slowly away from him as through the room was being stretched, watching it he felt as though he were watching distant clouds slowly roiling through the sky. The movement could not be affirmed at first, the motion too minute to mark; but the stretching grew rapidly more pronounced. He realized noting the change that it was not the distance between his body and the door which was increasing. It was the distance between his mind and his body. He was terrified, certainly this was death.

The world looked as though he were looking through the backside of a scope; as though there were a dark growing tunnel between the surfaces of his eyes and that whatever-it-is that perceives the sight. In a final frantic effort to preserve his mortality he threw his arms in front of him to latch on to substance. He saw, or believed he saw, his hands fly outward stretching disgustingly to grasp onto the rings of his pupils. His fingers vainly grasped onto the interior ledge of his eyes, only to be stressed out of shape; pulled as though he had reached his hand into a black-hole. In recoil to the grotesque display he pulled on his unfeeling arms, and saw the long abstract peachy-brown tubes break off as he continued falling; downwards to him, backwards to his body.

He looked down to see the tragedy of his arms, but there was nothing there; neither arms nor body. The image of his arms elongating out and breaking off flashed involuntarily through his mind. As those appendages had launched outward they looked as though they had been made of some fleshy clay, undulating as though some energetic liquid was rippling just under the surface of his earthen skin.

The substance of the darkness around him began to shift. The space around him began to take the structure of a large open cavern made from the same rippling clay-substance that had composed his arms only a moment ago. The cavern had no discernible shape as he floatingly fell through it, the distant heaving surfaces changed form and color too rapid to portray any such meaning. As he fell it was as if there was no substance to impact, the more he fell the more distance became apparent below him.

The churning of the colorful realm around him continually grew more violent.  The shifting substance began, slowly at first, to develop a complex network of currents. The wall before him began to approach. The side of the cavern was bulging out as though a large rotating sphere threatened to break free. As everything grew in intensity the space around him collapsed and the sphere, now considerably larger started to roll over and consume everything it touched. The ball rolled towards him, he was reminded of the strange crushing, smearing, sensation that had initiated this hell. He tried to escape, but he was powerless to invent any form of locomotion in this strange place. Just as the ball was threatening to seal him in the dark crease between it and the substance it was devouring, he heard a faint voice or felt the imposed presence of an inviting entity. Something about the tenderness with which he was invited felt malign and treacherous. He abandoned it and was rolled into the ball.

He was not crushed, even as the surface approached him it had seemed solid, but as impact drew near there was no discernible substance, he was surrounded by innumerable pulsating points of color at indistinguishable distances. Despite his now revolving movement and the slightly different scenery, there was nothing else to indicate the event had happened. This strange new motion did herald a change, he now felt a hurdling speed and felt his trajectory to be aimed at a dark spot in the distance. As he continued to accelerate, he thought he could make out familiar structures in the impending dark. He was approaching fast now, and with a shock of sensation he suddenly found himself standing in a dark yard. There was the subtle highlight of a brown fence against the backside of a two-story house, its light stucco contrasting against the dark purple sky. There was a light in one of the blinded windows that shifted as though there were someone walking near it. A tree top could be seen over the roof of the house. The leaves of the tree were illuminated by what must have been a streetlamp on the front side of the house. The scene rang with familiarity. He felt certain he had been here before, but could not bring any memory to hint when or where. Before he could gather more than these faint impressions he was suddenly standing somewhere else.

He had no memory of leaving the yard, but now he was standing inside a room. Inside the room he noticed the wood paneling on the wall and the two bookshelves, but his attention was commanded to a man, his head lying next to a toppled lamp on the desk; his visible right eye open and stationary. His parted lips were mashed down by the weight of his head into a dark pool of blood that ran down the slight incline of the desk, dripping into a much larger pool on the floor around the feet of the man and his chair. As he looked at the corpse he noticed the parted flesh of the section of visible throat. He felt that he was going to retch, but no sooner he felt as though some long elastic tether had finally strained to its end. He was yanked with a near instantaneous violence from reality through the colorful-sick realm, and felt himself snap back into his proper place just behind his eyes. His body was lying on the floor in front of his bedroom door.

He felt that an eternity had passed, that he had seen more than he could remember. Even now the few things he could recall were retreating into a haze. It was not long until all he could remember were the things he had recollected in the few moments after he had awoken. He did not trust his own reality; he lay on the floor waiting to be wrenched away from it. He remained where he was, afraid to attempt motion. He moved his head and saw his body. Slowly he stood, but still it was too quickly. His head throbbed and his vision dimmed, he braced himself on the doorframe. Still he felt himself fainting and he slumped back to the floor hoping to retain consciousness. The dimness passed and he weakly crawled into his room, up into his bed where he remained anxiously awake for the rest of the night.

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