The Gentlemen Nerds


Fear: Loss of Control

This one’s for Mark’s fear, mentioned in ep50.

by Michael Ashleigh Finn

You ever wonder what happens to the original psyche when a person is possessed, Doctor?
No, of course not. You’re a woman of science. You don’t believe in such things. To you, it’s explained away by misfiring neurons, or improper brain chemistry. You wear that little gold cross, and go to church, and believe in your own way…but not this, not the ugly side of it all, not possession. The Catholics even hide it away.
Let me tell you what happens to us, the dispossessed. We’re not evicted. We’re right here, in the middle of it. We watch everything it does with our bodies, watch it destroy our lives, like the one bit of sanity left peaking out of Charlie Manson’s brain, powerless to do a damned thing…no pun intended.
Actually, scratch that. I’ll lay odds that what led Manson to do the things he did was sanity. He’s probably stark raving sane.
Lord knows I’m not.
Here I am, peeking at what he’s doing to me, to my life, to you, from behind the curtains of my prison…my own mind, worse than a nutshell, worse than Denmark, worse than Pittsburgh …wrapping those curtains around me like a security blanket, sucking my imaginary thumb. Feeling claustrophobic.
I’ve tried breaking my prison. Tried shouting…the echo is deafening. Tried to reason with it. There’s never any answer.
After a while, you begin to think that maybe you’re the figment of it’s imagination, that you’re not real. You never inhabited this body, you just think you did. That maybe there’s a split personality developing, and you’re it.
Then, for a brief moment, you remember the feel of the sun on your face, the warmth of it, the smell of the air…sensation, period…and you know you weren’t always trapped. And with that realization comes the fear, and despair, and ZOOM! You plummet right back down into your own tiny hell, your little room with no real sensation, watching the Other take over your life again, just a man who might as well be strapped to a chair, eyes propped open, and watch something else have its fun with your body, your friends, your job…your wife.
And the insanity sets in for a while, and you start to wonder if you’re a fig newton of someone’s emancipation.
Ahem. Figment. Sorry. Started to slip, there.

Another little fright is the fact that the demon impersonates me well enough to go relatively unnoticed over the years by those around me. Peers, employees…even you, my dear.
Anything odd gets chalked up to personality quirks. Eccentricities of the rich. “People change as they get older.” It’s sickening to think that even my wife is capable of justifying some of the things it’s done. But then, maybe you’re no longer the woman I married.
Wouldn’t that be ironic? If most people you met were actually just walking bags of skin with a demon at the controls, the original occupants still trapped, forced to live their lives as a backseat passenger in a taxi, glass surrounding them? To be able to see the world pass by around them, and unable to interact, to even talk to the driver? Bang on the glass all you want, no one’s listening.
I mean, it’s not as if I’m privy to anything. I can’t read its mind. It doesn’t attend clandestine meetings with other demons out there. Yet, I’m convinced I can’t be the only person forced to live their life as a voyeur. There must be others, but how many? Just people in power, like me? Or others?
What if everyone’s like this? Hell on Earth, indeed.
Whoops, it’s kissing you good-bye. It seems the ambassadors are ready for that meeting to discuss the tariff.
We’ll talk later.
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