victim of circumstances

It's not my fault.

People think it's a bit suspect that I say that more often than other things. But it's true. I'm not the one who thrust me out on the street with nothing more than my shattered dreams and the clothes on my back. Yes, it's very melodramatic. I don't care. People also think it's a bit suspect that I have a vocabulary. He's supposed to be stupid, isn't he? Not a brain in his head? Well, maybe I like to wax poetic sometimes. Maybe people ain't always what they seem.

So when I tell you it's not my fault, I want you to know I mean it. So when I lift someone's wallet, I want you to understand that even though I'm doing it, it's not my fault. I didn't choose a life of crime. I'd stop it if I could. I don't think it's right or anything--my parents raised me to hate crime, after all--I just have to. The choice to do otherwise has yet to present itself.

Sometimes they ask if I want revenge. If I'm trying to revenge myself on the society that did this to me, so that's why I steal and lie and cheat and otherwise 'make a nuisance of myself'. I tell them no, no I don't. Why should I? I love this place.


a startling discovery

Ever since my clock broke, I've been unable to keep track of time here in the lab. The sun never reaches my sanctum, my little shrine to science, and there's not even the constant sound of the clock keeping pace to give me the faintest sense of time. I don't know how long I've been here. Hours? Days? It must be days by now. I feel exhausted. But it eats at me. I'm so close to something important. I can feel it.

I must sound like a madman, but I swear by whatever is holy, the universe is actively changing, just to prevent my discovery. Any time my mind begins to wrap around something and it seems as if it must work perfectly, something goes wrong. Something changes. Some problem that never existed before arises, and I am forced to start anew. Progress is slow and tedious, if it even exists. Every time I find out about some new problem, I learn that it's been this way for all of history. There are scientific laws. Some of them bear the names of famous scientists.

I'm not an absent-minded man. I've studied these scientists, I've looked in the books that the laws are in before, and I swear they were not there before. I discover these laws as if for the first time, only to discover that someone else discovered them for years ago, that it is an elementary principle of science, that I somehow never learned in my studies. And before I have discovered these things I know that it was merely not the case.

Somehow, here in my lab, I alone am able to recall a time before such laws existed. I am not impervious to the ill will of the universe, but I am impervious to the wool it pulls over the eyes of the rest of the scientific community. I continue my study, knowing that perhaps it is all in vain, and suddenly I realise I have forgotten what it is I am looking for.


random and humourous asides!

We interrupt your regularly scheduled angsty microfiction pieces to bring you A LINK TO ANOTHER BLOG. Also you should read toothpastefordinner. It is good for you!

It is mostly images and random thoughts and generally speaking is probably the antithesis of this blog, which is mostly words and purposeful thoughts which may or may not have anything to do with anything that have ever happened. I am mysterious like that. (The Sprite thing I do not deny, but I cannot give sworn testimony to my sobriety at the time of the Spritewriting.)

the limits of a distant sky

They tell me the sky is open, limitless, free. I would be glad to agree with them, except I cannot find it. Ancient mariners navigated by the night's stars, but I cannot see them. No clouds, no rain, no wind, nothing. I have travelled in quest of the sky for months and still it eludes me. I cannot find it. Everywhere I go, no matter how far from civilisation or how exposed, I feel as though a cage is closing in on me. I can even see it at night, little pinpricks of light coming in through the bars. There is no time I feel more desperate for the sky than at night, as I wander aimlessly, staring up, feeling my breath come short. The more I pace the more restless I feel.

I can only sleep when I have finally and completely cut myself off from the light. Still I dream of the sky, and when I cannot see it, sometimes I can imagine that there is still a sky outside. The irony has not eluded me.

When I turn my back on the stars, I can finally see them.

In my dreams.


the wrong character

It was one of those nights that everything was cinematic and symbolic. It was raining. It was dark. Even the city lights blurred like they do in pictures, making it all look unreal and unclear and most of all uncertain, just like the cinematic effects do.

She was even dressed for pictures. She never dressed like that, but tonight she was dressed for a cinematic confrontation, beautiful but deadly. I found myself in a suit--and I never wore a suit--and I looked good in it--but none of my suits looked good on me. I had a fedora to keep off the rain, and an overcoat, and I'm not sure I'd ever seen an overcoat that wasn't a prop for a high school play. In my hand I was carrying a briefcase. I didn't know the significance, but I knew it was important.

"So, is this it?" I asked as I entered conversational distance. I knew she was waiting for me, though neither of us had arranged the meeting and I didn't know I'd find her here. We'd never talked here before, as far as I knew.

She blew out a stream of cigarette smoke--even though she'd quit smoking a few weeks after we met. "I guess it is," she said coolly, as though the steady beat of the rain falling were actually the constant tick-tick-ticking of film reels rolling away.

I stepped forward, my face grim--for some reason I was aware of the grimness of my fate. She was perfectly lit, and I sensed that I must have been as well. "I brought this for you." I held up the suitcase. She nodded. I approached and set it next to her. "That's everything. We're done."

"How about you hold me one last time? For memory's sake." Another stream of smoke.

I embraced her, glad for one last thing by which to treasure her memory, glad that the moment was so cinematic and otherwise perfect for memory. Then, with cinematic realisation, I felt the knife in my back.

"Sorry, Mason," she whispered in my ear, then released me and backed away. I watched her drop the knife on the sidewalk--it must have fallen in slow motion--and then watched her lean against the building and smoke her cigarette. She watched me slump to the ground next to the knife, watched as I struggled to stand up, struggled to say something. She watched as I wondered whether the police could make a chalk outline on the sidewalk. She watched as the light left my eyes, so I couldn't watch as she walked away.