Alexus floated in darkness, swimming in an endless void. For the first time in a long time, he felt dreadfully cold, almost to the point where he wondered if this was what death was like.
Not even the stereotypical flashes of memories zipped through the mind, and instead he felt empty.
“What are you doing?”The voices in the darkness asked him. Its voice echoing endlessly. “What do you want to do with your life?”
He couldn’t help but open his eyes and search for the voice.
“Why? Why go through so much trouble?” It whined.
Whispers continually spoke with no shame, probing in his heart, looking for a reason to put him down. He knew that this darkness wanted to know why. Why does he go so far to live so hard? Instead, he could just sit down and rot, living in a world that has lost all light.
“Where do you want to go?”
“I don’t know.” He replied, looking away unsure how to answer. What has he been doing with his whole life anyway? Nothing. That’s what he believed.
“Don’t you have a dream?”
“It’s alright. Why don’t you go to sleep? Let the darkness wrap you in its blanket.”
“But….I don’t want to either.” His heart weeps. He knew the voices were just a figment of his imagination. Just telling him to give up.
“Why do you resist me?” The voices asked over and over again. “Why do you not listen to my voice? Is it not a soothing lullaby that helps you go to sleep?”
“No, to me you are like a venom that taints me.” He replied. Even though the voice was partially right, He wanted to sleep. He wanted to stay where he was, unmoving, unable to step forward. He had lost his goal. His dream. His light.
“I know you, I’ve been with you every step of the way. From the dawn of your birth and till the end of your life.” Sweet whispers were like crack, an alluring possibility of someone there, hidden behind a dark cloud. Unable to see more than what is in front of him, it was a presence that would not disappear nor would ever go away.
“But who are you?”
Silence followed after, nobody answering his question, leaving him alone. Pondering his thoughts, thinking over if everything was just a dream, he floated in the darkness unable to find a way out of his hell.
“Come, we should stay in each other’s embrace to warm each other up in this dark place.”
He turned around, trying to find the voice. “I asked who you are? Do you know me?” Was it just his imagination? Who was this person that knew of his dark self? His loneliness that always craved to be understood.
“But you do know who I am, I’ve been sleeping patiently this whole time. Waiting, watching, helping you through the dark times.”
Alexus was confused. Was there someone he knew? He never knew who this voice belonged to. It did sound a bit masculine, but it still had that warm but dark tone of voice. Almost familiar that he could put his finger on it. Even still, did he not want to move? That was a lie. A lie created in his heart to hide the shame of his thoughts and his failures.
His pain was like small wounds stacked up over time, little-by-little unable to contain the hidden pain that seemed to unwrap itself. A false mask that he put on to smile at the world, but in reality sadness damped his whole self of being. He knew that he wanted to find a purpose in this life.
Why is he alive? Why does he exist and for what purpose?
This question has always stood in the back of the mind. Whispering in the ears, in his heart, in his soul, telling him….no…pushing him to walk again. To find the reason. To find a purpose that no one else can tell him, but for himself. Stumbling blindly without directions. He looked up and saw a shadow that stood, blocking his view of the bright light that he wished to go towards.
The jarring contrast between the shadow and the light, a painful stabbing that he had never felt so strongly. He knew what was in front him, almost out of his reach, but even still his feet shuffled forward towards the blinding harsh light. Each step was another dedication, a deep resolve in his heart, that he couldn’t give up. Even if it is a step, it tells him that it’s alright. He can do it. He refused to end here.
Gritting his teeth, he fought with his instinct and his voices that screamed: sleep here with me. My other half. My soul.
“No.” A voice from Alexus’s lips escaped with a hint of repulsion to sleep.
“Why?” The voice of sweet nectar asked him questioningly. Unable to understand why Alexus struggled. Why did he push so hard against it? “Am I not enough?”
“No,” Alexus spoke more clearly than before.
“Why not? I keep you warm by the fire of my soul. I can wrap you in the darkness to hide you from the world that hurts you. I can even make you feel no pain at all.”
“No!” Alexus yelled, pushing away the thoughts with volcanic force. “It is not enough!”
“Because you do not make me happy!”
“What a load of bullshit!” The voice thundering roared with such force, Alexus took a step backward in fear. “Is this all you can show me? Emotions? Feelings? Happiness?” It roared with rage. Thundering lightning shot forth above him in a battle frenzy. “Feeling nothing is BLISS!”
“No. I do not want to feel empty. Hollow with no emotions. Pain? I accept. I shouted because it tells me that I am alive!”
“Hahahahahahaha.” The voice laughed with a wild cackle until finally, it died down.
“After pain there is always relief and happiness waiting for me at the end.” Even though he spoke such words, he felt that this was the whole truth. Nothing just ends with sorrow, that was what he felt. No, what he believed and strived for.
The voice abruptly stopped laughing. Alexus could tell without even seeing this being face, he or she was scowling. Maybe he did hit a nerve, he didn’t know. In all honesty, he wondered where this all began.
“I will enjoy watching you struggle.” The voice spoke with a hint of a smile that cracked with knowing. “Whenever you fall. I will be there. Always watching, waiting for you to return.”
Alexus nodded. He knew that this was not the end. There were going to be more battles with the voice that he could not see but hear in his head.
“Yea. I’ll see you again. Though next time, I’ll give you a better answer to your questions.” Alexus replied. His lips were curling into a small smile. A small tingling in his heart told him he said the right thing. Even if he did not know all the answers to the question, he knew that it all began with himself.
A sigh of relief escaped his lips as he took another step. Yes, the step that told him that he was going somewhere. The step that reassured him as long as he was moving, he would surely find the answer. Sitting still would not tell him anything that he wanted to know. Giving up? He shook my head.
No. Such thoughts should be pushed out from Alexus’ mind. His life had just started. Why end when he just found one of his purposes? This was his first step, carving a small victory, telling him he had won a small battle that would spiral upwards towards an unknown future. A marker that nothing is impossible.
The worst battle is in himself, and that small victory meant he could.
“This dream is worth it.” He replied softly with a hint of happiness. A smile spreads out across Alexus’ face. The shadow that stood in front of him disappeared. Even though he looked down the long path, and saw many other shadows that hinder him, he knew that he was not alone.
The other is someone who has been watching, testing him, giving him dark thoughts but at the same time pushing him forward telling him not to give up, giving him a direction, a goal. A contradiction that confuses him, but even still this presence that tells him. Go.
“I promise. I’ll tell you my answers. Just wait.”
“A promise it shall be. I will always be watching and waiting for the answers that you will give me.” The voice laughed and disappeared.
Once again, Alexus was alone in the dark path that led him.
“I can do this.” Alexus sighed with dedication and took a step forward towards the unknown
future that was waiting for him.