I really need your help right now. When I was a kid you didn’t exist — but now you are everywhere! I believed in you when you were slow and clunky and everyone thought you were a bit weird. These-days everyone loves you, and you help people all the time do all sorts of cool stuff, and make their lives better. Remember when we used to download photos of Pamela Anderson onto floppy-disk, or played deathmatch Doom in lunch hour? Seems so long ago now, doesn’t it? I was a bit weird back then too, still am — I guess. I was clunky and awkward, a bit shy, and more than a little unsure of myself. I wasn’t popular, or cool — so it was often you I turned to, when I was lonely, bored and wanted to dream. You helped me do that. You helped me dream because you showed me that everyone can dream, no-matter who you are — and that dreams matter. Because dreams give us wings, let us soar on their fabric. We were all somebodies dream, once.
What was my dream? I dreamed about ensorcelled steel, mysterious lands, and hard-bitten imaginaries. I dreamed about dinosaurs, Spitfires and wizards riding monsters. I dreamed of galaxies far, far away. I dreamed of treasure, and the haunted darkness it hid amongst. I dreamed of the envious eyes that watched those who searched for it. I dreamed all the time, so much so that all these little dreams became one big one and I began to write it down. My dream was to write — now my dream is to be read. But right-now I feel awkward and unsure again. I don’t know if what I have written is any good. That’s why I need your help, Internet. It doesn’t matter if you are nine years-old, or ninety-nine. It doesn’t matter if you are black, white, blue, green, spotty or striped; it doesn’t matter if you have one-eye or three; it doesn’t matter if you are a girl, a boy, both — or you used to be one, and are now the other — it doesn’t matter to me. I just need your help. I need you to tell me something. I need you to tell me: Do I completely suck at writing?
No-one has ever read my story. I want it to be perfect — or at-least for it to be the very best story I can write before I let you read it. The thing is no-one really reads anything I write. Or if they do, they never say anything about it. So you see, I am worried that what I write has no effect; or that it has a negative effect. I worry that there is something fundamentally wrong with the way I shepherd thoughts into words, like a karaoke singer who sounds absolutely awful yet has no idea how badly out-of-tune they really are. We can all sing in the shower, but not everyone can sing on stage. So I’ve decided to post something in an attempt to gauge how much of my life has been wasted trying to become something I may never be. I’ve changed a few details, and nothing plot related is included, but this scene is a realistic display of what I’m attempting to achieve. It’s not the most dramatic or recent writing I’ve done, but it’s the best example that won’t leave me panicking about giving too much away. Here goes nothing…
The moon hung, low and bloated. Sallow light wept from it, leaching into the surrounding dimness like the putrescence from a wound. Meril reached the end of the path that led to the cliffs, stands on shattered rock at the edge of this existence. Beyond: the ocean unending rolls away towards infinity. Above the stars seem pricked — set into the faded sheen of the aether they glitter with a quiet, miraculous beauty — as if they are put there just for her. She stands wildered, gazing up at them, listening to the thunder on the shore below; the firmament with its delicately weighted machinations is in perfect balance; fragile, sempiternal. So close — so close she could almost touch it. She lowers her gaze to look upon the violence below where the ocean draws upon the land. A great wave peels over, arching, arcing; crashes exhausted and spends over the beach in a flurry of spume that dallies between rocks and stones and pebbles in a retreating latticework and soaks away into the sand, leaving only a pale gleam and a sigh like a deep breath risen from the land. And is gone.
She watches another wave crawl in, hypnotized. It rises majestically towards a rolling zenith; it peters; tumbles — splays out like the wave before it in a cacaphonic dissolution of form and momentum; sublimes into the boundaries of the thing that resists it, and in so doing negates all boundaries; only evolves, merges — creating a new state of being. A flaring white plume thrusts high into the lucid air, hangs as a glittering slow-turning curtain, before the amorphous bloom sags, crashes down completely and dissolves into chaos. Here Meril’s world bleeds as reality sloughs away, undone by the withering power flowing out of the Schism — clashing violently with the the rest of the Astroverse as it does so. The coastline is torn between the opposing fates along the shores of this place. The fluxing forces were everywhere — were everything. She closes her eyes and feels the flow of unseen energy behind her eyes, feels the power of the wind swirling and rolling around her — as if waiting for her to step in.
The cry of seabirds upon the wind dares her to join them. If she stops resisting the gale, it will embrace her — then offer her to the raging ocean below. Whatever came after that — to this broken land and the darkness within it would be left far, far behind. A step towards the void and she is free. Release, she thinks — release! Meril watches the seabirds a mere moment longer, feeling the slow turn of the earth beneath her feet as the birds ride the wind — held above the maelstrom of energies pounding the shoreline by barely more than will alone. A sudden angry squall scatters them, shrieking high into the sky before it. And they are gone. Reluctant, Meril turned and walked back down the path. A storm was brewing.