Someone once told me that sanity is fifty percent context and fifty percent perspective. The only thing differentiating us from the insane and out-sane is that “their” answers for what’s going on in the world aren’t in line with all the facts and figures that the rest of the world is looking at.
Like a machine that gets its ones and zeros all screwed up or a program that fails to run an integral line of code..
I was in a lawn chair that I’d picked up at some point, perched atop a pillar that I’d created from the surrounding rubble.
I sat reclined, arm behind my head, my eyes closed. A few hours ago I’d just sent a thirteen year old girl into some of the toughest monster territory in this part of the Europan wastes, armed only with a single axe and a single revolver.
And as I sat there, watching as she faced against a howling, muscular, beast of mangy fur and oxidized metal, one thought kept echoing through my head.
(“You’re. Not. Crazy.”)
I knew what I was doing. Everything happening right now was completely under control and totally not a mistake.
The kid was fine and if she wasn’t she was close enough that I could instantly make the save if I needed to.
This was just my way of hands on teaching, and even if it seemed a bit rough it was still leagues more gentle than my future-self had been.
Like I said I knew what I was doing, and I had in fact been doing similar for months. The only problem right now was that I was having one of those moments where I’m not exactly sure if I’m in my right mind.
There weren’t any particular thoughts that stood out as off to me. It was more of a feeling. This off-kilter sense that the way I was currently thinking wasn’t in line with the way I’d been thinking a few hours ago, or even a few minutes ago.
Which I guess is normal, when one is mortal and your frame of mind is fragile enough to be influenced by the neural chemicals coursing through the squishy meats inside your skull and the hormones in your veins, but not when you a man who is more energy than matter. More a concept than a being.
In that case, those kinds of little subtle shifts start to feel more dramatic, more worrisome.
Especially when you’re me and a solid chunk of who you are, turns out to tied to being highly destructive and objectively evil. In that case, such strange and unplanned shifts of mood start to feel intensely inauspicious.
…My current status now looks something like this….
|Title(s):||Partially-Omniscient, Partially-Omnipotent, Child of the Emptied Skies, Red Moon King, Great Hero|
|Affinities:||Time, Space, Fire, Water, Air, Earth, Metal, Light, Darkness, Life, Illusion|
|Abilities:||Entity of Black, Entity of White, Entity of Gray, Blanked Gestalt, Devilish Good Looks|
|Virtue:||Temperance, Fortitude, Diligence|
|Vice:||Lust, Wrath, Greed, Gluttony, Sloth|
Asides from the talent points, which I suppose were now finally high enough that even I have to admit it was a bit much, even if it was still nothing compared to the monsters that set up the system to begin with, there wasn’t much in the way of dramatic changes.
Just a few seemingly superficial changes to my abilities and titles. And odd absence of the alias tag on my “name” that makes me think that the system has apparently just the decided to rename for some reason…but still nothing particularly dramatic.
Then again, this isn’t about all the little dramatic changes to my being, it’s about the big subtle one. The profound alteration of the nature of my existence.
When the divine calamity struck me, I both did and didn’t die. The lightning struck, and I tried to strike back consuming and being consumed in the process.
“I”, the original me, disappeared, but there was “something” left in its place. The residue of my soul was filled with residues of the immortals and then refined a cosmic reaction of the divine energy present both in this world and in that power that had been chasing me.
That bit of me that remained after the rest was burnt away achieved a state of universal oneness that I can’t even really explain. For a brief span of time I was everything and everyone and everywhere.
I stopped being a person and was instead converted into something closer to a concept. Becoming an existence akin to friction, and entropy and gravity.
Then just as suddenly as the real me, the old me had been destroyed, the new me was also destroyed. Dying and being reborn, countless times, in all parts of the cosmos. Till finally a new aggregate existence was created.
One without form, or reason, or rationality. Egoless and pure like a newborn child. Built of all the impulses and dark hungers that made up my beast, the darker self that once powered half of my immortal being.
After the divine lightning destroyed the continent I’d been on, the bestial me would go on to consume and destroy several of the surrounding continents.
In the same way the planets and stars arose from out of the fiery chaos of the big bang, eventually something like a new consciousness would arise from within my newborn monstrous self.
One with the same memories and relevant thought processes as the man that once was. Close enough to the real Desmond that if you squinted and crossed your eyes, it was almost like he, I, “was” the real Desmond.
Except he, I, was now tied to the baggage of all the other fragmented consciousness that were dissolved within in that final lightning blast, and the all selves that I’d been before “I” had existed in the first place.
The Goddess had been right. I’d been a bit skeptical when she mentioned that there was a chance that at least a few of us immortals of Agartha were just heavenly immortals who’d been reborn.
Now I knew for sure that she right because I’d met my immortal self and let me tell you…he’s kind of an asshole. An antagonist for all that lives.
Even after going all zen and touching the very materia of fate and fortune, it seems that my luck is still my luck. While everyone else got to be former angels, former gods, former heroes and even a few former devils. My former self was that of quarantined monster. Something along the lines of an immortal virus. Think somewhere between biological virus and software virus. That former me wasn’t alive per se, but it “was” everlasting. Possessing a consciousness made up of countless of former victims. Old and evil enough that the bad guys your typical cosmic myth had agreed to work together with the good guys to seal our kind away.
I was anti-life. Which now that I was now fully in-sync with myself and all the portions of my being, meant that there would now always be a part of me that just instinctively yearned for an end to all life, everywhere, ever. (…Forever.)
Unravelling the very fabric of reality till it was brought to a clean and beautiful blankness and all existence could restart in its proper shape…(whatever the hell that’s supposed to be…)
On the upshot, at the very least I wasn’t crazy. I wasn’t out of control. This wasn’t some wolf-man situation. I knew what I was doing….(for the most part. And had the ability to chose to act or not act based on my own decisions.
So long as I kept on doing as I needed to and didn’t let the beast in me get to be agitated, all would be well.
All in all if I really wanted to lie to myself….(which I kind of do)… I could still pretend it was just part of the whole normal package.
The only real issues that I couldn’t ignore was the fact that, for whatever reason, simply holding a physical, human form as I was doing now, seemed to both heavily drain my magical reserves and agitate the monster in me.
And the fact that, I was now apparently omnipotent but couldn’t actually tell you if becoming so had made me weaker or stronger.