Vignettes of Ruin and...

Gemini Deformis (Me and My Unforgiving Self)

In Wrath on May 31, 2011 at 8:18 am

Vincent has been sober for 105 days, 13 hours and seven minutes. Two years in a dog’s life, he says, gazing meaningfully at our beloved pet who lies draped across our laps, snoring loudly, oblivious.

Like it fucking matters.

You were drunk for five human years of mine.

I can’t work out how I feel about Intoxicatus’ retired servant. He still annoys me. His absence of common sense, his slow processing power and his awkward co-ordination frustrate me. When he eats, shoving it all in there while his eyes glaze over, tasting nothing, I feel illogically infuriated, like I want to smack him. Even though it is just Substantia looming, taking advantage of the holes in him. The way he always asks disdainfully, “this isn’t one of your films, is it?” as though accusing me of the crime of having personal taste that by being different, offends his. How he gets angry about the bloody weather if it’s not to his liking…

He is weak, he is weak! spits Deformis as, hanging out of me in a sort of attention-seeking way, her eyes blazing with vitriolic abandon.

Weak.

Is someone who goes through rehabilitation and emerges from the other side weak? A person who struggles with their addiction every day but chooses not to submit: is that lacking in character, in courage?

If he is weak, what am I?

Deformis ignores my question, fixated on Vincent with a wolfish bloodthirst. She is apparently a gift bestowed by the Gods of Vice. They sent her to keep me on the path to self destruction, to remind me why I am so devoted to them. It is difficult to disregard her, because she looks and feels exactly like me. When she is not whispering in my ear, she stands ahead of me, muscles tense and jaw set, the cool gleam of of her blade ready. It doesn’t matter where I am. A grey street, a warm home, a brightly lit shop- to her, it’s just another battlefield. Her weapons are many; cunning, manipulation, and words like poison barbs. She is my great defender. My vicious champion.

“Do you remember the time when we went to the park, and he didn’t want to get his paws wet, so he jumped, real daintily like! Over the puddles? Do you remember? Do you, hon?” Vincent is taking another trip down that same old worn memory lane that I have grown so sick and tired of. It almost isn’t his fault. Experiences floated past him, transient clouds that would dissolve when he tried to capture them, as he lay in the comforting swathe of stupor. The clearest recollections then become precious and he constantly repeats them, lest he forget them like he has all the others. The irony of it is that their preciousness deteriorates with each refrain.

Vincent is talking to the side of my face because I am listening to Deformis. I allow her to take me over. She is thrilling in my veins, a hot white pulse of cruelty.

“Hon? Do you remember? Why don’t you answer?”

I face him, turning my head sharply, feeling my expression crease into a sneer. He doesn’t know it, but it is Deformis regarding him with such dark intensity.

“I don’t answer because I have a pain in my fucking face answering your inane repetitive questions about the same bloody things, over and over, like a goddamn WASHING MACHINE. Of course I fucking remember. Not that you would ever let me forget the one thing you can’t! Because you never recall or appreciate the fact that I have been the one who has looked after him while you lay in a pool of your own vomit, rousing yourself occassionally to shower us with abusive insults. You never gave a shit about that dog, as much as you fooled yourself into believing you did! You never gave a shit about anyone but yourself!”

All Vincent can hear are words, but I can see her, Deformis, the Warrior for the Wretched, in all her fierce glory, slashing at him with knives, revelling in rapacious rapture.

Suddenly, I feel lighter. She has left my body. I can feel the vestiges of her smug satisfction, but I cannot share in her hurtful victory.

“I’m sorry,” I say, and I mean it. “I know you’ve been trying really hard…and have been so successful too! It’s amazing. And everything has been so much better…” I look around the room sadly and the artefacts of our time together seem to topple in upon us.

“I just lashed out at you because I feel suffocated in this little apartment. We need space. I feel trapped.” I explain. Weakly.

 He is angry, still stinging from the attack. I realise that he is covered in scars from her weapons, most of them still pink and shiny. Recent.

“It’s not the apartment that makes you feel suffocated. It’s ME. You feel trapped by ME!” He is shrieking at me. The volume and the pain in his voice surprise me. I can see it in his face. I feel crushed by my mercilessness and full of regret for making him feel this way. I am supposed to be the strong one.

I reach out and touch his hand.

Deformis rolls her eyes, sighs and sits back. She is not quite ready to leave, but she has made her peace.

For now.

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