Upside Down

I’m upside down
My feet in the air,
Head on the ground.
Wasn’t supposed to be this way.
Didn’t realize I was that attached.
Didn’t see she was my center.

Now I’m detached,
Free falling with no clue
What to do, to chase or wait?
But to give utterance is villainy
For I am the villain, I am a destroyer
And I am destroyed.

You were my glue. You kept me together. Then you dissolved, and you dissolved me with you, because I made you my world.

And it doesn’t make sense.
I screwed myself again.
And it’s empty.
Upside down.
Alone.

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Runner High

So I ran again today. I wasn’t going to because I ate disgusting things for lunch and felt funky. Then I decided I was going to run. And I did.

It’s day two. Just day two. I ran a ridiculous amount. I ran far better than Monday. My lungs burned as they expanded. My legs ached. My knee hurt. My vision tunneled. My gut rebelled. I ran.

I ran past the cute girl with the adorable dog. I ran past the adorable couple with the dog. I was passed by a lot of people. On bikes. Running. Walking because I got something lodged in my shoe.

I returned home, dying. I didn’t sweat because it was too cold. I took off my Last Light shirt, the shirt that made me think, “I’m a Guardian. I’m a Titan,” the entire run. I jumped in the shower. I ate. I ate more than I should have, but at least it was lean, healthy, clean.

As I started to relax, as the shower and the food kicked in, my mind exploded. I did push ups. I bounced up and down. I wrote. I read. I lived. Oh how I lived because of the life giving exhilaration of running.

I bothered the crap out of my friends because I feel like a puppy without training. Aside from using the toilet. I totally do not go on the floor.

Oh how I hurt, how my calves are sore, how my lungs still suffer, how my head swoons, my breaths are ragged, and I am alive. I feel alive.

I miss this. But I also hurt. I hurt so so bad. Which usually makes me sleep so so good.

There was a light upon a hill I could have chosen to ascend

There was a light upon a hill I could have chosen to ascend.
But I said no, and saw the cave, and down into darkness I went to blend.
Nothing good was in that cave, or so I have surmised,
For it was slimy and slippery, it hissed and it howled, and there was no sunrise.

Into darkness I plunged myself, hiding all my fears,
When people from the hill reached out and said, “Come play and have your fill.”
I told them to go fuck themselves, but not in so many words,
With the shrug of my shoulders, an indifferent grunt, they got the hint and were gone.

They visited time to time, and though I thought I would be fine, I’m lonely here, on my own,
In the darkness, which I patrol. I thought I wanted them, I need them so bad,
But in this cave I dwell, I remain, I sit, something pathetic, something so sad.

Fix Me

Why don’t you fix me?
I can’t help myself.
Why don’t you fix me?
You know I’m fading still.

Fix Me, Icon For Hire

Gears ground together, poorly lubricated and having accumulated much dirt in the grimy underbelly of Torzikov. The once beautiful brass finish of his plated body was now tarnished from the soot and extreme heat being so close to a lava river. His left eye died long ago, the blue illumination which he perceived through now a blackened, useless orb. Several occasions caused him to want to pluck it out, but while his strength failed due to leaky fluid veins, the mount for his eye was as strong as ever.

He struggled through the compact tenements to his master’s workshop. He never understood why she remained down in the pits, or why she refused to fix or dismantle him for parts. With AI still intact by some strange, machine god miracle, he asked several times. Every time, though, he was dismissed to fetch parts, or she left the room never to bring up the subject again. There was some glimmer in her eye, he thought, when she looked at him. It was equal parts fondness, hatred, and pity.

The workshop took up the entire bottom two floors of a building. Each building lifted up into the black sky, becoming the foundation for the city proper some hundred feet up. Structural supports would creak under the strain of holding up the nobility, the people of means, and he knew master could go up there at any time. She had a pass, there were petitions from hopeful patrons so that she would make them great works of comfort and beauty. Every time, she turned them away in a lavish way. But a no was a no, and every business suitor would send a dejected follow up letter. Some were wrathful, others mournful. A few became arrogant that she could not be as talented as the myths surrounding her, and others told her she was a lava drowned fool without a sense of the finer things.

A bell above the door rang when he entered. If that didn’t give him away, surely the whirling sounds of his ill-maintained parts would. A gear snagged, and clanked in a repetitive cadence. Master said, “Put the parts on table three.” She didn’t look up from her welding, the bright blue flame hypnotizing to the one good eye of the clockwork man.

When he put the box down, the gear was still snagging. He could feel it grinding down the brass. Soon his right arm would have severely limited functionality. A quick thunk to his arm, and the gear stopped snagging, spinning as it was meant to. But he was aware of his body, and he knew the gear wouldn’t last much longer.

Again he looked to his master as she worked on some modern marvel, no doubt. It would help the people down below and give them a new life, one with as much ease as the gentry up above. Or so he hoped.

He said, “I have delivered the box.” The voice was a metallic sound, faded from his younger days ten years, three months, and fourteen days ago. Four years, five months, and two days ago she stopped promising a new voice box.

She looked up for a moment, and even through her goggles he could make out her eyes. They were beautiful, and exquisite masterpiece no doubt put there by her own master, her own creator. However, after near forty years, her creator continued to maintain her, or gave her the ability to maintain herself. If only she cared that much about her clockwork servant. The pump for his lubricants felt strange, a pull on it like something was wrong. However, a quick internal diagnostics showed nothing to be the matter.

She said, “I saw. Did you need something?” The blue flame of her torch guttered and died.

Something came over the brass man at that moment. He blurted out, “Fix me.”

The words pulled again on the valves and pumps in his chest. Was his AI giving him new sensations? It had been a while before he absorbed new information, and rarely did he ever bring in emotional stimuli.

She gave out a quick snort of laughter. “No,” she said, then took her ignitor and clicked it a few times in front of the nozzel of her torch until it caught and sparked a blue flame.

“Please. I am fading. I am blind. My liquids are near empty, my gears worn and chipped, and even my AI is acting strangely.” He approached her, moving his arms clumsily. Though the gear caught again, it was not making movement in his right arm easy as the machine tried to find the right movement again.

This gave her pause. Then she turned off the torch and put it down, lifting up her goggles. It was difficult to notice, but there were thick soot lines which showed how dirty her face actually was. “What do you mean your AI is acting strangely?” She approached him and started to look into his eyes, though spending the greatest amount of time on his left. “Your eyes dilate.”

“What? What does it mean, master? What does it mean that it feels like the pumps and valves in my chest are being tugged on most painfully. I should not feel pain.”

She dug around for a screwdriver and opened up his chest plate. All his workings were working just fine, if aged and leaky, but they were all in place. “This is excellent. This is great news.” She kissed his cheek and steam blew out of the back of his head. Never had her lips pressed against him. “On the table with you. I need to make a phone call.”

He went to lay on the table, waiting, his chest exposed, still aching. His master picked up the phone, a new invention of the past few years, newer than he was, and she said, excitedly, “Doctor Hostoff, please. Yes, I’ll wait.” There was impatient tapping of her foot. “Dimitri, it’s Alexandria. You won’t believe it. He’s feeling emotions.” Another pause. “Of course I’m talking about our brass man. He is feeling emotional pain. We did it. I’ll bring him right up in the morning. Need to polish him up first, make him serviceable.” A pause. “Of course it was worth it, and Dimitri, don’t question my methods. AI isn’t a human. We can treat them as we please. I’ll see you in the morning. Be waiting at the university.”

The clockwork man understood. He was being used, a tool to his master. In the early days she said she loved him. But that was many years ago, he thought, as she approached him with glee, and started to work on repairing his countless broken parts. It felt like his chest sprung a lubricant leak, yet he never looked so shiny.

Demands of Father

Muric walked down the corridor, naked under the cloak, wandering idly as he let his mind roam back to the night he married his wife.

It was in the ballroom of his father’s castle, where everything was lavish. Women poured in all intent on meeting Muric, to claim him and his castle as their own domain, to chain him to a bed and have him put child after child in their bellies. There had been many balls, and every time Muric remained on the edge of the party, barely getting to know the girls. His father would ask if he found a future wife, and Muric would say none interested him.

The years passed, and Muric’s father became more insistent, “Man doesn’t breed keeping his eyes upon the past. Move forward. Find a new womb for your seed.”

Then there was the final ball. Muric stood aloof in a corner with his friends when his father approached him. “Muric, look at the women in this room. Pick the most attractive. You will marry her tonight.” His father’s red face drove his friends off.

“But father….”

“Enough pining for some bitch. I don’t give a damn what your criteria is. If you want some youthful maiden or some smoldering temptress that has likely seen more than a few turns, I don’t give a damn. If it’s based on her face, tits, wealth, I don’t care. But you will not dwell on past mistakes, you will look at one of these and you will marry her tonight. And then you will go into her and give me some grandsons.”

“But father….” Muric hadn’t let her go. He gave her too much and held nothing back to give anyone else. Only too late did he realize she took everything and gave nothing.

“No, boy. If you do not marry this night I send you into exile and if you are found wandering any of the kingdoms bending knee to my banner, you will be executed. Now look around, speak to them if you must, and find where you’ll start plowing.” Then father walked off, putting on his happiest face, carousing as he did so well.

There was a woman with hair the color of sunshine, straight and long, with two braids going from her bangs to the back of her head. She had a delightful form, far more beautiful than any he had held previous, with ample breasts which were not overwhelming and hips that a man could hold firmly while making love. Her emerald eyes were a rare treasure indeed, and color he had lusted for in youth. It could all be his.

Within thirty minutes of the scolding, he marched up to father and said, “That one, there. I’ll wed her.”

Approvingly, his father nodded, and the priest was summoned.

Walking the dark halls, remembering the past, Muric mumbled, “That one. Like you were chattel. I’m sorry, Jessica.” He continued his walk.

Hump Day

A – Z April: H

Guess what day it is? Hump Day! Yeah yeah! Happy Hump Day, folks. For those working, you’re half way there. For those with a lover, make it count. Happy Wednesday.

When in the desert....

When in the desert….

A little extra from our finest in uniform! Hump Day!

Hurt

This is a double! Why? Because last night I went to do push ups since I wasn’t going into the gym. I lifted two days prior but wanted to keep something going with the upper body. On three there was a twinge. On four there was a burning from my left shoulder to my left pec. On five is was searing pain and I was on the ground.  Great to be back in the game.

Floating Rib

In this past year of awesome, there is one painful reminder of what I’ve done. There is one nagging souvenir telling me Tough Mudder is a fool’s errand. There is one memory that was poked and prodded by doctors, to which they answered “Here’s some Vicodin,” but it’s solved nothing.

Last night I slept on my right side. I like sleeping on my right side. It’s my thing. Why do I sleep on my right side? For whatever reason that usually puts me facing the door, my back to an outer wall. I don’t get it, but this brings me comfort. It’s likely more and less complicated than that, all at the same time, but I’m not sure. The point is, when I woke up, I was in a great deal of discomfort. I can’t quite call it pain, it’s just a small voice in my side saying, “I hate you and won’t let you sit still.”

Ever since TM, one of my ribs has been either in severe pain or sporadically unhappy. There was a bulge there for a while. When I drove for a long distance, I’d use my hand to put distance between my seat belt and the rib or it made it difficult to focus on driving. This isn’t like a small ordeal. Right now, as I write this, I’m continuously moving around because sitting in one spot for too long is bad. My arm is also crossing my side, which is aggravating the stray rib.

Originally, I could not tell my side hurt. I couldn’t feel this one rib and its incessant tears. My core was wracked with so much pain, it was indistinguishable. I had to roll out of bed for over a week because it was that painful to sit up. And rolling onto the floor didn’t help as much as I would have liked because I still had to sit up. Often I got up by swinging my legs and using the momentum to carry me up right. When this subsided, I finally realized there was a very specific part of my ribs that was in a particular kind of pain, a pain that at one point was bad enough I couldn’t drive. I went to urgent care that day.

The reason I call it a floating rib is because it’s an apt description as to how it feels. It feels like this one troublesome rib, so traumatized by the obstacle course, is floating in there. It’s moving back and forth. It’s irritated. The more weight I put on that side, the more it acts up. The more it says, “And you want to do this again next year?” It is seriously disconcerting to the point I sometimes consider not doing TM next year. This gets me all weepy, because it was an amazing life altering experience I desperately want to do again. In under six hours this time. Four is a good aim. Not being dehydrated when I start would likely make that feasible.

I hope it just got badly bruised and is easily agitated. This is what I’m truly with all I have hoping for. Because it hurts. I do not like it one bit. But the hell I’m going to let it keep me from TM.