I have a question, Cory.
Why are you all giants?
I suppose it must seem that way, with your small door in these large hallways. I don’t know. I hadn’t ever thought of myself as a giant.
Cory stuffed his head under the pillows, drowning out the sounds of shouting. The bed still shook though. Like vicious tides through bedposts and mattress.
Lifting pillowcase fringe from his vision, he stared at the window, through the empty space in the row of cacti pots. The glittering snow ran like white eraser past the panes.
Cory’s stomach growled. He took that as a cue to lower his left leg and prop up his right one. He untied Ripple’s boots. Tied them up again. They were dusty boots. Where had they been before this to get dusty boots?
The empty place between plants on the windowsill taunted Cory as he laid in bed, trying to sleep. The empty space, as large as a head, haunted him. He stared there, at the dark emptiness outside, unable to shut his eyes because one night, many nights ago, pale creatures had crawled up out of the canyon and eyelessly stared through that window, freezing him motionless in his bed.
I know you may never read this, Ripple, but that’s because of your role in the system. You front most of the time. You don’t know about lots of the bad stuff that’s happened. Our brain splits those up, the functioning every day, the knowledge about what happened. You get to function every day.
Hello. I’m back. It’s Cory, again. Are you still sitting in that cave?
No. Sorry, I’m scared to leave.
You can come out. I can help you up to the house if you want.
I tried flying. Before. It burned my skin.
My name is Cory. I’m kind of new at this. What’s your name?
My name? I just…I don’t…I don’t understand what’s going on.
Sorry, I’m really new at this. I always remember existing, but I guess that won’t be true for everyone…
I’m sorry, I just remember…I just remember hurting.
Hello. My name is Cory, I’m twenty-two years old, and I’m the advisor of the system.
What’s a year?
Oh. A year? Do…you know what a day is?
Day is when the pain starts.
Hello. My name is Cory. I’m the advisor of this system. Advisor? System? What is that? Technically, the psychologists call it an “internal self-helper,” but I came up with “advisor” before we ever talked to them. I help organize and guide the members of our system. Including you. I’m…part of a system? Who are you?Continue reading “Cory’s Story: Scarlet and the canyon”
Cory’s story is approximately 10,000 words long, told from the perspective of an alter in a DID system. This is a story I wanted to tell about mental health and relationships and burdens, not about action, high-fantasy adventure sword fights or superhero battles.