As I awoke, I discovered I was no longer asleep. It had become hard to tell. I was no longer sure. Everything was dark. Day and night were one and the same. Dreams were delusions, and reality was worse. I was tired and weak. My mouth was dry and I could no longer feel my lips. Everything was sore. I couldn’t concentrate. The blackness spread and seeped into my head. I was infected. My mind found difficulty in devising logic. Explanations and understanding were long since lost. For as long as I could remember my life had been a lack of living. There was nothing I could do. No one I could talk to. Nobody who cared. Until I met Mr Johnson.
I had been trying to remember my birthday when I heard her speak of him. She sounded different. Happy, perhaps. I wasn’t sure. I had never experienced such sensations. I had no knowledge of joy or satisfaction. I was unaware of its power. My familiar feelings were matched by my relentlessly dark surroundings. Shadows were my only friends. I was lonely. Desperate. I longed to have a conversation. I wanted to engage with another voice and experience the thrill of recognition. I needed to know that I existed. It was after dinner that he appeared. I had no idea how he got there, but there he was. I was struck immediately by his posture and the gravity of his presence. He knew things. I could tell. But before I could ask, the darkness descended once again.
I have thought about it endlessly. Who was he? Where did he come from? Why did he choose me? What did he want? But the questions did not help. I could not understand the meaning of his appearance. It was confusing and entirely strange. I was lost. In more ways than one. I began to realise that things were changing. My hair was different. My skin softer and scented with fresh aromas. I felt unusual. I could sense that something was about to happen, but I had no idea what or when it would. I searched for answers but only silence acknowledged my cries. It wasn’t long before I realised that Mr Johnson was inhabiting my every thought. I was becoming obsessed. I wanted to know when we would meet again. I needed to know.
I listened out for any further news about Johnson but everything had gone silent. She was no longer discussing him and all I could hear was the radio. I didn’t want to wait any longer. It wasn’t fair. Why was I forced to spend what time I had alone? Why couldn’t I decide for myself if I wanted out? I was fed up of being trapped in this depressing darkness. I was tired of feeling lonely and having no power to change my circumstances. There must be something I could do. There must be some way I could break out and see the world for what it was. Experience the colours of life. Admire the clear sound of music and conversation. Learn about the millions of things of which I had not knowledge. Simple things. Things I had every right to witness. It was time to make a stand.
After a while I was able to have a shower and the cleaning of the days perspiration and discomfort somewhat soothed my mood. I was able to breath fresh air and I sucked it in as hard as I could. I knew that it would not be long before the darkness returned so I tried to enjoy the little pleasures I was granted. The radio continued to play and I was made to dance along to the repetitive beat, I knew it was coming. The shift in mood was palpable and as her voice filtered through the steam, I realised tonight was the night. Tonight everything would change.
I heard the doorbell go, and after several extra puffs of perfume, we were all stood in the hallway anticipating and hoping for a wonderful evening. It was about time. Dinner was served and they ate and spoke about work. I couldn’t hear the exact details of entire conversations, but it seemed they were getting along. Laughter echoed off the walls and wine glasses clinked more frequently. After dinner we sat on the sofa and as the music played softly I could sense the warmth of a hand close to me. It wasn’t her hand. It was different. Stronger. More purposeful. My skin rippled. I wasn’t sure what it was doing. What did it want? I tried to understand what was happening but before I could develop my erratic thoughts I felt it right on top of me. I tried to get away but it was impossible. There was nowhere to go. Slowly it began to move up and down. Fingers pressing down and moving around. I was trapped.
Then it stopped. I could feel the ground beneath moving until the sound of springs arose as we fell on top of the bed. Everything got more intense. The hand was rougher. Strange sounds emerged from nowhere. Moans and groans and the rustle of clothes. I had no idea what was happening. This had never happened before. Everything was strange and different. I was unsure about what to do. Then the darkness was lifted. I was free. The light stunned my eyes but when I finally opened them, there he was. After all this time, I could finally see him. I was horrified. Angry. This was not what I expected. I could not bring myself to speak. All of a sudden he started forcing himself on me. I tried to resist but he was too powerful. I couldn’t do anything. It was too late. I couldn’t move. I closed my eyes. Mr Johnson was a brute. He ruined me. Blood was everywhere. I waited for the darkness. Take me now, I pleaded. Hide me. Please.
The soundtrack for The Angry Beaver is Elephant Revival’s – ‘Ring Around The Moon’