Broken from Reality

I always wondered what it would be like to experience a dream on the same scale that we lived our tedious lives: Now however, I wish I never had the thought as I'm now trapped within, broken free of my Earth bound body and stuck in this 'other' world that mere humans should never want to be in. I am broken in mind, body and soul... I am...broken from reality...

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1. A Tattered Reality

   Considering never much was ever to be expected from the experiments, I was Quite surprised to denote that, over time, several patients have gone into the Annex and come back with their problems solved, and yet, sadly, I've also lost a few good patients to the machine, this includes my own son. As I write this final entry into this log and ready the machine, I only hope that one day, perhaps I can set things right with the world as, nigh have I mentioned the most important detail; the Annex can, as it turns out release those objects of our deepest subconscious into the world we call reality... Then again, what is real anymore? These experiments have left my mind in complete ruin, a tattered reality of sorts...

~January 7th, in the year of 1883 

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   When it all came to be that in the House of Simon Crawford, a machine was built that, for all practical purposes, was a complete defilement of nature, it would be of no obvious suspicion that he remained adamant about the secrecy to which he conducted the experiments that he did; yet, per by this measure, I'm getting ahead of myself, let me thereof introduce my self. I am known by the name of Mr. Andrews; that is all you you should need to be aware of at this moment as I regale you with the following tale; that of how this note as previous read came to be....

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   "Mason!" called a familiar voice to me, it was my father. Throwing back the sheets from myself I sat up in my bed, my hair falling into my face once again, as it always had. So dark in color was it that it appeared to blot out the very light from the world around me. It was at this moment that there was an insistent but calm knock at my door. The door opened to reveal my long time friend and loyal servant Callum.

   "Young master, your father is requesting your audience," he bowed his head as he crossed his right hand across his left breast; a common gesture to me, one that all the servants about the house seemed to do in my presence. 

   "I know," I chuckled lightly, "I can 'ere his bellowing voice across the house." Callum smiled as he moved swiftly across the room and withdrew a menagerie from my dresser that would, in his capable hands, fall over my body and cover me, becoming some lovely pattern of attire suitable of a young noble in this dim countryside that was Great Britain in the winter. "Callum, may I ask you; you've been employed by my father for a long time, haven't you?"

   "Since your birth that was but, oh, if I remember correctly, about sixteen years ago now," he answered with a meek grin as he slid my favorite pair of midnight black pants onto my body, tucking in my white shirt as he went. He slipped each of my stockings up their respective legs and clipped them in place, allowing me to stand up and stretch a bit.

   "Ah, there we go, much better," I turned to my butler and instructed him to rise, "I thank you Callum, personally, I've thought you more a friend than servant," I hugged him quickly before putting on my shoes and petticoat and flew out the door. As I left I swore I heard him whisper something like 'what a bold statement to call a simple servant,' and that made me smile a bit.

   "My son, come hither, I've something to show you," my father, Simon Crawford, beamed as he opened the door to the study; gleefully I followed him inside and shut the door behind me. Moving to the chair opposite his desk, he stopped me, beckoning me to the bookcase where he was standing. "Now, what I'm about to show you is something that you must promise to keep an absolute secret," his face suddenly became dark and intense in stare.

   "I solemnly swear on our family's honor," I answered, crossing my hand over my heart to which I received an approving nod from father as he opened the bookcase, now there was something I was never aware of, a secret room within the house, but, as large as the house was, I suppose it should've been of no surprise. I wandered down a narrow stone laden pathway that resembled more of a tomb, it smelled like one too. Finally, we reached the end of the narrow passage and my father opened a large Iron hatchway and climbed inside, beckoning me to follow; at first I remained in the dark and dank of the tunnel as the my imagination began to run rampant and I began to terrify myself as to what lay beyond the door.

   "Come now Mason, all is fine, there's nothing to fear," he took my hand and pulled me into the room. The hatch abruptly swung closed behind me and I jumped at the sound; my father laughed as I launched into his arms out of fear and surprise. "Alright, no need to act like a spooked child, see? Nothing to fear..." 

   "Sweet mary mother of god..." I whispered as I beheld a monstrous sight; a large machine that resembled some strange craft of iron and steel lay before me. This leviathan hissed steam from several vents and almost appeared to growl as the titanic sized gears and pulleys turned and pulled in their effort to sustain this metalic monster. I was so taken aback by this creation of man that I had failed to notice that my father had abounded to and, opened the hatch the led into the belly of this beast. I became entranced all of a sudden, my legs grew weak and I, faint.... When I came to again, I was no longer in that room, I was instead strapped to a cold table, the sleeve on my right arm rolled up in preparation for a needle to be shoved into it; I screamed out of fear.

   "Easy master!" hushed a familiar calm and soothing voice; Callum. I looked into his dark earthen colored eyes and my breathing became less stressed as he paced a cool hand onto my chest, something he'd done as long as I could remember that, for some strange reason, always soothed me. 

   "Callum! Please, get me out of here, please!" I begged, beginning to hyperventilate again, the fear in my eyes must've been almost comical to him as he just smiled and slid the cold steel into my arm. Almost immediately I began to become hazy in vision and my stomach began to churn violently as I sudden felt the sensation of falling and then blacked out.

   "Ugh... What happened?" I remember thinking as I awoke from slumber, my body and mind felt heavy which, to put it plainly, kept me from moving around too much at first; eventually though I was able to stand up and it was then  I noticed that I was in a large and elaborate hallway, but something seemed...off. 

   "Ah young lord, you're awake, that's good," it was Callum again and he too looked different; he no longer wore his usual tail coat and suit, instead, he resembled more of some nightmarish attire. Grey pants of smooth silk, tightly wound black boots and a blood colored dress shirt that had the frills showing forth from the cuffs of the matching grey vest jacket. Black vest and bow-tie with little bat like wings poking off the back of his coat and a small top hat that also had such wings and leaned off to one side He now also wore wire rimmed spectacles that reflected a strange rosy color to them and his hair was drawn back into a short ponytail.

   "What happened to you?" looking around I was now sure of it, the world around me was entirely of blacks, whites and greys; monochromed. "More importantly... where are we?"

   "Well, currently we are located in the Ivory Palace," He smiled as he took my hand and guided me to one of the windows. "This entire estate was dreamed up by the deepest reaches or your subconscious self; I must say, for someone so young, your architectural skills are a marvel to behold young master." 

   "Callum..."

   "Yes, young mast-" but he was cut short as I slapped him harshly across the face; not having expected such a hit, he spun to the ground but with great alacrity returned to his feet. "I suppose I deserved that, though, your hit could of had more umph to it, my young master."

   "What in the hell was with that needle you shot me up with!?" I screamed at him in anger, "Where in the bloody hell is this so called 'Ivory Palace!?'"

   "As I said young master, we are in the deep subconscious of your mind, to put it plainly... We are in your dreams," his calm smile was most revolting to me as his comment sank in and began to make miniscule sense. Spinning slowly on my heels I examined the sight outside; a large green and luscious lawn surrounded by ebony black trees as far as the eyes could see. 

   "Ebonshroud..." came the one and only utterance from my lips. "My dreams... come to life before me? What sort of madness have I fallen into?" I felt the calm but firm hands of Callum on my shoulders, followed by his soothing voice.

   "Not madness, none at all," he cooed, "This is your dreamscape come to life, young lord; Perhaps your father can better elaborate on the matter though..." I heard the familiar click as he opened and examined his pocket watch; quickly clasping it shut and restuffing it into his breast pocket he ushered me down the seemingly endless hallway of monochromatic scheme until we reached a large pair of elaborately carved white oak doors, they had been lacquered in a fine ebony colored coat. Upon his opening though, hands flew out of the dark void on the other side of the doors and without a scream I was pulled in as the doors slammed shut from behind, enveloping me in complete darkness.

   "Whe..Where am I? Father, are you in here!?" I tried to force myself to calm down but, despite my best efforts my voice began to waver and crack as the primal fears within began to manifest themselves inside my heart and head.

   "My son, you know this room feeds on your fears, do you not?" came his voice, but still I could not locate him.

   "What is this place?" I tried to remain calm as finally I felt the solid ground beneath my feet. Slowly, candles began to appear amidst the gloom of the blackness, brightly burning flames licked into the air showering me in a dim light that revealed a room in the likeness of that of an oval; the walls were imbued in a deep grey, almost midnight solace in color that upon being lit by the candles faded into a deep, tantalizing bluish hue.

   "The Room of Illusions," I saw the outline of my father against the opposite wall, "This room I created and implanted into this, your dreamscape, for my research to be conducted in." As he clapped his hands together, all darkness vanished, replaced by elegant light that again, changed the color of the room into a lovely shade somewhere between that of a red oak and an aged mahogany. He stepped forward, clad in  a fine cloak of forest green with gold wire rimmed glasses. Under the cloak was a matching suit of such color and magnificence, the only contrast being the brown commoner's shoes he appeared to be wearing. 

   "Illusions? What do you mean father?" He took me in hand and drew me to the center of the room, a mirror which, to my memory wasn't there in the previous moment, stood before me to which I saw myself; Pale skinned, that of an ashen grey, adorned in a scheme of black and white, black pants, vest and shoes with white socks and white buttoned down shirt. Even my eyes had become beset grey, a deep grey that peered into your very being it would seem. My hair had become dark as well and, rather unruly by my standards. "Is that... me?"

   "It's your perception of how you view yourself as a person," Father explained, "This boy before you in the mirror is a projection of how you see yourself, impressive, is it not?"

   "Might bit spooky if you ask me..." turning to face my father I asked him a simple question, "Father, is all this because of that monstrosity in that secret room in the house?"

   "The Annex? Why ofcourse, I've been using it for some time for some... special patients of mine..." He seemed to go a bit distant on that note. "That's beside the point though, I wanted to show you this because I wanted to see you happy; I've noticed as of late that, with my work picking up, we've seemed to become a bit..."

   "Distanced?"

   "Precisely, now, I just want to get lost with you in our shared dreamscape," he took my hand and showed me to the other side of the room. "These doors here will serve as the gateway to exit your dreams, but be careful, unlike normal dreams, you can feel pain and suffering in this world." He looked a bit dismayed with that factor, "I... haven't, quite worked out all the bugs yet so, please, be careful my son...Now, with that in mind, let's say you and I go find Callum and go exploring!?"

   "Sounds wonderful," I answered as I walked back to the other side of the room and thrust open the doors. What a wonderful world to be able to just sit back and get lost from the tattered reality that all those other nobles and their children must endure... Why would one ever want to wake up?

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