1. The Room and its Voice
The Room and its Voice
By Keyra Corey
This is your fault. Everything is your fault.
I nod in confirmation. The Room I sit in has nothing. There’s no tables or chairs, not even the dimmest of lights. I sit in complete darkness and silence on the floor. Or is it the ceiling? There’s no way to differentiate between the two at this point. I’ve been stuck inside this Room for so long that I’m not even sure of how big it is. The Room and I have merged into one being and there’s no way to tell where I end and where the floor begins. Despite the dynamic way of how I perceive the Room, one thing always remains the same. There’s a Voice. It’s the only thing that guides me through the dark, but I wish it wouldn’t say anything at all. I’d rather be left to my own devices in this void than hear that Voice say another word. It claims to want to help me get out of this place, but the more I listen to it, I realize that it wants to keep me trapped here forever. I’m past the point of being able to escape from it. It’s grown so powerful that it encompasses the room entirely. It has become the room and I can never leave. It fills my head with ideas that don’t even exist in the real world.
You’re a failure. Your life means nothing when you can’t even do simple things right.
I nod again. My mind has become docile and willing to agree to anything the Voice says. However, my heart screams. It screams and screams and screams until it tires out, but it rests and continues its wails some more. There’s no one around to hear it. It’s just me, the Room, and the Voice. The Voice laughs menacingly then hurls me up from the floor or the ceiling or wherever and tosses me to the other side of the Room. It does this again and again until my heart is forced to stop screaming and finally comply. I start to wonder if anyone outside of this room has noticed that I’ve been gone. Have they noticed that the person they once knew is no longer there, that in my place is a lifeless mannequin? I'm not even sure if I want them to know. Maybe it’s better that they think my replacement is me. It would save them the heartache of knowing where the real me currently is. I close my eyes and see nothing but darkness. I open my eyes and see more of the same. I’ve stopped trying to leave the Room ages ago. There’s no point. There’s no escape.
It’s meaningless. You’re meaningless
Everything the Voice says I am made to know as truth. I can’t say anything. My voice doesn’t carry here. Only the Voice’s words echo throughout the Room. I curl into a ball and rest my head on my knees. There’s no way out of this place. I’m destined to be a victim of the Voice… forever.