Shadows and RegretsMature

Wake up.

Tobias fought his natural instincts to return to his waken state. He knew that there was no need to wake up, as he knew exactly what it was that was talking to him. The Voices would not leave him alone, it seemed, despite him betraying them, not listening to them, generally being a bad host.

Tobias woke up, opened his eyes, then realised what he had done. He had failed to be strong. He had wanted just to stay asleep, to stay silent and calm, and to trick the Voices into thinking that he was still asleep. It was not that easy.

As soon as Tobias realised he had his eyes open, and that the Voices would now know that he was awake, he shut them again tightly, trying to fool them. It didn’t seem to work.

You cannot do this to us. We need you.

Tobias let his head poke out from the top of the covers. He was hot, but he did not want to expose his entire body to the night, so he tried to take deep breaths of the cool night air. This, in turn, made him feel cooler himself.

Tobias kept his eyes clamped shut, trying to ignore the Voice, which was what it was tonight, only one, but his silence did not have the desired effect. The Voice tried again.

You cannot do this to us. We need you.

They had not spoken to him since Tobias had told his parents of the truth. Maybe they were angry, or maybe they were just in shock, in disbelief over how Tobias could tell his parents, tell anybody about them. Maybe they had been formulating a plan, and now wanted to announce it. But Tobias wanted nothing to do with it, and so he squeezed his eyes shut even more, trying to block out the Voice, which now multiplied.

You cannot do this to us. We need you.

Two voices, one male and one female, now spoke together, echoing through the deepest parts of Tobias’ mind, scaring him into opening his eyes to ensure that nobody was in the room with him. It seemed clear – only his mind was haunted.

Tobias dared to reply in the quietest voice he could. He was worried that since he had told his parents, they would be listening to see if he was talking back to the Voices. If they were outside his room now, it was all over – Tobias would have to make himself comfortable in a mental home.

‘What am I doing?’ The Voices answered almost before Tobias had finished his sentence. They seemed to snap at him, and there were now three, just to reinforce the desperation.

Abandoning the Gifted. You cannot do this to us. We need you.

Tobias didn’t feel like he could reply without repeating himself, and in turn become more and more like the Voices he despised. Because although he was more afraid than anything else, he harboured a hatred for the Voices that had torn his life apart in three days. His parents now thought he was insane, and if Tobias was honest with himself, he agreed with them. How many people hear Voices in their heads?! Very few, and all of them are crazy. Tobias was just another one to toss in the loony-bin.

In order to avoid hearing them repeat the same words again and again, Tobias simply remained silent, not wanting to provoke them.

You cannot do this. We need you.

Covering himself back up with the duvet, Tobias hid from the outside world, covered up, and trying to disguise himself so that the Voices would not be able to find him. Unfortunately, it did not work, and before long, a chorus of Voices, more so than Tobias had ever heard before, began talking in his ear all at once.

You cannot do this. We need you. You cannot do this.

The same sentences again and again and again, until Tobias felt that he could say them in time with the Voices. But he didn’t. He didn’t want to seem like them. He wanted nothing to do with them, so he remained silent, not asking any more questions, not even reacting to what they said.

In silence, he anticipated the day ahead. Six hours until he could get up. Tobias accepted that it was unlikely that those six hours would be filled with any sleep whatsoever. Instead, he worried about what would happen when he looked at his parents. What would they see in him now?

It was only a matter of time before they took him to see Dr Andy again.

Or maybe worse.

The End

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