Monday, 19 December 2011

I'm sorry.

I could have been back sooner, I just ... Well, I suppose my head didn't feel quite right. I was tired out after all that work, and I was so relieved to have that weight off me, that for Thursday and Friday I didn't want to have to face all of this stuff. Selfish, I know. On Saturday, me and Dad went into the city centre to pick up some Christmas food and go ice-skating in the gardens. The streets were hung with twinkling lights and as I glided across the ice I felt a burning energy fill my being.

I think I was bordering on mania by yesterday morning.

But I've got a confession to make. I've not been doing okay. I've been trying to put on a brave face, but the truth is I'm more scared than I have ever been right now. The gaps in my memory are becoming more frequent, and I'm finding it harder to concentrate on my work.

At the weekend, I threw off all the weight that had been holding me down, and the high was intoxicating. However, that feeling only lasted until last night.

Last night, I was treated to another concert. This time it was Christmas themed. Lucky me, eh? He's clearly spoiling me. And he can't have had long to prepare, since it was to the tunes of all the carols we'd sung at the morning service.

I've been on edge all day. Susan says there's no reason to panic. On the other hand, what does reason have to do with any of this? You know you're crazy when your own alter-ego's the one telling you not to fall apart.

But yeah, I suppose I should try and stay together, if only for the sake of my family. My Dad's going to pick up my granny tomorrow. I suppose it'll brighten me up. My granny is brilliant. She might not know how to use the internet or what the difference between Freeview and Sky is, but she's got the long-term memory of an elephant and wit as sharp as Albitr (just to throw in another obscure/slightly nerdy reference - this one's from Inheritance).

The Nightmare Before Christmas was on yesterday. I couldn't watch it. As soon as I saw Jack, ... I just couldn't. It's been one of my favourite films for the past three years, but now, I don't think I'll ever be able to watch it again. There's too much fear inside me.

College is finished for the holidays now (apparently they decided to close a week early in case of snow), which means I have work to do before I go back. I'm going to try and get it done as soon as possible, just in case anything happens and I can't get it done later on.

I'm going into the city tomorrow to meet C. It's a long and complicated story, but I think I might be in love with him. And he seems to like me in the same way. We've been getting closer and closer - I feel like I could tell him almost anything. At the beginning, he could be a bit annoying; he would make jokes about things he didn't understand (in fact, that's how I ended up telling him about my hallucinations), but he's always willing to listen and learn, and we've become increasingly close over the past month or two.

But what do I do? I don't even know the normal rules, never mind for someone like me, never mind for someone like me who's being tormented by a malicious paranormal entity. Should I pretend I'm aromantic as well as asexual? Nah, that wouldn't work. If he told A or B that I'd said that, they would know I was lying. Should I just push him away? I don't want to hurt him, and I don't want to lose him.

I don't know. Should I just tell him about all this and let him make his own mind up? I've never told anyone about this, apart from you guys, and you already knew about Malinky. I've heard that he eventually targets those who know about him, and, well, my experiences show nothing that contradicts that.

Does anyone know what I should do?

Monday, 12 December 2011

Just checking in,

letting you all know I'm still alive and all that. I'm unbelievably busy at the moment, I've really not had a moment to spare. I'll respond to emails and such when I get the time, but be warned, that might not be until Thursday night.

I swear I could kill my laptop right now. It's probably not completely responsible, but it's the one thing that definitely contributed that I can physically lay my hands on without incurring an ASBO or a restraining order.

So yeah, I'll hopefully be back before Thrusday, but if not, don't worry about me.

Friday, 9 December 2011


So, I seem to have blacked out sometime last night. I don't remember writing my last post, and I'm a little concerned about what might have happened. I'm okay, though. I'm managing to hold it together.

I left early for college this morning, just in case there were hold-ups. I passed a couple of piles of debris - for the most part broken branches, but roof slates and rubbish and the occasional more eye-catching object managed to find their way onto the piles.

I arrived a little bit early at college, so I took the time to draw. I don't usually get the chance to be creative nowadays. I drew a sort of comic strip - an evil scientist had someone tied to a chair, and threatened them with "THE CATHODE RAY!". The poor little stick-fellow was very very frightened. The scientist then turned on the device, but it didn't seem to do anything. He was like "Argh, why won't you work!?". The frightened stick-man was then like "Strange, I feel almost... happy!".

It wasn't intended to be particularly funny, just a sort of a private chuckle. But I showed it to A and she laughed (B wasn't in today), so tell me if you get it.

We put the Christmas tree up tonight, me and Dad. Pete was hanging around, making suggestions about where things should go etc., and I got a surprise when I lifted the box to take it upstairs and found Liam had decided to hide inside it. XD

It was strange decorating the tree without Mum there. It was always me and her who put the tinsel on. [Our tree is a plastic imitation, by the way; a relic from the days where quality was the most important aspect of manufacture.] But there were the decorations she'd made as well. Even some of the ones that I made, I could remember her helping me with, when I was little.

The smart of grief that I felt, that I'm still feeling a little bit if I'm honest, was juxtaposed by the warmth from the tree and from doing something together. I think Dad felt it too, though we both smiled and laughed. But now, with the tree up, it almost feels like she's with us. I don't know how to explain it, but the loving memories, and the love she put into each of the decorations, they're still there, and it's like the tree is a symbol of that.

It's two weeks until the holidays. I don't get off until the 22nd. I don't know how the college expects people to get their Christmas shopping done, but I suppose they're only really interested in getting a high pass-rate at the end of the year. It's the same reason they're so strict with attendance and bursaries etc.. No point funding a student if they're not going to pass.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

There's going to be a hurricane!

^A reference to a programme I haven't watched since I was a child. ... The animals of Farthing Wood was better than David The Gnome.

I haven't seen the wind this strong before. The trees in my back garden have survived 90 mph before. I don't know what the windspeed here is, but in the Highlands it's over a hundred - nearly two hundred at the top of the mountains.

He's out there. I saw him. Standing completely still - tentacles waving in the wind.

Can't go out. The wind's too strong. It stripped the felt off the shed. And there's things in the dark.

I don't want to know - go away! I don't want to talk to you! You're bad. You're wrong! I'm not like you.

I'm staying here. It's not safe.

Monday, 5 December 2011

It's cold outside...

But I know there must be some kind of atmosphere what with the wind and the clouds etc..

Sorry, my bad. I'm just trying to keep my spirits up. Most probably none of you get the reference anyway.

Well, I suppose I should start with what happened between Wednesday and Saturday. Here's a list of significant events:

... Hence the lack of posting.

Yesterday decided to be different. The weather turned cold, and there was snow on the hills. No snow here, though. When I was coming back from the shops, for a split second I thought I saw Malinky following me, but then when I turned he wasn't there. I simply shivered and carried on.

After dinner, I got to my room and found Susan looking at Robin's mask. I asked her what she was doing, and she jumped. She looked sad, and then she said "I wish I could've met him."

"Robin?" I asked, slightly perplexed.

"Yeah." She paused and I sat down next to her. I held out my hand and she gave me the mask. All the memories came to the front of my mind, and I felt tears seeping into my eyes. "If you hadn't dug your heels in, it could have been us."

I looked at her. She had tears in her eyes as well.

"Yeah." I felt bad about the things I'd said to him. He didn't seem like a bad person, and yet I acted as if I hated him. "Why did he have to be so ... nice?" Susan gave me a weird look. "It would have been so much easier if he was a bad person."

"He wasn't so nice to you in the beginning."

I thought back. To when he'd tackled me, to when he'd pinned me down after I tried to run, to when he grabbed me in the street and gleefully told me his boss had given me two weeks. I remembered how big he seemed at the time, how frightened I was at the time. But it turned out he was the same age as me. I held back a bitter laugh as I realised what a hypocrite I'd been.

"Yeah, he was a little warped, but who are we to talk? I treated him like some weirdo, when he was just trying to be friendly." I shook my head and thought of the times I'd tried to push him away. It was only at the very end, when I thought I was about to die, that I'd let myself relax around him. "I should have gotten to know him better."

I started crying. Susan faded away. I could feel her sympathy, though, even though she said nothing.

This morning was another early start. There was snow on the ground, and the air was at that temperature where it completely sucks the heat out of anything that touches it for more than a few seconds. I wrapped up warm, but the wind decided to join in, so after just a few minutes I was already feeling pretty chilled.

When I was nearing the bus stop, I could see the commuters lined up against the wall, bored as usual. But someone else was there as well, standing right next to them. I was already cold, so the sight didn't perturb me. (It's hard to feel fear when you're already willing yourself forward against the freezing cold.) Heh, if it weren't for the time of year, he would have fitted right in, what with his business suit and all.

[The road was a mix of water and grit, but there was more than half an inch of snow on the pavement. Not much by our standards (and a piffling amount compared to last year) but I'm sure it would be enough to send London grinding to a halt, am I right?]

So, I carried on, crossing the road, and approached the bus stop as usual, though slightly wary of the tall dude. I stopped when I was next to him. I didn't want to look up and expose my neck to the wind, but I had no choice if I wanted an inkling of what he was thinking. He reached out his hand, and after a moment of thought I took it. He led me a little away from the commuters; farther down the street to a wider section of pavement. Snowflakes started to float down.

We stopped around the middle of that wider space. When he spoke, it took me completely by surprise. At first I didn't understand what he said. It was quiet, but piercing - sort of electronic and bleepy, like a corrupted audio file.


He spoke again, this time more clearly.

"who. are. you."

It still sounded slightly electronic, but it was no longer crackly and there were much fewer random bleeps. The intonation was weird, though. The word "are" was much higher than the other words, and his pitch seemed to wobble slightly on "you". I didn't know how to answer his question, so I stood there staring back at him, shivering with the wind. After a while, he put his hands behind my head and gripped my skull. Warmness started to seep through my body, and suddenly I felt very very scared.

A series of images flashed through my mind. These were my own memories, and it was as if I was reliving them. He showed me all the bad things I'd done, the things I'm ashamed of, the times I'd been tortured, and when I'd been selfish despite instinct.

My awareness returned and the hands lifted slightly. I looked up at him, but his not-a-face didn't betray any intention or emotion.

"N-no, that's not who I am." I stammered. He tilted his head to the right, then the hands returned and more images flashed through my brain. This time, he showed me all my acts of selflessness, of mercy, of helping other despite inconvenience or sacrifice.

Again, my vision returned and the hands lifted. His head was still tilted, and he stayed motionless.

"But that's not me either."

His head returned to normal position, and his hands touched my head for the last time. Memories flooded through me, both good and bad, some neutral, and within it were summed up the most important aspects of my growth.

"Yes, that's it."

He took his hands away from me, returning them to his sides.


I was confused, but at that moment the bus rounded the corner, and I glanced at the sudden noise and light. When I looked back, the Slender Man had gone, and I walked back to the bus stop feeling cold once more, and very bewildered.

I've felt weird all day. And, yeah, I fell asleep on the bus again. I saw Pete in Maths - that hasn't happened for a while now. I told him what happened and he looked a mix of concerned and awestruck.

It's very, ... I suppose, mind-opening(?) to see your life so far, and to see how it's changed who you are. I think I'll have to reflect more on this, but also, what was he doing and why? I don't see why he'd want to "know me" like that, or why he'd want me to know who I am. Is this the thing that Robin was talking about, or was it something completely different?

Edit: And oh, yeah, 50th post. My blog now feels half a century old. And honestly, I come back from a few days of no internet to find I now have over ten followers? Well, welcome to the both of you. I don't know why on earth you'd want to read this thing, but I suppose that's none of my business.

Saturday, 3 December 2011


This morning I took my pulse (as you do) because I was bored/curious. It was around 65 bpm, so not too bad, but then I started thinking. My heart has been beating my whole life. It never stops. It never sleeps. It just keeps on working to pump blood round my body. And it has the capacity to keep going for another seventy  years at least, barring accidents or dietary disasters.

I find that amazing.

I wondered how many times my heart had beaten during my life, so I grabbed my calculator. I took my average bpm to be about 80, and I did the calculation 80*60*24*365*17. (I left out leap days because they account for less than 0.1% of my total days on Earth.)

I found that by my last birthday, I had lived through over 700 million heartbeats. Isn't that just staggering? To think that that little ball of muscle inside my chest, that has been with me even before I was born, that without which I would surely die, has worked so hard, but not even broken a sweat!

Using the same method, I calculated the number of heartbeats per year to be a little over 42 million.

We need to look after our hearts. I think it's too often we take them for granted. It wasn't until today that I realised the miracle that is the human body. And not just the human body, but that would be going off-subject.

By the time I'm nineteen, it will be around 800 million beats, and by the time I am eighty, it will be around 3 billion.

It just keeps on working. And it won't stop for as long as you live.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

The Battle of Athelstaneford

Years before Kenneth MacAlpin succeeded in uniting the Kingdoms of Dalriada and Pictland, King Angus of the Scots was invading Lothian, at that time under Northumbrian control. However, the Scots encountered a larger force led by the Northumbrian King Athel.

The Scots army was forced to retreat, and were cornered near the Peffer Burn. Angus's men were severely outnumbered, so the King and his companions (which included Kenneth) prayed to God and the Saints that they would be delivered from the hands of their enemies. Soon after the fighting began, the cross of Saint Andrew appeared in the clouds above the field. Emboldened by this sign from above, the Scots went on to victory, even against such overwhelming odds.

Seeing that the battle was turning in favour of the Scots, King Athel attempted to build a ford and escape across the burn. However, he was slain while trying to cross, and that place was forever known as Athelstaneford.

When Kenneth united the Scots and Picts, creating the Kingdom of Alba, he remembered the Scots' triumph over the Northumbrians at the hands of Sint Andrew, and so Andrew became patron Saint of Scots. The battle is remembered in the Scottish flag, which depicts a white Saltire cross against the blue sky. It is also commemorated in the celebration of St Andrew's day, which is held each year on the 30th of November.