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Copyright © 2011 Michael Wolf
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It’s a dark spring night, cold and unpleasant; the City of Manhattan has never looked so black, as you glance down at your watch you pause as you are about to read the time of the night. You sit there waiting, watching, for the flickering lights of the subway to cycle again so you can see through the shadows. The time reads 2:03 am, it’s late, an end to a long day. On the opposing side of the train you see the silhouette of what appears to be another passenger, you make him out to be a man. Even as the lights flicker you can only make out an outline of his facial features. He has done nothing to you, you don’t even know him, he just sits there, cold as stone; it was as if he met eye to eye with Medusa herself. The mood of the subway is heavy, and the air thickens as the lights flicker off from the rubble on the tracks that rock the train as it darts to the next station. You both once again enter absolute darkness. Not a word, nor sound can be heard, just the repetitive trance like sounds of the subway trekking along the tracks. As you look at yourself in the reflection of the window, your mind can’t help but wonder, and a thought enters your head, a seemingly harmless thought; yet one that yields such power and potential its effects are and will always be an unforeseen transcended act of fate.
What if you decided to follow this man?
Who is he? What does he do? What is his business at 2 AM? In this moment you make the bold life changing decision to find out. Your destination is three stops away. As you approach the next station, its lights glare in through the window and you see your new friend stand up. It is his stop. You nonchalantly stand up and walk toward the door furthest from him yet closest to you. As he exits the subway, you follow twenty yards behind. At this point, he doesn’t appear notice you. If he did, it is all a coincidence that you both got off at the same station; he can’t read your mind nor could have seen you pondering your actions back on the subway which have lead you to this moment. He is completely unaware as to your presence and intentions. You have the upper hand. Your mark begins to approach the subway exit, up a long flight of concrete stairs lit only by the moonlight shining through at the other end. You briefly notice what appears to be a full moon, but you can’t be bothered with mediocre observations at this point in time, you are on a mission. As he walks at a steady pace down the street he sticks to the path under the street lamps as to light his way. You walk to right, along the buildings, lurking in the shadows. Your adrenalin begins to pump; the excitement of your current journey has you on a natural high, euphoria and thrills of the catch is your domain this night. You do the only thing you know to be right. You slowly reach over to the collar of your black double-breasted pea coat and flip it up. Your jacket covers seventy percent of your face, the rest, by the shadows of fate. If anyone were to notice you all they would see would be whites of your eyes; though given your current journey and its intentions, those whites might as well be filled with an empty blackness, a color given its meaning by the manifestation of pure nothingness. Five city blocks go by, it has just been the two of you, not one other person, not one other car. He begins to feel a presence, you aren’t a professional, he notices you. A connection is made in his subconscious; you must be the same guy from the subway. He slowly begins to pick up the pace, “Am I being followed?”, he thinks to himself. Though he is unsure, he can’t be sure. What if he is wrong, and he approaches you; he may be thought of as crazy. So he presses on, toward his destination at an increased speed. You now risk the chance of losing him, “Why is he walking faster?” This intrigues you, “What is he hiding?” You pick up the pace. You are now being sucked into his world, his mind-set, and his schema of thinking; this is no longer a game, nor a simple moonlit walk- this just got serious. Your mark glances back as he approaches the corner and peers into the shadows, “what made him look back?” He now knows he is being followed. He veers off his path to his destination; he walks in the complete opposite direction and doubles back. You have been figured out, but he seems harmless enough, so once more you follow his every step; he must have something good to hide if following him caused him to double back. Your minds, by a twist of fate set into motion by a single harmless thought, have become linked, intertwined; yet neither of you realize it.
Once more he glances back and sees you, he sees you there in the shadows lurking, watching him, observing, following, stalking. There isn’t a doubt in his mind that he is being followed, that you are the same guy from the subway. The chance that two people would double back on the same block at the same pace is anything but a coincidence. He snaps…
Two worlds collide as you are both frozen in time. At this point one of two things has to happen: One, he will approach you and demand with aggression, yet a hint of fear, “Who are you?” or “What do you want with me?” If this is the response, this man has a clear conscience, and has done nothing wrong in his life to warrant being stalked. Two, he will continue to evade you, he will run, he will dodge, but with stealth and precision through careful thought as to lose you in the quickest most evasive maneuver possible. If this is the response, the fear inside of his mind has gotten the better of him. It is unsafe to approach you; for you see, at this moment, if he runs, his mind is personifying his deepest fears vicariously though you. You will have triggered something hidden deep within the depths of his unconscious mind. At one point in his life he must have committed an immoral, and unethical act. By following him, it would [will] have triggered the “repercussions of the act he committed” you will become the force of Karma, of God, of The Law, here to seek retribution and justice, to set the slate clean and slam the Tablets of Moses upon his forehead. To take him down and make him pay for his deed is the only purpose you seek. Based off of his crime or action you can be anything to him; The Police, FBI, CIA, The Mob, an assassin, you are whomever he so fears. You are no longer seen as yourself, you are transformed. Yet you do not know it.
As he looks back at you, billions of neurons begin firing off signals at a rate of over a million a nano-seconds connecting synapses from his left and right brain creating an electrical storm of fear and chaos. A car comes speeding by; the direction the car is coming is toward his back, the car’s lights beam upon your face. You both lock eyes for this brief moment in time. His world stands still; you are overcome with excitement, his mind overloads and splits. It is almost as if he is standing outside of his body overlooking the whole situation. He sees from a plane’s point of view, overhead, overlooking the stage you have both created on this hallowed night. There you both are, standing, gazing, in the middle of the sidewalk, him under a street lamp and you diagonally in a shadow cast over by a nearby awning. Each moment to him seems like an hour, his perspective spins back into his body as a lightning bolt of reality strikes him. His pupils dilate and the veins on his forehead begin to extrude. His heart is now pumping blood at ten times the resting rate; his heart will soon pump out pure air. He feels pressure on his temples, the vice clamp contracts and consumes his head full tilt. You can hear the adrenal glad discharge an extensive amount of adrenalin; it mixes with his blood. Fight or flight is now fully active. The electrical storm in his brain signals his muscles, they contract as his blood pulses through his arteries into his arms and hands; they are now clenched into fists. His conscience mind ceases all operations and his subconscious takes hold. All control is lost. Without warning he darts down the block into the night, you lose him in less than the blink of the eye.
You walk back to your apartment wondering what just happened, but you couldn’t really care; it was fun, an adventure to pass the time at 2 AM. Little do you know, you just set into effect a series of events that will forever change this man’s life.
As the other man approaches his once safe-haven of a home his mind begins to trap him into a world of darkness, a world of questions without answers, of paranoia, of fear; a world of a living hell. His perception shifts from the social norm, he begins to question all he knows. He sees cars out front of his apartment that he never noticed. The license plates stick in his mind. He wonders if they live by him, or they are there for him, he wonders of their purpose. Yesterday a new camera was installed for security purposes on the adjacent building. He just notices it now. He freezes with fear. His adrenaline keeps pumping, his mind can’t discern between reality and fantasy, he has lost all reasonable judgment, he trembles as he climbs up the stairs to the building’s front door. It was just painted, why was it painted? He can’t figure it out, everything he notices now has no base, no grounding in reality. He begins to slip into his imagination; the real world as he once knew it, is no more. All that is left is this imposing reality cast upon him by his own mind; here, his emotions of fear keep him captive. He crawls into bed, pulls the sheets over his head, and his mind becomes filled with the dark black cold of nothingness.
There are things worse than death in this life. Our normal man has entered his Rabbit Hole; where up is down, where everything has a meaning and symbolic purpose, where there is only yes and no, black and white, right or left, where he is victim to himself, where there is no escape, no reason, no help, no hope. Where paranoia reigns.
Imagine the power. Imagine what would happen, how easy it is to trigger an emotional and mental reaction.
The human mind is a powerful tool, it can even be said to be a weapon. Though, what happens when that tool, that weapon, focuses all of its power, energy, and potential, on its owner? What happens when your own mind turns against you? What options does that leave you with?
It all starts with a simple question, a trigger, a question that you can’t answer that is left open and floating in the air. It’s when you try and answer this question that you open a door that can never be closed. Once you walk through, there is only one way out and it’s not the way you came in. Welcome to the Rabbit Hole. Here, your world is ruled by an intricate series of tunnels, traps, dead ends, pit-falls, and darkness. Fate rules your world, you no longer have domain over your life, your will. You are always fighting a losing battle. Every time you think you have found a way out, it will be sealed off, every glimmer of hope will be shot down, you are fighting the very mind that has created the tunnels of the Rabbit Hole. The only way out is to venture deeper in, find the problem, and create a new escape.
You pick a mark, a seemingly random person and decide to follow him. Though in actuality was it fate that put you in that place at that time, was it fate that the thought you had to follow that man entered your head? Did you have a choice to follow him? You will never know, the decision was already made and you had already preformed an action. Your action has now presented an unanswerable question, there is nothing more you can do but to sit back and watch as you have just trapped a man in, The Rabbit Hole.
Or, will he be sitting back and watching, as you fall victim to the Rabbit Hole.
A Michael Wolf “Short”
A Moon Light Walk by Michael Wolf is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at michaelwolf.co.uk.
© 2011 Michael Wolf [1-727666731]
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