Mind Double

4:02 in the morning.

I check my watch before I pull the notebook towards my bed of straws on the wooden floor. The sound that whips my ears is nowhere near pleasant, but this beats waking up on a pile of dung, or with a monkey staring back at me.
I take the pen out of its slot – merely a ribbon attached to the notebook – and write down.

4:02. Again.

And just after I see a strange drawing in red.

This time, however, I think I remember enough. I quickly scribble down a squiggly line that may or may not be a letter in an old language that is now lost to us. The bits and pieces that I had previously noted are now merely puzzle pieces.

I look through the pages to make out the single letter that looks too soft and squiggly to be an “A”. In fact, I would be surprised if that was an A. It doesn't match the image in my head. And apparently, this is the twenty-three time that I’ve seen it.

Twenty three consecutive nights on this island.

And I don't even know where I am, let alone how to get out.

Or most importantly, how I ended up here.

To be honest, the only actual thing that I remember is the explosion. The one that somehow pulled me through a rift that threw me out here.

Why me, though? What do I even have to offer?

Or was I just a bystander?

Maybe if I stay, I can learn anything I want about this place. Still, I am dying to get the he'll out, after twenty-three nights.

Twenty-three consecutive nights on this island.

And I don’t even know where-

Oh no. Oh no, it is happening again. I am repeating myself. Maybe it’s not been twenty three days. Maybe it’s been less and people are still looking for me.

Or maybe more than…

Twenty-three consecutive nights on this island.

No, I should not repeat myself. I should not give in to this… Strange… Sensation. This strange… Voice, telling me what to say. I do not want to listen to it anymore, get it out of my head! Out, get out!

“Daniel.”

İ jump and look up. The same voice. For the twenty-three time.

“Are you God?” I scream. “Come on, you gotta show yourself!”

“Daniel, please. You are complicating this whole experiment.”

“What experiment?”

I hear the speaker swallow a mouthful of spit. “Look, we have restarted your thoughts for quite some time now. For some reason, Daniel, you are stuck in a loop.”

“Yeah, yeah. I’ve heard that before! What does that mean?”

“It is like an obsession,” responds another voice. I have heard the exact same thing – and I am not just talking about the voice. “Your… Mind, cannot boot up properly. You are stuck in the digital realm.”

“Wha-“

“You… Remember, don’t you?”

I don’t respond. The explosion, I know. But this?

“Oh, brother,” mumbles the first one. “This was a bad idea. We cannot recreate his mind.”

“I want to try again,” says the other voice.

“Alright, just put him back to sleep.”

I feel something crawl up my spine. A big spark before my eyes. I gasp. I see the logo. And I remember…

4:02 in the morning.

I check my watch before I pull the notebook towards my bed of straws on the wooden floor. The sound that whips my ears is nowhere near pleasant, but this beats waking up on a pile of dung, or with a monkey staring back at me.

I take the pen out of its slot – merely a ribbon attached to the notebook – and write down…

——

Image credit: BelleDeesse

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