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Old Stories

Mind Games

Have you ever noticed how illogical your mind can be? It hits me every time I wander up Hob's Hill. I've wandered more times than I can remember but every new time brings a new feeling of sensitivity in my mind. I can't explain it. I'm not sure I even want to. It goes something like this.

Midnight's past, the witching hour's nearly past as well. What I'm trying to say is that it's dark, dark as I've ever seen the sky. The moon is nearly full and it spreads a light glow over its pillow of cloud. Two trails of smoke from invisible aircraft crisscross over its face. I think that it would all make a great photo. Why haven't I got my camera with me?

I look around, try to evaluate my surroundings. To my left, a vast patch of nothing, no houses, no roads, so no light. I realise the sky's not as dark as I thought: the hill on my left is pure black, blacker than a witch's hate. To my right, rotting branches, blown asunder by enthusiastic wind, poke twisted fun at all the shapes I see in their twisted forms. I wonder what the branches that I can't see are doing, hiding behind dilapidated stone walls. Ahead of me, endless regimental lines of motorway lights far in the distance stealthily conceal themselves one by one behind buildings I can't see. Behind me, the realm of sound. Was that really a footstep? A rabbit? Or just my mind playing sadistic games with me? I wouldn't be surprised. I refuse to turn round. What if someone's behind me playing tricks? They'd want me to do it. It'd be the killing joke. My mind's made up - I refuse to turn round.

I turn round. What if the someone's a psychopath? No. That's ridiculous. I open my eyes and jump. A grinning face speckled with violence, a red axe hurtling towards my head. I close my eyes again.

I open them again immediately. The doctor is ushering me out of the cell. I wish my mind behaved itself. Why does it have to be so illogical. Maybe it's just trying to fit in - the thought comes to me. I know why it's not logical.

I never found anything that was.


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