A False Grounding in Reality
Short Story by: SNAFUShadow
For the largest majority of my life, I've been a rather logical, science-trusting person who would sooner believe in that you can prove than that you can theorize with absolutely no evidence. At the time of writing this I'm a young man of seventeen years of age, and as time passes I scorn my former self for previous flaws in thought, because our younger selves are wont to flawed thought and action towards things we know little about. I have, however, spent the vast majority of my life asking what I call as the philosopher's question about everything; why. Sometimes I do this right in the middle of a task, or sometimes when idle, but usually I sit and think about it for a period, often times me later wishing I didn't have a penchant for thinking far too damned much.
It was a year ago or so, then, when one night when I sat in my room playing a medieval war game and began considering the story of it that I began contemplating something. Now any man who has ever questioned existence will have a faint reollection the feeling I am soon to describe, for every man who does so has experinced it and due to my constant bouts of random deep thought I'm well accustomed to it, but the thought that came to mind was one that provoked a sense of extreme dread that seemed directed at my own existence and my understanding of it. As accustomed as I was, however, this time the feeling was different, and was strong from the second it began clawing its demented path from the back of my mind to the center of my focus. You see, in the story of the game, or at least the one some fans had created due to the plotholes it had, many divine beings and the like were in fact physical beings, albeit on a higher plane of existence. The plot began that these beings were seen in the same light we hold ours in our various religions, but in actuality, while you never do encounter them, they do exist
Something about this struck me this time, even though it's far from the last time I've heard this plot point. I paused for a moment and sat back, for some reason contemplating the implications of this in real life. I began considering how previous phenomena in history were thought to be spirits of some form or some other type of being at work were actually natural, and the fault I saw in Atheism, and moreover the reason I chose to define myself as Agnostic or Undecided; the belief that there are no "divine beings" or what we define as them seems wholy ignorant with no proof unless natural phenomena is the point of argument and the divine being is actually a tornado. The fault was the jaws of the beast breathing down my neck, and it bit hard on my mind as a realization came to mind that lead to me to write something I found in my desk recently. You may find the fact that I just delivered a synopsis on how I felt writing as arbitrary and unnecessary, but as I sat at my desk an hour ago reading it, I found the story to be even more disturbing after recalling just what ran through my mind. It still resides there, as well; an uncanny personification of my own existentialism laughing at me as this is typed.
Somewhere in the countryside near Atlanta, Georgia, a man in his early 20s awoke. Despite the common connotation of being some form of hillbilly that most men and women receive when living in the South-Eastern United State's rural areas, appeared to be the epitome of civilization. Lining the walls of his bedroom were several bookshelves, filled with everything from encyclopedias to that one damned poetry compilation he had found at a garage sale that for some reason the previous owner tore the Edgar Allen Poe section from, with a rather high-end computer sitting in the corner of the room on what looked like some sort of wannabe-post-modern-artist's orgasm than an actual desk. Sitting in the living room was a couch that sucked any seaters in like it wanted to consume them and then enthralled them in comfort in front of an impractically large plasma screen television. To elaborate any further on this man's displays of grandeur and materialism would be futile, so it would be best to summarize that most men would sell their souls to be in the man's position.
He groaned as he was tossed from the comfortable embrace of slumber, then rolled and sat his feet upon the floor. He reached for his glasses as his senses began to switch from an artificial reality in his mind and to the actual one, and then he stopped as they picked up something. Something was in the kitchen and making a mess. He snapped his glasses on and open the drawer of the nightstand next to his bed, where he kept a loaded Colt .45 for a now confirmed fear that he'd have an intruder one night. He quickly took it from the drawer and crept into the hall, then into the kitchen, remarking in his mind how cliche it is that a burglar would wake the house up by fiddling in the kitchen. Something strange greeted his ears though, a strange mix between a flapping noise and an old plane's propeller. When he turned the corner he was greeted by the sight of something he had wholy not expected.
A creature around his height stood in front of him, seven eyes staring at him with several wings circling the body The body was a beastial mix with a few features he had never seen before; namely that one arm looked like some sort of tree branch, but moved as if a tentacle. From random sections of the body came what appeared to be fire, yet the creature itself did not burn. The man froze, staring at this abomination, as he tried to comprehend what he was seeing, as it simply stared. He began to sweat profusely, and searched his mind for any definitions he had read of describing this thing. Then he wished he hadn't, as it dawned upon him what he was looking at was an angel, as described by a few occultic texts and a translation of the Old Testament he had once read.
And that's when he felt something inside him snap. The creature did nothing but stare, and for a brief moment he thought this was a dream. But all dreams have a quality to them, one that you know of being you're in your own mind and can tell. Even hallucinations have this quality, but this was no hallucination. His mind tried to process it but failed. This creature, this angel was here but his mind rejected it. It wouldn't register it. It refused to accept it. It acknowledge what he was staring at was an angel, but he was at the same time not looking at one. His mind erupted into a fire of computation and fear, as something inside him snapped. The human mind is, at the end of the day, a rational thing, and superstition can only block one so far. Deep down all humans had the same belief that animals had, and that was that they'll die and disappear from this plane forever. Religion is a game. Yet here stood an angel before him, and he felt his reality tear apart. His mind was trying to find an explanation but it failed. He tried to make it and still failed. The creature still stared. His mind tried to desperately cling onto its hard-programmed beliefs, but now they were collapsing right in front of it. His mind became a flurry as it tried to figure out what he was looking at within reason; angels shouldn't exist, they shouldn't even be possble. Yet, here he stood, and right in front of him.
There was another mental snap, and suddenly all went black. He fell down, and his heart began slowing down. His body couldn't take the mind's shock, and broke down right with him standing. The angel stared once more, and was gone. About a week later the man's employers informed the authorities that he hadn't shown up in days, and the soon came the police. They arrived to find him on the floor, dead from what they could only faintly diagnose as cardiac arrest. When his friends and coworkers learned of his fate, no one could believe it; he was a healthy young man with no heart issues. But, he was dead, and apparently just from an unexpected cause. That was now fact in their minds and no one really questioned it, in the same manner as that of what caused such a shock to the system.
One of the ambulance workers, however, will never forget the story of thinking he saw one of the windows suddenly light up as they drove away, and could swear he saw some sort of figure looking at them.
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