Man is a ‘mini trinity’. A creature carved out in imitation of the Divine Creator, the ordained being tasked to care above all other creations on the face of Ala.
Man is but every other wondrous thing created by the Source of all Life with an extra ingredient in the mix… the condiment called ‘Awareness’. Like the Professor in a kid’s animated show, the ability to grasp to a level all ‘that is’, is the ‘Chemical X’ poured into man’s creation. And so, Man becomes a special being… but he gets no preferential treatment.
For all the ‘Love’ showered upon the head of humanity, man still defies his Master. The Fall of Man as attested in the ‘Holy Book’, as affirmed in the ‘collective unconscious’ of humanity, saw humans go from the beacon of light they were supposed to be, to becoming shadows in pursuit of redemption.
Something opaque stands before man and the Light of God. It makes the Creator’s luminescence go around the intended target. It obstructs the flow of His mercy and grace upon man, keeping humanity in an Egyptian night.
This opaque ‘thing’ is called sin.
It is the archenemy of Man, the bane which denies him salvation, it makes him tarry when he is supposed to light his torch in the liberating bonfire that the Saviour, who died for man’s sins prepared for us. Humans strive in virtue to regain the glory that the Ancestors lost when they were in the Garden. And yet, amidst all these, there are those who still follow the Path of the Serpent. The Destroyer, the Deceiver, the Warper, the Devourer, the Scion of Damnation has enthralled so many souls to his whims. His evil pervades the world, carried out by cacodemons… entities and humans whose souls are lost to stygian darkness, condemning themselves to the fires of Acheron.
It is because of this arrogance of ‘certain men’, this ‘appreciation’ for evil and sin that I and a friend find ourselves in torment, suffering fates that no person our age should ever encounter.
Man is a mini trinity; body, soul and mind. God is a prefect trinity, sublime in one and all Personae He manifests. Man, without His divine touch is but a mere caricature. This trinity as regards to me, has been shattered to its constituent bits… it has been ‘split’. Divided and scattered like rogue seeds in a violent wind. Like seeds in the hands of the sower, the seed of my mind rests among hellish thorns, traversing a world of endless insanity; the seed of my body lies dormant upon a hospital bed, in a deathly coma held only by a single thread that tethers me to the world of the living; the seed of my soul resides in the flesh vessel of my dear friend, his psyche suffers greatly because my spirit burdens his frail human entity, without him I would cease to exist.
I sigh as I contemplate my predicament. Using a pond as a mirror, I gaze upon my visage as my thoughts seek to resolve themselves. The image I see makes me shudder. It is an uncomfortable sight; I wear my torment like a cloak. All I see is a night without any spot of light, no stars and no moon. It is a fitting metaphor. It is fitting because I am incomplete, parts of my psyche are no longer in me… I am half full… or is it half empty?
No sane person should have seen what I and Edum had witnessed, normal people would not indulge in wickedness… those innocent children… No! Those were not mere ‘men’. They were demons wearing the flesh of men. Humans lost to the rhythm of the Serpent’s dance.
The skin of my face is grey as a corpse’s… the same with the rest of my body. Shrivelled lips, receding hairline, a laden face with beady eyes. My eyes are inverted in colour, white iris and pupil against the dark background that is my cornea.
I am half-naked and barefooted, wearing only my black school trousers which are torn at shin level. Upon my neck, arms and legs are metal shackles with short chains. The chains end after seven links, I do not know the reason for that but I look like an escaped ‘monster’.
I am trapped in a grey world of shifting reality, an insane limbo. No conscious mind should be here, should any sane man behold this place, he would go mad. I’ve heard and read about this place before. I never imagined I’d up witnessing it with my own senses. This place is a place of oblivion and eternal twilight, a grey realm in between the White of the heavenly and the Black of the infernal.
I am trapped at the threshold, the liminal place between Life and Death.
This place is called the Grey Limbo, a mad realm where things long dead and forgotten, animate and not, reside. I see it go from one phase to another. Becoming mystical places, I recognize them from texts and other media of ken I have visited in my leisure time. It is the place the newly dead pass through.
“Ala ndi Mmuo”, “Barzakh”, “Hamistagan”, “Bardo”, “Sheol”, “Da’at”, “Styx”… before my eyes all these come and go in a crazed flux. I sense no distortion, no feeling of change, no displace… This is a realm where “there is and there isn’t”.
“It all depends on where you want to go or where your journey takes you”.
Startled, I turn towards the direction of the voice. My frantic movement causes my chains to jangle in a crazed rhythm.
“I’m up here lost one” the voice says again.
I stretch my sight to where the voice came from. Upon a branch of a gnarly tree on the far side of the pond left of me, a pristine white dove addressed me with questioning eyes.
“Who are you?” I ask without any show of emotion; I barely possess any.
“I don’t have any, and it’s not really important.” the Dove replied.
Thoughts crossed my mind the speed of my impulses, but before I could voice them, the Dove cut me short saying,
“Before you start with your queries, as you humans are wont to do, your friend is in a bit of a crisis. Help him first.”
Those words struck a loud chord in my being, so loud it sent a mad flurry of images before my eyes.
I recognized him immediately. I recognized where he was by his attire and the environment. Our school’s lavatory. I could see the ‘things’ closing on him while he fights off the burden on his mind. What a perfect ambush. the lavatory was empty at that time, no interference from any soul except the one in torment in one of the restrooms.
My dear friend, Chinaedum. Because of his astral connection to me he suffers nightmares. I try to reach him sometimes in his dreams, between midnight and three-thirty am, when the veil between realms weaken. I try to communicate with him, I only end up giving him more nightmares.
Without him I’d be dead. As long as he lives, my body breathes, and with it the hope of true life. As long as we live, those innocent kids will have a chance to see another day… or… rest in peace. In that entity I call friend, in Chinaedum’s psyche does my soul find solace. He is too precious to allow the cacodemons triumph over him.
Despicable things. I’m sure they orchestrated the psychic attack on him.
Leading the fiends is a cacodemon with a corona of wicked fire upon its head. They all look alike- gaunt faceless heads, smooth thin grey skinned things with long talons for fingers and clawed feet. I counted thirteen of them, captain included. They had wings which looked to have the texture of black mist.
The demons could never harm me at the hospital, my body is invulnerable to their attacks because of Chinaedum. The thread which binds my soul to his keeps a powerful shield over my comatose flesh vessel. I feel a sudden wash of melancholy, Edum suffers because of me.
A tear streaks down an eye. Better dead than being a burden.
In a fit of dark rage, I inadvertently charge towards the portal that was summoned by the Dove.
My fists clenched, my fury implacable, I make manifest in my school lavatory. Chinaedum silently suffers series of traumas in the restroom, which culminates into a convulsion. I sense him, I feel his burdens… the pain, the horrors… he will be safe in there… for the mean time.
The demons recognize me; they know my intent. I am to deny them their prize. The cacodemon-captain orders his subordinates to attack me. They do. I bellow my defiance and rage at them with a mad shriek, they will not harm my friend.
I will destroy them, I will save my friend and when the time is right, Divine justice will rain down from the heavens with a fury greater than mine. For now, I’ll embrace the monster I have seemingly become, my fists will be sleek with the ichor of demons…