0019 – Pamela: Eternal Isolation, by Karl

Hello, Gareth.


I wondered how long it would take you to find and open this book. How much time did you pass alone, in that cottage, before you finally resigned yourself enough to poke through the bookshelves in the study? I can’t wait to find out.


How are you finding your captivity? Is it dull? Are you bored?


I bet you are.


You’re not half as bored as your wife is, though.


Why don’t you read a little story about her?


A story that, once I finish it and speak its Name, will become her reality?


She’s right here with me.


Enjoy my work, my apprentice.


———————


Pamela screamed and struggled, but she was completely powerless to resist me. I laughed. I was having so much fun now that you were finally out of my way, Gareth. You tried to keep Pam away from me, to prevent her from knowing anything about me, and that ultimately proved to be very useful. It made it easy to win her trust.


Pam’s trust, as I’m sure you know, was misplaced. With a word, I put her to sleep. I can do that, because I actually understand Sermomancy. Unlike you, who wasted your time learning precisely nothing – and even gave up your job for it!


Once she was asleep, I carried her back here, to the windmill. I had a special room prepared, underneath it. It didn’t take more than a few words, once I had written the books required. I even wrote some of them while you stood, bored and irritable, your feet aching, in the corner of my study. You saw me write often. If only you’d known what I was doing.


I strapped Pamela to the table before she awoke. Then, I started writing this book. Here is where the factual account ended, and the magic began. It is poor form to change tense in the middle of a story, so I shall remain in the past tense while I work my Craft here for you to see.


Against all reason, with no apparent cause, Pamela felt the physical sensations drain from her body. Her skin could no longer feel the table below her. She no longer registered it as colder than the rest of the room. Even the regular feedback from the rest of her body, that told her she had wiggled a toe or flicked her tongue, or strained against a bond, simply stopped.


Pamela began to panic. Anyone would, under the circumstances. She called out for you, Gareth. She called out your name, and sobbed, her numb tongue butchering her speech. But then, the sounds of her own pleading and crying faded in her ears. She rapidly became so deaf that she could no longer hear anything whatsoever. She would never hear your name again, Gareth.


Her eyes frantically rolled in her restrained head. She looked around desperately, eager to find me, trying to plead with her expression alone. But the sight drained from her eyes. She became completely blind, and because she could not feel, she did not even register the movement of her eyeballs in their sockets. She may as well have been eyeless. The last thing she ever saw was the dismal ceiling of the room I had prepared just for her.


Robbed of three senses, her remaining two became acutely sensitive. She was still hyperventilating, and her nostrils, sucking in air frantically, could suddenly detect every smell in the room – not just her scent or mine, but even the very stones of the walls. The complex mental picture her frantic, sensation-starved brain had painted from smells alone faded away with her sense of smell, and soon, she may as well not have had a nose, either.


Taste was the last thing Pamela had, the very last sensation her tortured, desperate brain could cling onto. And the last thing she tasted was metallic. That’s all she knew. Whether she had bit her tongue, she couldn’t tell. Perhaps she was tasting, in some way, the corruption of the cancer eating her frail body from within. But even that faded, too, until there was nothing to taste either, until her useless tongue hung in stasis in her mouth, and her brain was completely sealed in, alone.


Pam was still sentient, and could still perceive the passage of time. But she could not feel, see, hear, smell or taste. She would spend the rest of her life strapped to that table, going mad.


The brain is addicted to stimulation. In the absence of it, we make our own. But beyond that is a void of mindlessness. And if Pamela spent too long in that state, she would never recover from it.


Unfortunately, her pathetic husband was trapped very far away, and could do nothing to save his beloved. He lived in comfortable, sustainable imprisonment, knowing that his lovely wife was losing her mind, undying, even without food, even with the filth of her excrement staining her. Nothing could claim her life, even the disease consuming her from within.


Poor, unfortunate Pamela. She had done nothing to deserve this fate, and yet it had befallen her anyway.


Until the end of time, she would lie captive, a mind imprisoned, bored to madness.


———————


Did you like my story, Gareth?


I’ve been experimenting with various titles, but I think “Eternal Isolation” sums it up nicely, don’t you?


Soon, I’m going to close this book, bind it, and Name it.


I’m going to take it downstairs. To the room where your wife calls your name.


And I’m going to speak that Name in front of her.


Consider this book yours, now. You can speak its Name yourself, if you like – but it won’t do anything. You’ve nobody to use it on, have you?


Maybe if you want to feel close to Pamela again, in some way, you could read it into a mirror.


Would you like that? I don’t know if it would work.


Please do try it. I’d love to find out.

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