The Cold Plunge

The Cold Plunge

I dipped beneath the world I knew in a cold plunge of ethereal grace. The fog that had clouded my mind diminished with the iced injection, life fell away in layers. I was an orange peeled in one long, unravelling length, spaghetti wound around a fork, a vacuumed ghost. I was all this and more, but I never once forgot you.

I remained anchored by those eyes, your eyes, attached to the world I was meant to leave. I slowed, though my body felt nothing, stalled, though my mind said not. Paused between reality and a dream, I coalesced into something bigger than my once self, and the fury built.

Surfacing like a submarine from the Marianna Trench, a place so deep as to be unknown, my anger should not have been, yet it was and it did, and I did, too. The one who’d separated us would pay.

“The cold plunge,” said another. “You’ve felt it?” as I passed.

“I have,” I whispered, though my mouth never moved.

“Take us with you,” said another faceless being in this faceless place. “Please!” begged another.

And so I raised from the stone floor on which I’d fallen, the blood still dripping from my chest, a gaping cavern all that remained of my heart. I was not alone. The mob knew fear then, I would see to it.

My army of ghosts squeezed them away to that place beyond death to die a million times over, then die some more. The heat from their bodies would diminish by the cell and the ghosts would take every atom.

When I turned to my darling she screamed, and I died again, not from anger, not from pain, but from love. I was an abomination she loved no longer. Her fear drove me away.

Yet still I lingered as fog, the mist in the mirror, the unsettling dream. For me, death had just begun.

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