Hilter Odolf Williamson wakes up from a sound, dreamless sleep to find his nightstand empty. Before he went to bed last night, he placed the crystal that called to him in the ratty wooden shack on that nightstand, but now it’s gone. And for some reason, he knows exactly where he’ll find it.
“No…” Hilter says to himself as he gets dressed in his best slacks and button-down. “That’s not possible, Hilter. She’s hardly even alive, the woman doesn’t have the strength to get out of bed. I had to hire a hospice nurse for God’s sake, it’s not possible.”
But he knows it is, and so Hilter walks down the road to what used to be the Johnson’s house, the very first house he bought on Fricker Drive, the same house Daisy grew up in, not that Hilter knew that when he bought it – it simply spoke to him, called out to him in a metaphysical sort of way – nor does he know it now. He goes in through the garage and walks through the basement, then pauses at the door to his Mother’s apartment.
“Hilter, do you really believe your catatonic Mother got up in the middle of the night, broke into the one house on this road you happened to be sleeping in – a detail she would never be able to know or guess, regardless of the elevated state of consciousness her schizophrenia allows her to access, because I mentally blocked the information from her and her specifically – and stole that big quartz crystal off your nightstand? Without waking you? Come on Hilter, you must be fucking daft.”
And he almost walks away. But then he doesn’t. Hilter opens the door and sees the crystal lying on his mother’s stomach, slowly rising and falling as she breathes.
“How in the hell did you manage it, you evil woman?” Hilter demands, storming into the gloomy apartment and slamming the door behind him. “How is it even possible?”
Daisy opens her tired eyes, then turns her head slightly to face Hilter. “Hello, my beautiful son.”
“Hello, Mother,” Hilter says through clenched teeth. “Answer my Goddamned question and answer it now. How did you get that rock off my nightstand last night?”
“I… well, I don’t remember, son. I wasn’t carried by my will alone.”
“What?!” Hilter shouts, exasperated.
“It was The Father of Existence, my child. The Father spoke to me last night, for the first time since I was a little girl… The Father told me what I need to do.”
“Oh? And what’s that?! Do you need to murder me like you did my father?! Do you need to have me locked up in an asylum again?! WHAT?!” Hilter screams, veins bursting from his throat.
Daisy only smiles. “I love you, Hilter Odolf, and I’m sorry for everything that’s happened. But I’m not long for this world, and I must ask you to listen.”
A scowl of rage and disgust makes itself perfectly present on Hilter’s face. “Fine. Fine, I’m listening. What do you have to say, you psychotic old witch? And make it quick, before I do you in myself.”
“If that’s how it’s meant to happen, that’s how it will go… but I do not think…” she trails off, then lets the air hang silent. Then, “I must tell you the truth, Hilter.”
“The truth?” Hilter barks. “I know the truth, Mother. You are a psychopath, you are a severely sick schizophrenic woman who decided to murder her husband. You stole the stuffed animals from your son’s bedroom, the only creatures your son had to talk to, the only ones who would listen to him! His Mother wouldn’t listen, his Mother was always too busy speaking to a voice in her head that didn’t even speak back! And his father, his father was always belligerently stressed out about his mentally ill wife, always too busy worrying to pay any attention to his son! The other kids at school made me an outcast because they knew my parents were crazy; I was alone! I was all alone as a child, I grew up and lived out my childhood alone because of you, all I had was my stuffed animals and you even took them from me! And you gutted them like you gutted my father and you stuffed my dead father with the plush from their bellies, and then you started killing pets. And then you started killing wild animals. AND THEN YOU BLAMED IT ALL ON ME!
“I know the truth perfectly well, Mother! The truth is that you are a witch, you are a horrid, abominable human being, you are a Goddamned fucking monstER AND YOU DESERVE TO BURN IN HELL FOR WHAT YOU DID TO ME!” Hilter’s face is beet red, his hands are clenched into fists so tight his nails have pierced the skin of his palms. His arms are both trembling, his breathing is heavy and erratic, his teeth are clenched so tight that his molars are beginning to crack, but yet he is standing his ground. He has not leaped across the room and murdered his Mother, he has not broken her neck with his bare hands, he has not taken the crystal and used it to bash her skull in. Hilter is not like his Mother, Hilter is not a manifestation of pure evil, and so he simply stands there and feels the burn in his throat. And you know what? It feels good, like a long drag from a burning joint.
“There, that is the truth, Mother. I’ve finally said it, it’s all out in the open. Do you have anything to say for yourself?!”
A single tear falls down Daisy Williamson’s face, but she does not shed her tear for her son, nor does she shed her tear for herself. Daisy sheds this sole tear for The Father, for Daisy knows He has seen all that Hilter spoke of, that He was forced to watch it all, that He suffered through it just as much as Hilter did. More than Hilter did, even, for Hilter does not understand reality. Hilter only sees what is right in front of him. It is time for Hilter to learn the truth.
“Hilter…” Daisy says quietly. “You were supposed to have a baby brother, Hilter. When you were very young, your father and I went to the beach, and I lost the child on that beach. His soul was stolen from me by a terrible monster, and I was forced to give birth to his lifeless body six months later. That… that broke me, Hilter. That shattered my mind. Nothing was the same after I lost your brother, Hilter, and everything that I did I did because I lost him. I’m so sorry, Hilter. I’m so sorry for what I’ve done to you… but you must understand, it was not all my fault.”
“It… what?” Hilter sneers. She almost had him, she almost made him feel sorry for her. “It wasn’t your fault?! It was all your fault, you psychotic, deranged… you, you… FUCK YOU!”
“Oh, Hilter…” Daisy weeps, the crystal heavy on her chest. “Oh Hilter, oh my son, you cannot imagine the pain He feels for you, Hilter. You cannot begin to know…”
“He?! Who the fuck is he? Are… have you disassociated? Are you here with me, Mother?”
Though she weeps waterfalls, Daisy Williamson manages to smile. “I am here, Hilter, and He is here, too. You now know my truth, Hilter; it is time for you to know the truth.”
“The truth of what?!” Hilter screams at the top of his lungs.
“The truth of reality.”
“The truth of…” Hilter starts, then lowers his head. He takes his glasses off his face and wipes the fog off the lenses with his shirt, then puts them back on, pushing the bridge tight against his nose. Then, Hilter looks up and says, “I know the truth of reality, Mother. I understand it perfectly well. The truth is that everything is conscious, everything vibrates at a certain level on the spectrum of consciousness. The truth is that some humans, humans like you and myself, are schizophrenic, that we select few are quite literally higher than the majority of those around us. We are special, our minds are more powerful. That’s how you so easily got away with killing my father and all those animals, that’s how you were able to convince everybody that it was me and not you. Because you’re psychic, because you can look into the mind of another human being and bend and twist it to your liking.”
Daisy smiles at her son. Her son hates her for that smile.
“It’s the only thing that makes sense! I’m the same way! I’m the world’s greatest expert on the schizophrenia spectrum! I have the disorder, I know firsthand how it works! How else can you explain my success, how else can all the conveniently coinciding incidents that happened to bring me here this morning? How else can you explain the fact that I was brought to that old ratty shack in the woods by the Universe itself, huh Mother?! How else can you explain anything that happens in this fucked up world?!”
Daisy can only smile. “I’m sorry I couldn’t be the one to show you my clubhouse, Hilter.”
The color drops out of Hilter’s face.
“Did you know I grew up in this house? And now I’m going to die here – it all comes around eventually, son. Unless it doesn’t, in which case… in which case it didn’t need to. Your theories are fun to think about Hilter, they’re fun thought experiments to run, but believing them will bring you no further in life. Can I tell you the truth now? The real truth of reality?”
Hilter says nothing; he cannot speak, for he’s too busy trying to understand how his Mother’s voice just changed like that, how she sounds so young and healthy all of the sudden. How her voice is so soothing to his ears.
“The truth of reality, Hilter, is that there is no the truth.” Daisy Williamson, holding the crystal in her hands now, levitates out of her bed, phasing through the blankets that once covered her while, at the same time, keeping her nightgown on. She floats in front of Hilter and stands on the air, meeting him at eye level. “Existence is a living thing, Hilter, and you’re right – some things are more conscious than others – but nothing living inside of Existence lives under its own free will. Everything that happens, everything from the formation of planets down to the thoughts which pop into your head, happens because that’s how Existence needs it to happen. There are no forces above Existence that directly alter Her course of action; well, none that dare to, at least. There are merely forces who help facilitate and guide Her creations as they embark on their wondrous journeys inside of Her. There are three of these outside forces, Hilter, and they are called The Mongrel, who gives life to the others; The Perception, who gives life to the I; and The Father of Existence, who speaks to all who will hear His voice, whether they’re capable of listening or not. And sometimes, my beautiful son, my brilliant Hilter Odolf Williamson, sometimes Existence doesn’t work like that. Sometimes Existence breaks the rules She sets up for Herself, if for no other reason than the fact that She’s capable of doing so. That’s just how Existence is, that’s how She’s always been. And that’s enough; for you, Hilter, and for Existence Herself, that’s enough. And so the wind continues to blow.
“You will never understand Existence, Hilter. You will never understand how consciousness truly works. You will never be able to grasp reality in your hands, Hilter Odolf Williamson, because it is not your purpose to do so.”
Hilter takes a step back, refusing to listen. “No, that’s… that’s bullshit, all of it! I am a psychologist, the world-renown–”
“Human psychology is a pseudoscience, a pattern picked out of the ordered chaos that is reality by the misguided, you arrogant fool,” says Daisy in the voice of The Father. “You are on this Earth to help those in need, those like Scotty Mells and Dallas Hinton and Gill Milligan, whose dream journal you still have yet to read. You’re here for those like the boy Cooper, the one with no last name, a fact you never once questioned during your interactions with him, and yet you question me, the closest thing to what you know as God. You own all the houses on this street so you can give troubled souls like your mother Daisy a safe place to rest so they can heal and move on, so you can talk to them and help their souls level out. That is your purpose; you are special, Hilter Odolf Williamson, but not for the reason you think.”
“Then why?!” Hilter shouts, although he doesn’t choose to do so. He merely feels the heated words fly out of his mouth, and in that moment, Hilter understands that none of his actions are his. None of his actions have ever been his and none of them ever will be his, because there is no him. There is merely Existence and all of Her creations, which are just reflections of Herself. Above Her are The Mongrel, The Perception, and The Father of Existence, and within her are many gears which all churn together, and Hilter Odolf Williamson is but one of those gears. And that’s enough.
“Because Existence decided you should be. Existence Herself decided that you have a very special role to play, my Hilter Odolf Williamson, and you shall play it until Existence Herself dies.”
A feeling of unadulterated bliss and love washes over Hilter Odolf Williamson. He forgets about his past, he forgets about his anger, his confusion, all the perplexingly convenient incidents that have brought him here to his Mother’s apartment in the basement of the first house he brought on Fricker Drive. He realizes where he is: Universe W-63, a special universe where troubled souls go to be incarnated and heal from past trauma so they may move on and spiral anew elsewhere in The Void. A simple universe. Hilter feels good about that. Hilter feels safe, secure with his role here, and when his Mother Daisy falls dead to the cold concrete floor in a heap of broken bones and shattered white quartz, Hilter can only smile, because that’s exactly what was supposed to happen.
Hilter turns around and goes to leave the apartment forever, not worrying about his dead Mother because Existence will sort that out without having Hilter play a part. Then, he hears a voice whispering to him from inside his head. The voice wants Hilter to turn around, and so he does.
Daisy is floating again, but her arms and legs aren’t attached to her body – they’re all linked together, hand to hand, foot to foot, stump to stump in the shape of a circle, a horrifically bloody circle of dismembered limbs embedded with sharp shards of shattered white quartz spinning faster than the tires of the police’s cars on their way to arrest the true murderer of the neighborhood pets. In the middle of the circle is Daisy Williamson’s torso, her legless, armless, headless torso, the nightgown which covers it soaked in blood which leaks onto the spinning wheel of dismembered limbs, and as this wheel of limbs spins ‘round and ‘round, it paints the cinderblock walls, the rafters in the ceiling, the concrete floor, the bed and the wheelchair between it and the wall, the flatlined life support equipment, the cushioned chair for the hospice nurse; the entire basement apartment is painted red with the sacred blood of Daisy Williamson. Her severed head is floating before the center of her torso. Her eyes are sunken in and pitch black. Thick streaks of glowing purple fluid flow down her cheeks and dribble out from her stump of a neck.
“One last thing before you go, Hilter,” Daisy’s severed head says in Her beautiful, loving, elated voice, the voice of The Father of Existence. No, this voice is different – this voice is the voice of Existence Herself.
“What’s that, Mother?” Hilter asks, not at all perturbed by the sight (nor the smell) of his Mother’s actively bleeding and grossly mutilated corpse.
“Existence will eventually end, Hilter. I will die one day.”
Then, in a deep, haunting voice that sounds like it should be speaking backwards, Existence says, “But not until I’m damn well ready. You shall continue to live here on the street called Fricker Drive, and you shall continue to save the souls who are sent to you. You shall forget all you’ve been shown here today, Hilter Odolf Williamson, but you shall hold the understanding in your heart and in the back of your mind. And that shall be enough. For you, Mister Williamson, that shall be enough.
“And the wind shall continue to blow.”
Hello Commons, this has been the last subchapter of the last story from Convenient Incidents, an anthology of fifteen interconnected short stories which revolve around a man by the name of Hilter Odolf Williamson.
Convenient Incidents is part of the Third Spiral, an anthology of sorts called The Here and Now which is comprised of stories told from the various planes of Existence.
Convenient Incidents is available to read for free in its entirety on my website. Click here to check it out.
I’ve written a few other books, too. Click here to see the list.
If you like Convenient Incidents and would like to help support my work, click here and buy an autographed copy of the book (or anything else!) from my store. Alternatively, you can snag a cheaper (and unsigned) copy from Amazon by clicking here OR you can buy the ebook for even cheaper here.
If you’re there, hypothetical reader, thank you for being there. Be well Commons~