by robbie illos
A schizophrenic's diary entry ends up as a criminal evidence. Will they believe her?
I sat in front on the television, holding the remote up and my head down on the table next to me. I always find comfort in a world which is in sideways; though I guess it’s harder to read the reporter’s lips this way. But my head stayed the way it was.
I kept pressing on the remote and flipping through the channels. Ours end in 15—no cable and all. But I’m now on 41, with the gray screen buzzing nonsense into our living room. 42… 43… 44…. I was finding out how many more there were before I get back to my starting point. 45… 46… 47 Nothing sinks in and I admit I’m completely bored; there’s nothing to do. 48… 49… 50…. When mom gets home, I should have already thought of a convincing proposal as to why we need the cable back. 51…52…53…. There’s this thing bugging me at the moment, I know. But I don’t know where it’s coming from, more so what it is. 51… 52… 53…. But I thought, maybe, it’s coming back. Maybe, it isn’t ever going away. 54…. The screen is still gray, still the only source of light, still flickering as outlines of people in it move inside the confines of their box. I glance at the door and suddenly I feel a rush of fear. Still 54. So I start pressing the button again. 55… 56… 57… 58… 59…60…61…62… 63… 64… 65… 66… 67…. I turned the T.V. off and shut my eyes in the blinding darkness.
When I awoke, I saw my older brother sitting by my feet, flipping through my notebook. It’s supposed to be a journal, a diary or something, but I guess people in this house had already been given the permission to enter my brain without knocking. The last entry must be probably entertaining because my brother was suppressing a laugh and only let out instalments of titters.
“Niko,” I said, barely audible. Parts of my brain were still in the dreamworld. “What’s so funny?”
“The band of monkeys,” he replied.
“Getting worse, huh?”
“No, I don’t think so. That’s the funny part– you’re not. I also saw the monkeys. Are you sure that isn’t contagious?”
“No, it’s hereditary.” I gave him a wary look. “You might just have it too,”
He just laughed, chucked the notebook back onto the table and lifted his feet up onto it. “There was a parade today. They let the supposedly well-trained animals make a mess out of our streets. Very entertaining. You should’ve seen the kid on apartment five being chased by the geese.”
I shrugged. “Didn’t know whether it was ‘EXISTENT OR NOT’.” I put airquotes on the original phrase of Doctor Jaltay, just to make Niko more aware of how I hate being the way I am.