That morning, I woke up, and the light from outside hit my eyes. I closed them; but the bright image stayed in the dark, imprinted on my eyelids. It was too bright; it hurt. I thought, today I am in the mood to dissolve in the sky.
I wanted to, so bad. I wanted to melt away. I wanted to merge with the nothingness, and the blue, and the colours and swirls of air. But especially the nothingness. I wanted it to stop, this existing, this awareness of the edges of my body, the vague beat that was the pumping of my heart, this being. Just stop. Leave me alone. Let me be unconscious. Free me of body. Free me of mind.
When it stopped echoing in my head, I got up and everything went black. Then the world slowly came into focus. I looked out of the window. There it was, the sky. I stared. I was almost gone when she called.
And so I shook myself out of the trance, I reached for my phone on the desk, discovered the time and vaguely panicked. I got dressed, I heard the clatter of plates and cutlery being thrown into the sink. She said better be ready soon uh, gotta go, see you tonight! and the door slammed. I ate, I put a coat on, I wished I was somewhere else, I closed the door and walked to the train station. It was two streets away from my house. Everything was damp; the world looked like it had been out for a long walk. Like it had been caught out in the rain, like it was soaked to the bone and unprotected. I remember, noticing there were leaves beneath my feet, being surprised by their colour, by the earth-toned orange and yellow, which seemed to have been added on afterwards, like pastel on a faded drawing.
When I got to the small square building, I went in and looked wearily at the screen. The train was late; I hadn’t missed it.
All of sudden I felt that mood come upon me again. I wished I was back to sleep. I wished I could rest from sharp edges. It was worse than before. It wasn’t just that I didn’t want to go to school. I didn’t want anything- anything that was in my life. I didn’t manage to push myself back to normal this time. The feeling twisted my resistance until it broke with a whisper; fuck it. I lowered my bag down on the station floor and left. I walked to the platform on the other side.
My train was arriving, but my feet stepped onto the one going in the opposite direction, towards Paris. I didn’t care. I didn’t feel the slightest worry. I didn’t feel the slightest excitement. I don’t think I even had a moment of hesitation. I was past that. I just moved and sat down.
Yet many times before, I had dreamt of doing just what I was doing, and many times I had reminded myself that I had no money, nowhere to go, no excuse for skipping class, and that whatever I did, what I would always have was another day. A tomorrow, that would invariably be back at school.
I didn’t think about that this time. I just stared ahead; I wasn’t really aware of what was happening. The train slowly filled up.
Later, I looked up and read, lack space to store everything? Call Xtra Space for cheap storage rooms! and for a second I thought about this kid, who went by the name Leaf of Glass. He had left home, taken a train and gone from Essaouira to Casablanca, with nothing on him. No luggage, no ticket, no company. Just himself. He wouldn’t have needed xtra space. But he was fictional.
I got up, and, feeling everything lurch forward as the train stopped, moved toward the doors. I stepped out in the cold air, onto an unknown platform. It wasn’t central Paris. Probably somewhere close to the end of the line. Somewhere I was still conscious that the reasonable thing to do was to take a return train as soon as I could and simply arrive late.
But that somewhere was powerless. The voice of reason, the voice of self-awareness and sanity, was utterly powerless within me. Like when people go crazy in films, when they suddenly flip over the table, when they hit their best friend, when they start screaming and crying… Except my anger had no direction, there was no one to hit. There was no point.