I have clipped my nails and taped my hands to prevent touching the wounds I have picked open along my arms. Their eyes watch me as I struggle to type, as I try not to look too closely at their adorable little faces. It’s a trap, a trick. Anthropomorphous reactions are a symptom of the RHD infection, I know it. But the cilia of their fur is soft, so soft. The ears came first, and then the noses, and now, heavens, there is the illusion of paws. Sweet, dear tiny paws with sweet, dear tiny claws that prick around the edges of the scratches like pins and needles. The fungal spores extrude farther from my skin every hour like curious, exploring rabbits, tentative yet stubborn. I can feel them growing, moving. I tried ice to numb the feeling, but that only made it worse. The fungal tips make a screeching sound when the cold forces them to contract, it’s horrifying, and the pain was more intense than the pleasure of the brief respite was worth. My roommate may have already succumbed. He doesn’t answer his door when I call and there is a heavy weight leaning against the far side which is too much for me to shove aside in my weakened, near desperate state. I have already eaten all of the pills I got from the clinic. Maybe I should fetch more, but I fear it may be too late.
The doctor at the walk-in clinic has confirmed that it’s RHD and not allergies, a flu, or delusional parasitosis. My eyes are already shinier. My nose has begun twitching. I was instructed to keep away from public places, so I walked home instead of taking the bus. The lapidae fungus fluffs transfer easier if I scratch at them, but I can’t not. The tips of the fine “ears” have started sprouting from my pores and they itch!!
Guess I’m not going in to work tonight.
I seem to have the first symptoms of RHD. Up and down my inner arms; itching. A rough cough from deep in my lungs, like there’s a hair in my throat. I feel cold, but I dare not wear anything with sleeves. I need to know, I need to see if it starts. Maybe this is just a flu? A flu where I itch, itch and scratch like a nervous animal.
After the cure, the obliteration. The body I’ve already exposed, the oblique columns of muscle and bone, to the odd flirtation with technology. Centuries, even decades ago, they dreamed of this. Now I’m just testing the feeling, drowning in colour as the night doctor operates. Steady hands, penicillin buzz, the names of the dead erupting from my mouth like a safety switch, the effects of sensory dilation as the silver cage of the time bomb was manipulated and armed under my skin.
From now on, I will bruise easily.
Where am I now? Recovering. The foreign molecules now stranded in my body have been part of a different universe and the penetrating fatigue of interstellar travel is taking its toll. My eyes have gone dark, languid and unstirred, but I can feel recovery creeping up. It is coming closer, like a long earred animal in the dark.
Oh gosh, I almost forgot! We have less than one week until the next Rabbit Hole Day!
Started in 2005 by the remarkably clever Dan Curtis Johnson to mark Lewis Carrol’s birthday, the surreal and fantastical Rabbit Hole Day is celebrated by turning everything upside-down and inside-out until nobody is their normal self anymore. Better start planning your weirdness now!
Friday! Friday! Friday!
Wow! The Ministry of Social Engineering medical adjudicator has approved my application for baby benefits, much, much faster than anticipated! Apparently Parliament just passed a bill giving precedence to the development of registered parent lists to combat the grim business reality of an alarmingly low birth rate, even while giving a lot of lip on TV to synthetics, rejuvenetics, and “aging gracefully” to avert the financial crisis. (I hate those posters, don’t you? Always at the bus-stop, next to all the other ads targeted at poor people.) This is all so unreal, like I’ve fallen down a rabbit hole. Never in my life has the government ever been so helpful! They’ve even given me a chit to register with a far more luxurious creche than my income bracket would allow, because of my high test scores and because I’m such prime birthing age.
Next step: asking the new partner how he feels about the whole thing.
No matter what the politicians in Ottawa say about population control, I’ve decided I’m going to be a mother. We might be past peak oil, our air poisoned, our water even worse, but my biological clock is ticking, louder every heaving, lonely night, and more insistent with every passing day, leaving me shaking with desire for a baby like a leaf in a heavy wind. So I don’t care if I have to live on the other side of the border fence, I’ve already signed up for the fertility testing and registered with the district as a potential partner-parent, available for insemination, contingent on mutual RBT-H:D results. Wish me luck!
Reposted from Dan Curtis Johnson:
Back in 2005, I posited that there should be a day of the year on which everyone posts not about the usual things that they do, the usual life that they have, but instead about a day in a completely different sort of life. A day in which everyone falls down the rabbit hole like Alice, a day spent where the rules are completely different.
I thought a fine day for such an event would be the 27th of January – the birthday of Lewis Carroll, author of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. Why, golly, that’s five days away, Thursday next week! The Seventh Annual Rabbit Hole Day is almost upon us!
In 2005, of course, it was largely limited to LiveJournal but in years since it has spread to the various other blogging platforms and even onto Flickr. Maybe this is the year it gets all over this Maybe this is the year it gets all over this Facebook thing that I heard someone talking about somewhere maybe one time.
For consideration: try it! you’ll like it! who doesn’t like to get away from the Usual for a bit?