Do you know that feeling, that voice at the back of your head, always there but not always active. You try to make a decision and it pipes up again. It feels like a second person inside your head.
I was 15 years old, out with my friends. Us younglings were being idiots like we all do when we’re young, and someone had convinced us to go bungee jumping. That's when it started.
I had all the gear on, safety harness and all. It was the 16th of May, on Insert Bridge and not the best day to go outside. Not cold or rainy, just eerie. The mist shrouded the mountains around the bridge. And there was the voice. Out of nowhere. “Go on, Tom. Jump. Go on.” It was faint, it was almost like it wasn’t me talking, some sort of being taking control.
“You’re so slow, Thomas. We’re waiting for you!” cried Andrew.
“Stop your whining, Whingy.”
“Shut up! Let’s just go, Joel.”
That’s when I spoke up.
“Hey guys, I… Uhh… I might not do this.”
There was the voice again. “What are you doing? You know you want to jump.”
“Hey Tom!” I look around to Joel, he stares at me for a second blankly. “Nnnnnnnncluck! Cluck, cluck! Buq buq buq!” Andrew joined in. Their cruel cries tortured me, if there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s being called weak. The voice started laughing.
“Fine. Let’s go.”
I get into my harness and stand at the edge of Insert Bridge. “You go first, Tom. We want to see you fall,” said Joel.
The instructor stepped up behind me.
“3! 2! 1!” The voice started to laugh. “Jump!”
I fall off the bridge, and I hear a snap.
My vision was blurry and absolutely everything hurt. I could make out was that I was at the mouth of some sort of cavern or cave. I could see the river underneath Insert Bridge and it was absolutely pouring. I was soaked to the bone. I attempted to get up but was soon followed by a sharp, searing pain shooting up my right leg, starting from my ankle and ending at my knee.
Something wasn’t right. I lay there for a while more, just thinking about what happened, I had completely forgotten about the voice. And there it was. It felt like something was watching me, something in my presence. I turned around and saw nothing, turned back around and a flicker at the corner of my eye.
By now I had established that there was something else here, whether it was an animal or a human, or neither, it was alive. I was immediately aware, my body rejected all the pain and pushed it away. My senses came back to life and I could feel everything.
I tried to look around but my neck locked in place, the muscles denied the input from my brain. Everything around me turned cold and lifeless and I felt something coming up behind me. I began to lose consciousness but not from pain or injury, even though my injuries were great. It felt like everything was shifting away to the back of my mind, and something was taking over. It had replaced me.
I could still hear everything. I could still acknowledge everything that happened to and around me. I just couldn't control my body. I didn't know what it was, it seemed dark and evil so I was too scared to try and communicate. My body rises, shaking and jittering and my face forms a grin.
"Tom! Tom!" I could hear sirens. Flashing lights and everything around me was dark, penetrating my mind. "You're alive! Guys, Tom's alive!" Joel began to cry and smile at the exact same time. "You stupid, STUPID kid! You had me worried sick! I, I thought you died!" The crying had taken over. He came up to me, slammed his fists on my chest and proceeded to hug me with the force of a million bears.
Mind you, I still hadn't said anything yet. In the midst of the happiness I was feeling, I forgot my fears of this being that had infected my mind and attempted to talk. What I thought came out of my mouth. "Oh my God, Joel! I can't believe I'm still alive! The craziest thing happened! I fell in a cave and then there was this thing and the-" I stopped. I wasn't speaking.
By this time I was in the back of the ambulance with all the guys, the nurse had gone on and on about how I'm lucky to be alive.
A few moments later, my friends realised I'd stopped talking. Well, it wasn't exactly me, guess it was my body, but I had no way to tell them, but- Never mind. It took the nurses a while to diagnose what was wrong. At first they thought it was a coma but they realised that I was still reacting and moving, so they ruled that out.
Apparently I'm mute from shock and unable to talk for a while. I'm not going to lie, I'm angry. This thing inside my head is still here, still there, still planted, and you know what? That's exactly what's going to happen. I think it's like a seed, and it will grow. I don't know what it will grow on, but it will. If I can figure that out, then I might be able to get rid of it.
Well, that's what the voice at the back of my head tells me.