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By Wai Ho Liu


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I sit. And I stare. I stare at the walls, stare at the ceiling, stare at the little red spot on the far corner. It was the first thing I saw in this room. The only distinctive characteristic this room seemed to have.

            And so I sit. And I stare. But mostly I sit, because I'm not really staring. Or better, I'm staring beyond it. Staring though to another world. The world in my mind.

            This world changes, maybe not in any sense of logical progression, but it does change. Unlike this room, this life inside this room, where there is not even a difference to tell between day and night, much less, today or tomorrow.

            Yes, it seems that where there is no measure of time, there seems to be an absence of it. The passing of time that is.

It's like I'm stuck in the one time frame, unable to move forward. I know it is just an illusion though, and that I, like every other living creature, is still simultaneously living and dying. Except of course, that unlike me, they are actually living. They are not here, in this small room, where there is no way to tell. No sign at all.

And my captors, they want to hurt me. That is the reason for me being here. They want to hurt me, corrode my sanity, slowly and painfully. They want to but they can't.

And not because I won't let them. I'm not one to make foolish claims of exaggerated strengths of willpower because I believe willpower can only get you so far.

No, they can't because they stumbled. Very rarely do humans accomplish perfect executions. And they didn't. They made a mistake. A small mistake really. Just an oversight.

You couldn't pick it at a glance, and if you did, it wouldn't really seem significant. However, any mistake can be crucial if the opponent knows how to use it to their gain. And every mistake is vital in this game.

And that is what this is. Just a game we play.

A game of patience and endurance, of high risk, of survival.

A game of quiescent intensity.

And in that little speck of red on the far corner lie their weakness and my strength. Somehow, they didn't notice it, or just naively decided to leave it there. And it's a danger to them. More a danger because it's unknown to them.

I can just see them, sitting there. There's no unease, no doubt in their mind that they will succeed. They have with many others before. There's no reason for them to believe that they won't succeed here. They are confident, even arrogant.

But they don't see what I see, and they don't know what I know. And all the moment, I have perfect control, complete domination.

And so I sit. So I stare. It's only a matter of time. I could wait forever. I will wait forever, because time is not moving. Not here, not now, not in my mind.

My perception is my reality.

            The doctors come in and they examine me. They find nothing wrong. I'm physically a picture of good health. But they are starting to worry. This has never happened before. They are starting to doubt themselves.

            The more I stare, the deeper I seep through the red dot, the further I fall. To me, it is no longer just a red dot, it's a red sea. And my bodiless soul is longing to drift in it, trench in it, drown in it.

It is the slow birth of a whole new world. It's a better world, a perfect escape and a perfect paradise. There's no real elements here, no emotions, no love, no hate, no bounds, no physical matter or anything else which existed within the old world.

Up is down and down is up, except there are no ups or downs, nor left or right.

It's a world void of all that we have come to know. And a world made up of all that we have never encountered. A place only visited in dreams. But I've come here to stay.

And the doctors are real worried now. They don't understand why this is happening. As I drift slowly to this new world however, I must leave this old one behind. My body is starting to fail. It cannot function without my mind.

People are at my bedside. They are my loved ones, or once my loved ones. I don't remember them now. And they are not important to me anymore.

They are crying. They know there's not much time left. In their world, this may be true, but in this new world, where time ceases to exist, I'll always have forever.

They believe this is my day of death when in fact, this is my day of birth.

They hug my body. It gives them comfort but they don't understand that it is nothing but an empty shell.

The inevitable is about to happen. My heartbeats are slowing down, my vital organs are failing, the grand transition is almost about to take place. Slowly I've been drifting toward the red dot, but it's getting so much faster now.

The sounds are getting softer, the light is getting dimmer and my senses are fading away. The distance is increasing. I'm light years away from a room in a hospital where a family is saying their farewells to a comatose man whom cannot hear.

And then lastly, time, the essence of this old world, finally folds onto itself and I'm gone.

I don't remember when I left, the exact moment when everything became all truly red. It may have only been a second ago, or a million years may have past. It doesn't matter anyway because I don't even remember how long a second or a million years really is.


13th July 2000-8 August 2001


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