So many stories.

Last century I considered stopping. I considered letting the stories free. The pain consumes every moment of my life, clings to me, is almost a part of me, and I wanted it to end.

But I caught a flash, barely a single image.

It could have been my imagination but deep down I know. A warning. A warning from the God-Machine.

My mind avoids the image, steers around it, looks away, denies, but still – it’s there. A single flash of foul fluids, worms, pain.

No!

I focus back on the story, today’s story. That’s how I survive now; one story at a time. If I can immerse myself in the words then maybe I can forget my own existence, at least for a time. Yesterday a brave heroine saved the universe from ancient aliens, I like her, I hope I see her again.

That story felt special. Mine. A bitter taste fills my mouth at the thought that someone else… another scribe… might touch my story, ruin it, twist it. MINE.

I cling to the tatters of memory, all that’s left to me once the story has left my fingertips. I clutch them close to my mind like a jelous lover. Mine. Mine. Mine.

Pieces of that story even bleed into today’s tale. No one else would notice… but I see it. Whispering around the edges, the other story. It’s the only real evidence that I even had a yesterday otherwise all my time bleeds together, pooling into one single existence of agony. Another thing that makes it so special.

Today’s story is special too. I think it has a message. It’s an old story, but with history so… unstable… it could be brand new. There are seven robots, the Machine wanted me to call one Sneezy, but that’s ridiculous. Robots don’t sneeze. I forced my hand to write Leaky instead, a small victory for me over the God Machine.

Leaky.

A smile curls my lips. Hopefully, somewhere in the darkness, someone will laugh.

***

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