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Finding Myself

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You know that feeling when you go through life feeling like a walking shell of yourself? Where you wake up forgetting who you are, and feel like you're watching yourself go through the motions of your daily routine? Yeah, that's me; this morning and every day for the past six months or so, I can't remember. I get up, go to classes, then work as a waitress and make barely enough money to live on in tips. I don't know if it's the stress of moving to a new place for college, or going to school during the day and working nights that's got me this way. Half the time I feel like I'm on autopilot, and the other half I'm narcoleptic. The worst part is that I never feel rested when I wake up from randomly falling asleep at inappropriate times.

I barely even remember putting on my clothes, but sure enough I gather my books and start to leave the "C" building my dorm is in. It's a dreary ass November morning, as usual. It would be colder if I weren't already numb. As I approach the school, I get a small jolt of déjà vu that causes me to look toward the "A" building. Ambulances again. I think to myself, "Who died THIS time?" I then chastise myself for such a morbid thought. Have I really gotten this depressed? I shake my head and frown slightly and walk to psychology class. It's the only class I'm not barely fucking scraping by in, and pretty sure it's no coincidence that it's my favorite subject.

Even still, I've been passing out in class a lot. Damn narcolepsy. I wish I understood what the hell is going on with me. I even approach Professor Stanley about it. He chuckles and confirms that he's noticed me catching z's in his class.

He jokes, "I know my voice is boring, but you don't have to rub it in!" in his robotic baritone voice.

"Seriously though, you do seem a bit depressed, and it does worry me." He says to me.

I shrug, "Well, I mean I work all the damn time trying to make up for the tuition I had to pay to get in here, and this is one of like four or five classes I have this semester. Hell I can't even remember, I've probably failed one of my classes for not showing up at all."

Stanley frowns, "After this semester you might need to lighten your load." I nod and say, "I'll think about it" and take my seat as more people start to come in. I notice Stanley reading the school newspaper as I try to stay awake with the eerie hush that has fallen over the class. I mean yeah, it's early morning, so most people are half asleep, but I'm getting a chill.

Déjà vu strikes me again suddenly as Stanley's eyebrows suddenly arch in surprise and he says aloud, "Whoooaaaa..." As everyone takes their seats, Stanley stands up and paces back and forth, looking at his feet for a good half a minute. My heart seems to have fallen into my stomach for some reason. He then picks up the paper turned to the page that caught his attention and points to it.

"Folks, we've just lost ANOTHER classmate. Same cause of death, same dormitory." The entire class erupts in a mix of gasps and "Oh my god" and "Whaaaat?" I just stare, agape, at the article:

"Steven Carl Yorickson was found in his dormitory bedroom this morning, dead from an apparent heart attack while asleep. He was found by his friend Antonio Morgan Johnston, who had been worried for his health after a recent end to a relationship. 'I told him he was punishing himself' a grieving Johnston told EMTs after Yorickson was pronounced dead."

The article goes on to say that he had apparently been drinking heavily as of late and having issues with depression, night terrors, and even mentioned something about his diet. It also mentions the eerie coincidence that Stanley pointed out, about the room he died in and the cause of death. I personally find it creepy as hell because I got the same feeling in the pit of my stomach and déjà vu when we discussed that Joe guy's death a few days prior. The fuck is going on around here?

The subject of death in dreams once again gets brought up. Normally Professor Stanley would look like some paranoid nut, but the way things are happening recently, the whole class, including myself this time, listens intently. Some even give their opinions on things like what they think dreams are; some think they're hallucinations that the brain occupies itself with, and some think it's the soul wandering around in the spirit world while the body rests. All of these are pretty interesting theories, but I can't really speak for myself lately. As much as I've been falling asleep for the past half a year, I can't really say I remember any of my dreams. Hell I can't even remember who I am in the mornings. I don't say anything about it to the class, because I don't really feel like I have anything to offer on the subject in my situation. I don't think going through life feeling dead to the world and having déjà vu about death has anything to do with death in dreams. I'm starting to think that dying in one of my dreams would be a welcome release from this monotonous depression. I then silently scold myself for my suicidal thoughts.

"You'll find yourself again eventually." I tell myself.

I start to begin my normal routine again, but then I get a wild hair. With all this craziness going around, I need a break in the routine. I call in to Applebees and do my best to sound as ill as possible, which is surprisingly not that hard. They buy it. Must be something in my voice or something. I also buy an energy drink this time before going to my next class. It seems to work, because I go for the rest of my courses without falling asleep once. I actually learned a few things today. Even if there's a couple of classes I'm forgetting about. At this point I'm beyond caring. I'll take next semester off, if I'm not put on academic probation. That or ask to work weekends only.

Something's gotta give either way. These thoughts run through my head as I walk back to the "C" building, trying to stave off narcolepsy again. Maybe the energy drink wasn't the best idea. I suddenly stop and turn my head toward the "A" building. I think to myself, "Maybe it's haunted or something. I mean hell, two guys died in supposedly the same room. 14-A, I believe. I don't know what possesses me, but I kinda want to go check this room out. If it's still vacant that is. And hopefully not, like, blocked off or something.

I drowsily enter the "A" building's second floor where rooms 11-20 are located, and find the second door on the right. The oxidized brass letters "14-A" are hung loosely on the door. I shake my head to fight the urge to fall face first onto the door, as I have done with my own a few times during a narcoleptic episode, and twist the knob. The door opens, to my surprise, and a cool draft comes from the room inside to wake me up. The room seems empty, which is odd because Steve died just this morning. Then again I heard he didn't have a whole lot, and had just moved in a few days ago. Just for good measure though, I call out, "Hello?" I hear no answer.

I look around, and the apartment seems just as small as mine, with a kitchen in the same area as the living room, and the bedroom being on the left of the doorway, and a bathroom next to the bedroom. If I didn't hear anyone call back, I figure no one is in here. So I slip into the door looking behind me, making sure no one sees me trespassing. It's late afternoon on a cloudy November day, so people are probably either in class or working. But I want to make sure. I walk around, shivering from the cool air in the room. I don't know if the heat isn't working or what, but there's definitely a chill in the air. I also chalk this up to the INTENSE and LINGERING feeling of déjà vu I'm getting from this room. I've never even been in the "A" building, but somehow this room feels like home. I also feel even more depressed than usual. I feel almost like crying. Something is definitely wrong with me. I need to sit down.

Fuck, I dozed off again. I get up and stretch, wiping the drool off my face and blinking rapidly to try and regain my eyesight. Instinctively, I walk to the bathroom. Jesus, the bathroom is cold. I turn on the faucet to throw some water on my face. The water wakes me up and clears my vision slightly, but I still feel foggy. I look up into the mirror and almost stumble backwards as my heart tries to jump out of my chest. In the mirror I see myself. Well, a version of myself. It's me, but with ash grey, frizzy hair, clouded over eyes, and pale white skin. The... other me, is staring straight at me, unblinking as I hyperventilate. This is unreal. I'm either hallucinating, or I'm in a dream still. But I can't wake up. No matter how lucid I am, no matter how fucking terrified I am, I can't wake up. I can't make that thing go away.

As my breath slows down and I stop screaming, my mirror image speaks to me with a raspy whisper, "Who are you...?" I stand up and I look at myself, or her, whatever. I answer, in a shaky voice, "I'm Serena..."

My reflection's face suddenly contorts in rage and shrieks at me, "NO!!! I AM SERENA!!!"

And jumps OUT of the fucking mirror and pins me against the bathroom wall. I scream and panic madly until I suddenly feel a sharp pain in my chest, and... I can't breathe... I can't see... I can't... I can't think... I...

I wake up in the bathroom, feeling extremely invigorated. I haven't felt this good in months! I stand up, crack my neck and back and let out a sigh of relief. I actually feel... alive! And for the first time in so long I feel complete. I might actually be able to move on now. I think I'm finally over Joseph. And the other guy... Steven, I think his name was. I step out of the dorm and breathe in deeply and sigh contently. I think I'm ready to find a new boyfriend...

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