My insides bled, my insides fled, I lost the girl inside my head.
It was after a heated debate and one of the worse years of my life. Before I met my wife and after my step dad had a breakdown. It was at a time in my life when I would binge eat, show up late for work, and the height of my gynophobia and paranoia. I was not in a great mood and not a year afterwards I would alienate almost all my closest friends.
I understand that change is inherently painful. Trust me on this.
We yelled, we cried, we screamed about my cowardice and unacceptable apathy that I would die alone and unloved. That I had, at the time, embraced the idea of permanent hermit-hood. Mandra argued that life without another, ANY OTHER, person to share it with was worse than numbness or weeping on stage with en empty audience. That I, like with so many other things, was waiting for love to fall into my lap, unwilling to put out any effort. I argued that to womankind, I was the enemy, an inexperienced sadist who was so sexually confused and afraid of woman kind.
I hope that someone heard us, looking through the window, watching a man sit in a chair and yell in two different voices. And out the door she walked. She would never be that powerful again, and I wouldn't see her, truly, for a few years. I wasn't even able to draw her.
The Ebony Tower was empty. In the Church of Notes her statue was replaced with me. Brimstone and Adria barely spoke of her and an hallow wind whistled where her voice used to be.
Then Queeny showed up. Departed Poet, as I knew her, was a drop of sunshine. I still will never know why should would take a chance on such a fuck up as myself, but this isn't about my wife, it's about Mandra.
When Mandra returned, years later, it was in little drops and pieces. She doesn't poke at me anymore, or talk that much. She just sits in the background and watches. Even when I'm bored, and talk to her, she's still herself, but just not as important. I gave her the black manacles she wears now, I don't remember why. Maybe to keep her from running away again.
No longer an Anima, I felt the need to enshrine her, somehow, so while working as Michelin Tire Factory, we came up with the rest of her world together. It didn't make sense to call the world anything, tho is was named Mash'ta. It grew around the tower and populated with it's own myths and legends and stories. She's been there for about 2000 years.
Two years back (2010), for the NaNoWriMo project, I wrote a novel about that world, called Annalow, the city the Ebony Tower stands over. I think it's time to revisit Mash'ta.
[note: I did not update yesterday. I have 14 days off left this year.]