book three, you are kicking my ass

Narcissus PompeiiVery, very ironic, since I thought you would be the easy one. No rules, no holding back, flowing like absinthe. Ha. You’re the Green Fairy of late stages, when the effects are hard won, puzzling and painful. Quite fitting, since a drop has never passed my lips. Kicking my ass at the conclusion before I’ve even begun.

You are an intoxicant. I’m craving you, but when I have you it’s all confusion and stupor. I want more, I’m desperate for you even when you’re making me ache. Hurts to be with you, hurts to be without you.

Am I raving? Yes. I’m a lunatic with this one, and it’s only right that I should be. This one has taken on some enigmatic concepts, along with very intense transcendence. In short, I don’t know what I’m doing. But I kind of like it.

This book is all about transcending. Transcending all boundaries, all definitions, labels, concepts of what is beauty and what is broken. This is about the void, chaos and confusion, and the sound of echoes through time.

I’m not quite ready to talk about the series as a whole, so I know that doesn’t make a lot of sense. But it does make sense, it is exactly as it should be. I’m doing exactly what I want, I’m getting the words I want, everything is falling in place just as I wish, only it’s taking for-e-ver, piece by excruciating piece. Now, I’m thinking and I’m hoping that the difficulty is all mine. I hope those who read it will enjoy the playful irony of it all.

Here – this is a good representation of where I’m going with this, what I’m doing and the reason behind it all. Hey look at me, all sharing and everything. Another side effect of the drug that is Echo.

The three descend the stairs to the café below, and once seated, Aequus begs to try the absinthe. Around them people talk of everything all at once. Their voices are at discord: no rhythm, no melody. A rush of white noise. 

A carafe of water and three glasses of the yellow-green liqueur are requested by Amadeo, and these are brought to their table along with a china bowl of glittering sugar lumps, and three pretty little silver spoons, pricked and ornamented. The twins watch as Amadeo places a spoon across each glass, a lump of sugar centred in each spoon. He methodically trickles water over the arrangement until the liquids louche, and passes a glass to each. “Enjoy,” he says. “Don’t expect too much—it’s merely drunkenness, until you develop an acuity for it. But that takes experience.”

“Like the first time getting high.” Caprice smiles and plays with her spoon, tapping it against the glass, the table top.

Amadeo puts his hand over hers, gently silencing. The room echoes with the clink of spoons against glass, of cutlery against china accompanying the drone of conversation, but Caprice’s rhythm is a dissonance amongst the din. Incongruous. They’re not meant to be here. “Getting high?” he says. “No, not like high. Like drink. A lot of drink, a pretty colour, fascinating taste….” He takes a long swallow that begins with lips softly coated, the tongue, the palate suffused in warm bite and florid bursts: coco and citrus; the back of the throat, the slide into earth and jade. It flows through him, the pleasure. He knows how to coax passion from the milky depths. The twins watch, fascinated, aroused. “This is absinthe, children. Not a hypnotic, an experience. It’s the experience that enthrals—what you ask of it, what it allows. It’s the consent that gives one the impression of transcendence.”

Aequus tries to mimic Amadeo’s limpid sensuality. He coughs up the herbs, licks the spatters fromabsinthe his lips. “I guess it’s not consenting to me, yet,” he jokes.

“It’s condescending,” Caprice laughs. “You’re like a baby sucking at a bottle, it’s not mother’s milk!” But she must force down her own mouthful, inelegantly hiding her shuddering swallow, Adam’s apple bobbing like a tackled lure.

“Nor is it an emetic, but it has been treated as both,” Amadeo says. “Alright—what are you doing here?” He rolls the glass between his palms, lifts it again to his lips.

“We’re tracing the origin of us,” says Aequus. “The true origin—us before us. If anyone should know, it must be you.”

Amadeo laughs. “Oh I know; I’m there when it happens, I know. But babies, you don’t need then what you have now. It’s like the absinthe—the consent to transcendence.”

Aequus thinks about this for a moment. “Theirs, or ours?”


Caprice pushes away her glass, reaches across the table for Amadeo’s hand. “Uncle, isn’t it like the origin of you? You then into you now. It is similar, yes?”

“No, baby.” Amadeo reaches for Aequus, and holds both of their hands in his. “A body? Yes. All that is me held in one form, all that is me that cannot be held.” He smiles at them, a doting, familial look. “You are flesh and blood. You came into this world as all humans do—tiny, wet, crying in the shock of vicissitude. But the pain we experience, that is much the same. The pain of singularity, when you are in fact multifaceted little jewels.

Aequus studies the foggy liquid in his glass, inhaling its scent and taking cautious licks around the rim. “Do you think we can’t bear it? We will. If it helps us to know, we will.”

An unsteady silence, and Amadeo speaks again. “I’m not worried that you can’t bear it. I’m worried that you can.

“That boy upstairs—it’s not that he doesn’t see; it’s that he does. He sees what all else are blind to. He lives in agony, he lives trying to create a world within a world, without the constructs to do so. Everything he does in attempt to create sense, it falls apart over and over and over. But you; you have always lived outside the bounds, you were born into this chaos. You want to pull the world in with you. Very clever, babies. You may yet find a way.

I don’t know why I’m sharing. For one thing, it’s a pretty safe bet, since no one reads this. Maybe I just want to send a little echo across the waves, perhaps dole out a bit intoxication along the way.

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