This may yet need some editing, but here is what it is so far.
Lost in the Familiar
The date and hour of the event is not important. Those involved wouldn’t remember if you asked them. If they did remember, the people they told would not believe them. No matter the time, what is important in this story is the place. The place is a very well known area, somewhere we have all been. The only problem is that it is impossible to recognize as it never looks the same. No matter how many times we visit, it always seems as though we have never been there before. Even though we do not recognize the place we all share the uncanny ability of being able to navigate this area with ease. We do not wonder whether to go left or right, up or down. We instinctively know neither direction matters and we lead ourselves right to where we wanted to go. We may stray from the path at times, but we always end up where we were headed.
On this day things were different for John Novack. Just as we all have, John unknowingly traveled to this special location. The difference is that John thought everything was too familiar. Instead of everything having a strange familiarity, it all had a complete familiarity. John walked around and knew where everything was. He was in control, accomplishing tasks faster than what is considered safe. To understand why finishing a task too fast is not safe; you must first understand that this location is intended as a place for rest. Doing tasks quickly does not provide the rest needed. This place is not like a place of work. If you finish everything too soon you cannot leave nor can you find more work to do. You are at a loss and trapped in a place of nothing. Life as you know it would freeze.
Two-thirds of the way done with his work, John noticed a change. The place he was, the place he had been to before, the place he should not know but did began to change. The unlikely problem however was that the place was not changing. The colors he saw, the objects around him, the smells of the place, all stayed the same. It was really John’s mind that was changing. John’s mind was slowly losing the familiarity of the place while he was in it. This would not be a problem if it had occurred while John was outside. However, John was inside. His mind could not handle the change. Normally, coming to this area not remembering allows you to wander and learn but when you enter and lose the memory your mind does not accept the change. Your mind goes through the process of filling in details. Where there once was a plant now there is a light, where there once was a wall there now is a door. This can cause some major problems.
Believing he was about to be going through a door, John stuck his hand out for the doorknob. His hand caught nothing but air and confused John tried again. Not satisfied with the result of catching only air again he pressed his hand up along the wall and searched for the knob. John searched for a good ten minutes before finally giving up and moving on. While walking away from what he thought was a door John noticed a staircase. John was still trying to figure out why he could not open the door while he took his first step onto the staircase. The experience of stepping upward and finding out there is nothing there is an indescribable feeling. Unless you have had the misfortune of missing a step before you would not understand John’s amazement when he tripped and fell onto his face. John also still felt as though there was a staircase in front of him so he put out his hands in attempt to catch himself on one of the steps. Missing the step he thought was there, John did not brace himself for the floor. The impact of his head against the ground was enough to knock him out.
John was found many hours later talking to a house plant in the corner of his apartment. No one believe the story he told in attempt to explain the cut on his head and his likely concussion, nor did they believe him when he told them the plant was actually a person and apparently the only one that believed his stories. His stories would have been passed off as due to the concussion if he hadn’t been so consistent and committed to his story. He told everyone that passed by about the place he had gone, about how he felt as though he knew everything about it and it had changed shape. Just as what would happen to anyone else John was placed in a mental institution with little hope of any future recovery. To this day you can still find John in room 307 and he will have quite the story to tell you if you listen. He always creatively starts it off by saying “Come with me on a Journey Into the Mind.”