This was my narrative for honors literature. The objective was to take a certain writing style (I chose stream of consciousness) to depict a vivid and life changing moment in your life. He wanted us to focus on keeping it condensed, focused on that single moment. Enjoy. The Shadow Man It was not uncommon for him to visit me; he was as much a part of me as myself, grown from fear and nurtured by hate, the shadow man is as much my savior as he is my demon; blocking out the light and trapping my memories tight, for it was happening now, now, he rushes into my mind, his claws bearing into my flesh, blotting my vision and casting my perception inward; he grabs my attention, in a frenzy I blink into and out of reality, but he does not want me to see the truth, for he knows it’ll undo me; stretching his hands further to grasp my fleeting mind he is silent, an utter silence that is consuming, almost blocking out the shouts on the other side of the world, the screams and rhythmic thud of fist upon flesh, but I feel nothing other than the vast emptiness my own mind has conjured; he is my creation, my escape, my prison. Briefly I see an angry face, the angry face of my father, his hellish rage oozing from him like a festering wound, but no, no, no, I can’t see him anymore; the shadow man is back, coaxing me with his nullifying emptiness, humming a soundless lullaby, yet my heart feels the melancholy in his silent chords, the pulsating beat of shouts that are so very far away, so far, so insignificant; I no longer breathe, my eyes locked with the black pits of his face, falling far into the abyss of my mind; his spell begins to take affect, I vaguely feel my knees buckling, I once more try to claw my way out of this darkness, but he pushes me down, further into the place I never thought I’d escape as the bursts of pain fade away, their off-beat thrumming becoming nil, a memory of something that never happened; something the shadow man refuses to let me acknowledge; something I forget as I fall deeper into my downward spiral; a woman’s voice echoes through the chasm, stirring up a thought that fell oh so long ago, a thought of a happy, functional family, a family that was unrightfully taken from me; I see a streak of light- the voice is reaching for me; hope ignites my body as the shadow man loses his grip on me, but in time my eyes have dulled, my motivation lost over these long unbearable years; I close my eyes and let myself be pulled away from this false sense of security, and I pray to a God who has abandoned me, I ask for my mother back, I ask to be taken away from this place, this reality, to fall forever into my void; I felt free as I was thrown across the room, hitting the wall didn’t even hurt, in my mind I was still falling, still searching for a way out of this hell, and the shadow man nodded; it was time, time to end this, time to sleep, to feel the gentle caress of a mother than lost her child all those years ago, to run away from the father that I was too weak to stand up against; warning bells rung frantically, trying to save someone who was already too far gone; it was for naught, as they began to fade away so did the shadow man, his eyes closing in syncopation with my own.