Ba-bum-ba-bum. Ba-bum-ba-bum. Ba-bum-ba-bum. Ba-bum-ba-bum.
This was the cadence of his lifemoments lived in fast staccato, building a crescendo right behind his temples. If he concentrated very hard, he could ignore it, push away the throbbing noise for a few precious minutes and see everything the way it was meant to be. The universesuddenly new and clean and beautiful, a thing outside his own twisted mind. But then the beating would start again, softly, softly, and it would grow louder and faster (andlouderandfaster) until it was all he knew, all he understood. First, it matched the beating of his hearts, and then it quickened them, and then there was nothing apart from the drum-drum-drumming in his head.
There was no relief. All the running and screaming and kissing and killing in creation couldn't rid him of this sickening pulse. It turned his stomach, sucked his mouth dry. He would do anything, anything at all, to escape it, but there was nothing that could be done. If anything, struggling only made it worse.
It was buried in his head, a thing so tangled inside nerves and bone that it could never get out.
He couldn't run from it.
So the only thing left.
Was. To. Fol. Low.