Did you know how it feels like to be born not as your own person, but as the fragmentation of other person memories and personality? Well, I did. And it sucked. I barely interacted with the outside world and was forced to witness everything through his eyes. The only time I interacted with the outside world is when my original got too stressed out and sick that I had to switch place with him. And when I did, I was always overridden with rage and impulsive reactions. I very rarely thought clearly. But that didn’t mean I never try. I just simply embodied the most broken part of my original.
What’s the past will stay in the past. But due to the current situation, my master has now noticed my existence. And because he noticed me, somehow my mind could think clearer now. I was not overridden with pain and rage anymore, or at least not to the extent of my old self. Maybe because I didn’t have to carry all his burdens on my own anymore. Either way, I was happy I could finally interact with him.
My original was reading a book right now in the living room. The book has nothing but words in it, how did he not get bored reading it?? I wish I could just play with Tobiel, but no pleading would move my original around...
“Timaeus, are you there?”
My original called out for me, and I instantly keep my alert up. “A-are you okay?? Do you want to switch place with me or something?”
My original was very puzzled by my reaction. “No, I just want to check on you. I want to know what you are currently doing in the dream world.”
I lowered my guard down and took a deep breath. I was relieved that my original was in no big trouble right now. But of course, I must stay alert. Jeffrey was always relentless when it comes to hurting my original. I must make sure that that monster won’t lay a hand on my original. I will switch place with him if it means I could protect my original.
“As usual, I created a lot of sculptures using the wax from my body. I tried to recreate the story from Sinbad! I know Tobiel would love it!”
For some unknown reason, when I was manifested in this dream world, I was my original’s clone but with a body made from wax. This body often falling apart from time to time, but my original believed that one day this body would stop crumbling apart. My original theorized the reason my body kept falling apart was because I was lacking identity and a sense of self. That’s why I have a name now, Timaeus. My original believed that having my own name was the first step of creating my own identity. My body did feel more stable after he gave me that name. I hope it wasn’t just my feeling.
“I know you would. You are always good in story-telling compared to me.”
My original’s kind and honest words had always warmed my heart. He made me feel like I am my own person. It’s still hard for me to saw myself as human, but I wouldn’t let it go to waste.
“Thank you so much for the kind words!”
“Just telling it as it is.”
While me and my original having some conversation, Tobiel finally appeared in the room and greeted us with his usual endless energy.
Tobiel has a confused look on his face before realizing that it was me talking. Just like my original, Tobiel could also talk to me through telepathy. “Hiya, Timaeus! What are you up to today?”
“The usual, reading a boring book with my original!”
My original furrowed his eyebrows. “It’s not a boring book! You guys just don’t get it!”
His reaction made me cower in fear. I needed to say something so Tim would not hate me. “S-Sorry!”
“No need to apologize, Tim’s book really is boring!” defend Tobiel. Why would he say that? Was he not afraid that Tim would hate him?
Tim grunted and moved his book to the side. “Fine, I'll stop reading. Let me guess why you are here, Tobiel. You want me to play with you, right?”
Tim’s answer hit the nail and Tobiel replied with skipping around like a baby deer. “You got it! I found a lot of cool flowers and I want you to see it!”
Tim sighed with all his might. He just wanted to read books today. Maybe I should tell Tobiel about this... But before I could say anything, Tim said something that shocked me.
“Timaeus, what do you think?”
I would never expect this my whole life. My original asked me for my opinion?! My heart thumping like a drum barrage. Treated like I was a human being was truly overwhelming for me. How was I supposed to react?
“I... It’s up to you, my original...”
Tim took another sigh, but this time it was not because of stress. “Timaeus, first off, please just call me Tim. We are technically the same person you know. And also, you promised me that you would try to make your own decision. Now, tell me the truth. What do you really want?”
What did I want? I knew I wanted to stop reading the book and played with Tobiel, but I was afraid that Tim would be disappointed with my choices. While I continued to be indecisive, Tim threw the same question to Tobiel.
“Tobiel, told me what you want right now.”
With no hesitation, Tobiel immediately answered. “I want to play with you! If Tim didn’t want to, I wouldn’t mind dragging you with me!” The last part was most definitely aimed at me.
Tim giggled at Tobiel’s answer before talking again to me. “You understand now, Timaeus? It’s okay to be honest with what you want from time to time. Don’t be too selfish as Tobiel though.”
“Hey, that’s meanie! I can’t deny that, but that’s mean!” said Tobiel while stomping his feet and puffed his cheeks like an angry child. I just wanted to pinch his puffed cheek. But even he had given me examples, I still couldn’t tell him what I genuinely wanted.
Tim sighed even more due to my indecisiveness. "Fine, I will guess what you really want. You want to play with Tobiel, aren't you?"
I didn't flinch the slightest. It wasn't Tim if he didn't make accurate guesses like that. He had a level of observation that I could never comprehend. "Interesting. Why do you think that's what I want?" I asked with neutral tone.
"You seemed to be very excited when Tobiel came into the room, you told me that my book is boring, and you gave me a neutral answer when I asked you your opinion. You knew that I didn't want to play with Tobiel even though you wanted to, but you couldn't lie to Tobiel either, hence the neutral answer," explained Tim in full detail.
All of the sudden, I felt cornered by both Tim and Tobiel. They had finally seen my true form, a coward. Refused to answer something so insignificant, all because I was considerate of Tim's and Tobiel's feeling. All because I didn't want to disappoint them. Pathetic. I wouldn't be surprised if Tim wanted to throw me away again like in the past. I had always either run away from my problem or solve it by fighting, but not today. I refused to take over Tim's body for my selfish desire.
An ugly sobbing came out from my mouth and take Tim and Tobiel by surprise. "I'm sorry... Please don't hate me, Tim...."
Tobiel was panicking and immediately pounced at Tim and shook him relentlessly. "Hey, Tim! Switch place with Timaeus! I wanna hug him!"
Tim pushed Tobiel away to the side as Tim tried to focus on me. "Did you fear me, Timaeus?"
I couldn't tell whether he asked it with concern or disappointment, but I didn't want to have any misunderstanding with him. I hate being honest, but I didn't want to push him away. "No, that's not it!! It's just that in the past, I always screw you over with my actions. You hated me and wanted nothing more but to get rid of me! I couldn't even apologize to you in the past! But now you could see me and talk to me. I'm so happy... I don't want you to hate me again, that's why I...." I couldn't finish my word, it was getting harder to breathe. My crying becoming more and more uncontrollable. My tears fell like a Niagara waterfall.
"That's why you try to be accomodating to my needs?" asked Tim. Tim thought long and hard before a small smile adorned his face. "Timaeus, I couldn't even remember the past. I couldn't hate you for it. And besides, you feel horrible about it and you wanted to change for the better. How could I hate you for it?"
I didn't deserve this kindness. After everything I did in the past, I didn't deserve it. But Tim was still go on.
"Before we got here, you never got to experience life as a normal person, right? You exist only for my needs. That's why me, as your original, refused to let you lived with all my burden ever again. We were supposed to be equal, the one and the same. We both shared a body after all. You might be my alter, but it doesn't make you any less of a human. I'm sure you had so many things you wanted to do but never happened because I unconsciously torturing you with my pain. I'm sorry about that. I hope I could make it up for you now."
Tim apologized to me even though he didn't do anything wrong. Even though I didn't deserve his apology, I would lie if I said it didn't make me feel so light. All of my burdens fell off my shoulder. I... was so lucky that he was my original... "Tim, could I play with Tobiel, please?"
Tim nodded with a big smile on his face. "Of course you can. Have fun!"
Our soul and mind slowly switching places. Tim's eyes were suddenly full of tears because I still can't stop crying. "Thank you so much, Tim...."
As the switching was happening, Tobiel was returning to hugged Tim's body with full force and rubbed Tim's hair. "Aww, poor Timaeus! It's okay, I'll make sure we will be having fun together!" Tobiel's touch was so warm and comforting. No wonder Tim loved it so much.
I finally understood why I was not as aggressive as the old me. It's because I finally have someone I could trust and talk to. And I didn't have to hold all of Tim's burden anymore. I still have to hold some burden because it was my purpose, but at least now I could share it with Tim and Tobiel.
Thank you, everyone. I could finally be free.