I am broken. Shattered. The Drewitt that was there before Ambrosia barely resembles the man I am today.
Is a man still a man when he’s so broken? Can you call a man by his name when he’s been shattered so many times?
Each knock I take is a crack in the vase, each time I die is a smashed mirror. And each time I come back is like I’m being glued back together. Still expected to function like before, but with scars that will never truly heal.
But I have become a master at making the best of that. Self-repairing the wounds that ail me. Self-diagnosing the dangerous things that go on in my head. Self-medicating some nights.
Each repair I make takes me further from the man I was, and into the dark unknown.
But at least my repairs are subtle. Invisible even. The glue that holds me together – no matter how brittle – at least dries clear.
Imagine if you were so damaged that glue did nothing, and all the knocks in your life were ‘fixed’ by literally papering over the cracks.
Imagine if instead of attempting to repair them you just ignored them. Let them fester away, burning you from the inside out.
Imagine if you walked around dressed like you’d raided a first aid supplier rather than understand what it was that broke you in the first place, and try to make sense of that.
The Burned Man may be the titan closest to me in the pain he feels, but even he cannot understand my torment fully. His pain is lesser than mine, but he somehow seems less complete than I do. The fire took something from him that it could not take from me. It burned and singed away his very soul. The fire could not take my soul for my soul is not ripe for the taking. Whereas The Burned Man is made of paper-thin skin and bandages, I am like the ceramic on the vase, the pain chars me on the outside, but it cannot burn me through to the core.
And no matter how much I shatter like the mirror, every single piece of me is put back into place when I return from the dead.
And each and every single one of those thousands of minuscule pieces of me feels every ounce of that pain.
I’ll bet that The Burned Man has felt like death would greet him like a warm embrace many times over the years, when he thought his whole family were dead. I would love to feel such an embrace, but I cannot. So I will give The Burned Man a taste of that warm embrace in my stead, singeing his soul once more, damaging him beyond repair as the bandages that keep him together start to fall to pieces themselves under the heat.
Let’s see if you can put yourself back together like I can when I rip you limb from limb.