There is a door at the end of the corridor, the gateway to a secret place. It’s a door without key or lock, the combination for safe passage guarded closer than a dragon guards its fabled hoard. Only the white neon light filters through the gap under the door. Inviting. Menacing? It has been flickering annoyingly of late. It’s due fixing. There is no space for imperfection where the door leads.
I am a collector, self-styled, distinguished and anonymous and the door you knocked on opens onto my safe haven. I bid you welcome, curious soul! You’ve never heard of me, yet my collection dwarfs that of any museum. Compulsive hoarder, the good doctor’s diagnose reads, and I cannot contest it. I collect anything I find (even the pills supposed to set me straight). Store it in a compartment hidden away in my mind. Loathe (unable?) to throw away anything that is mine.
People too, I collect, if they give me but half a chance. Their fears, dreams and phobias have always fascinated me. So, I trap them under glass displays and add their autographs. Others, those more deserving or somehow special to me, earn their own spot of choice on the catwalk, under the neon spotlights. Dissected and preserved, then cataloged and indexed, they keep me mute company while I wait for the telltale knock on the door. And there always is, another interesting piece to add to the collection. Curious, how their curiosity remains incurable.
Despite the crowded collection, mine has been a solitary existence. Only the mannequins keep me company, my museum devoid of visitors. Perhaps I need to change the visiting hours. Society has never held much appeal to me, however. Too much ambient noise, too many demands, a myriad expectations defying logic. Do this, do that. Fuck, there’s always been too many voices in my head.
I like to think I have always been misunderstood. Not least because I like the things that people seem to always overlook. So, I gather them up and painstakingly catalog it all in the pages I wrote. There is so much now that I forget if I don’t make a note.
I am a collector. You might not want to knock.
Credit where credit is due. This short piece of fiction is heavily inspired by the song Index by Steven Wilson, an artist I particularly admire, and the video that goes with it. Check it out here:
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