The Distant Sound

I painfully woke up and found myself in the hospital not having the slightest clue of how I got there. Suddenly I remembered how and why I got to the hospital with a broken leg and arm. It was because of the phone. It was not just any phone, it was the bulky jet black blackberry I got on my 15th birthday. Just thinking about that cursed phone sent shivers down my spine. Ringing started echoing in my ears again making me want to scream. My heart raced and filled with anxiety as I franticly searched for the source of that atrocious noise. I couldn’t settle my rising heart beat or the nagging voice in the back of my head telling me to run away from it, and I probably would have if it wasn’t for my broken leg and that I couldn’t run from myself no matter how scared I was. Why I’m afraid of such a simple and useful device you might ask, well its simple, it tried to kill me and almost succeeded.

It was my 15th birthday and I got everything I could want cloths, books, and a new guitar but once multicolored raping paper littered the room I realized that I had one more present left. Under the masses of paper I saw the outline of an undecorated and unwrapped box, when I opened it I found a smooth, slightly bulky midnight black phone. If you were to even slightly touch the phone screen it would radiantly light up exposing the panel. When I lifted it to look for a card, or note of some kind, I found nothing, not even a name to tell me who it was from. After a few minutes of wondering, ` I decided to let it go and inquire about it later. I sat on my coach so I could explore the wonders of my new phone. It had games, a calculator, a planner, and so much more! I was absolutely thrilled to have such an amazing phone. I just couldn’t wait to use everything the phone has to offer.

While in school the next week, I was warned that soon we would be flocked with exams of all kinds and we would have to study or else. I didn’t even want to think what the or else was, so I started to study like crazy. I would spend any free moment thinking about all the material I needed to cover. Down time was consumed with the nagging thought, “I must do well, or else…or else,” and then I got the most marvelous idea ever… I would micromanage my time on my phone so, I would have time for everything! The plan sounded a lot better in my head than when it was acted out in real life. I set up my phone to remind me to study a new topic every 30 minutes and made the alarm sound like one of those old, annoying telephone rings. Now that I think of it, doing that was the worst idea ever but how was I supposed to know how it turned out?

Efficient-that’s how it began. I was diligent with my studies, changing every 30 minutes, covering vast amounts of subjects, reviewing notes and previous tests, keeping up with the sounding alarm. BRRRING, BRRRING, time to go back to Algebra. BRRRING, RING, RING, time for History. BRRING, time to get up…wait, no, it was time to go to bed, no it was time for school. “Was that the alarm? Didn’t I just switch?” BRRING, the school bell never sounded like this I thought. I walked to class, the bell seemed to ring within minutes of entering a each class.
After the first week the alarm constantly rang, it slowly started to raise my heart beat and increase the speed of my breathing. I thought I could deal with it. I thought I could turn off the alarm if I needed to. I kept on trying to bear through it but eventually, hearing the alarm was one of the most painful things I ever heard. I tried to change the ring but no matter how hard I tried it wouldn’t change. I tried everything, I put the phone on mute, turned it off , took out the battery and even did all of the above at once but it wouldn’t stop, if anything the ringing happened even more frequently than before, so I finally just gave up and left the alarm alone. Two more weeks passed, then I was so worried that the phone would keep ringing, I couldn’t sleep, barely ate, and almost never studied, or was it that I was studying all the time? It was like I was slowly wasting away. You might think it’s strange that the phone got to me so much, but it didn’t just annoy me it terrified me. I never knew when it would ring and couldn’t get rid of it. It also made me feel like I was going to fail everything I did, and in a way that’s exactly what happened.

It was the first day of exam week, and the ringing still didn’t go away. I slowly took the test trying to ignore, without success, the constant ringing. I started to breathe quicker and quicker and started to hyperventilate, and by the end of the day I barely was able to finish any of the exams and was almost certain that I failed all of them.

By the time I got to my apartment on the 3rd floor, ominous rain poured from a dark sky along with the quick and sharp booms of thunder and flashes of lightning. I tried to drown out the ringing by concentrating on the intense and fierce thunderstorm but even that couldn’t delay the ringing. CRASH, BRRING, BOOM. Was that the rain or the ringing? Is the thunder inside my room? A thrashing, whirling energy pounded the window, the room, my brain. BRRING. Dark skies, rain ringing against the window, my phone singing its thundering sound, BRINGG.

Without really thinking, I took the phone which seemed to be laughing at me, and threw it out the window. I saw it slowly drop, and break into hundreds of pieces. As I walked back to the coach, I was certain that the ring wound stop but again I was wrong. The ringing grew louder than ever and wouldn’t stop no matter what. As the ringing grew, so did the pace of my heart until it was almost as loud as the ringing. Finally I couldn’t take it anymore, I flung open the door to the fire escape and started to run, not knowing where I was going or when I would stop, only that I couldn’t stop until the ringing went away. As I ran I was oblivious to the steepness of the stairs and the puddles that littered them, and even still as my body went flying to the ground and landed in a limp formation, the ringing continued for another moment before all things faded.

As I pondered the condition of my leg while lying in the hospital bed, I heard the sound of a distant alarm. Did I pass my tests? Was that the bell to switch class? Where’s my phone? The clouds were gone and the window next to my bed allowed the noonday sun to enter. With the singing of a nearby bird, I considered the ringing to be a figment of my imagination, or was it?





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