Ah, Panic. My oldest companion, the bane of my existence. You’ve never been far from my side, have you? You merged with my shadow long ago, never allowing me to escape your malicious presence. You needed to stay close, ready to pounce at the first hint of my unease—the best time to strike. I couldn’t be allowed a moment to consider I was being foolish. That might be long enough to change my mind, to feel better. And you couldn’t have that, could you, Panic?
My calmness would deny you the thing you crave the most. My suffering is your ambrosia, your entire existence depends on it. You feast on my fear. Delight in my doubts. Take pleasure in my pain. My misgivings about even the simplest of things create the sweetest nectar you’ve ever drank, and your thirst is unquenchable.
Oh, yes. I know you. I know you all too well. After spending all these years wrapped in your cocoon of misery, you are no stranger to me. I know you for the liar you are!
But I’m learning to resist your devious voice, little by little, day by day. I rejoice every time I manage to soothe the frantic pounding of my heart and still the trembling of my limbs. I know it will leave you parched, lacking even the tiniest sip of my fear to ease your dreadful thirst. To deny you what you desire most, even in the smallest of ways, is a moment of triumph for me.
Be wary, old ‘friend’… there will come a time when your voice is but a faint whisper in my ears, your presence but the slightest chill in the air. You won’t be able to sway me any longer with your insidious deceptions… and the last I’ll ever hear from you are your anguished screams as you fade away into nothingness.