Ty shot up in his bed, dripping with sweat. He had had that nightmare every night since he could remember. He couldn't remember very long. If his dreams were anything to go by, he didn't particularly want to remember. Every piece of furniture in his room besides his bed had either smashed or exploded; something that was becoming dangerously common. It was only a matter of time before someone got hurt. He needed help. That would be interesting; going to the hospital and telling them he was blowing things up in his sleep. Even an idiot could figure out which ward they would refer him to- which hospital. The type with sponge walls that made you wear jumpers with buckles on them.
It had, at some point, occurred to him that, rather than the dreams causing these unexplained feats, that they were somehow the roots of the dreams. After all, he had blown things up wide awake, so it wasn't just the nightmares that were setting it off. In fact, he knew what was setting it off. Every time he felt something: fear, anger, sorrow, joy, excitement…and he couldn't control it, so he had learnt to control his feelings instead. He no longer felt anything.
That was why he now looked as he did. The dead, lifeless look in his once sparkling grey eyes. The dullness of his black curls. The unnatural pallor of his skin, which had not seen the sun in too long, for fear that anyone would make him angry, make him laugh, just make him feel... The apparently beautiful face that everybody else seemed content to admire would never be seen by the world. He wanted to be frightened, but if he allowed the fear to take hold, the very thing he feared would happen. Only in his sleep would he ever let his guard down.
In his sleep, when some unknown specter from his past came back to haunt him. When he found himself, time and time again, in that barren, grey room, unidentified men and women in surgical masks peering down at him, tied down to some cold, hard surface, unable to move. Hooked up to some kind of machines he did not want to think about. They had muttered amongst themselves, something he could not hear or could not understand. And then the pain had started. A burning that shot through his limbs, as though the fire of the sun was coursing through his veins. And then things had begun to shatter, to smash, to explode, and the ceiling had crumbled, just as it was about to land on him…he woke.
Ty splashed water onto his face, trying to push the dreams to the back of his mind. The toothpaste had burst from the tube, a few bottles of shower gel and shampoo had exploded, and the bathroom mirror had cracked, but that was the only damage to the bathroom. The first night, the entire house had been in ruins, so he must be improving. He didn't catch the relief quickly enough, and in the brief moment he felt it, a new tiny crack appeared in the mirror.
He began to clean the mess from the bathroom walls and sides. That was pretty much his daily activity; cleaning up the mess of the night. It was one thing that couldn't possibly result in any emotion. Then he moved on to his bedroom, trying to salvage as much of the furniture as possible. Replacing what was broken would not be a problem for a very long time. He didn't know who Arthur McDonald was, or why the man had seen fit to leave him vast sums of money and a house in the middle of nowhere, but it had proved most helpful.
When he'd awoken, on the first morning he could remember, the entire interior of the house had been in ruins. He'd not even known his own name, let alone where he was or why he was there. All he remembered was the nightmare; his first memory. He was pulled out of it by a series of loud bangs on the door. He had stumbled about, eventually finding the door and figuring out how to open it.
The lawyer that was there to discus Arthurs will had been a tall, grey haired man, with a hooked nose and a slouch that gave the impression of a vulture. Despite his appearance, the man had been pleasant, expressing some great concern and even offering to help clean up. The mans name had been Rodney something-or-other, and he had referred to Ty as just that, though the name written on the will was Tyrone Weaver, and Arthurs two grown up children, who had too been present, had merely referred to him by his surname, without Mr. in front of it. They had made it quite clear they didn't like him, but had accepted that their father had left him his house and vast sums of money, had seemed even relieved, almost.
It hadn't taken him long to figure his situation out, or what to do about it. He had decided that he would stay in the house, away from the rest of the world, until his dying day. Internet shopping and home delivery made it possible. He rarely got board as there was a never ending stream of housework to do, courtesy of his nighttime destruction. He didn't even have the time to become lonely, which was exactly how he liked it. If he felt lonely, he would be feeling something.
It took until noon to clean up the bedroom. Ty temporarily abandoned the rest of the cleaning to make his lunch. The kitchen sides were like a minefield. Smashed plates and bowls littered them, and various cans had burst and exploded in the cupboard. He found a still intact tin of soup and set about trying to persuade the hob to work, though too many pots and pans had been dropped on it and it was always rather stubborn. When it did light, he discovered the can opener was broken. He gave up, quickly made himself a sandwich, and sat at the table watching the birds through the window.
When he was finished eating, he returned to the living room, where a hundred or so books had flown from the bookshelf. He had never read any of them, they had belonged to Arthur McDonald, and it had seemed wrong to throw them away. He didn't even know if he would be able to read some of them, he could only make sense of the simplest of words, enough to be able to do his shopping, and some of them looked rather complicated. Besides that, he wasn't sure what effect they would have on him emotionally.
When the books were all back in their place, he set about straightening the sofa and chairs and putting the shelves back on the walls. When he had done that, put the curtain rail back up and checked that the T.V, which he never watched, still worked, it was mid afternoon, and he still had the kitchen and study to tidy. Deciding on the smaller job first, he set off upstairs, already dreading the mess he would find.
The computer desk had collapsed, the second set of books needed returning to the bookcase, the computer looked to need some small amount of repair work- though it was nothing he couldn't do himself- and the windows, once again, needed replacing. It would be sunset by the time it was all done. Perhaps this wasn't the smaller job after all. Perhaps he only thought he was improving. Either way, he would leave this room until tomorrow. It would only get destroyed again anyway.
He was barely halfway downstairs when an envelope was slipped under the door. That was odd; the only mail he ever got was bills, and they were put through the mail slot, not under the door. He quickened his pace and went straight into the living room. He couldn't catch sight of anybody through the window, and it was impossible that they could have been gone that fast.
He went back into the hall, slowly, cautiously making his way towards the letter as though it were a poisonous snake. Sitting down with his back against the door, he opened the envelope with his thumb nail, sliding a single scrap of paper out. Scrawled in bold letter was a single sentence: a question. He scowled as his mind slowly turned the combination of letters into words. Do you want to play a game? He hadn't a clue what that was supposed to mean, or how he was meant to respond to it. Instead, he dropped it on the kitchen table and proceeded with his cleaning, scrubbing each cupboard and side as though he were punishing them for something.