Only this, and nothing more.
It's the barest shadow of pain, like the beginnings of a sense memory exercise where you try to pull something from deep inside you. Hellish, intolerable anguish run through a filter and muffled into submission.
I don't feel it like I'm supposed to. Or maybe I don't feel it like it wants me to, pain cast as an attention-whoring demon. I can assume that it's the medication, the cascade of antipsychotics and antidepressants and anti-attention-whoring-demon drugs that the doctors have forced into me in their last-ditch effort to keep me sane. And I suppose it's working. At the very least the voices in my head have settled down to nigh-inaudible whispers instead of the screaming rants that used to be there whenever I'd try to sleep, but down deep inside, I kind of prefer the clarity of delusion over this dull pastel wash of reality.
There is just this room, four gray, dingy walls with peeling paint and a mattress that smells faintly of disenfectant and old pee, a stainless steel sink-and-toilet combination that I have to keep clean with an old towel that they give me once a week, and an unbreakable mirror with enough scratches and gouges on the surface to almost completely obliterate the vacant face that stares back at me.
When did I get so old?
This room is my existence. They tell me that I'll never get out, and considering what I did it's probably for the best. I don't remember anything other than brief flashes like some sort of funhouse slideshow, blood and gore and bits of things that shouldn't be on your outsides sticking and sliding to walls and skin, oozing and warm.
And the smell. I remember the smell, like electricity coursing through my veins. Coppery, dark, with an undertone like a cross between vinegar and ozone, the sharp smell of fear. God how I love that smell.
They've taken all that away from me now, but I can still recall that smell, sharp and vivid. It's exciting, like the keen edge of a knife just waiting to taste flesh for the first time. I don't tell them about it because they'd try to take that away from me too, chemically burning my nostrils or shocking parts of my brain again trying to get rid of the memories, trying to "quell the patterns of behavior". Butchers and thieves, the lot of them. They've taken away my ability to feel anything: happiness, pain, joy, fear, all gone, replaced with a dull gray fog. The only thing I have left is the memory of that smell. It's the only thing that makes me feel alive.
They tell me that I'll never get out, that this facility is escape proof, that I'm in here for the next three hundred years or until I die, whichever comes first.
We shall see. I'm very resourceful.