From Samriel’s Mental Journal:
30-09-54 (September 30th, 2054)
Someone once told me that when God closes a door, he opens a window. And generally speaking, I’ve always hated this saying. Why? Because that would make God a total jerk. Because a window is much smaller than a door. So closing the door to open the window would result in a net loss. As opposed to, I don’t know, opening the back door or something. Wouldn’t that be a much better saying?
For most of my life, things have seemed fairly straightforward. I knew what was real. I knew my place in the world, more or less. I mean, I argued with the Professor some since I didn’t think elves are inherantly superior to every other sort of creature. But I still felt relatively sure of my place in the world, as a particularly gifted individual in many respects. I had vast amounts of knowledge gained from some of the wisest entities in the world. I possessed a deeply-ingrained understanding of how magic worked before the Awakening even came.
But, recently I’ve been leading an… interesting life. Monsters that should never exist. Existential crises. Kidnappings for people to mess with my mind using some sort of horrible machine. There’s been.. sort of a lot of things. I mean, it’s been bad enough that I’ve genuinely been questioning my sanity.
So, most of my life I’ve been pretty solid, psychologically speaking. My mind’s been solid and well-refined, and as a result I suppose it’s been rather rigid in most respects. Perhaps that is why I’ve traditionally been very good at concentrating on things, such as individual summonings. I can concentrate as hard as orichalcum rods. But that hasn’t traditionally made me so terribly wonderful at multitasking.
Glitter is always urging me to work, and learn, and grow. She always wants me to push myself to be better, to master new skills, and so on. It’s very endearing, honestly; she wants me to the best me that I can be. But lately the tasks she’s been having me do, trying to concentrate on multiple things simultaneously… have sort of started working.
I don’t know what it is exactly. Maybe my mind is working a little more… fluidly? Maybe it’s less set in its ways to focus on a single thing? Maybe Greg could tell me a little more, as he has a stronger grasp of psychology than I do. But I think I’m sort of learning to split my attention to focus on two things. Glitter calls it compartmentalization. It’s … honestly sort of surreal. I’m not sure if it’s disassociation, or what’s going on.
Essentially I sit there and I concentrate on splitting my mind into fragments. The exercise I’ve been doing lately is that one part of my mind goes looking for a pretend item that I’ve hidden somewhere in my house. Then the other partition of my mind goes looking around the house for the hidden item. Mentally of course. But still, it’s rather surreal. I’m getting to the point where I’m getting really good at hiding things, and I have to concede the game and ask myself where I hid the object. Surreal. But helpful. I’ve just about mastered holding a spell up while forming another one. It’s not as easy as just one, of course, but far easier than it used to be…
Maybe I had to go borderline insane in order to master this new talent. I guess maybe everything really does happen for a reason.