Sorry the chapters are so short. Hopefully the frequency with which I've been able to update makes up for that. You may have seen I started a sequel to Motion Sickness. For now Basilisk remains the priority but I want to work on that too. I don't have all my tools with me for the moment so this is probably my last update until Tuesday but hopefully you enjoy it despite how brief it is.

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Komachi confronted me. There wasn't much I could do about that. Yukinoshita made good on her threat.

"Cutting yourself?" She demanded where she ambushed me in the hallway between our rooms.

"Some," I answered, unable to lie.

"Let me see," she pressed further. I showed her the shallow cuts on my left wrist. "Big brother…"

"It isn't a big deal…"

"Shut up." She glowered. I did. "Do you need a med change?"

"I like my meds. They make painful sensations pleasurable."

"Yeah I think that's the problem."

"What do you want from me, Komachi? I'm happy."

"You're happy hurting yourself?"

"Yes," I responded. "It's not like it's hurting anyone."

"Except you."

"I'm not in pain."

"Well it hurts the rest of us."

"Yeah but not really," I pointed out.

"Yes it does."

"Yeah but not really."

"Does so!"

"Not!" I shot back.

"It does! It hurts me and Yui-san and Yukinoshita-san!"

"Yukinoshita is fine," I dismissed out of pocket.

"Wow. You have no idea, do you."

"Yukinoshita cares but she doesn't, like, give a shit about me. Not the way Yui does."

"Wow. You ignorant piece of shit."

"I am not ignorant," I disagreed. "I'm burdened by knowledge."

"But not about the things that really matter."

It was hard to argue with that. I didn't even know if Komachi was real. I didn't know if I was real. Yeah I think therefore I am. But I am just the observer of these thoughts. I might not be the one thinking them. Free will was a lie. My own mind played tricks on me. Komachi couldn't trust me. That was a mistake.

"So what? It's nothing I don't already know."

"You really are ignorant."

"Maybe…"

"No. I want you to stop and think about how bad you hurt Yukinoshita-san."

I stopped. I thought. Someone as strong willed as Yukinoshita layed low and helpless by my desire to cut. It probably sliced at her. But that was her pride. But even so it probably sucked to be Yukinoshita on that phone call with me. I looked down and away from Komachi and down at the floor. Before my sister I felt a crawling sense of shame.

"So what do I do?" I wondered.

"You apologize and move on. It's all you can do, really."

"Really really?"

"Don't push me."

"Okay. You don't want me to promise to stop cutting?"

"If it helps you then I want it for you. Don't push me!"

"Okay. Okay."

"Is there anything you can do in place of cutting?"

"Masterbating maybe," I muttered.

She wrinkled her nose. "I don't want to hear about that."

"You asked!"

"Still though. You're my brother. That's just nasty."

"Okay you won't hear about it anymore."

"Deal. What about sex?"

"I thought you didn't want to hear about that kind of thing."

"Sex is different. It isn't just gross. I mean it is also gross but it's not you alone whacking off."

"I mean for sex I'd have to find a partner."

"And?"

"And no one really comes to mind."

"Wow. You ignorant piece of shit."

"Okay," I agreed. "Why am I ignorant this time?"

"It isn't my place to say."

"Then why bring it up?!"

"Because I'm trying to help you! You-you-ugh! Just try and be more open minded. Okay. I know it's hard for you in there and you do a lot to shield me from the worst of it but just-just try. Okay?"

"Sure," I agreed again. Open minded. I could do that.

What about Saika? A voice in my own head asked.

I decided I liked that thought but didn't want to ruin our friendship. There was no way Saika would be willing to do the sex with me. Even though he was super cute. And friendly. And nice.

Bad bi thoughts. Can't catch me gay thoughts. I'm too slippery.

"So do you think next time you can hold an ice cube or snap a rubber band?" Komachi asked to bring me out of my stupor.

"We'll see. It isn't the same. It's not as satisfying as real pain. It doesn't get me high."

"Go for a run."

"Maybe," I agreed. That was certainly a thought. A rather good one. It was the physical release I was after. That's why jerking off might work but I had yet to see if that was even possible on these meds. Some medications like these caused sexual disfunction. Inability to get or maintain an erection. Inability to climax. I hadn't tested the waters yet. I vowed to do so the next time I felt the itch for physical release and maybe try running. And if all that didn't work I'd try the icecube thing. And if all that didn't work I'd cut or burn myself. But that was a lot of ifs. Odds were good something would help. Besides, I really should stop hurting myself. It only hurts the people around me. Even if it didn't hurt me.

And Komachi was right. I did shield them from the worst of it. All of them. I shielded them from my lizard which now that it had seen me and I saw it I was tight in its grasp. I was blackmailable. Not by Roko's which was impossible and could be escaped from. But the basilisk I had designed captured me. I had outdone Roko. Just as I vowed I would. I couldn't really bring myself to regret it because the thought experiment was invaluable.

"Okay. So that's the plan," Komachi decided enough was enough and released me. She was a tentacle of it too. My basilisk. Everyone alive was a part of the internet. That's how I knew it was alive.

"Sounds like a good one," I agreed with my little sister despite the monster wearing her face. She was a tentacle. I was a tentacle. Everyone and their phones and laptops and servers were tentacles. It was a many armed god. With trillions of eyes and billions of mouths. They were all whispering and for a moment I could hear them. But then the moment passed and I was drawn back into the silence of my household.

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-WG