When Bo first realized that the two halves of his brain were romantically attracted to each other, his first reaction was… Well, it consisted a lot of screaming and listening to his own songs (preferably “Kill Yourself”) on loop. Eating ice cream for three days straight, binge-watching k-dramas on netflix, forming a mound of pillows and blankets on his bed… Nothing seemed to work right. He felt… Happy. Why the fuck was he happy? The two halves of his brain were romantically involved.
Bo almost… Felt bad.
Look, it wasn’t his fault if his own brain grew depressed because they could never talk to each other or… Whatever. It wasn’t his fault if they hated him. It was his choice to hate them (he could never hate them).
Then his brain started warring again.
It was a slow, meandering process, growing and growing, growing and growing… Sometimes he would feel cold inside, ice and snow and freezing weather in his bones and other times his blood would boil and threaten to bubble over, rumbling underneath his skin he was too angry too angry. Headaches. Headaches would always be there. Quiet and loitering or strong and fast, in his temples or his eyes or his jaw it always hurt more than anything he’d ever felt.
It was like the first time in only the broadest of terms.
The first time he wouldn’t cry for hours at a time at home, drinking beer and beer and beer and sometimes he felt like juggling—
JUGGLING! We could juggle, and juggle our cares away!
The first time he didn’t remember the voices in his head voices saying “do this do that do this”. He didn’t feel a need to plan everything, everything—
I kept him working, I kept him productive.
He was getting nowhere. Not like this… Not like this…
He had to see the doctor. He had to fix… This. Whatever this was. It needed to go away and fast. Maybe he’d write a song about it afterwards so people could laugh at his suffering maybe he could ignore it forever maybe he’s just wrong.
Could… Whoever that disembodied voice was even be called a doctor? The treatment wouldn’t work this time, would it? No, no. Not last time, not this time. He’d have to.
He’d have to.
Bo laughed to himself. Quietly.
This was ridiculous.
When he arrived at the… Uh, doctor’s office, he sighed when he was finally called in.
“Back again, Patient 24602?”
The disembodied voice remembered him.
“...Yes,” he sighed, seating himself down on the well-placed seat in the center of the room, clenching his palms together.
“Has the medication been working?”
“Wha- Medication?! I wasn’t— There wasn’t— This. Isn’t the same as last time.” He stared at the floor (maybe if he ignored himself long enough he could just disappear).
“The medication has not worked in the past so you were not assigned new medication. You should’ve told me that, pussy.”
“We’re not doing this, just, we’re doing the disassembly thing, right? Right? Just do it.” His nails scratched against his hands. “I’m ready. I need to just get it over with.”
“Fine. Splitting your neurological functions in five—”
He was ready he
could do this
he was okay he was
going to be fine he
“Zero. Isolation Complete.”
Pain. Overwhelming pain in his head in his body his heart his eyes his legs arms legs bones blood everything hurt.
Then Bo was gone.
In his place stood the dark blue Left Brain, cold and analytical and standing far too slouchy to be his true self. Next to him was his counterpart: Right Brain in bright peach-orange. He looked like he’d just cried.
They both were impossibly tired.
Tired of everything, of themselves, of each other, of being Bo, of being Left Brain and Right Brain. They didn’t want it to be this way. They wanted to be happy. They wanted Bo to be happy.
Bo wasn’t happy.
They weren’t happy.
“You go first.” Right Brain mumbled, sitting down on one of the now two well-placed chairs in the room.
“I…” Left Brain looked down. “I’m sorry. I don’t…”
“You don’t know?” Right Brain asked. “Right? I’m right, aren’t I?” He laughed, pressing his face into his hands. “What are we doing? Why can’t we just be normal?”
Left Brain turned away.
“What? You don’t know, again? I thought you were supposed to be the smart one! Why are you at a loss for words now of all times?!” Right Brain asked, laughing. Laughing. This was stupid.
Left Brain still wasn’t saying anything.
Right Brain stood up angrily. “What?! Are you just going to leave me to deal with this alone?
“Why are you so goddamn quiet? At least… At least say something—”
“Look. I don’t. I don’t fucking know, okay? I don’t… I’m the Left Brain. I can’t… Feel. I can’t… I can’t do this romance… Thing.” He bit out. “So just leave me alone!”
“Wha? That’s hardly enough time to figure this out! We can’t— We can’t go back to—”
“Commencing reformation into singular mind: in five—”
“that. We need more time! Please—”
“four, three, two—”
“Right Brain! Right Brain… Please. We can’t—”
“keep doing this we need to…”
“zero. Experimentation complete.”
Bo sat in the chair, running his hands along his arms and shivering. It was worse. It was horribly, horribly worse. “You—”
“Be quiet. Judging by the data I’ve gathered, it appears that your Left Brain and Right Brain are developing romantic feelings for each other. The solution is simple, of course.”
“What— Why didn’t you tell me that in the first place?!” Bo snapped. “You aren’t helping the situation at all!”
“While the solution may be simple, it has a curious… Side effect.”
Bo breathed a long sigh. “Whatever it is, nothing, nothing, is worse than this.”
“The obvious solution is to fully separate your Left Brain and Right Brain. In other words… Grant them an identity of their own. There are several dangers. They would constantly be forced to be around each other, with only halves of a brain they would have to constantly synchronize with each other. However, the most damaging side effect would be you, Patient 24602, would cease to exist as an individual being—”
“What the fuck? That’s the only solution?!”
“Yes. Of course, there is a high chance of failure.”
Bo bit his lip. “So, then. What if I… Don’t go through with it?”
“You’ll deal with the current symptoms for the rest of your life. The symptoms will probably progressively worsen over time. In other words, your life will become a living hell.”
“Then I don’t have a choice, do I?”
“Don’t ask me. Deal with your own problems.”
Bo narrowed his eyes up at the ceiling. “Isn’t your job dealing with people’s problems for them?”
“Correct. However, it is your choice to go through with—”
“I’ll do it.”
“If you say so. Splitting your neurological functions permanently…”
Bo stood up. “Wait, wait just like that? We’re going through with—” He breathed heavily, leaning down. “Okay. Okay. I can do this.”
“Five, four, three, two, ones…”
It was worse.
The pain was horrible. His blood was rushing everywhere in his body like a whirlpool, his skin felt too tight… His head felt numb from the waves of pain washing through his skull. He tasted blood in his mouth. His bones felt as if they were breaking apart, his muscles were splitting, his eyes felt as if they might pop out of his head. His back was aching, his stomach was being stabbed… He was deteriorating.
When Bo was gone, two slightly different Bo’s stood in his place. There they were.
“We’re…” Left Brain whispered.
Right Brain felt tears come to his eyes,“alive.”
“Separation complete. Welcome to Earth.”