Citation: nickop01. "Peering Into Hell: An Experience with Benzydamine & Caffeine (exp113796)". Erowid.org. Nov 11, 2020. erowid.org/exp/113796
00h00m DOSE: 2g benzydamine (chased with water on an empty stomach). I start with the lights on low, 50%, pink-red blend.
00h05m Feeling nausea already, hairs standing on end. Last time it took 50 minutes, literally 10 times this long, to take effect. This is extremely unusual, which adds to the anxiety caused by the benzy.
00h10m Feeling tingles on my cheeks and neck.
00h15m I'm already feeling a dry throat. Things are definitely moving way too fast. I can tell my pupils are dilating, the room is getting visibly brighter.
00h25m I'm seeing the classic tracers and star-like specks now. A wave of benzy-induced anxiety hits me like a semi truck. The fear is powerful, but not overpowering. I think I can cope. I spin my eyes in circles to clear my peripheral vision of horrors when it gets too much. I feel hot and cold flashes throughout my body. My hearing seems like its cranked to the highest sensitivity, and my vision is starting to sort of swing a little even when I'm not moving my eyes.|
00h30m The effects subside a little bit for just a few seconds, like the valley between waves in the ocean. The calm before the hellstorm.
00h32m I feel multiple puffs of wind blow across my right ear, like breathing, as though someone is directly behind me, which I recognise from my last trip. This repeated experience gives me a confidence boost, but before I can compose myself for the experience to come, I'm hit with a wave of mind fog.
00h35m The fog has turned into a full-blown head high, like smoking way too much sativa, yet even worse, as the backdrop of the trip creeps into the high, turning it dark and anxious. I hear the sound of crawling spiders; a blend of faint plastic-y clicking and soft hissing. I start to hear phantom voices as well.
00h45m I feel very dizzy, and have extreme difficulty concentrating on anything. I simply write "df" in my live jot-notes. Not sure if I missed the 'c'-key or if I tried to recall the word "concentrating" but couldn't, settling for "focusing" instead. After a couple minutes, my mind clears and I change it to "dc". I feel breath across my skin again, this time across the back of my neck. It takes me a few moments to realise I'm feeling breath underneath my neck warmer. I wore it specifically to cope with the constant feeling of neck tingles. I feel chills. This is not going well. I start to feel the crawling sensation of spiders moving all across my body.
00h50m Within only a couple minutes, I suddenly feel fear like none I have ever known in my entire life. Impending doom crushes down on me. I am terrified, so much that I do not even think to bring up the question of what I fear. (I later recall, after the trip, seeing dozens and dozens of human-sized spirits and creatures, along with many spiders, all twisted and menacing, moving fast in the dimly-lit room in my peripheral vision, mere feet away from where I sat. It felt as busy as an underworld street in the darkest pit of hell crowded with vicious, angry demons just waiting to flay my mind into pieces, as soon as the benzy took full effect and hallucinations started manifesting in my direct vision.) The music coming though my headphones is indecipherable, just white background noise, it no longer has any positive effect on my mental fortitude. I try to access the part of my mind where I store my stress-management skills, but I can't find it in all the brain-fog. I recite spiritual verses, ones that I have known for years, the same ones that guided me through my last trip with ease. They feel empty, sucked dry of meaning. I spin my eyes in circles, but the demonic spirits return as soon as my eyes stop, and I can't keep it up forever. Pure panic consumes me, the visceral, survival-instincts kind of fear I have only felt when I literally blacked out from oxygen deprivation. I instinctively grab my phone and turn my led light to the brightest, whitest setting. It feels like breaking my head above the water within seconds of drowning, but I have no energy to feel relieved, and it would be short-lived anyhow. Within moments, the raw, unhinged terror returns, like a gigantic anvil falling on my shoulders. I feel as though my horror manifests itself in my very body.
My hands are shaking so bad I can barely type any jot notes. I'm feeling vertigo so strong my eyes literally cannot focus on anything. The room is spinning like a half-pendulum as my focus swings left and upward, then suddenly snaps back to straight ahead, repeating this motion 2-3 times every second. It's literally nauseating, so much so that I don't even have the spare focus to realise the sickening irony in that my very coping mechanisms are morphing into symptoms that intensify the fear I'm trying to handle. Complex thoughts are beyond me.
Post-trip note: live jot-notes cease here
01h00m The anxiety is unbearable. I feel so exhausted I literally cannot think to save myself. My entire body is heavy and sore. Its like I can feel the benzy flowing through my veins, poisoning every part of my body. Breathing is difficult and painful. I am utterly void of energy, of power, even mental. Exerting the willpower to conjure a single thought other than pure horror is like trying to lift a skyscraper with only my bare hands. All I can manage to record is "can't type". I hear the floor creaking in my room, and the fact that it's a concrete basement apartment only magnifies my reaction to it. The chair I'm sitting in starts making way too much noise. Am I unaware of my own fidgeting, or is something very large with way too many legs crawling around on the underside? The nausea is overwhelming. Everything is overwhelming, but I am starting to feel like I may actually puke. I still have no energy, so I cannot even brace myself for the trip and the new horrors I know await. I'm exhausted, sleepy and scared.
The thought of ending the trip rushes into my mind. This trip is getting grim. I look at the table and see a can of energy drink. It's risky but I'm desperate. I down what feels like a massive gulp but in reality is a tiny sip. I feel every muscle in my mouth and throat straining to operate. Not only is the act of using any muscle a massive task, but the thought power to be aware of and feel them working drains me. Then, like a gift from the gods, every symptom starts subsiding. I take bearing of my mind, my body, my situation. I drink more, a little bit of willpower. I drink more, a little less fear. It's still mind-numbingly horrifying, my body still feels like it's being crushed by cinder blocks, and I can barely piece my thoughts together, but I'm no longer literally paralysed by fear. I have what feels like about 1/3 of the can, or about 53mg. I spend a great deal of time savouring this tiny fragment of solace I can get in the midst of my damnation. Finally, I take a couple more sips, gather the tattered remains of my willpower, and head out.
As I leave my room and walk down the hallway to the bathroom, I see in my peripheral vision multiple grudge/ring looking girls and a couple adult-sized ones run at me from behind. I almost don't make it to the bathroom, but thanks to a brief black out, the distance is halved. I shut and lock the door. Inside, everything is white and the light of midday brightens it even more. I kneel with my face in the porcelain bowl for what feels like 20 or 30 minutes. I'm seesawing between holding it down because I don't want to feel the stomach acid burning my already sore and dry throat, mouth and nose, or gaining just a tiny fraction of my willpower back by letting go. I end up settling for the former, because I need as much water and calories in my stomach as I can keep down. I feel intensely sick, both worse and different than a flu or a hangover. A cursed sickness. It takes me a while to get back up and prepare to return. When I do open the bathroom door and head back to my room, I don't feel nearly as much fear of the grudge girls, despite the unnerving and extremely vivid pitter-patter of half a dozen pairs of bare feet behind me. They're so close I can feel their breath on my neck. I feel one of them tug at the back of my shirt. After opening the floodgates of hell in my own bedroom a mere hour ago, this is a welcome change.
I am in agony. Walking, even standing, is a breathtaking, painful challenge. I climb into bed. I used up all the energy I gained in that bathroom trip. It's getting worse again. I check the stopwatch. 90 minutes. I'm a long way from peak. I finish the other 2/3rds of my energy drink: taking breaks to let the nausea subside, then taking another painful gulp down my sandpaper throat. I feel the energy slowly slip away as the paralysing exhaustion overpowers the caffeine. I try sleeping it off instead, but when I close my eyes I see spiders, demons and unspeakable horrors. Every second my eyes are closed my CEVs get more and more vivid, and more dark and disturbing, until I open my eyes in scared shock at the realness of it. One time I try to close my eyes and I suddenly see a gigantic demon made of rock, with horns bigger than a rhino, burst through my doorway, wood dust and splinters flying as it charges at me. My eyes snap open at the vivid jump-scare. The dream lasted less than a second, yet I felt like I was there, like everything I saw was real and could affect me. The feeling dissipates as soon as I open my eyes. The room is getting much more sinister in the conscious world. There is no escape. The doors of hell cannot be shut so easily. I have a spread on the table with food, water, juice and electrolytes. I try solid food but it tastes like rubber coated in WD40. I start sipping juice. My stomach tries to pirouette jump out of my chest but I manage to keep it down. Each sip gets a little easier. Waves of dizziness and mind fog come and go, unending since the very beginning (and continue for the entire trip), harbingers of dark spirits that are soon to appear.
A particularly intense wave hits me. I feel phantom spiders crawling all over my head. I brush at something on my ear, not sure if it is a phantom spider or hair. It's a hair. I brush it off my ear and back into place but it sticks to my hand. I blink, the hair is gone. It wasn't real. The vividness of it scares me. I tuck my hands under the covers, but no sooner than I do I feel a small patch of glue-y, sticky threads on the underside of the blanket. I bring my hands back up, and see a tiny splotch of white on my right thumb. I try brushing it off with my finger but it sticks to my finger, stretching across both digits. It's spiderweb. I'm scared shitless. It disappears in a blink but that just scares me more. Anything is possible now. Touch, sound, vision, taste, pain. The most horrific fables, the most terrifying renditions of hell, the most unimaginable torture scenarios, they are now all within the realm of existence. And I'm still not at peak. The room seems to darken, nearing the same dimness as the very beginning, despite the light being turned up as bright as I can get it. It's as if hell is swallowing up the light like a waking nightmare. Every time I breathe or fidget I hear the sound of tiny silken spider threads snapping, like an army of spiders is gluing the back of my shirt to the pillow. It feels like it too. I feel lots of very strong, vivid tingles and jabbing pains
I feel lots of very strong, vivid tingles and jabbing pains
. My silhouette on the wall next to me moves, even when I look directly at it.
Despite the crushing fear and brain fog, I manage to type a final foreboding message for the experience log: "In shadows now, not as planned". I need daylight. This room is no longer safe, and it's about to get much worse. I decide to take refuge in the living room. I grab my laptop, and as much provisions from my table as I can carry, and brace myself for the trip. I take a deep, ragged, painful breath into my sore chest and open the door. The only place not bathed in sunlight is the dining room, which is on the opposite side of the living room. Hallucinations always spawn in shadows. My bedroom door is halfway. I have a head start and I don't waste it. I rush to the living room and tug the door closed behind me, blocking off the grudge girls that I can hear running after me. I lay on the couch with the full light of day streaming in through the 12-foot wide window and prepare for what is to come.
2h00m I see shelves and power cords twitching and jerking like they're possessed in my peripheral vision. In my direct vision, the bare walls bulge outward in sudden popping motions. My shoes are extremely loud, I can hear every single rubber squeaking and canvas brushing sound as if I have a megaphone next to them. As soon as I lay down I feel the crawling, tingling, stabbing spiders return, as they glue my shirt to the couch.
2h15m I see 'shadow people' for the first time, even though the room is piercingly bright. I see them come and go for a while in the corner of the living room barely more than 5 feet away from me. Then, the main attraction arrives. I'm suddenly hit, but not physically, mentally. I'm confused. I can't piece sentences together in my head. I'm just rambling. Random words connect to each other like a broken autocomplete. Every few seconds I'll realise what I just thought made no sense. But as I try to understand what's happening, I'll start rambling again. Then it really hits me. My memory jumps. It's not like a blackout, it feels like a completely unbroken series of events. I feel normal (under the circumstances), then suddenly I feel totally disconnected from myself. I don't know who I am. I don't recognise my body. I don't understand my own thoughts. Wait, no, I know who I am, These aren't thoughts, these are memories. Emotional memories. I remember the feeling of not knowing who I am. I remember not being myself. I'm remembering what it's like to feel true Delirium. And it is terrifying.
2h45m I have no idea how many times I bounced between sanity and delirious disconnect, but it seemed to last only a few seconds at a time, at least the parts that I remember. What little time I had in my sane periods after recollecting all my thoughts were filled with shock and terror. I never intended to go this far. Whats coming next? Is this the end of the peak? Or the end of me? As if by divine foresight, I managed to take the exact correct dosage for my metabolism to just peek into the maw of insanity. Within only 30 minutes the delirium subsided. I didn't go anywhere or do anything, I'm still lying down. (Thinking back on it, I doubt my body even could move, if whoever or whatever took control of my empty mind wanted it to. I was still exhausted, still battling waves of nausea, still in massive pain and merely breathing was still a laborious task. I don't know if I could have even spoken.) But before I could breathe a sigh of relief from regaining firm control of my mind, the reality of my situation came back to me. I hear the whispers of young girls, but with a sinister edge. I'm starting to hear the sounds of tiny bare feet running around behind the closed living room door. When I look at the tiny gap at the bottom of the door I see several feet worth of pale white toes. I hear one of the grudge girls run to the opposite side of the house behind the door, then moments later run back. Then, suddenly, the sound of a saw cutting through wood. The sawing stops and the sound of metal clattering on the ground rings through my ears like a gunshot. Then I hear multiple small palms sliding across the door. They're trying to push it open. I wait in silence for the next horror. I hear more pitter-patter, then the sound of a wooden table being dragged across the floor. It stopped right behind the door, and I see through a gap at the top of the door, a tiny sliver of a head covered in long black unkempt hair just barely poking up. I look away.
Suddenly I hear the crystal-clear sound of the door sliding wide open. I snap my head back. The door is closed. I hear one girl run off and return, then hear the jangling of keys, and the sound of unlocking. The door remains shut. I hear several small hands scratch the door with their fingernails. I hear gentle knocking from tiny knuckles. Then, out of the cloud of indistinct murmurs, I hear a whisper call out like a cursed bell in perfect clarity: "Let me in" it taunted. Every attempt fails, but is terrifying none the less. They might yet get through. Anything is possible in this hellish reality.
3h30m The girls continue to run about in the apartment, creaking the door open when I'm not looking. Then, finally, it subsides. Everything subsides. I would feel relieved if I weren't so exhausted it hurt. I look at the door again and notice a massive grunge mark across the white paint. It's pale, so I wonder if I just haven't ever noticed it before. It's right at the level of the doorknob, and looks like the kind of rubbed-in dirt marks that a door would get from being pushed open thousands of times. Then suddenly, it moves. It starts morphing into different shapes. I look away and look back again quickly. Now it's in a different spot. My relief from passing peak appears to be short-lived. I feel I'm not out of the woods yet, if I can see hallucinations this vivid. I try looking away then looking at it again. Now there's two identical grunge marks. I reset yet again, trying vainly to purge my vision of hallucinations. It's in a new spot again. I watch it this time as it starts morphing into different shapes. It turns into a fist, then points a finger at the TV. I look over at the TV, it's surface a semi-glossy black mirror, and see a room much larger than the living room I'm in. I see the reflection of my legs, and the couch and the divider wall between the living room and outside door. I also see things that aren't a reflection. I see an armchair in the non-existent space between the couch and the divider. And on the other side of the divider, I should see the door to the outside but I see only pitch black. I look back at the chair and see a figure. He looks at me. I ask him mentally what he wants, but he walks away and disappears into the darkness on the other side of the mirrored divider. I lean over to peer through the darkness and a hallway appears. It's long, way longer than possible, with double doors and two windows letting daylight stream in.
I lean back as I feel a sudden rush of fear of my exposed back, as well as the crawling, tingling and jabbing intensify without my back pressed to the couch. The figure reappears suddenly. Only to do the same. I don't have it in me to sit up again. I see what appears to be the reflection of my legs, except its oriented completely wrong. Mirror-me is way closer to the TV, nearly touching it, and also underneath it somehow? I see hands reach out and stretch, and the legs follow suit stretching and bending. The illusion of reflection is lost as soon as it starts moving of it's own accord. The movement is so crisp and smooth, its the most realistic visual hallucination I've seen yet. Then suddenly, like a rubik's cube, patterns on my fake mirror's pj pants slide in several directions at once as the reflection snaps to reality: the reflection of my feet, the couch and blanket. Then it repeats. I see the armchair figure multiple times, sometimes shapeshifting, but growing more and more indistinct every time. I hear my roommate come out of her room suddenly, and start doing dishes. I can tell it's real because it's (seemingly) louder than the hallucinations. She turns on the dryer, then goes back to her room. Then she's out again, and walks all the way to the door, pulling it open. My heart leaps into my throat: she's going to let the grunge girls out! The door doesn't move. Then I hear the bathroom sink turn on. I guess my foggy brain misheard the footsteps. I can still tell the difference between hallucination and reality if I focus.
The roommate finishes up and returns to her room. More pitter-patter from the bare feet of the hallucinated girls. The roommate comes back out of her room, walking all the way to the door and stops. Then I hear the sink turn on. It seems that when my real roommate walks around, my hallucinations hijack the sound, to make themselves seem more real. I can just barely tell the difference between the fake footsteps and the real ones, by how loud they are (It is only later after reviewing my notes that I realise the scary truth. At the time, I could barely concentrate on anything other than fighting off the unending fear, fatigue and nausea in between bouts of head fog, so I thought nothing of it, but why would my roommate go back and forth between her room and the bathroom nearly 8 times? I was annoyed at her in the moment but now I realise: she didn't. I couldn't tell the difference between real and hallucinated sounds, not at all.).
4h00m My mind has slowly been clearing since the peak, and I now have enough focus to try and test my typing ability. I look back at it half an hour later and see that it is legible (and still is, after looking at it 48 hours later). I notice a couple of my keyboard letters are slightly blurry, but this will pass shortly. I also notice that the lyrics of the music I'm listening to get heavily jumbled/nonsensical if I turn the volume down, like my mind puts random words together when it can't hear what's being said in perfect clarity. I am truly balancing on the very edge of insanity.
4h30m I break through the mental exhaustion for a moment and am of sound enough mind to resume typing my notes from memory, as I remember everything in visceral detail.
5h00m My laptop battery dies so I decide to move back to my bedroom. I am still stalked by the grudge girls in the trip from the living room which takes a lot out of my psyche. I am left exhausted, dizzy, and unable to concentrate when I arrive. I suddenly hear the sound of a man peeing loudly in the toilet, which is impossible as there are no men in my apartment, only myself and my roommate. I hear the phantom man finish, and the distinct sound of footsteps moving towards my door, then the terrifyingly realistic sound of jingling keys, followed by the sound of a key sliding into the padlock and the bolt lock sliding open. The door remains still as I hold my breath. I hear this auditory hallucination happen repeatedly, but my exhausted, foggy brain isn't able to learn that it's fake, and every occurrence takes a little more out of my energy reserves. Sometimes when the man inevitably fails to unlock my door he starts scraping loudly with his fingernails. I occasionally hear the sound of what seems like a hundred mice in a giant swarm in the kitchen. One time I suddenly hear the crystal clear sound of my bedroom door opening. My heart leaps into my throat as I snap my eyes to the door, but it is closed. Another time I not only hear it opening, but SEE it open in my peripheral vision. I again snap my eyes directly at the door as my heartrate skyrockets, and again the door remains locked and closed. The phantom man seems to be gone. When I look at my laptop to resume typing the gap at the bottom of my door expands in my peripheral vision from an inch to several feet high. I see a gigantic spider come out of the massive black hole, and crawl across the floor to my chair. When it appears on top of my chair it is no longer a spider but a cat. When I look directly at my chair the cat disappears. I also see ghost spiders at the edges of my vision, but I cannot see any hallucinations in my direction vision anymore.
5h30m My room has suddenly brightened, and I feel like the darkness in my mind has lifted. After another 10 minutes, the mind fog returns. It appears it was just a valley between waves of mind fog and fatigue. My throat feels not only sore, but raw. It feels like it has been damaged badly, with a caustic substance.
6h00m I see the faint but full-colour hallucination of a snake-like japanese dragon in my window, wearing a humanoid japanese demon mask. It moves slowly from the window into my room, growing more monotone as it crosses from my peripheral into my direct vision, where it becomes a ghost-outline, and then disappears on the opposite side of my peripheral vision. I also see in my peripheral vision a giant spider come out of the enlarged hole in the bottom of my door, crawl to my chair and, this time, turn into a hedgehog.
6h30m A super intense wave of headfog hits me. I have difficulty maintaining a linear order of events when attempting to accomplish any task, even one as simple as forming a thought.
7h00m I just now notice how sweaty I am. Earlier, near the beginning of my trip, I measured my heartrate at double my resting. It is still 60% higher than my resting rate right now.
7h30m After returning from the washroom I realise I have gone to the washroom over 10 times since the beginning. I still have no appetite, I have to force myself to eat, and can still only get down liquid nutrition.
8h00m I am typing notes on my laptop when suddenly, my entire field of vision jolts and blurs a little, and an entire wall of text in all caps appears instantaneously in front of me. My mind reels from the sudden time jump, and I feel a gut-wrenching, cold, clammy fear grip my chest as I read the words. "I AM HATE. I AM EVIL. I AM CRUEL. I AM SELFISH." Dozens and dozens and dozens of sentences have been written in a time of which I am not even aware passed. A screed of uncensored, unrestrained messages, like a demonic manifesto, fills my entire screen. Is this what being possessed feels like? Regardless of what is or isn't real, the writing before me is, and my memory of writing it is totally non-existent, and I am left shaken and terrified.
8h15m A black ball of spidery legs rushes across the floor incredibly quick.
8h25m All of my visual hallucinations have been subsiding over the last few hours. It has been almost 5 hours since the end of my peak, so I expect that the trip is nearly over. Suddenly, I am starting to see specks/glitches. I feel a rush of anxiety, hear hallucinated voices and the light in my bedroom grows brighter. Am I starting a second trip?! I can't possibly have re-dosed. I have remembered nearly everything in my trip so far in perfect clarity, and even in the remote chance that I do have memory blackouts, it takes nearly half an hour to gather all the supplies needed, fill capsules with benzy concentrate and measure the amount. Not to mention that I have ABSOLUTELY no desire to keep this nightmare going any longer. My chest pounds at the thought of things ramping up again, regardless of how remote it seems.
8h45m My vision blurs and jolts again at the discombobulating feeling of another time jump, though again I have not moved. It appears I was possessed only for fraction of a second this time, as whatever evil will taking over me had only enough time to enter a line break.
[------2ND COME UP------]
8h50m I am most definitely having another trip. All of the mental and emotional effects are intensifying, much more than they should be 5 hours post-peak. It has been about 7 hours since I had caffeine, so it must be wearing off, allowing the benzy to surge back to full strength. I contemplate having more but I don't want to strain my heart any more than it already is, so I choose to simply ride it out. My bedroom turns dark and foreboding so I decide to take refuge in the living room once again.
9h00m I see a translucent, drifting thread in the corner of my eyelashes, a single thread of spiderweb, and pull it off with my fingers. I feel nothing and the hallucination vanishes. The furniture stars to creak much too loudly and often. I've left the door to the living room open, and I hear the distinct noise of someone walking around in bare feet. She sniffs her nose like it's runny, dumps a tiny amount of water into the sink drain and starts to walk towards the door. Fear grips my chest like a vice. The roommate hasn't returned yet, I'm still alone in the apartment, or at least I should be. I rush to the door and swing it shut, ignoring the glimpses of figures down the hallway.
9h15m I start to feel the familiar sensation of a cold phantom wind blowing across each and every finger individually. All of my hairs are standing on end. I'm hearing lots of auditory hallucinations and seeing visuals in my peripheral. Above me I see a vivid double of the light fixture, but when I turn my eyes up to look at the ceiling it's gone.
9h30m My ears are ringing, a deafeningly piercing high-pitched whine, just like last time before my first peak. I hear the sound of a table or a stool scraping across the kitchen floor, coming towards the door. Instead of stopping, though, it turns around and goes back to the kitchen, then starts going around in circles. My mind must have been getting extremely foggy, as I hear the circular dragging seem to move vertically and over me to the ceiling, yet don't question the realness of it at the time.
9h35m I feel breathing across my ear again. I feel tingling all over my body, and a sudden bad taste in my mouth.
9h50m The head fog, nausea and dizziness return extremely strongly.
9h55m I hear what sounds like a body falling on the floor on the other side of the wall, and the table shakes a little in the corner of my eye. I hear quiet knocking at the living room door. The lyrics to the music I'm listening to are getting jumbled again.
10h15m My chest is in extreme pain again, and breathing becomes very difficult. My mouth and throat are horribly dry. A wave of anxiety hits me like a train.
10h20m I hear my neighbour outside yell angrily, and a car alarm go off, as though he caught a robber trying to steal his car. Was it real? Pretty sure not, but there's no way to know for sure.
10h30m I'm in a valley between the waves of effects. I instinctively want this calm to last but I know it will not. In fact, whenever I become aware that I'm in a valley, it's usually a sign that it is going to get much worse very soon.
10h35m I look at the shadow of my own hand against the back of the couch and feel something strange: it is as if I don't recognise the shadow as my own. It feels nearly exactly the same as when I had a moment of temporary prosopagnosia when drinking absinthe and couldn't recognise my own reflection as my face.
10h45m The ear ringing is getting louder with each wave.
10h50m Am I feeling time dilation or just near-delirious confusion? I notice I'm making very odd movements with my hands, like a nervous tick that I've developed just now.
11h00m I hear extremely believable knocking on the outside door. Two firm knocks, as if with the metal top of a cane, repeated 6 or 7 times. It's the loudest, clearest and most believable of all the auditory hallucinations I've had so far. It can't possibly be real, that door faces the back yard. The only people who would enter there are the landlords, and they always call before entering. Yet I cannot stop believing it is real. I hold very still and pretend I'm not at home, despite the living room light being on. After a while, I hear the sound of the entryway landing creaking behind the divider that stands between me and the outside door, as though someone is walking in. The creaking stops just behind the edge of the divider wall. I feel as though a dark, regal spirit is waiting for me to invite them in. I don't know whether to get up and do so, unleashing who knows what kind of malice into my house, or to refuse and risk the consequences. I decide it's better not to invite unknown spirits into my home. After another period, I hear the sound of the base of a cane angrily striking the sidewalk outside of my door, then clacking footsteps walking swiftly away. Have I brought a worse fate upon myself for being rude? I feel it's better to stick with the evil I know, but perhaps there is no good choice.
11h15m I hear another hallucination: above me, the old man's stroller drags loudly across the floor, and the sharp sound of high heels follows behind. It must be real, it's too loud to be a hallucination, yet I've never heard anyone with high heels visit the tenants upstairs. Then, it starts moving backwards, the two phantoms retracing their steps, then behind me, then diagonally down one wall, then down another until at ground level.
11h20m Another pause between waves.
[------2ND COME DOWN------]
12h00m All of the symptoms start to subside, and I gather my things and return to my bedroom, as my laptop is almost out of battery again. In my room I am able to turn down the lights to a dimmer setting without much anxiety.
19h30m I spend the next 7 hours editing my notes as I battle through fatigue and mind fog. It's a double-edged sword. I'm distracted from the physical world, and all the hallucinated demons and spirits, but remembering and writing intricate details about such dark and terrifying experiences while I'm still not sober affects the world around me. I have vivid bouts of auditory hallucinations and visuals in my peripheral throughout editing, and even now I know if I let my eyes sit in one spot too long I'll start seeing things more vividly until I see it in my direct vision.
19h45m My eyes are starting to hurt, I feel a migraine coming. I'm ready to fall asleep. I turn my computer off then turn off the lights. I immediately hear the sound of a soft thud and a small mouth inhale, like a child jumping. I sense a grudge girl, right next to my bed, inches from my face. I turn the lights back on. I feel nauseous. My stomach gurgles, faint at first then growling louder. It keeps growling, way too many times. Is it a hallucination or to be expected after ingesting a toxic amount of chemicals and then not eating for an entire day? I have no way of knowing what is or isn't real when it comes to sounds, and I'm most definitely still not of sound mind. As I type this I can see a plastic easter island head statue standing impossibly sideways on the side of my desk that disappears when I look straight at it, and reappears when I resume typing. I hear the faint sound of a massive hellhound breathing in it's sleep under my bed. I finish typing, just about to get ready to fall asleep when suddenly I hear a familiar, foreboding sound: a deafening high-pitched whine. The third peak is coming.
20h00m I turn off my computer again and try to quickly fall asleep before I can start seeing, hearing and feeling things. The first hour I can only fall asleep for 5 minutes at a time. I'm still seeing vivid CEVs, though not nearly as bad as during the first come up. It always starts in a place that feels small and cramped, like a movie short happening on a tiny set, and it always ends up returning to the same pattern: rushing at 200mph through a long, winding, unending tunnel. The dream keeps getting more real, dark and sinister until I'm shocked awake. One time I close my eyes and I see a magician, he opens a red curtain just barely big enough for me to walk through. I see dozens of curtains opening up inside, one after the other, each one darker as the light fades into the distance. I'm rushing through them.
Now it's not just the shadows making the curtains darker, the fabric itself on each consecutive curtain is a deeper red than the previous one, until they're all black now, and they start to get more and more vivid. I'm only in the curtain-tunnel for a couple seconds before I rush into a tiny, black tent. The magician is there. The room is lit dimly as if from only a few candles, even though I can't see the source of the light. Someone is tied up in a chair with a plastic mask that has three holes: one for each eye and a third in their forehead. The magician grabs a giant, razer-sharp knitting needle and stabs it into their head, through skin and bone. I start to feel a sudden stabbing pain in my own head, which makes me jump awake. The dream felt like it lasted less than a minute. Another dream and I'm in a tiny, dimly-lit room again, with old-fashioned lightbulbs on a wire lining the top edge of two of the walls. The low ceiling is a thick, opaque tarp and blows in the strong wind outside. I feel like we must be near the seaside. It's nighttime. There's a person standing next to a small table. There's only standing room between the edges of the table and the walls. They're checking the lightbulbs. They bend over towards the table and suddenly everything starts spinning, like full-vision, full-colour tracers, My entire tiny world is a circular pattern, then suddenly I'm rushing through it as it turns into a tunnel. The tunnel is striped, black and grey, and I'm falling at breakneck speed, though I don't feel any vertigo.
The walls start to gradually become more clear, until they're glass, with black metal between each pane. Outside I see I'm underwater. It's getting darker, as I fall deeper and deeper, until there's only pitch black. Suddenly the tunnel is no longer made of glass, it's made of skulls. I'm rushing through the open maw of a million giant consecutive skulls. Outside of the skull tunnel I see a deep red glow get brighter and brighter, as I rush down the tunnel into hell. I jump awake. Again, the dream only lasted a couple minutes. Another dream and I'm looking at the sidewalk in the city. I know it's daytime and that there's a bustling city around me but I can't see anything except this tiny, 10-foot square space of the sidewalk. There's half of a public bench sticking into the scene, the other half exists out-of-frame. Under the shadow of the bench, on the concrete, is a bunch of tiny baby chickens for some reason. They're grey, instead of yellow. Suddenly, a large dog rushes into the scene, devouring the small birds in a gruesome, bloody mess. It finishes it's gory meal in only a few bites, and looks up at me. It's head is flat and it has no eyes, and then I realise it has two bottom jaws instead of a top and bottom jaw. It's head is just a giant mouth. It's no regular dog, it's a hellhound. It sniffs me then opens it's maw wide and jumps at me, and I see a long, dark tunnel lined with teeth before jumping awake. Every time I wake up my heart is racing and I start to hear the ringing in my ears, followed by crawling, tingling sensations and movements in my peripheral vision. I try to get back to sleep before the fear can keep me awake. After a restless hour of 5 minute naps I start to have longer dreams, and as a result sleep for longer periods. 10 minutes, then 15, then 30. As the dawn starts to light up my room through the window I feel safer closing my eyes, and the light seems to cast a calming mood over my dreams.
23h00m I wake up feeling almost sober and a little bit rested for the first time in what feels like eternity. It's daylight again. I check the time on my phone. I try to close my blinds to sleep better, but still feel the cold, clammy grip of benzy fear grip me in the dark, so I turn it up again, then return to sleeping. The periods of rest between waking gradually increase over the next few hours, and feel more restful.
27h00m I wake up and decide to stay up this time, feeling fine. My mouth tastes like chalky, acidic chemicals. I warm up some solid food and pour hot sauce on it to burn out the terrible taste. I feel my throat burning like I've just downed a small spoon of bleach, still raw from the benzy. I keep eating and it gradually burns less. I don't feel any nausea. I hear a loud bump and a metallic clatter in the kitchen, like pop cans or spray cans, I can't tell. My heart leaps at the noise. Still jumpy. Was it real though? Am I still hearing things that vividly? I check my table and find a hair that hours ago I wasn't sure was real. It seems my vision is clear. I hear the distant and faint sound of the microwave warming food. Then I think I hear it beeping the finished sound, while still running. That's not right. The beeping seems to fade as if my understanding that it's an illusion causes it to. Then I realise I have never been able to hear the low hum of the microwave warming food from my bedroom. It's the other way around, the beeping was real. Or was any of it real? I hear another loud thud, another metallic clatter in the kitchen. I glance at the edge of the bed, and something catches my eye. The black sheet has a ghost outline against the white wall, a classic benzy illusion. I AM still seeing things. I close my blinds. In the pitch black I start to see indistinct shapes, like partial illusions, and tiny, sudden movements, at the very distant corners of my vision. I hear the microwave beeping again and go investigate, testing my reality for the first time. It's real, the roommate was warming food. I resume typing. With my light dimmed to a deep, dark red, I can clearly tell now that I am definitely still seeing things in the corner of my eyes, albeit faint and indistinct. In areas of pitch-black shadow I see the blackness morph and spider-like legs reach out just a couple inches. In bright areas I see small, super-faint ghost-spiders dash about. I resume editing my notes.
29h00m I'm hearing the high-pitched ringing again. I know the hallucinations aren't coming back so it's no longer terrifying, but still loud and slightly painful now. Was it always painful? Probably, but I was in a constant state of agony during the trip, from physical pain, extreme exhaustion, soreness, and nausea, so I probably didn't notice something so mild. I also seem to still have difficulty seeing things for what they are when I have music playing. After writing a few paragraphs, I'll notice several bright red underlines appear, all at once, typos that I didn't see at first.
It's now 52h30m and I've finished the trip report. I still see the hint of moving things at the edges of my vision, the occasional leg of a ghost spider, and I have the uncanny sensation that I can feel the darkness of shadows, like the contrast of my vision is up just slightly. Even the pupils of my eyes, though they are of regular size, look blacker than I remember, and I feel just a little tinge of anxiety looking at them, even in the bright light. Benzy is potentiated by darkness, so it must be a residual effect.
Benzydamine is unlike any other deliriant. It's not like DPH. It's not like tropane alkaloids, anti-histamines or z-drugs. There is no mental or emotional anaesthetic during a benzy trip to soothe the horror, every feeling is in fact amplified. The impending doom, crushing despair and literally paralysing anxiety only increases with the dose.
Benzy also plays one's own fears against themselves. My mind was constantly racing through dozens of fears, monsters and scenarios, creating new ones every minute, during the entire trip. Trying not to focus on them is like trying to walk across a disturbed anthill without stepping on a single ant. All it takes is pausing on a single dark thought for one second too long and it starts to creep into the physical world.
Caffeine is an extremely effective benzy suppressant, but will magnify the stress on the heart.
The visual hallucinations would often "sync" with real sounds, while the auditory hallucinations would meld, play off of or mimic real sounds happening in the moment, making the latter impossible to tell apart.
I don't even bother drinking plain water, it has no effect. Coconut water, sports drinks and/or electrolytes are essential for staying hydrated.
To say that 'frequent urination' is an effect of benzy would be an understatement. My liver was clearly desperately trying to purge my body of poison. I lost a massive amount of liquid that I couldn't possibly keep up with, and with my sore throat, mind fog and time dilation even taking small sips was a significant undertaking. I'm still replenishing my body liquids now.
Benzy greatly inhibits alcohol. I only drink once or twice a year, and can be prone to blacking out. On the night after the end of the trip, I went out and had a lot to drink with friends, far more than I should have been able to handle, and both felt very aware and suffered no impairment to my vision.
As a final note, I cannot possibly fit everything I saw, felt and heard during every minute of my experience into this already massive trip report. I experienced so much that, despite having only a few short memory blanks, I simply couldn't fit everything into my memory. Even now I am having things come back to me, details that were overwhelmed in the moment by the pain, exhaustion and fear. I have a clear memory of an unbroken linear series of events, but there are several times when a single sense or emotion was so strong that I cannot recall what else was going on.
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