Azure Jane Lunatic (azurelunatic) wrote,
Azure Jane Lunatic

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I refer to myself as "the Lunatic", rather than Azure. Azure feels funny, stiff and formal and not-me. But I call myself "the Lunatic", and sign myself "Loony", often as not, when leaving notes on the kitchen whiteboard.

I'd never given much thought as to why this was, until I suddenly realized, when an introspective mood and the right music coincided. The Lunatic is in my head. I ran around school, singing that song with the Azzgrin on my face, because it suited me, suited us.

But why not Azure? Azz is still me, but not Azure. I have a difficult time remembering that I ever answered to Azure. Azure is gone now. Accepting messages addressed to Azure feels very much like I'm taking messages to be passed on to a dead woman. Looking that one over, it seems that the Collective answers in whole or job-specific as appropriate to Azz, the Lunatic, Azure Lunatic, and any of the body names and nicknames, and answers in specific to specific names (such as Dagger and Naomi, and someone makes sure a message is taken if they can't talk right now), but when we're addressed by a specific name and the specifically-named doesn't exist anymore, it's like being called the wrong body-name, only weirder. I bristle when called John or Jo-Ann; I bristle the same way when called Azure. That isn't my name. No one home who answers to that name.

Azure was the original Lunatic. She was born when my Evil Ex BJ had a gaming group and they were doing a Vampire: The Masquerade Live Action Role-Playing game. I decided to play a Malkavian, one of the utterly mad vampire clan. The name came from an ancient band name generator; I liked the name enough to keep it around until it would be useful. Azure was just plain nuts. She had a huge, insane, and scary grin. She was spacy, and had an obsession with touching wood. She was utterly unplugged from reality and barely acknowledged the inputs from the senses, but noticed wood. Azure-the-Malkavian used to be a nun, so she reacted very unpredictably around any reminder of her roots. That aspect didn't stay in Azure-the-personality. The game bored us, but the personality stuck.

There was an open slot for a personality then, because Angela/Alys didn't want to stick around or got assimilated into Shanna somehow. There are always four. That's the stable number. Three of them were steady: Joan-prime, the front, with continuity to the original personality; Mona, the shy one, with continuity to the original personality (and what we would discover was the original split, from Joanie into Joanie/Joan); and Shanna, who was the Guardian, and the one who assimilated the fourth personalities once they'd proved themselves out to be useful. (Shanna was much like the stickyballs in the game Katamari Damacy, except perhaps more selective, and definitely somewhat more day-to-day necessary.) That fourth personality space was somewhat like the Barrayaran Ninth Auditor position. Someone would show up to fill a need, and then either disappear, especially if the need was temporary, or be found to be both functional and necessary, and assimilated into Shanna. The Vulcan merged with Shanna that way; Guardian merged with Shanna; Laughing Hawk merged with Shanna; eventually, Azure merged with Shanna.

The fact of Azure merging with Shanna is clear in the memory because it happened recently, in the same timeframe as the entire Collective merging. We'd noticed that Azure and Shanna were generally together right before the entire merge happened. The Shanna/Azure merge was taken as a given, a "Well, of course it's going to happen," sort of thing, because we knew that for whatever reason, Azure was a necessary part of the Collective, and we knew what happened when the fourth was a necessary person. The surprising part was when the entire Collective wound up merging (at Darkside's innocent suggestion).

By the time the Collective had merged, Azure and Shanna were no longer separate parts. No one really talked to Azure. People mostly talked about Azure, mostly trying to make sure she stayed under control. People mostly addressed her as Azz, when they talked to her. By the time most people, people on LJ, started talking to me under the guise Azure Lunatic, it was the Whole Merged Collective answering to the name. When the next split happened, there was no Azure.

It's a dead name, delivering to a null mailbox. There is no Azure. There's an Azz, and a Lunatic, and of course azurelunatic. No Azure. (Also, no spoon, but that's a different movie...)

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