Cotard Delusion – With Backstory Freebie
Goth gone mad. A character, protagonist or antagonist, walks with a slight supination or underpronation, and feels compelled to spend their time hanging out in graveyards, refusing to eat or bathe for extended periods. Known as “walking corpse syndrome.” Or The Walking Dead as pyschosis. This character firmly believes they, or parts of their body are dead.
This is not to be confused with a death obsession or staged death enactments as cleverly explicated in Harold and Maude.
How did this character’s behavior come to be? The walk is the tell. Without standing in front of the mirror or dropping forty lines of head-time backstory between two lines of dialog or going Disease of the Week, there’s Dactylolysis Spontanea. A disease where the little toe (or even another appendage) decides to amputate itself. There is no known cure nor explanation. A disease and the resulting psychology that can be explained in a line of dialog. My toe fell off. I must be dead.
I continue to offer the Character Bullpen Series in an effort to do my part for expanding inclusivity and diversity in fiction. I feel it’s my duty since we have reached a point in extreme political correctness where a person with an incredibly rare one-in-the-whole-of-Earth’s-human-population affliction must be accommodated and granted access to fast food meal delivery through an elaborate device required by law to be installed, at considerable expense, in every greasy spoon on the planet. Just in case that one someone from, say, Zimbabwe or outer Mongolia decides to collect their ICU unit’s complete array of support devices into a van and hit the Steak and Shake in Clermont, Florida.