I Have a Gecko Named Anxiety
Would you like to meet him?
He's about the size of an adult golden retriever. He lives in the corner of my brain, lounging on a particularly stout, low-hanging branch. The tree, of course, is covered in vines and flowers, merging with the side of my skull. It's hard to spot, though... no, you'll want to ignore that library, you'll get lost for days. Yes, that one too. Straight ahead, around the fire pit (don't jump in, you won't escape unscathed) and over that bridge. Yes, it looks rickety, but it'll hold your weight. There you go, over the Chasm of Eternal Falling and to your left. No, don't stop. The rustling in the ceiling is most definitely not due to giant arachnids. They're friendly, I promise. Hang a right at the human-sized, mummified, dying creature and... there! You've done it. Do you see him now?
You can move closer, if you want. He sleeps most of the time, emitting little croaks and grumbles while his stubby gecko tail coils around and around that branch. Just don't wake him up. When he wakes up... well, it gets messy. He doesn't like people, so maybe just stop a few yards away. Don't make a sound. He doesn't like syringes, either-- the last time he saw one he screamed for about three minutes straight before passing out.
Well, of course he screams. What else would he do? Can't you feel it? Every time he makes a sound, it translates to a draft of anxiety. When he's asleep, it's a gentle breeze. When he's awake and babbling, everyone within range is about to burst a blood vessel from excess adrenaline. When he inhales deeply, though, you really have to worry.
Of course you'll know in advance. He's part chameleon, so he'll flash some warnings. The last time he sensed a social interaction he turned a putrid combination of pumpkin orange, olive green, and a particularly violent shade of violet. Then he'll take a full minute to inhale-- see that odd-looking patch on his throat? He expands it just like a frog, then screams like one of those videos of a screaming goat until the air runs out.
Terrifying? Him? I suppose, maybe... no, I don't see it. He's a silly, simple creature. Just like one of those little yappy dogs that barks their heads off at the slightest provocation. In fact, it's hard not to laugh when he screams, because, well... he gets such a strange, cross-eyed look, and you can see all the way down his throat. Yep, straight down the gullet. And his tail goes straight and his knees lock. Once he got so panicked he fell out of the tree. He was so shocked he stopped screaming-- although he also got the air knocked out of him, so that may have helped.
How can anyone be afraid of a silly screaming gecko? That's all Anxiety is, after all.