"I was finishing brushing my teeth when I heard the noise. I rushed out into the hall, only to feel myself suddenly frozen to the spot. The thing had found me again.
It was taller than me, but thinner. Its skin was pale and clammy despite the cold, its lips cracked and its naked body covered in sores and wounds.
It stood at the top of the landing, beside a broken window. Watching me. Hating me. I had no more excuses to get around it. No more forms of escape. I was too tired to fight anymore. And honestly, I didn't know how.
"I'm not here anymore. And yet you won't let me go. “the thing said in an empty voice.
It was true. I couldn't let go. Or didn't want to. But part of me did want to let go. This sick feeling I kept having every day. I hated it even more than the loss. Because it was a disturbance in the natural order of my life. And I had no idea how to recover from it.
It leered at me, its cold, glassy eyes set above a wide, simpering grin. It was not happy. But it was a perversion of life. So I wanted to see it happy. But it couldn't feel happy. It didn't want to feel anything. It wanted to be dead. And I didn't know how to kill it.
"This isn't`t your house," it whispered, almost compassionately. "They aren't your family. Are you really planning on bringing them into this as well?"
I remained silent. I knew what it meant. These people I lived with said they were there for me. But every day I felt tortured. I felt like they were being punished. I was polluting their lives, and no matter how often they tried to reassure me, I always knew the truth.
That they would be happier.
But I fought that back. I reminded myself that they had come to support me willingly. It didn't matter if I was a mess. They were there for me.
"They are not there for you," the thing murmured, reflecting my thoughts back at me. "They support the other you. The lie that they think is you. But you know the truth. You are and always have been a mess. You always will be a mess. And they mock your pain by wanting you to be different."
I closed his eyes. I tried to find their comfort. I tried to find my strength. But they felt a million miles away. And I felt so lonely. Just myself and this thing. This dead thing. Or perhaps something worse. The thing that seemed to follow me everywhere I went. That seemed to hate me more than I imagined possible.
That thing I loved.
I opened my eyes, and the thing was still there. Its eyes were still glassy. Its skin pale and its hair stringy. I was so so tired of fighting. And I didn't want to hurt them anymore. They didn't really know how much I was hurting them.
I stepped forward towards the thing, that hissed upon my approach. It smelled of bad memories. Or sensations I would sooner forget then cherish. But as I got closer the thing opened its arms and held me as I sank to the ground in tears.
"I miss you and you can't miss me," I said through my sobs.
"No," it said, stroking his hair. "No I can't. I don't. But I am all you have."
And I and the thing sat in the wind of the broken window and the moonlight, sprawled on the ornate rug. And I rocked back and forth, as the thing acted as if to console me. Brushing my hair. Rubbing my back. But all the while it whispered.
"I don't love you. They don't love you. Not the real you. You are in great pain. I feel nothing. You are...sick..."
And I sobbed as I felt my fingers pierce the thin flesh of the thing. Something wriggled underneath, but I knew it was no indication of life. For I found no comfort in death. Nor any comfort in living.
Not at the moment.
I heard a noise of someone calling my name. What felt like my name. They came up the stairs. And as they did the thing vanished in a wisp of smoke. But I felt as if it was still wrapped around me, holding me and whispering the most terrible things.
She reached the top of the stairs and looked down at me. I said nothing. I simply felt the fiend around me and the glass under his legs. I felt heavy and frightened and cold. The glass from the broken window in my hand.
And she came over and wrapped her arms around me without a word. And I struggled inside, as something couldn't stand something else holding me. But I tried to fight, though I was so tired. I focused on the feel of their skin and the sound of their voice.
"We love you...we love all of you...you precious and you are alive."
And I cried, in thick, choking gasps as she looked out the window at the moon.
She was tired. It was written on her face But I was precious to her. I was a mess. And it was hard. But I was real to her.
I was real to those who cared about me.
And I knew the thing that haunted me wasn't going to go away. That it would never let go. But that one day I would be okay, living two lives.
Both equally real.
Witnessed by those who so often found their way to me through the broken window."
It has been weeks. It carries on. The weather is changing. It's warm early. And I ache. She loves me. She is scared I think. I heard something calling out to me. Calling out to me. Outside the glass of the porch. It was raining. Thing was calling. Thing that sounded like a cat.
Couldn’t be the cat. It couldn't be a cat. Loyd was dead. Stepped outside. Thing covered in dirt and old blood stared up at me. Rubbed against my legs. It hurt. I looked at the grave. It was unearthed. Empty. Like it had never held a body.
Loyd. Brought him inside. Margaret didn't ask questions. Helped me give him a bath. He normally hates baths. He must have been...
Was warm today. Smells like an early spring.
Things are waking up.
Things locked in the snow are beginning to rot again.
[i/TRIED fpr weeks/post thjs. Could’t/som]]thng. Wrong]]]\]