A Soul's Own Personal Hell

Reads: 102  | Likes: 0  | Shelves: 0  | Comments: 0

More Details
Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
Upon waking up in a strange room with neither name nor memory, a child identifies himself as 'Ray,' the word written on a tag pinned to his chest. As he immerses himself within the mysteries of his odd new world, strange and unpleasant truths come to light regarding his current life, his former one, and the people he was beginning to see as 'friends.'

Submitted: July 11, 2017

A A A | A A A

Submitted: July 11, 2017

A A A

A A A


A Soul’s Own Personal Hell

 

1

Blink.

It took me an entire second to comprehend my existence, and yet another to process the unendurable screeching sound ringing through my ears.

Blink.

I appeared to be in some sort of bed. A white ceiling hung above me, so blank and pure that I could almost see my reflection within it. What did reflect off of it, however, were the screams of the girl on the bed beside me. I didn’t know what was going on or what I was supposed to do, so I screamed as well, mimicking her. “Help me, someone!” My empty call resounded and collided with her desperate one. I figured that I must be some sort of a follower—most humans are, after all. That was the first thing I learned about myself.

I was in a bed, too. The large room I found myself in was cramped full of them, and women in blindingly white uniforms bustled from bed to bed, tending to the children within. Children. I looked at my hands, and to my surprise, they were those of a young boy. I didn’t know why, but I had assumed I was a bit older. Scream. Nearby, a girl perked up at the sound of this new voice. Somehow, it alone stood out to her in the chaos. She forced her way around the panicked nurses and the beds too close for comfort until she was by my side. She extended her hand. I didn’t hesitate to take it. The first thing I learned about myself was that I was a follower. Monkey see, monkey do, and all that. The second was my name. She spoke it to me, and somehow, in all the craziness, I heard.

“Come on, Ray,” she murmured, and she tugged me to my feet. My body felt light, and so I moved with ease. Around me, people screamed for help. For friends, family, and forgiveness. I simply looked ahead, focusing solely on the flickering auburn hair in front of me. The hair was attached to her head, the head to her body, the body to her hand, and her hand to mine. I felt connected, like I was a part of her. In that moment, it was almost as if I belonged in that world after all. Only when she brushed open the wide doors and we stepped into a narrow hallway could I breathe freely again. Now that I had escaped that hell, I recalled the odors and sickness clogging the air that I had grown used to. How strange that a human can become accustomed to such unfavorable conditions and accept them as normal. I, of course, proved to be no exception. The girl turned to face me. Her long red hair cascaded over her shoulders, reaching almost to her hips. She was shorter than me. She shook the hand still enclosed in her own.

“Hello,” she said. “I’m Rin.”

“Um…” I began, before I realized how stupid I was going to sound. Oh, well. “Do you know where we are, and, well, who I am?” She smiled, and prodded me in the chest. I startled slightly, looking down at where her finger pressed. A paper name tag stuck to my shirt—Ray. That was all.

“And as for where we are,” she said, “this will be your new school.” I glanced around. It did indeed appear to be a school. “You must be full of questions.” Here Rin paused, as if egging me on. I shrugged. After a beat, she continued. “You see—you’re dead.” I wasn’t quite sure I understood, but I nodded anyway. “That’s unusual,” she noted. “You’re not going to deny it?” I shrugged. “Anyway, it’s not something special. We’re all dead here, more or less.”

“More or less?” I questioned. My eyes wandered back to the wide doors of the white room we had exited. Rin seemed pleased. She knew all the answers, after all, and felt great pride in sharing them.

“What died wasn’t the you that you know.” That was completely lost on me. I nodded anyway. “That is to say,” she clarified, “back in that world we came from, a person died. However, this person had such traumatic memories that the soul was damaged. You are that soul.”

“And will I be here forever?” I questioned.

“That depends on you,” Rin explained. “To graduate from this school, I suppose, is to regain your memories. If you can do that, you can find the missing piece within yourself and move on. Or so I’ve been told.”

I wondered whether or not it would be considered “fitting” to mourn my past self. Of course, in reality, I felt nothing for someone I didn’t know (or couldn’t remember, I suppose), but if the situation called for it, I was more than willing to shed a few tears.

Rin gave me a funny look. “You don’t have much of a personality, do you, Ray?”

I forced a smile. “I suppose not.”

“Oh, well,” she said. And then, observing my pained smile, “Don’t strain yourself too hard, or you’ll die all over again.”

2

Rin told me to attend classes, so I did. Apparently, she was some sort of class representative, so I decided I had better stay on her good side, which was easy enough. When she introduced me to the class, one of the other students actually sat beside me, though I soon found out he wasn’t exactly making an effort to be kind. Kai would often lean over and tilt his head slightly towards my paper. It was clear to me and those around us, but the teacher appeared to be unaware. The first time this happened, I was caught off guard, and ended up instinctively shielding my class work with my arm. Annoyed, Kai extended his leg and proceeded to grind my foot into the carpet. I flinched slightly (I suppose even the dead can feel pain) and complied. It’s not like his cheating affected me, anyway. After class, he asked me for money. I told him I didn’t have any, seeing as I was dead, but he didn’t seem satisfied. I thought he might try to hit me, but after a while he just left.

Not sure what to do, I returned to the classroom in search of Rin. She wasn’t there, so I instead consulted our teacher, who gave me a map and a dorm room key. I thanked him with my empty voice as I turned and headed down the deserted hall. Empty voice, empty words, empty actions. Had there ever been a true meaning in anything I’d done? I wondered if I really was the “me” that had existed in another world, and what I had been like there. Did I ever have anything to live for, or was I always simply going through the motions and doing what others told me? When I arrived at my dorm room, the door loomed in front of me, somehow intimidating. I sighed and shook my head. What was wrong with me? Was I a child living alone for the first time in his life?—oh. I suppose that would be accurate.

I shoved the key into the lock and gave it a swift turn. It didn’t work. I tried again. Maybe I had the wrong door. I considered this for a moment before checking the number to the left side—77. No, this was right. Again. I tugged the key gently from the lock and tried again, this time slowly and carefully. Click. I shouldered open the door and stepped inside of my new living quarters. A light flickered on automatically at my entrance, revealing a sturdy, cozy space that I believed I would find myself rather pleased with throughout my school life. I closed and locked the door behind me before shedding my coat. (Upon arrival, I had been given a school uniform, a light jacket, a coat, and a pair of stiff shoes. I had also been told that my dorm room would be pre-stocked with more changes of clothes as well as other necessities for food and hygiene.) I found the kitchen first, and, to my surprise, there was Rin. She knelt in one of the five chairs at the table, and smiled at me upon my arrival.

“Hi there,” she said. I just stared. “You’re probably wondering why I’m here,” she reasoned. I nodded. No kidding. She shifted in her chair so that she was sitting normally, and then patted the chair beside her, as if to say, “Come sit.” This she did say, and I did just that, though in a different chair then the one she’d beckoned to. At this she laughed, though I didn’t really get why.

“As class rep, I have keys to all the dorm rooms,” she began. “I did forget to tell you where to go and where to get your key, but I figured that you’d be just fine, so I decided to wait here. Anyway, Ray, we need to talk.”

I considered this. Did I trust this girl? I shook my head a little, as if to clear it. Hold up a second, I was telling myself. Why did I come up with something like that? I had no reason to not trust Rin, no reason at all. Meanwhile, Rin considered me. As if I was some sort of specimen, she examined me thoroughly. My movements and expressions appeared to confuse her.

“You’re a curious one,” she said.

“How so?”

“As class rep, it’s my job to find out what you know and then help you move forward,” she said. “But I can’t find any tells with you. No uncomfortable gazes or twitching. As far as I know, you haven’t been contradicting yourself or confusing the people here for ones back there. Usually, even this early on, there’s something.” “What do you mean by that?” “You don’t have any memories, do you?” she said. I startled at this, if not much else.

“Isn’t that true of everyone?”—Surely it was, I assured myself. We’re all dead, after all. We’re all in the same boat.

“And it’s not just that,” she continued. “You don’t act out at all, unless you’re just following someone else’s lead. You don’t panic, act confused, or say you want some time alone.” She glanced at her hands. “I could hardly believe it, but even when I left you alone in an unfamiliar school, with no idea where to go, you still made it to your room so quickly—did you not panic or look for me at all?”

“So you didn’t forget about me,” I said. “You were running an experiment, then?”

She nodded. “And does that make you mad—that I abandoned you in a strange place just to see how you would react?”

I shook my head.

“It’s like you’re one hundred percent raw soul,” she reasoned, pointing at me. “Almost like you never even existed inside of a person.”

“I never lived, then?” I wondered.

“And how does that make you feel?”

I shook my head. Nothing. Rin stood swiftly, knocking her chair over as a result. I hastened to right it, but she grabbed my arm and tugged it away. “What—” But I didn’t bother to continue. The sudden flash of fear that had awoken in her eyes died down. She let go. I stood the chair back up. When I turned around, she was gone. I heard her footsteps echoing as she ran to the door. I prepared to chase after her, to ask what had happened, but before I had taken a single running step, the automatic lights flickered suddenly off as the front door swung closed. Cursing under my breath, I tripped and fell to my hands and knees. Like so, I crawled on the hard floor until finally finding a proper light switch.

3

That night, I saw my own face for the first time in the bathroom mirror. My hair seemed in need of cutting, but I didn’t mind having it a little long, even if the bangs dangled annoyingly over my eyes. After showering and changing, I crawled into my new bed, cold and hard from lack of use. It was hard to sleep, and uncomfortable to try. I tossed and turned often, and wondered what was the matter with me. Eventually, however, a frigid, dreamless sleep overtook my restless self and I thanked it deeply.

I found out the next morning that the automatic lights flicker on at seven o’clock sharp. I rubbed my irritated eyes as I stumbled over to the closet and rummaged about for a pair of slippers. Nothing. Shame. I selected a large pair of socks as a replacement and pulled them apart. They were thick with dust, but I didn’t mind much. I tugged them onto my feet. I didn’t trust my own cooking abilities, so breakfast was a container of blueberry yogurt with orange juice I found in the fridge. I sat at the chair that was beginning to become my usual spot and decided to wait until up to seven thirty to see if Rin would come pick me up. It was time for me to go before long. I had dressed and brushed my teeth and hair, but Rin was a no-show, so I headed along to the school on my own, retracing my steps from yesterday.

Apparently, class started not at eight o’clock, which had been my original assumption, but at eight thirty, so I waited for an extra twenty minutes before the earliest students showed their faces. Rin was not among them—some class rep she was, huh? Children filed in as the minutes ticked on. Kai the cheater found his seat beside me and I shifted in position to give him a better view of my desk. In front of me, two girls with name tags proclaiming “Lyn” and “Kim” chatted. I began to wonder why everyone’s name was three letters, but pushed the thought aside after deciding it was just for convenience’s sake. These probably weren’t our real names, after all—how would the people here find them out, anyway?

Class began at the bell. Math, English, Spanish. Lunch break. Social Studies and Science, and then Art last of all. I found no issues with any of these. The problems were easy enough, and as long as I kept Kai happy, I didn’t have to worry about trouble at the hands of the other students. The bell rang at the end of the day as I gathered up my things. Either alone or in groups, the others shuffled out. The teacher remained at his desk, sorting papers. I found Rin waiting for me at the door.

“Hey, Ray,” she said with a half-hearted smile. “Are you doing all right so far?” I found this to be a strange question, as Rin hadn’t seemed like she cared how I was doing before. I told her so, and she laughed. “What I mean to ask is, have you remembered anything?”

“I don’t think so.” She sighed rather openly, and I held up my held up my hands as if to say, “It’s not like it’s my fault.” She nodded.

“I know, there’s nothing you can do about it. But it’d be nice to at least have something. There’s no telling how long you’re going to be stranded here at this rate.”

A thought then occurred to me. “So everyone else has at least some memories?” I asked.

“Memories, or perhaps left-over feelings, or insecurities. They’re all something that proves you are still that person, even after death.”

“So if everyone has something,” I pondered, considering this, “that means, so do you. What do you remember, Rin?”

She paused. “You’ll find that’s a very personal question,” she replied after a beat.

“You do know how many times you’ve asked me that personal question, right?” I prodded.

“I trust you can find your own way back to your dorm,” she said, and I nodded. And with that, she left me alone, still standing just outside the classroom door.

4

When I exited the school, I spotted that one girl Lyn frying ants with a magnifying glass. Moderately interested, I crouched beside her and watched them writhe. It was grotesque. I stood and took my leave. Eyes open wide, I observed those who still lingered on campus.

Kai appeared to be picking a fight with a couple of kids twice as big as him.

Idiot.

Still moderately interested, I leaned against a tree nearby even as Kai and the older boys glared pointedly at me. Don’t mind me, I thought. By all means, carry on. Kai turned and walked away. I followed.

“You shouldn’t pick a fight in the first place if you’re going to be so half-assed about it,” I commented. He scowled and walked faster. I sighed and decided to let him have his way.

Once home, I partook in a twenty-minute search to find some way to disable the irritating automatic lights, crawling under desks and tables in the process.

“No luck, huh?” Rin said from the doorway. I jolted upward, banging my head hard on the coffee table above. She stepped inside, and, as if to emphasize my frustration, those damned automatic lights sputtered off. She flipped a switch just in time to observe me cursing and rubbing the expanding lump on my head, all the while rolling awkwardly on the floor. She stifled a laugh. “I’ll take care of the lights for you,” she assured me. “Close your eyes.” I wasn’t sure why she wanted me to, but I did indeed close my eyes. Within thirty seconds, I was told to open them again.

“Why couldn’t you just tell me how?” I wondered aloud.

“Well, if I told you how to do everything, then you wouldn’t need my help anymore. You not knowing is necessary if I want to keep students like you totally dependent on me.”

“Are you serious?”

“Of course not.” She hastened on. “Anyway, Ray, I was wondering if you’d noticed any strange quirks about yourself. They could be a lead to whether—I mean, to what kind of person you were in that other world.”

“You mean, like if I burn ants with magnifying glasses?”

She perked up at this. “Yes, anything like that. So, you like to burn ants with magnifying glasses, do you?”

“I don’t.”

“Oh.” Her shoulders slumped, and she sat down opposite me on the floor.

“Well, what bothers you or makes you uncomfortable? Do you feel annoyed when Kai cheats off of you, because it’s dishonest?”

“It doesn’t matter to me. Nothing really does at school… Rin?” She was staring at something distant, as if her eyes were passing right through me. I felt exposed, as if she could see right into the depths of my heart. “Um… Rin?” Blink.

“Sorry, I—” her eyes regained focus and she jumped to her feet, a mix of fear and blind rage welling up on her face. I began to back away, climbing to my feet as I did so. However, when she turned to run for the door, I lunged forward and grabbed her arm. She screamed a terrible scream, and I released her. Rin walked purposefully to the door. I didn’t try to stop her this time.

5

Sitting opposite the school counselor, Rin twitched uncomfortably. The kindly woman’s expression was unchanging as she waited. Rin swallowed, cleared her throat, and swallowed again. Finally, she spoke.

“I’m regaining my memories, faster than ever before,” she murmured. “And I don’t know what to do. I think—” she swallowed—“I think… I was murdered.” Silence. “By someone in my class,” she hastened on, words spilling out and tripping over each other. “Someone in my class killed me. I was so sure it was him, since my memories started returning when he arrived, but he doesn’t have any clue. I think. It’s like he’s a different person.”

“Do you want revenge?” the counselor asked. Silence. “Be honest with yourself. Do you want to punish the murderer for what he’s done?”

Swallow. Clear throat. Swallow.

“I want to kill him.”

The counselor smiled. “I’m glad you came to talk to me today. Please, come again any time.”

Rin hesitated, confused. “You’re not going to tell me what to do?”

“I think it’s perfectly clear what you should do. Do you not want to kill him, like he did you? And are you not your own soul, telling yourself it’s perfectly normal to seek revenge? An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a life for a life.”

Rin stood. “Thank you for your time.”

6

Slowly, a routine was growing on me. I woke at seven, had had my yogurt, or sometimes, cereal. After showering and getting dressed, I usually had about fifty minutes to sit in my usual spot and wish that I hadn’t gotten up so early. The days dragged on. Rin continued to keep me at a friendly distance, but still popped up in my room from time to time. Though these instances usually ended up with her running out on me suddenly, I still felt as if we were maintaining a healthy enough relationship. And then, something changed.

Lyn, who sat in front of me, drifted away from her friend Kim and started gravitating toward me. I didn’t mind much, so I allowed her to follow me around. From time to time, Rin would join us. On one such occasion, she collided with me as I turned a sudden corner, and after groaning a bit about how I should be more careful, she decided to walk with me. Lyn, following behind, made no objection.

“So, how’s school?”

“Rin, since when have you been one to care about how I’m doing in classes? Isn’t what you really want to ask whether or not I’ve regained any memories? Come to think of it, why are you so concerned about my memories in particular?”

“No reason,” she said. “And why won’t you let me even attempt to carry on a normal-ish conversation?”

I turned a sharp corner and picked up my pace a little. The two girls continued to follow. They really couldn't take a hint, could they? Oh, well. It’s not like it mattered much. I shouldered open the wide entrance doors of the school, even though it was only noon. Lyn didn’t hesitate to follow. Rin, however, had her doubts.

“Where do you think you’re going?” she asked, hovering near the door.

“I need some fresh air.” My message was clear enough, I think. Does your little obsession matter to you enough to follow me out here? What’s the answer, Rin? She closed her eyes and sighed.

Oh, well, she thought. Everything’s going to be fine, wherever he takes me. “Alright,” she said aloud, and followed. I looped around the athletic field, heading to the other side of the school, where a monstrous staircase loomed. This led to the basement portion of the school, a place hardly anyone ever saw a reason to enter.

“Actually, Ray,” Rin began, fingering something in her pocket.

“Look out!” Lyn shoved me aside, colliding with Rin as she came darting forward. An insane fear clouded the girl’s eyes. Even so, Lyn held her ground, and thrust Rin against the school wall. They were but inches from the looming staircase.

“What are you doing?” I gasped, picking myself up from the ground. “Lyn, what’s gotten into—” I stopped short, staring at Rin’s twitching right hand, and, more importantly, the object inside of it. Her eyes widened as they met mine.

“You’re wrong—it’s not what it looks like—”

“Ray, she’s got a knife!” Lyn shrieked. Struggling against the other girl, Rin was clearly panicking.

“You’ve got it wrong. It’s not me—it’s not me, I swear!” In a last ditch effort, Rin forced herself from the wall and charged at me, knife glinting in hand. I stumbled backwards and fell, but Lyn had my back. It was over in an instant. After all, it was the simplest of movements. Just a small push, and Rin was falling. Panting from terror and shock, I stumbled over to where Lyn stood, equally scared. Squinting into the darkness of the stairway, I could almost see the splayed out body. My hand lept to my mouth to stop the rising bile. Lyn took a step back.

“I had no choice,” she reasoned. “She had a knife on us. It was self-defense. Yes, self-defense.” She took hold of my shoulders and shook me; once, twice. “You have to tell them that it was self-defense, Ray,” she said with a shaking voice. “Or, better yet, I didn’t even push her. She just… fell.” A beat passed. I nodded, and she could breathe again.

7

“If you don’t mind my asking—why? Why was Rin like that?” We sat across from each other in my dorm room, Lyn and me. Still slightly shaken up, the two of us had carried the twisted body of Rin to the Hospital Area and explained how she had just “fallen.” That’s right. Nobody’s to blame here. It was self-defense.

Lyn closed her eyes. Sighed. “I think I know why,” she began. “But I’m not sure you want to know.” I nodded, egging her on. She complied. “You see… we’re all either killers or victims here. That’s the trauma that keeps us from passing on. I think—I think you killed Rin. And she knows it.” “But I don’t remember—” “That doesn’t matter, as long as she does. But don’t misunderstand. We’re all like that here. I’m like you—a killer. She doesn’t remember it yet, but I killed my best friend Kim.”

“Oh. Is that… so?” I didn’t know how to respond to such an outright murder confession.

“Anyway, I figured that you were the one that did her in. After all, she only started acting weird once you showed up. Eventually, I assumed, she would try for revenge. So I stuck to you like glue.” She closed her eyes again. Sighed again. “I believe,” she stated when I remained silent, “that this school is sort of a rehabilitation opportunity. Killers and their victims can make amends, and overcome the damage that has been done to their souls. The thirst for revenge can be quenched here. But at the same time, this place could just as easily become our hell.”

“Our… hell?”

“Think about it. We’re trapped here with the ones who hate us more than anyone else in the world. There’s nothing stopping them from putting a slow, painful end to the lot of us.”

“So,” I said, “it’s possible to die in this world?”

“It’s possible to get injured, isn’t it?” Lyn reminded me. “Like Rin.”

8

The room was painfully dim, so much so that she doubted she would even be able to see something an inch from her face. Rin squirmed uncomfortably under the night-hawk eyes of the sadistic nurses that made up her imagination. Because in this hospital, nightmares could just as easily be considered reality. A hospital. A place where the new are born and the old die. And those who will pass away before their time, as well. Surely, she was included within that sorry group—the sick, the depressed, and the unlucky. At least it was quiet during the night. Screams were stifled behind sweaty hands; trembling with fear at the thought of disturbing the stiff, suffocating silence. And then someone did indeed disturb the silence.

A door creaked open, and one of the two people she least wanted to see beckoned. She stood. Flinched, but ended up holding her head high anyway. Rin was never one to show weakness in front of an enemy, after all. It was common sense. The nurses didn’t try to stop her. Though the others grasped at her with muted whimpers, no one would actually make a move to intercept her. It seemed that it was not her time yet, after all.

9

If something truly was going on, I was determined to see it. After all, I was only human. I think I’d hate being in the dark forever.

Maybe she wanted me to hear. She did tell me she was going to confront Rin. She made a big show of leaving. And I definitely wasn’t going to miss out on a chance to finally know the truth of this world. Or perhaps only the truth of “my” life, lived by a person who killed a girl in cold blood, a person I don’t remember and don’t care to. The truth of this world—what gave me that idea?

There was no confrontation—only a quick exchange of attacks. Rin was clumsy and weak from her fall, and caved immediately. Lyn stood above her. And that made me realize something. I thought I might be on the wrong person’s side. I knelt beside Rin and helped her to stand. Reflected in her eyes was an extreme shock, paralleled only by her excessive terror. Lyn, on the other hand, was not surprised. I had expected as much.

“In the end, he chooses the one most likely to kill him—and somehow, he made the right choice.” Something moved in the corner of my eye. A silver flash darted down Lyn’s sleeve and into her open palm, and she flung her entire self at us. Rin screamed as I ducked out of the way, dragging her with me. What was going on? I didn’t know what was going on. But I couldn’t ask. Why couldn’t I ask?

Lyn was speaking, but I didn’t understand. Was it a different language? No, I just couldn’t hear. My heartbeat was in my ears, or perhaps just the memory of it. Even the dead can feel phantom pain, or, in this case, phantom terror.

“…Because if I was to target Rin, she’d surely eliminate the threat within the hour. And so, I targeted her special little project. Stuck to him like glue. And when Rin finally came to rescue her murderer, I was able to use her resolve against her and paint her as a madman with a knife.”

Smile.

I think I’ve learned something else about myself. I believe I must hate those who turn simple smiles into hateful, sadistic things.

I decided then and there that we were going to live, even if I had to carry Rin out of there on my back. She was smaller than me. It would work. She seemed to understand. We took hold of each other, and we could’ve just as easily been brother and sister instead of murderer and victim. With the girl on my back, I fled.

 

Those whose memories have fully awakened scream in their own personal hells, in the guise of those white walls. That cursed hospital screams out in pain and in fear and in regret. Bloodlust, radiating from killer and victim alike, materializes in the stagnant air, so real one could almost touch it. I think I’ve realized yet another thing about myself—I’d rather have never existed in the first place when it comes to an infinite hell of white, staring walls and red, glaring nightmares.

 

“I would never kill you, Ray—as you are now, at least.” The words came as a slight shock. She wouldn’t kill me. Rin wasn’t going to kill me. And then it struck me.

“As I am now, you say?”

“Can you honestly tell me that it wasn’t you?”

“Of—of course it wasn’t me,” I lied. Blatantly. There was a “me” in another world, a person I didn’t remember, who stood in front of another human being and ended her life.

“It was you,” she said.

“It wasn’t me.”

“I mean, it was you, but not the 'you' that you know. It was a person infected with memories, motives, and emotions. You’re pure. The other you was contaminated. Without the contamination of those things that made you human, you couldn’t hope to understand your old self, let alone take responsibility. For me to kill this 'you' would be petty—no, it would be the downright murder of an innocent.”

I didn’t understand. More likely than not, I couldn’t hope to understand the philosophy of someone so “infected” with the memory of a past world. My universe was limited to a classroom of crying souls. And one day, when my soul has been degraded to its ugly state from within my human life, my universe would be limited to white walls of insanity.

“If we were to make amends, we would be able to graduate,” I pointed out.

“I don’t care. You needn’t worry. You’ll graduate soon enough when you regain your memories and I take your life.”

“But what about you? What will you do, then, Rin?” I pressed.

“At that point in time, I’ll surely deserve my fate. It would be pathetic to not accept it—no, nothing less than embracing it wouldn’t do you justice. Once I destroy your soul, I will not simply walk into the fires of hell and insanity; I will spread my arms and embrace them. Anything less… Anything less would brand me a hypocrite and a coward.”

“Then I hope you’ll go with pride,” I offered. She nodded in response.

Somewhere distant, a scream cut through the air. Somewhere distant, a killer was being dragged into the pits of hell. I could never cry for someone I didn’t know, but for some reason, I was crying for Lyn at that time.

Disgusting.

The fact that I could actually shed a tear for the one who had opened my eyes to this twisted world, and my own twisted fate that lay at the end of this freakishly twisted road, was astounding. Lyn. I had stood over her shoulder and watched her fry helpless ants with a magnifying glass. But then, there was also Kai, who picked fights only to tuck tail and run a minute later. Kim, who seemed so cheerful and full of gossip. And Rin. Would they all meet the same wretched fate?

Yes.

I wiped my eyes. Sighed. I stood and then extended my hand to my would-be killer, or, to be more accurate, my some-day killer. She was injured, after all. And maybe it wasn’t the current me she would be killing, the “me” that I knew. The “me” that was to die deserved to. She accepted my hand and stood. I felt like I was going to cry again, but if emotion was going to bring me closer to the “me” I used to be, then I wasn’t going to risk it. After all, I wanted to stay in this mock rehabilitation with Rin, Kai, and the others as long as possible. I was curious and wanted to know—I’m only human, after all. And everyone had a story. I looked at them all every day, and wondered.

Killer, victim, killer, victim.

And how long would each person last?

10

Apparently, as time goes on, many more will target Rin. Those whose memories are assaulting them count their remaining hours and search desperately for a way out. As she is the class representative, many will either beg her for a way out or take their anger out upon her. Until the day I die, I will stand beside her. Until the day she embraces insanity, she will carry my memory with her. That is the agreement we have reached. And for now, that is what my universe is limited to--my own personal hell.


© Copyright 2017 Nagisa. All rights reserved.

Booksie 2017-2018 Short Story Contest

Booksie Popular Content

Other Content by Nagisa

A Soul's Own Personal Hell

Short Story / Other

Popular Tags