The Doppelganger Story

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Under the dark veil of the night, the eyes of a young man catches a glimpse of what he imprudently perceives as a myth, an unborn twin, a doppelganger. The more fearful thing being he wouldn't be able to be sure, ever, of this beings existance.


“Grandpa, grandpa! Tell us a story.”


“Well well, why are you not in your beds now. It’s too late for you children, the sun is already lurking under the mountain, you’ve only left a small amount of darkness”


“We couldn’t sleep.”


“Yes we couldn’t, because of that boring lecture aunt Elizabeth has given today. When I try to sleep I still hear…”


“Grandpa tell us a story!”


“Heh heh, now that can it be you three waited for me to return in order to hear another story? I heard from your mother that my last one frightened you a lot Jimmy.”


“No, I’m not afraid, I was just afraid of the thunder that night. I want to hear another story. I promise I won’t be afraid”


“Ok then I suppose I can tell you a short one. Go sit round the fireplace will ya.”


“Heeey thank you grandpa.”


“Now, lend me your ears because the story I’m going to tell you is about a doppleganger.”


“What’s a doppleganger?”


“Little is known about them if any, cause nobody is sure if they really exist or not. They are mystical creatures who are known for their ability to change their appearance to look and act exactly like anybody they laid eyes upon. And not only appearance, they can copy a person’s emotions, feelings or even ideas. It is said that nobody can distinguish a doppleganger from the person it is imitating. This is the reason why their existance can’t be proven.”


“But grandpa, if nobody can distinguish a doppelganger, how can there be a doppelganger story?”


“We all make assumptions on things we don’t really know, based on impressions that might have nothing to do with the subject at all, yet we believe in it, defend it, don’t we now.  This is a story of assumptions, the answers nobody has or everybody has, depending on your angle.”


“So it’s kinda like a detective story where you try to find the killer. I’m excited”


“Not like that but be it that way. Just listen to me closely.


Our story starts in a little town called Dollywater where troubles of the city life is too big for the small lives of the villagers of this small town. Having a little population, this town rarely faced with starvation or wealth. Everybody made do somehow and if you happen to be in the town inn under the night of the sky, no complaint can you hear but the joys of simple life uttered by the rough mouths of the townsfolk who knows nothing of kindness but tell their words in frankness.


The only troubling aspect of this peaceful place was that it was shrouded with superstitions. Head to toe, every single member of this town was superstitious. They would rather break their beds and tables instead of breaking a mirror, they prison themselves to their houses for days if they see a black cat gazing at them and almost everybody carries something with them for sheer good luck. The belief of doppelganger’s existed even before the eldest member’s oldest known relative set foot on earth in this town. They were believed to be the harbringers of bad luck, or in more elaborate form, it was believed that if someone sees his or her doppelganger, it means his or her death is so very close.


One day in this tranquil yet superstitious town, under a rainy night, a young man with the name of Bill was hastily making his way to his house.  It was pouring and the thick veil of the night hardly let young man see his way up which eventuall y led  him tripping over some randomly gathered stones and fell. His package which he was carrying for his mother tumbled into their neighbour’s garden and splashed into mud. Cursing, Bill jumped over the fences and obtained his package with modarate difficulty. When he was preparing to leave, he saw Mr. Foster, the owner of the garden which he just trespassed , leaving his house with quick steps in a long coat and a hat. Bill quickly hid in order not to create any ground for an unfortunate misunderstanding and fixed his eyes upon the door to make sure nobody follows him. After a few seconds Bill was frozen with fear and dropped his package to the ground. It was Mr. Foster again, leaving the house from the same door he just left a few seconds ago with the same figure, clothes and at the same pace. It was not possible for Mr. Foster to go around and enter his home and leave again in just a few seconds obviously, so he must be mistaken he tought but the stories about dopplegangers his parents told him, rushed him. No he was not mistaken, it was Mr. Foster, and his doppleganger. He quickly collected his package the second time and start running to his house, this time more quickly.

At first Bill decided to keep this secret to himself, fearing any kind of interaction with a doppelganger would result in horrible consenquences. But then being the sole person with the knowledge of this evil being’s existance in the town, he felt a heavy uneasiness and eventually he decided to share it. The ill-news spread like wildfire but the behavior of the townsfolk was an interesting sight to behold, absolutely nobody was talking about the subject yet one can clearly see the fear in every villager’s eyes and hear the unrest in their voice. Though the fear was not comparable to the one Bill felt when Mr. Foster started a conversation with him on the street  a few days after the incident. Bill, uncontrollably sweating  and his voice cracking somehow lasted until the end of the conversation without losing it . There was a fifty fifty chance that this might be the doppelganger he was speaking, or it might be  Mr.Foster, he could never know yet the idea of possibly speaking with a doppelganger filled him with the cold fear of death.  After this conversation Bill avoided going out of the house unless he absolutely had to.


The initial fear and uneasiness died down a little among the townsfolk after a few days. Some people started doubting Bill’s story, a few completely forgot it or at least acted like it, but there were a considerable bunch who were still on edge and approached Mr. Foster with extreme caution. It wasn’t until that night the issue became the major subject of the town again. Mrs Foster, the wife of Mr.Foster entered the  town inn in a hurry. There was no doubt that Mrs Foster  was aware of the rumours about her husband but nobody spoke to her about the subject face to face before. She arrived to a crowded table in a pale face, complaining about her husband. Apparently Mr. Foster was acting unusual lately. After hearing the rumour circulating the town, she decided it is best she share this with the good people of Dollywater. Nobody was surprised.”


“But grandpa, you said dopplegangers can imitate somebody’s behaviours and there is no way to notice the difference, why wouldn’t they be surprised?”


“Oh my boy, brilliant question indeed. You are right, it is believed that there is no way to distinguish a doppelganger yet people are easily deceived. You see, there is also a belief that, only people who can tell the difference between a doppelganger and a human that it’s imitating are the people who are truly in love with the mentioned somebody. Again, there is no ground for this belief either but it is very common to use the idiom to show how much you love your significant other. It is more like a romantic way of showing how much you love somebody than an expression to live by. But as I said before, people are easily deceived, upon hearing the fact about  Mr. Foster’s unusual behaviors from his wife, it was immediately assumed that the existance of a doppelganger was the sole reason and Mr. Foster’s wife can notice the subtle differences. But that was not all, Mrs. Foster also mentioned that her husband was complaining about some kind of memory loss, he couldn’t remember some fragments of his daily life. Mrs Foster didn’t stay long enough to share all the details but she added that she loves her husband and will do no matter what to cure him and left the inn.”


“Why would Mr. Foster had memory lost, is it a symptom of having a doppelganger? It doesn’t make any sense.”


“It does make sense if you think about it my boy. It even made sense to the simple people of Dollywater. If two of the same being try to live a single life, each one of them will miss some parts of this life. Doppelgangers are usually intelligent enough to avoid situations that will blatantly prove their existance in the community they succesfully blended themselves in but living as the same person in a different place will leave blank points in his victim’s mind when confronted by the people who were unfortunate enough to spent time with this doppelganger. In short, Mr Foster was not having any kind of memory loss, he was just naturally not aware of the times his doppelganger spent with other people in his stead hence he thinks he just forgot them when they are brought up, but in reality, he hasn’t really experienced those situations.”


“So granpa, they can easily find the doppelganger with this way, he must be the one not having a memory loss.”


“It is not as easy as that. Doppelgangers are intelligent creatures, they can act like the one with the memory loss or even avoid complaining about it to employ reverse psychology and trick people. It is still fifty fifty chance, you could never know. But Mrs Foster was determined, she slipped from her house every other night after her husband went to sleep to talk about him in the inn because she was afraid to do it in daylight fearing her husband might find out . People shared their interactions with Mr Foster to help her identify the doppelganger. But one villager was more willing than anybody to help this hopeless woman in need. Bill had never left the house for days and almost went crazy thinking about the doppelganger. It was him who noticed it, it was him who revealed it, he must be the one it is looking for right now, yes he must be, he thought. It was too much pressure to handle for this young man, the fear finally drove him to action and the only way for composure he thought, is to get rid of the doppelganger.

Days passed, Mrs Foster continued her midnight visits to the inn and Bill was ever present on her table. With every appearance of Mrs Foster at midnights the townsfolk started to grow more and more uneasy, eventually a collective expectation for a result from the midnight meetings had been formed, or more like, hoped. Nobody even wanted to lend their ears for information about this terrible being yet everybody in their heart expected from Bill to take action. It was the norm, he was the young man of the town and the second person who is the most suspectible to harm from the doppelganger. Finally, one night, Mrs Foster said that she formulated a plan to catch the doppelganger. She said after weeks of information gathering she noticed a pattern on her husband’s behaviour and she can identify the doppelganger at the right time. However nobody knew about this right time, Mrs Foster and Bill talked about the final part of the plan in the shadows, alone. Nobody knew what will happen next, how will it happen and when.


One day in this supersitious town, under a rainy night, Bill was hastily making his way to somewhere nobody knew until they heard the gunshot. People sprang out of their houses the second they heard it and met with an unpleasant sight of a dead body, lying on his face down. They gathered around it, gazed at it, like it would help them understand. It was Mr Foster, or at least looked liked him. Bill was sitting on the wet ground with a gun in his hand with an empty look. Mrs Foster was just beside him, her hand on young man’s shoulder, not shedding any tears. The question on everybody’s mind was the same, is he the right one? Is The village finally free of this terrible fear of the unknown? As silly as it sounds to think that you got rid of something unknown, Mrs Foster was sure that the doppelganger was no more and nobody was in a state to disagree. A man has died, a village full of people were relieved and a young man’s mind was finally free to live his life.”


“So is this the end grandpa? Did they get the doppelganger? Did Bill kill the right one?”


“Always so curious to get an answer and not to bother thinking, so why don’t you figure it out yourself, what do you think?”


“How could we know grandpa, there is no way to understand which was the doppelganger, you have to tell us”


“Exactly. There is no way to tell, so how can I tell you? If the doppelganders doesn’t exist, the story is irrelevant, if they do exist, still, the story may be irrelevant. You see, the only real thing about this story is, a man is killed on the street. The rest is the reason behind it based on an unknown. There is no end, or an answer to this story. Because after that night, nobody has seen Mr Foster again and Mrs Foster was found crying and mourning after her late husband in her house.”


“So that means Mrs Foster was wrong and Bill killed the real Mr. Foster not the doppelganger, it makes sense right?”


“Except Mrs Foster had no idea what everybody was talking about. She wasn’t even aware that there was a rumour of a doppelganger. She just noticed that everybody was acting a little weird but Mr. Foster was obviously not noticed it so she didn’t think on it. She had no idea what was going on on the town and one night, out of the blue, somebody killed her husband. That is the story from poor Mrs Foster’s eyes. The doppelgangers get satisfaction from tricking people, deceiving people, and it was exactly what happened, a doppelganger deceived everybody around it, they were looking at the wrong person, the doppelganger was Mrs Foster’s. On a dark and rainy night, it is not hard to dress and move like somebody else to trick a young gullible supersititious man into an unreal belief. It was the doppelganger who visited the inn every night, filled people with unrest and manipulated a troubled young man into a murder in the disguise of an allegedly doppelganger’s wife, while the real wife was unaware of everything , living her life at daylight and sleeping at night as usual. Because of the assumption that Mr Foster could notice if anybody reveals something to his wife in daylight, nobody spoke to her  about the doppelganger except at night, because of the assumption that lovers could identify a doppelganger, people easily believed in the fake Mrs. Foster’s lies. Make no mistake and have no doubt, these assumptions are surely implanted to people’s mind by the doppelgangers of the past, spreading rumours about a lovers ability or a doppelganger’s true nature is ingenious, because people with assumptions are way easier to deceive.”


“Wow, I wasn’t expecting that. So the doppelganger tricked Bill into killing an innocent man. This is very frightening grandpa, to think that doppelgangers can be anybody and they can manipulate you to do things most unholy and feel justified”


“True and this is why I said there is no end to this story. The supersitition of the doppelgangers is fullfilled in the end. Disregard what happened in detail, the man whose doppelganger is rumoured to be seen ended up dead, just like the old beliefs. Doppelganger being Mrs.Foster is still the explanation based on an unknown, although it is the most likely.


Ok children it is finally time to sleep, you had your story.”


“Ok grandpa but I have something to say”




“You were wrong when you said the story is irrelevant if the doppelgangers don’t exist. Because if they don’t, this is a story of a woman’s ingenious plan to get rid of her husband by exploiting a village’s supersititious beliefs. Because as you said, on a dark and rainy night, it is not hard to dress and move like her husband to trick a gullible supersititious boy and ignite the fear of a mythical creature that he can’t perceive. With that fear spreading around, feed people your lies, tell them what they want to hear, that you too realised the doppelganger and have the means to get rid of it. Catch the one with the weakest mind, the most fear, the most able, drive him to madness and make your own murder his only way to sanity. And the most beautiful of it all, in the end, make the already made up doppelganger your own, pass your sins on it, stay pure and be free of any kind of responsibilty of your husband’s death.

This is the most likely end to this story grandpa, at least it’s how I see it.”


“Incredible, I was wishing one of you would come up with something like this. It is most fascinating right, that our ability to think is what makes us most suspectible to be deceived, with delusions of knowledge blinding us, yet it is also the same thing what makes us conclude that in the end the simplest answer is most likely  the right one.


Thats it fellas, a good night’s sleep is what awaits you now”


“Grandpa where did you learn so many things about doppelgangers?”


“No more questions. It’s already too late. Now go to your beds and sleep, good night.”







Submitted: April 10, 2012

© Copyright 2022 Req. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:



Great job! This story caught my eye and Wow'd me ! This is cool, keep writing

Tue, April 10th, 2012 11:33pm


Thanks Deathstix. I'm glad you liked it.

Will do, don't worry.

Tue, April 10th, 2012 11:46pm


Oh my god, this story was so cool!! Where'd you get the idea from this? I love how you set it up so that it's the grandpa telling the story. It had an innocent yet eerie vibe to it and I really, really liked it. KEEP WRITING!!!

Wed, April 11th, 2012 1:06am


Thanks. I find doppelgangers very interesting because they are always the part of the unknown. I wanted to write one of my own, I glad you liked it.

Wed, April 11th, 2012 1:55am


Very good story. I liked the way you lead into the story and the intrigue and tension that built as you go to the heart of the story. I also am interested in doppelgangers and have written a story in relation to the phenomenon. Check it out if you have a chance. Keep up the good work!

Thu, April 12th, 2012 2:29pm

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