By: Josephine Rudolf
She shut down her computer for the fifth time that day, the feeling of rejection
drowned out whatever bit of hope she had left. The aspiring author avoided looking into the mirror, on her way to the bathroom. Suddenly there was a noise coming from her workspace, it startled her for a moment, but she chose to ignore it. “People often hear things that aren’t there when washing their faces, right?” she assured herself. She dried her face and brushed her teeth, still convincing herself that she didn’t hear anything. Yet her curiosity got the best of her, and she went to check her workspace.
She couldn’t believe what she was seeing, there was somebody sitting in her chair
looking through her laptop. Her brain told her to run, yet her heart felt a strange sense of familiarity. “Tough luck, but to be fair it’s hard being as successful as I am,” he chuckled. “Cat got your tongue?” He caressed her fingertips softly before continuing, “I hope they stayed intact” He felt so familiar, yet she had no recollection of meeting him before. “I…I am sorry I don’t think I remember you,” she stuttered. He began snickering, “Here is a hint; I´m not only the most memorable character you ever wrote I´m also your favorite” she replied in shock “Nate? How is this possible?” He replied smugly “To look this good? Tough question, but if you’re asking why I am here, well you were about to quit and turn me into a memory… and as you can imagine I´m not a fan of that idea” She looked down sadly, avoiding his gaze “You don’t know how it feels to be declined over and over again…”
“Well speaking of feelings that I don’t know of, I don’t know how it is to have fans,
why? Because you never submitted my story anywhere you coward!” he spat viscously. “Because I´m not done” she defended herself. “Right, I forgot… you prefer talking about being a writer, instead of actually writing” She held back tears, answering “You´re not fair, I´m just very stressed.”
“I can help with that”, she turned around rapidly to find out to whom the voice
belonged. Her eyes widened as she saw who was standing in her hallway. “But … I never wrote about you” she began stuttering as the handsome devil walked towards her. “Just because you never typed it doesn’t mean you didn’t create the story” She rolled her eyes, “Don’t get cocky with me now unless you want me to remind you of your late-night thoughts” he warned. Nathan cleared his throat. “Not to interrupt you two love birds but there is a child present,” he said, pointing towards a young girl. The girl resembled the author, the only difference being age. Nathan continued, “So I´m the favorite, he´s the hottest and she is the saddest character you ever wrote?”
“The…the first character I ever wrote” the author could barely form words.
Everybody stopped moving as the child began to talk, “Please don’t stop writing, I don’t want to go back into the darkness” she began to sob. It only took seconds for the writer to run towards the child and take her into her arms, crying as she whispered, “I won´t, I promise, you will never… ever have to go back there again.”
They stood in complete silence for a while, the writer was still busy comforting the
child as the others began to wonder why they were still there. Nathan walked toward the demon before whispering “I´m not sure about the logistics of this whole magic thing but aren´t we supposed to disappear after the big emotional climax?”
The Demon chuckled “How am I supposed to know? Do I look like a goddam fairy?”
The author overheard the conversation causing her to wonder as well, the demon noticed her eyes growing wide and began to question her “What´s wrong blondie? Are we just too hot to let go” She covered the little Girls ears before telling the others her suspicion “It´s a false happy end, to trick the reader you know” Nathan’s face turned pale as he heard noises coming from the distance “quick close the door” he ordered. The demon obliged “so what are we missing sweetie, any important characters that aren’t here yet?” She thought hard but couldn’t think of anyone. The little girl began to stutter “It-it-it´s the darkness, she is coming for me again” The writer assured her that that wouldn’t happen while trying to think of a way out. “You said that she was your first character but what was the story about?” Nathan questioned. “And what is this darkness she keeps talking about” the demon added. The author’s chest expanded as she breathed in deeply “When I was younger, I always used to imagine myself being somewhere else, sometimes I was a fairy in the woods, other times I was a normal kid but with loving parents and a clean home, anyway the important part was being somewhere else the story itself didn’t really matter” a few tears left her blue eyes. The noises from behind the door kept increasing and dark smoke slowly made its way through the keyhole. The little girl begged the writer to do something. “I´m trying, I always tried to protect you… but I failed” she replied. Smoke had already covered the floor; Nathan and the demon began to cough, and the little girl trembled with fear. The writer knew what she had to do yet it was so incredibly hard. Her characters began coughing even more intensely in response to the smoke increasing. At this point they couldn’t talk anymore, all that was left for them were silent pleas with their eyes. She breathed in deeply before kissing the girl on the forehead promising her “I got this.”
She marched towards the door and opened it, tears poured out of her eyes as she stood
face to face with her deepest fears. “You took my childhood, my dreams, and my freedom but I won´t let you take this, I´m done running” She felt a huge relief and suddenly the smoke disappeared as well as her characters. The writer walked toward the kitchen, made herself a coffee, and then sat down on her chair in front of the laptop and opened it again.
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