I have been here for three days. The light from the window skirts the floor and creates a vague square. The pain in my stomach returned in a violent pang and the feeling of utter desolation filled my throat. I wish I could say that I would not move. However, the truth in the matter was I could not move. I felt the creatures under my skin seethe.

I remember her serene look as she held my hand and kissed me with her soft lips. Her eyes were delicate. Her body was weak. We both knew that this embrace would be the last but neither of us said it. if starving, ravenously took into my consciousness. Safira. Her soft green eyes never looked as beautiful as when she told me she couldn't handle being without me anymore. Venom spilled out of my throat and formed into words that cut her deeper than anything she has ever done to herself. Hate. That is all I could feel. Malice and misery followed her around like shadows. 

Funny enough, by the next day, I almost felt sorry for her. She no longer came to her classes, and she wasn't mentioned by anyone. It took me nearly a week to realize that she wasn't kidding. That stupid girl really did kill herself. Just like I told her to. I really didn't feel too bad. Maybe I rationalized it as I wasn't the one that directly killed her. It was her fault.

I feigned tears for her. That much I did owe her. Her family hated me afterwards, and they even said that she blamed me in her suicide note. I laughed at that. Safira wasn't the kind of girl to write something as cliché. 

The memories, as as that. It was only a couple months before everyone really forgot the entire matter.

I met a girl from Fairview that following summer. She was simply gorgeous with her blonde hair, icy blue eyes and pale skin. Just as luck would have it, before our love blossomed into anything physical, she was diagnosed with lung cancer. She told me she loved me. Funny enough, when I told her “Alisa, I love you too.” I think I meant it.

Warmth slid down my neck, my arm and finally to the wood at my feet. For a moment, I forgot why I was still here. Death was assured to everyone, after all. Ignoring the wound in my neck was easy, but the maggots that tore at the still living flesh drove me insane. I would not move. 

Looking back to it all, I guess I could say that I deserved it. I deserve to be sitting where I am with the pain of death too far to relieve me. Outside, just a few feet from the solitary window that kept me from the darkness, I heard the sounds of my brother. He was crying. He was screaming my name. He thought he needed me. Everyone needs me. Just not out there. Here, with these flesh eating monsters and the book. 

It was only after I had finished my requirements and moved out into a small apartment, that I met her. She had Safira’s green eyes but Alisa’s fierce personality. She was everything I have ever wanted. Only, there was something just a little odd about her. Every time we kissed, I could hear whispering. Whispering that only grew louder as the kisses became more passionate. She wanted me more than anything, but I only wanted the sounds of the unknown to leave.

You do not belong to the mortal world. You do not belong to her. Deep, deep in my chest I already knew who it was that kept me from being with her. Then, I did something stupid. Whether it was truly out of love for my newest flame or perhaps lust, I called the whispers out. I knew the whispers were real. I knew they were not my imagination. They sounded so much like a faint memory. 

It was dark before my dear brothers choose to leave. This was the last place he had seen me and he felt convinced I was still alive.

Many cultures have the concept of containing evil at bay. Many performed rituals that would seal darkness and death from the world of the light. Some were more lethal than others. The Aztecs ripped out hearts, and the Greeks thought they could be contained in a box. Some pagans felt as if could be summoned from a book. 

If I could move my eyes, I knew I could see the creatures writhing together in a large mass. They would be soaked in my blood, and their lust for flesh could only be sated when they hit bone. It was suppose to be a fair deal, a soul for a soul.

It was only when I was alone that the voices would transform into a person. Safira. Her green eyes never left mine as she spoke to me the true horrors of hell. How the pain of the second death was greater than any pain felt on earth. She was sorry, she said, about what she had done. When the king arrived, in his dark garb and fiery flesh, he made known what he had wanted. I would provide a host for his pet in exchange for Safira’s eternal soul.

I should have known better, for the king of lies does not come in an obvious costume, a mockery of what mortals view him as. He would come as a handsome lord.

The maggots formed a large black serpent, whose body wrapped around my jagged and mutilated neck. It began to tighten on me. Its eyes were icy blue. When it spoke, it spoke using whispers. “I told you I would love you forever.” Alisa’s voice was never so cruel. “Even in death, you would join me.” She snarled. I looked at her, at the creature who had tricked me. There was no heaven, and there was no hell. There was only the eternal darkness that is the afterlife. Any being that tries to convince you otherwise is merely trying to take you with them. Perhaps, that way, they would not be so lonely. 

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