Your Own Worst Enemy

Miranda is the daughter of one of the most famous actresses in the world, but her life is far from fabulous. The girls at school bully her mercilessly. Yet that is not her worst problem. Adnarim, a malevolent spirit, follows her around, and embodies the people who put her down. But who is Adnarim? And how will Miranda ever learn to stand up to the real bullies when she can't even battle her worst enemy: herself. EDIT: In case anyone is wondering, Witzelsucht is a rare illness where a patient makes inappropriate puns or jokes at bad times. The sufferers finds these jokes amusing despite this.

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5. Miranda

Nothing happens. The knife passes straight through her.

            “You can’t kill me,” Adnarim smiles.

            My breath comes out in short gasps. I know what I have to do.

            I turn the knife round, holding the point against my neck. “If I can’t kill you, I’ll kill us both,” I whisper. “No one is going to tell me what to do anymore.” Adnarim shimmers, for the briefest of seconds, but I’m gone past trying to decipher what this means. She can’t control me. She can’t tell me what to do. A feeling of elation washes over me, as I press the knife in a little, to break the skin. I wonder if this is what it is like to go mad.

            Madness is a glorious thing, you know. There is nothing in the world quite like it. A low laugh fills the room, quiet and terrifying. It is coming from me.

            “Goodbye Adnarim,” I say. A trickle of blood runs down the blade, and I watch it with morbid satisfaction.

            At the same time, a trickle of blood runs down her neck and it conforms my theory. Her life is tied to my own.

            I take a deep breath, knowing it will be my last. I am the one in control now. Never again will I be told what to do, where to sit, who to be. I wait for a comment from Adnarim, but none comes.

            She is standing in the centre of my room, blurring in and out of focus like a bad TV. She is breathing quickly, sweat pouring from her, blood still trickling from the wound in her neck.

            “You’re killing me,” she mutters.

            “What?” I haven’t done anything yet." The knife falls out of my hand, and lands with a clang on the floor. She shakes her head, now gasping for breath, clutching her chest, heaving, heaving, heaving. I almost want to call an ambulance, instinct taking over, screaming that I have to help, I have to do something.

             But I'm frozen in place, staring down at the pitiful figure of my greatest tormentor, and I say the thing which has been in the back of my mind all along, but which I've never truly believed.

             "Your words mean nothing to me. Those bullies at school can’t hurt me if I don’t let them. I’m not letting their words get to me anymore." I pause, before carrying on, "because that part of me which believes them is nothing but a figment of my imagination. That's all you are Adnarim. I control you, not the other way around."

        Adnarim starts shaking, as if she is having a fit, and she gets blurrier and blurrier around the edges, expanding, and expanding, until, with a single puff, she disappears.

            I am alone.

           Adnarim is gone, and I think I killed her and I am free. Free. Free. The words echo in my head, growing louder and louder. I know what I should feel: happiness, wholeness. But I feel oddly hollow, now I’ve achieved my victory. I am not filled with self certainty that life is going to be great from now on, that on Monday I’ll go back to school and find that everything has changed.

           No, I just accept something which I should have known all along. Those bullies at school are nothing. Their words, their taunts, only hurt me if I let them, if I believe what they say is true.

           I’ve conquered my own worst enemy. Me.

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