My imaginary friend is not my friend. **for the Who Framed Klaris Cliff? competition**


2. Mary II

The way Mary moves creeps me out.

She's like a skinny, hairless ape, a pale cream colour and so thin you can see all her bones. She has a few clumps of straggly black hair on her round head and lizard eyes.

She scares me senseless.

Mum thought I'd outgrow 'Mary'. She assumed that Mary was probably a little girl with a blue dress and a brown hair. She had no idea how terrifying and monstrous Mary was.

"Does your little friend have a name, Mavis?" she asked, smiling extra big like when adults try and talk 'nicely' to kids.

I sucked my thumb and shook my head, trembling, trying to ignore the creature in the corner.

"How about..........Mary? That's a pretty name," Mum said.

And so, the beast of my nightmares became Mary.


I watch Mary carefully as I eat my supper, brush my teeth, wash my face and read a book. I don't want to put the lights out. I don't want Mary to get me.

Eventually, Mum comes up at half past twelve. "Mavis, you should have gone to sleep hours ago!" She flicks the switch, still talking as the room is plunged into darkness.

I swallow dryly. 

Mum walks out.

I can feel Mary smiling.

And suddenly, the scratching begins.

I scream and scream, but not physically. I'm bellowing in pain but not making a sound as Mary crawls like a monkey onto my bed and drags her nails down my arms and face. I can feel the bloody grooves as they appear. My limbs jerk in a frenzy. I must look like an octopus having a seizure as I try to beat Mary off.

The scratching continues until the sun starts to come up, and then Mary stops. She smiles with her needle teeth. And she scuttles off to the corner. 

I manage to squeeze in a short period of sleep before Mum yells to wake me up.

I check my arms. Nothing.

Mary is horrible like that. Torture, but without evidence. 

I want to get rid of Mary.

And now I know how.


I go to school, as normal. I come home, as normal. Mary follows and spits and snarls and growls and hisses, but I try to be indifferent.

Before I lock myself in the bathroom, I sneak a knife from the kitchen.

Now I'm standing in the bathroom, looking into the mirror, holding the knife. Mary is sitting in the bathtub, watching me curiously.

The knife gleams silver.

The only way.

The only way.

The only way.

I hold it to my wrist, shaking. 

Mary starts to make keening noises. She knows what I'm about to do.

And I slice.






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