Abigail

She is everyone, and no one. She doesn't even have a name, because every day she is in a new life. She doesn't know who she is...or was. All she knows is the pain of these other girls, these living girls, the suffering girls.

She wants to know who she really is...but what will it take to find out?

WARNING: This Movella contains rape, bullying, suicide, abuse, self-harm, and other sensitive elements.

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13. Sasha

When I wake up, I find myself face-to-face with a framed photograph...of my own face. I’m smiling, my short brown hair falling lightly across one eye. To the right of me is another girl with dyed purple hair, bright blue eyes, and a smile that’s just a warm as my own.

    Sasha.

    I don’t really remember her. The only reason I know her name is because she is the girl I’m inhabiting today.

    While I was alive, she was one of my two best friends.

 

    Who was the other one?

 

    I stare at the photograph for a little while longer before finally getting out of bed.

 

    As I approach Sasha’s mirror, I’m hit with multiple shocks. First, the mirror itself; the reflective surface is framed with many photographs, the majority of which feature my grinning face alongside Sasha’s. Some photos also show the two of us with a blonde girl. The rest of the mirror’s photos are of Sasha with other friends and family.

    The next shock is Sasha herself. Her hair is now a dull brown, the tips still showing hints of faded purple-pink dye. Her eyes are dull, too, and her skin pale and littered with acne. In her skimpy pajama shorts and tank top, I can easily see how skinny she is.

    As I start to feel her thoughts and emotions, I slowly understand why she looks like a ghost.

    

    Both of her best friends are gone. Her other friends have abandoned her in her grief, and her family has given up on trying to push her through this lonely darkness. She’s only alive because she’s terrified of death, terrified of what would be waiting for her. Heaven? Hell? Pitch darkness, an eternal nap? She still has things that she wants to do in life...she just never planned on doing them alone.

 

    So she lives like a ghost, barely there and barely alive.

 

    I sigh and turn away from the reflection of my haunted best friend.

 

    How could I have abandoned her like this?

 

    I get dressed slowly in a plain black T-shirt and light-colored jeans, pulling my hair into a low ponytail and shoving my feet into Sasha’s old and worn black Converse.

As I dress, my eyes land on the calendar.

November 13, 2016. One year since Abigail. A year and two months since Ella.  The thought races through my mind, then disappears before I can try to figure out who Ella is. I glance at the clock, panic smacking me in the face as I realize that I’ll be late if I don’t leave now.

I race through the empty kitchen, grab a granola bar, and dart out the door. Sasha’s car is dirty, the blue exterior covered in bugs and mud and dust, the interior littered with papers and food wrappers. My nose is stuffed full of old food smells, and I can’t help shuddering.

    Sasha’s instincts kick in as I start the car, much to my relief. I’m not sure if I know how to drive, but Sasha does, so I let her take over and drive us to school.

 

    At school, no one looks at Sasha. No one speaks to her. No one moves to get out of her way. No one cares. She’s the grieving ghost girl.

    I pass by my memorial on my way to Sasha’s Biology class, and a shudder runs through me. It’s odd to see it now, knowing that it’s me. For Sasha, it just hurts to see all the pictures, the RIP notes, and the flowers, all centered around me.

 

    To be in the body of someone who is actually grieving me is probably the weirdest and most painful experience of all; I am seeing firsthand what my death has done to someone close to me. I hate seeing this, feeling this.

 

    I walk into the Biology classroom with my head low, shuffling quietly to my desk. I’m early - there aren’t any other students in the room yet, just the teacher. I pull Sasha’s binder out of her bag and open it to the section featuring her Biology notes and assignments. There’s a homework assignment that’s due today. I find it and carefully pull it out of the folder.


 

    BANG!

 

    I freeze. Sasha’s heart suddenly starts to hammer against her chest.

    At her desk, the teacher immediately bolts for the door, arm stretched out to close it.

 

    BANG!

 

    She stops abruptly just inches away from the door. I see red bloom across the back of her pale blue blouse, and watch, still frozen as she crumbles to the floor. I look up. The shooter is standing in the hallway just outside the door. His pistol is aimed right at my face. He’s wearing a mask, but I can see his eyes: dark and cold and merciless.

 

No!

I can’t let Sasha die!

I struggle to move her limbs, but she’s very present right now, and her paralyzing terror is making it impossible for me to move her. No, no, no, don’t shoot, please! She can’t die, too!

 

BANG!

 

Sasha and I scream together as we feel the bullet hit her chest. Pain explodes through her heart, shattering bones and snapping thread-like veins. Darkness creeps across her vision.


 

    I feel it when she dies. I feel her fade away into the darkness, leaving me floating, blind and numb, in an empty place.


 

    Oh, God. What’s going to happen to me now? Sasha is dead. My host is dead. I’m not in a body anymore, am I? I don’t know where I am. Everything is just...nothing. I don’t feel anything, see anything, hear anything, smell, taste, sense, know anything. I can’t move, there’s nothing for me to move. I don’t know what to do, and I’m terrified. Am I dead? Is this what death is? Just floating in emptiness, fully aware of a lack of anything?

 

    Is this what I’m stuck with for all of eternity?

 

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