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I was never a scary girl in school. People would walk all over me without a problem. I’ve been dealing with it for seventeen years and I’m finally done. They made a wrong move, and then I found them.

It was a normal day for me; I guess you could call it normal. I was walking down the school halls when the world’s biggest bitch came around. “Well look who we have here? Little emo girl have fun crying herself to sleep last night?” Kate asked in a somewhat taunting tone. Normally I just try minding my own business so I keep walking. “What? You don’t like me asking? Did your little band freaks advise you to ignore me? That’s not going to work Nicole,” She taunts while smiling and puts her hand on her hip. I stop for a moment thinking about her last comment before I reply, “They aren’t the freaks here.” My eyes keep staring forward and my back faces Kate.

She laughs at this, “Are you sure? Am I the one with black hair, black clothes and a thousand tattoos?” At this point I’m getting agitated. I just wish she would leave me alone “Listen, I don’t have time for this,” I say beginning to walk away.

“You don’t have time for this? What else are you going to do? Listen to the shit you call music?” She sneers. “What ever” I roll my eyes and walk away. Well I’m fucked, I think to myself. The thought eventually leaves and I silently walk. The first few classes go by normally, sit in the back of the class and draw. But by about 3rd period things get interesting. As I walked through the halls I don’t get my normal whispers and laughs, instead they are replaced with just stares. Oh shit, Chad’s coming to get me I think to myself. A few moments after I give myself that thought Chad magically walks into the hall. “Well, well, well, if it isn’t Miss Nicole. Tell me, why do you insist on messing with Kate?” He asks smirking.

“I don’t want trouble today, I’m really not in the mood,” I tell him, speeding my walk a bit.

“Well then I guess today just isn’t your day, is it?” He says right before punching me. I feel the full force of the punch hit me square in the back of my shoulders. Naturally I lurch forward and fall on the ground. Everything I was previously holding spills all over the floor. “I thought I told you to fuck off?” I warn him. I pick myself up, but leave my stuff on the ground.

“And I should listen to the little emo? Nah, I’m good,” Chad aims another punch to my face. Using my quick thinking I duck and he misses, but just barely.

“Get her!” Chad yells. Already being put through this before, I know what happens next. Run! Is the first thing that comes to my mind. Whipping around I full out sprint through the small group of kids that have begun to watch the scene unfold, pushing through them I make it out alive. Thank God I keep sprinting; hopefully Chad and his friends think I’m just scared out of my mind. As I soon figured out I was wrong, I bump right into one of Chad’s friends, his name is Rich if I recall right. Stumbling back a bit, I look up to see his grinning face. Shit, I’m screwed, what to do? I look around frantically, but by the time I find an escape Rich has already attempted to punch me. Fine, he wants it? I guess he’ll get it I grin at the thought and get into a defensive stance. He tries landing a hit in my gut, but I catch it and twist his arm and swing him around, holding his arm behind him. I push hard on it, forcing his arm upward between his shoulder blades. He squeezes his eyes shut in agony, but refuses to admit that. Looking down at his knees for a moment, I kick the back of them, causing Rich to fall. “To your knees!” I yell, forcing him downward.

“Why me?” He grins and flips me over him. I hit the ground hard, but get back up.

“Listen bitch, I don’t want to kill you,” I threaten.

“But I want to kill you,” He grabs someone’s binder and hits me hard with it. My palm automatically goes to my jaw where I feel something dripping. My free hand is clenched into a fist and I brace to fight. After a few moments he tries to hit me again. I duck under his swing and grab his arm. I flip him over myself and whip around to face him again. He kicks me in the gut from the ground and I stumble back. He rushes at me and tackles me to the ground. I try to wiggle out of his grip, but he’s too strong. Chad walks over with a grin on his face “Good job Rich, that’s enough though. We can settle this later.” Rich nods and gets off of me. The two boys walk away. They have something else planned for me… What is it now? I think.

It’s the end of the day; I walk outside and look for my little spot in the woods that I walk through. I prefer not to take the bus because I know that would mean interacting with people, if you know me well you know I hate that. After all the busses leave I slip into the woods and walk. My music blasting in my ears, no one to bug me, life is perfect.

When I finally get to my house I pad inside and walk upstairs. I walk into my room, shut and lock the door, and then sit down on my bed. My hand reaches under my pillow for the collection of razors I own. Finally finding one I press it against my wrist. Then slowly drags it to the left, causing blood to drip from the fresh cut. “I bleed… To be sure I’m alive…” After repeating this a few times I begin to see little specks of black in my normally red blood. Hm, I wonder if that’s normal. Bet it is I assure myself. Cut after cut, I make my art. The weird thing though was that the blackness had increased from just specks to little blotches of color. Still choosing to ignore it, I put the razor down.

I never really had trouble going to sleep, but on this night, I just couldn’t sleep at all. I felt, different. I heard things tonight, what a normal person would think as horrible. To me though, they were somewhat soothing. It was the sound of muffled screams overpowered by the laughter of a madman. I hear sharp things slicing into people, people crying. Then I see something, something that looked a bit like me. Actually a lot like me. Those same scars I have, my hair was in a side braid the way I always wear it, that same orange hoodie I wear a lot, my faded blue jeans, and black boots to complete the look. One thing did seem off though, and that was the black liquid this girl had under her eyes. Who knows what it could have been, mascara, eyeliner, anything really. Pushing away the thoughts I have, I eventually fall asleep.

Same thing today, I’ll just have to let it slide again. I think while getting dressed. As usual my parents and sister were still asleep, I get myself up. When I’m done getting ready I go into the woods and walk to school. Something felt wrong about today, I don’t really know what it is. Eventually the thought fades away. As I had suspected, something was wrong. Both Chad and Rich jump out. “Get her!” Chad yells. Dammit! They’re back! I scream at myself. Without another thought I run only to feel a sharp pain in my side. I glance back to see the both of them holding tazers and Rich had caught up. “Gha!” I scream falling to my knees. Chad comes walking over to me and hits me in the side along with Rich. “S-Stop!” I manage to whimper. “Ok, let’s end it here Rich,” Chad stands grinning and pulls out a pistol, and aims at my head. Right as he pulls the trigger I roll to the left, barely missing the bullet. I jump up as fast as possible and begin running away. Chad shoots me in the ankle and I fall again. He walks over and aims at my head again “Maybe you’ll die this time. Let’s just hope so. I still need to get to school,” He grins. Just before he pulls the trigger I kick the gun out of his hand. Without a second thought I try to get the gun.

Rich is there before me though. As my hand touches the gun, so does Rich’s foot. He wiggles his foot which slowly breaks the bones in my hand. He removes his hand and with the one that isn’t broken I grab the pistol. My finger pulls the trigger while I’m still trying to aim. It must have hit Rich in the head because he collapses. I stagger up and look toward Chad who’s wide eyes are glued to mine. My feet rush forward and I tackle Chad, smashing him against a tree. “I found you little boy,” His eyes showed pure terror in what was to come. Quickly I pull the pistol and press it against his temple. My finger pulls back and I pull the trigger, ending his life. I step back and shoot his dead body; just to be sure he’s actually dead. Today I decide not to go to school. After all I didn’t want people looking at me weird. That’s why I spent the day in the woods, just me, and my uncle’s katana he had given me for my birthday. Slashing at trees, listening to music, climbing trees. Today was the first day I actually felt free. I no longer care about what people think of me. I’m free, finally free. It feels good. I should do this more often.

I glance at the setting sun. I should go home about now. Just so they don’t suspect anything of me. With that thought I begin to walk home only to see my gleeful mother sitting on the porch. “Where have you been, Nicole?! I’ve been worried sick! Your teachers called me today and said you weren’t in class!” She obviously isn’t happy.

“Really? I was there, I promise,” I explain calmly.

“Don’t lie to me Nicole.”

“I’m not.”

“Nicole, where were you?"

I give a sigh of defeat before answering, “Fine, I was in the woods today. I had skipped school.”

“You what?! That’s it Nicole. Give me your iPod,” She puts her hand out for me to put my iPod there.

“But-!”

“No buts, give it to me.”

“Fine,” As I walk past her I give her my iPod and storm up to my room.

The night goes pretty much the same as usual; I stay in my room and paint my pretty pictures. This time though not just with red, the amount of blackness had increased to the point that’s all I could see.

As my family sleeps, I lie awake, restless. As usual, I don’t want to find out what life has in store for me tomorrow. This is the third time this week. Finally giving in to the urge of walking to the bathroom and giving myself a little motivational de-motivational talk, I leave my bed. I make absolutely sure I don’t wake my family and slowly pad to the bathroom. When I enter I slowly shut and lock the door, then stare at my reflection in the mirror. “Just look at yourself, look at what you’ve become. You’ve become a monster, Nicole. I used to be so nice to everyone, I used to have friends, but I just pushed them away. I’ve pushed them away and replaced them with razors and music,” I slowly whisper. “Are you sure I was the one who did it though? Maybe they didn’t like me so they slowly pushed me away. That can’t be right. It was me, all me. Yet I choose not to face the truth, I choose to believe it was them. My self-destruction was because of them…”

A tear slowly rolls down my cheek; the difference is it was as black as my blood, as black as my soul, as black as my heart. “It was you, all you, Nicole. Now I have a choice, continue hiding or show people myself. I’m sure my family would love the new me,” More black tears roll down my cheeks until it becomes a steady stream. The choking noise I was making before is replaced by laughter, the laughter of a mad man. “Tonight, tonight I break away,” A large grin spreads across my face, “She’s finally found me, I’ve finally found her. Now, it is time for the show to begin,” that grin I was wearing sticks as I walk back to my room. Looking for my katana, I find it. I grab my orange hoodie, my faded jeans, and my black boots. Let’s begin, shall we? I think and walk into my sisters’ room to see her sleeping body. I approach the lump that is my sister and turn her over, Wake up, come on, I know your awake. I think to myself, I take the flat edge of my katana and place it on her cheek. Ashley’s eyes slowly flutter open and she whispers sleepily, “Nicole? What are you doing awake? We have school tomorrow.”

“Good morning Ashley,” I smile.

“What? It’s not even morning,” She says looking at the clock, it showing it is 3:00 AM.

“What would you like me to say then?”

“Good night.”

“How about this? I found you,” A grin spreads across me. I whip my katana upward off her face then down on her hand, piercing it to the bed. I grab her shoulders and jerk her away from my sword, doing this a few times rips off her hand. “Nicole!” She manages to say with a scream. “Dinner time,” I remove the hand from my katana and stuff it in her mouth. “Didn’t they tell you why we have hands? It’s not to grab things or anything foolish like that, we have them to eat. Now chew your food.” She obediently chews but then spits the glop of flesh that was her hand. “Now Ashley, didn’t we teach you to swallow your food? Never mind anymore I guess, you've never been very polite,” The grin on my face sticks as I push her body down on the bed. I lift my katana and shove it up the soft part of her chin. Her scream was that of pure pain, nothing less, nothing more. I keep pushing until I can see the tip of my sword coming out of the top of her head. Violently I rip it out and stab my sword into her neck. She is already dead but I didn’t care, I stand to make the finishing move. My katana is directed right through her heart, this looks a lot like the finishing blows you would see a hero do, but I’m no hero, I can tell you that much. My eyes venture to her dead, mangled face. “She found me and now she has found you.” Now, time for my parents, My mind tells me. “Ashley? Ashley are you ok?” I hear a knock on the door followed by my father’s voice. I giggle, “Daddy? Daddy is it you? Or is it the devil coming to get me?”

“Nicole, what are you talking about?”

“Oh nothing,” I walk to the door and slowly open it so I can look at my dad right in the eyes. “Like my natural makeup? I think Andy would like it.”

“Andy who?”

“Andy Biersack”

“Who’s that?”

“The one who has kept me alive for years, but I’ve been alive for too long. Thanks to time I’ve changed.” I grin and show him my bloody katana, “Look daddy, red. Just like you”

“Wha-?” Before he could finish his sentence I jab him dead in the stomach then rip it out. He tries to punch me but I give him a low sweep, knocking him off his feet. The first thing I find is his bow, which he was holding. Without a thought I grab it and wrap it around his neck so the string part is at his throat. “I found you, daddy.” Leaving it at that I jerk the bow backward, snapping his neck. “Now, if there has been one thing I’ve heard, it’s that a human heart tastes good. Guess I’ll find out,” I whisper and dig my katana into his chest. Carefully, I dig out his heart and take a small bite. “Mmm, it is good,” I smile and finish it up. I stand up and pad to my parents room to see my mom still asleep. “You’ve always been a heavy sleeper mother,” I walk towards her and gently wake her up. “Huh? Ashley? Did you have another nightmare? Mommy’s here, don’t worry.”

“Wrong daughter Mom.”

“What othe- oh, what’s wrong Nicole?”

I laugh, “Oh nothing, you’ve just wanted to know what I do in my room. So I guess I’ll show you,”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” As she says this I grab her wrist and cut it. She releases a loud scream. I wanna say about 13 times before I grab a lighter.

“This is how I get it to heal so quickly,” I light it and put it on her cuts. She screams again but twice as loud.

“Nicole stop it! Nicole that hurts!”

“How do you think I feel now?”

Too panicked, she doesn’t hear me. “I found you, Mom,” With those last words I slit her throat. I feel a laugh rising, a laugh of a madman. Finally it reaches the top and I explode into a fit of madman laughing. “It’s over, finally over. I don’t have to worry about them anymore.” Black blood pours from my eyes as I walk back to the bathroom and look and my new self in the mirror. “You’ve done it Nicole. We’ve done it. Good job,” I say to my reflection. “From this point on, I will be known as Katana, yes, I like it,” I open the bathroom window and jump out, running into the night.

Some say I’m dead, others believe I’m still alive, out there, waiting. Both of those theories are wrong. I’m dead on the inside, but very much alive on the outside. Now, I will find you, no matter who you are, I will find you. Sleep well, and know I’m coming to get you.