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Level Three Ongoing: Necrophobia

by Cyrus Calamba 8 months ago in Series
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Ang iyong ganday umaabot sa buwan. (Your beauty reaches the moon)

I cradled the abandoned kitten in my arms. In fear she trembled, but she enjoyed the warmth there that she wasn't getting anywhere else, making her decision controversial. I saw myself in her, when it came to living in my own home, in a land that's so foreign and so new. We're a lot more similar than she could ever realize, little did she know.

I walked the sidewalk some more, this one specifically, that was crumbling and needed some road work, with nowhere to go in the middle of the evening besides home itself. In the darkness, it didn't matter how close to zero your vision was capable of seeing; the difference of the city and the miniature villages was clear. Much less hustling and bustling, that allowed the call of the crickets to speak up louder than before. That's how I knew I was home.

I went up the narrow stone and cement path, up to our front door, it creaking loudly though I tried to keep it quiet. The scenery before me was the same as the spinning of material that built up this house in my head so swiftly a little bit ago. My father, — or Camdyn's father is how I should truly refer to him — was sitting on a cushioned chair, barely snapping awake to the noise as I entered, "And where do you think you've been all night?"

"Otou-san," the words came to me, literally put into my mouth, "I needed fresh air. I know we're both distressed over the loss we've had recently but I think we can overcome it. Never forget, I know, but maybe move on. We have to. We can't bring her back."

"Don't speak to me like that, you disappointment child," his father had boomed, and though I tried to brace myself for what he would do, I couldn't be ready for the grip he'd get on the roots of my hair. It's like being treated as a ball to toss around for the fun of it, but it's being let go off that it started to hurt the most. "Did I ask that you mention it?"

"No, Papa." I responded with the answer he clearly wanted that Camdyn evidently knew too, cradling the kitten slightly tighter into my chest. Doing so was a mistake, or it felt like one, because it gave him, in his angered state to have full-on proper view of the helpless animal, and he didn't like that. Not at all.

"What nonsense are you bringing in the house?" He yelled, his voice husky and deep, almost seeming to become more that way as we continued interacting. "Get it out! Get it out of here right now!"

"But Papa—." I argued gently, holding her less tightly in hopes him seeing her up close would lower his guard or standards and be contented with her cuteness. That's far from what happened.

"I said get it out!" He yelled again. It all happened way to fast, but it didn't take a difficult game of connect the dots to understand the loud thud, a screeching meow, and my arms empty to get what just happened. It was out of Father's force that the kitten had flew and hit the wall, too hard to consider the myth of nine lives, especially with how fragile she already was, but accepting death on top of losing Mother, I couldn't do it.

I scooped up the little fur ball, heading back outside. Somehow, the sky was a whole shade darker than it was when I got home, and I screamed for the attention of any medical-knowledge person in the neighborhood. Groggily, a person came out, dressed in the scrubs that shouted a long shift of being on call barely finished. There was anger on the woman's face to have been bothered from such a day's night rest, but when her eyes fell on me all you can see in her was fellow feeling. "Please help me," were the words I said that were intelligible after the gibberish my screaming sounded like.

We met 3/4 the way on the path to her door, a house similar to the one we had recently bought they were almost identical, to take a look at the tiny creature back in my arms. Upon looking, all I could get out of her was this shake of her head, and after she mustered up to it. "I'm sorry, there's nothing I can do. She's dead."

I still cradled the abandoned kitten in my arms a while longer. She no longer trembled in fear or enjoyed the warmth from my own body heat, because she herself was colder than ice could get, but again, I saw myself in her. We're still a lot more similar than she could ever realize, little did she know.

"What does that even mean, Camdyn?" I screamed, scarred for life by the feelings that were creeping up my skin when I entered into what built up his mind. Scanning the house that was a replica of the space I was just standing in before I'd run outside with a dead cat, I wanted to convince myself that it was all made up and that nobody would ever feel that way for as long as they walked the earth, but it was too strong after stepping into what was behind his eyes to think that it was fake. I could feel it, when I lived in his shoes, how badly he wanted to die, and I knew too, that he tried to. I didn't need confirmation for that.

"You must've gotten to the part where I tried to kill myself and failed?" He said bluntly, confirming it anyway. "I went through this extended period of weakness for way too long, Mars, I can't deny it, and yet—? The time that I felt the absolute weakest is when the rope I tied to the ceiling in my room that didn't even feel like mine yet, it was so new, started to scare me. Here I was, wanting so badly to die and never breathe on this planet again, and I'm terrified, petrified even, to take my own life away. It's stupid, isn't it?"

"No, Camdyn. It's not stupid. You're not stupid," I insisted against his idea. "Don't you think it was a good thing? You've been able to become so much since then. You've accomplished several of your goals and your hard work paid off. Aren't you glad you were able to do all those things?"

"Funny you should say that," he scoffed, folding his arms. That was more a habit of mine than his, that he got from me, but that rubbed off on him so much he was still doing it until now. "I'm in your head right now, Mars, and we're going through every single fear we've ever had to live through from the top. In real life, you're in surgery, but when you come out of it healthy and strong, you're the destined inheritor of your step father's company. I'm in prison for a good portion of life. The last time I've said anything so positive I was dating you. I'm not anymore, clearly, yeah? And I'm not going to force you to if that's not how you feel. If you're afraid of me, then I get that."

I smiled weakly, but tried to brush it off, and make it seem I came out of this conversation with the confidence in what I had already told him; that living and staying alive is worth it, that he should be glad he failed his attempt. "Oh, come on, Cams," I began hoping to lighten things while on the road to those plans, when I found a large clump of curly dark hair between my fingers, that clearly wasn't mine.

At a loss, my gaze fell to the floor to find three bodies there, none of them breathing. Two of them were of Shyrene, and one was of Blake. On the first of Shyrene, her french braided hair was tangled around her neck so tightly, it appeared to have strangled her to death. I assume the same went for her second, but instead of the evidence being left that way, it appeared the hair of her second dead corpse was stretched in a way to kill one of Blake too.

"Where are the rest of them?" I spilled out, as fast as I could. I knew that if I didn't, my jaw would lock up I wouldn't be able to get anything out, so I put it out there before I'd reach that point.

"They got scared and ran away." He said. It came out the opposite of me, slowly and hesitant. "Look, they were going to attack you when you were in your most vulnerable state, and you chose to live through my memory when you're full on aware it's going to mess with your own abilities. You gave me the freedom to take over your body and protect you while you were in a bad state in my head. There's several of them. Shyrene and Blake are both okay. I'm not really hurting anyone. It's all one gigantic video game."

I shuddered at the idea that three went down just now because of him, when this electric shock traveled like a flow of blood in my veins. I had memories of it all. The struggle that Shyrene and Blake went through from what was technically my hand and body, the process came to me. I could see the entire thing from how I got them to the ground and how I somehow got the strength to overpower them fighting back until their bodies went limp and gave out. I was the last face these ones saw before their heart stopped pumping.

Camdyn just gave me these memories to hold forever as if they were done in my perspective. The ugliest ones I could ever have.

"No, no." I shook my head, "this is totally wrong! I could never do such a thing! And three times? There's no way I can even pretend I would be the one to do such a thing!"

LEVEL THREE FAILED!

LOADING POSSIBLE COMPROMISE DUE TO GAME CIRCUMSTANCES

"What?" I said aloud, as the written words were painted above me, far from the same typical wording that I've seen until now. I've never been so perplexed, and it was kind of worrisome to accept that that came to get more meaningful every level that I gone through.

REYES, ELLIE

ACCORDING TO GAME OCCURRENCE PER LEVEL THREE, YOU HAVE BETWEEN TWO OPTIONS, WHICH INCLUDE:

A.) ACCEPTING FAILURE OF LEVEL THREE AND REDOING SAID LEVEL FROM THE START

CHOOSING WILL RESULT IN THE LOSS OF ONE LIFE

B.) PROVIDE THE LOST THREE LIVES DONE AT YOUR HAND AS A SACRIFICE TO ACCELERATE TO LEVEL FOUR

ACCEPTING SUCH CHOICE WOULD INCLUDE THE PERMANENT LOSS OF THE HARMED THREE LIVES TOTAL

YOU HAVE SIXTY SECONDS TO MAKE A DECISION

"Choice B." Camdyn chose, before communicating his thoughts or his motive behind it, but luckily, the answer to the question wasn't programmed to receive answers from him voice, but from mine. I hated going along with the second option, because that meant at least acting like I accept I'm behind three murders that went down way too fast, even if what happens in my mind stays in my mind.

"No. Definitely not."

Camdyn sighed and shut his eyes so tightly, that gave away how far he was from relaxation, "do you want to go through level three again, Mars?"

"Well, no. I—."

"Then we don't have any choices here. There's only one choice."

"We'd lose three lives! This world isn't a joke. We're gonna need every life we could get!"

"I'd rather figure out how to handle that than to repeat it again, honestly, Mars, and I think you would too. You're just hesitant because you're basically admitting for a so-called crime done in your body and in your charge but not in your mind."

I exhaled deeply, since he saw right through me. "Okay, choice B."

CHOICE B HAS BEEN SELECTED!

LEVEL THREE PASSED!

LIVES REMAINING EIGHT

PREPPING LEVEL FOUR

Series

About the author

Cyrus Calamba

writing attempt-er + mystery/thriller enthusiast

that pretty much sums up my entire life

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