Is this a joke…?
That was her thought, but the young girl’s throat was dry and the hands that held the sketchbook was shaking.
This is a story…surely a story…or maybe Namfon was playing a prank on me. Didn’t seem like her. And this is a really bad prank.
Lilith glanced around the void classroom. It made her feel lost.
Was it this late already? So quiet…why are there no teachers or janitors around?
The girl shook creepy thoughts away. She stood up, and her eyes caught on a message at a corner of the book.
Not Namfon’s handwriting.
…What is going on?
Traitor traitor traitor traitor no no no no nonono noone will come between us there can only be us two won’t give to anyone no no no you cat burglar you thief if I see you…I will kill you kill you tear you to pieces kill kill kill kill kill kill killkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkillkill
Lilith threw the sketchbook down. It was open, but she did not want to pick it up. I’ll come get it later. Now she just wanted to go home. She didn’t want to stay here a second longer.
She grabbed her bag and crashed into a table. She gasped at the thing that rolled from inside the desk.
Phew, calm down, Lilith. It’s nothing.
Just a hand mirror…
Lilith consoled herself and picked up that mirror. The second she looked into it, a sentence flashed in her mind.
‘Namfah is not in the mirrors anymore.’
A gust of wind blew into the room. It blew across the sketchbook, flipping the pages and stopped at a particular one.
The girl slowly approached it.
And she saw…
Enough!!! This is crazy!!!
Lilith dashed away from the room. She ran along the rapidly darkening corridors, and as she stepped down the stairs…
Footsteps echoed, sounding like someone was walking on wet ground barefooted.
Lilith peek through a gap and could only see a shadow of someone slowly walking up. One step. Two steps. Three steps…
From below…Someone is walking up…
Lilith held her breath.
A girl in school uniform appeared from the shadows. Her head was bent low and her face was not visible. She was soaked through. Water trailed after her. She was barefeet, no socks or shoes.
And when she looked up, Lilith screamed.
It was her friend’s familiar face, but she could feel this was a different person. The girl smiled a distorted and unnatural smile. Her lips twisted in a strange angle. A dimple was on her cheek.
“Found you, cat burglar.”
Lilith turned around and ran for her life, but Namfah’s hand seized her long hair from behind and yanked. Lilith rolled down the stairs, the back of her neck crashing to the floor.
The young girl struggled to her feet, dizzy, but was stomped on by Namfah’s foot.
“I will not let anyone get between our bond! Never! Namfon is mine and mine only!”
Namfah’s foot came crashing down on Lilith, over and over, like that kitten in the past.
“There can only be two of us. Annoyances should be gone!”
“No!!! Let me go!!! I beg you!!!”
Lilith screamed as she saw the gleam of a pair of scissors in Namfah’s right hand. The second she curses a ‘die!’, the scissors were pointed down.
But it stopped before hitting Lilith.
Lilith gasped. It was strange. A girl holding a pair of scissors in her right hand, trying to stab, but was stopped every time…
…by her own left hand.
Lilith remembered that Namfah was right-handed.
And the left hand that stopped the right hand was…
Lilith understood. This Namfah was no ghost or demon. She was Namfon. Due to something in her subconscious, she made Namfah’s personality without knowing it, and now she fought with the sister inside her to save her only friend.
“Namfon, fight it…”
Lilith spoke in a raspy voice.
“No! Namfon, you can’t leave me! We are sisters, we are twins, right!?! We’ll be together forever!!!”
Namfah in Namfon’s body spoke, tears streaming down her cheeks, before the same lips spoke again.
“Enough. I won’t let you hurt Lilith. I’ve endured enough. This time I won’t let you hurt the one I love!”
The face was ferocious. Left hand yanked the scissors away from the right.
“I don’t need you anymore!!!”
Lilith shook as she watched the girl rain down blows on her right hand with that scissor. It seemed something straight off a nightmare. Finally, the right hand ceased to move. The girl threw the scissor away and looked at her two bloodstained hands.
“Are you alright…?”
Lilith asked. Namfon nodded, still pale, but smiled through all those tears.
“I’m so happy. Finally I get to talk to you face to face.”
Lilith smiled and held the left hand.
“From now…the two of us will get to be together forever…”
I held the black cover friendship book at my side, while standing in front of a patient’s room in a certain hospital. Actually, I had no relations to the patient in this room. I was only a witness who brought the injured to get treatment, and so I used that as an excuse to come visit ‘them’. That was all.
In my terms, rather than ‘visiting’, I would call this behavior ‘observing’.
“Who are you right now…? Namfah? Or Namfon?”
The doctor asked a girl on a bed. Her right hand was bandaged, and her left held it tenderly.
“There is no more Namfah.”
The girl’s lips spread into a smile. She spoke softly, shyly.
“There is no more Namfah to come between us. There is only the two of us, right, Lilith?”
The girl turned to her right, where an empty chair stood, before the same lips spoke again. However, the voice that came out had a clearer ring to it, as if a cheerful girl was speaking right then.
“Yes, Namfon. We will be together forever.”
“How can there be no Namfah?!?! You are Namfah!!!!”
The girl’s mother could not bear to listen and cried.
“Namfon is the dead one! And that Lilith girl of yours doesn’t exist! You imagined it all!!!”
The girl tilted her head and watched her mother crying into white bedsheets with confusion. She sat there with a smile frozen on her face.
There was a dimple.
“Why did it turn out like this, doctor? Namfah was a good child. She was very cheerful, but after her twin sister drowned from an accident, she kept saying the one who died was Namfah and she was Namfon! I understand she was in shock from losing her sister. Namfah loved her twin sister very much. They were never apart. So we moved here in order for her to forget bad things.”
The girl’s mother spoke rapidly in a high pitched voice, as if all her walled thoughts came tumbling down and her screws of endurance all snapped apart.
“But suddenly, two or three months prior, Namfah said she’s not Namfon but another girl called Lilith. What…what have we done to deserve this?!?!”
The doctor consoled the mother.
“From what you have said, I gathered she has dissociative identity disorder, or DID. The patient will have two or more personalities in the same body, and those personalities will alternately come out without the patient realizing it. Your daughter has three personalities in the same body. I think the patient was under some kind of pressure that caused this disorder. We will investigate the cause and find a way to treat it…”
The doctor further explained that the shock from losing her twin sister might be the cause of Namfah creating Namfon’s persona, but nonetheless he pondered why she created a friend called ‘Lilith’ in addition.
Meanwhile, the girl’s father noticed me standing at the entrance and thanked me for sending his daughter to the hospital. He looked skeptical, though, because he knew I did not care too much what happened to his daughter.
As I said, I only came here to observe.
‘They’ are the results of my three months’ experiment.
I met a girl called ‘Namfah’ three months ago. That so called meeting was just me, sitting in a classroom, watching her get bullied by a group of girls who passed her bag around like a ball. I watched the events unfold in the school garden like someone watching a stage play on a front row seat.
The girl chased after her bag, but in the end they poured its contents into a garbage can. The girl cried and rummaged the garbage for her belongings, amid scornful laughters, before those girls left her alone.
I watched with apathy. I had no intention to help her or tell a teacher. I had no intention of doing anything.
I just ‘watched’ her idly.
My actions were not a result of cowardice or selfishness. I believed all humans have a ‘duty’ to struggle and survive in this world. That was why a weakling who could not even endure a small prank, who bent her head and accepted the loser’s life, was worthless in my eyes.
“Serves you right! You will never have friends, Namfon! As long as I am here, I will not let you have anyone but me!”
The girl spoke to herself in a rough tone. Her face was furious, like a different person, before softening into the same girl as before.
“Namfah…I’m sorry. I’m very sorry.”
That moment, the weakling gained value.
Some biologists studied genetics and are excited to discover new species. I was no different.
However, what I studied was ‘human’.
Human that were different from others. Human that were envious and overambitious. Human that were twisted. They were like precious guinea pigs.
How would someone like her live in this world?
That was my question.
From my observations, I knew this ‘Namfah’ girl had two personalities.
Namfah believed she was Namfon, or her twin sister, and Namfah (or herself) had died because her sister pushed her into the water and she drowned.
But the truth was the contrary.
Namfon was the one pushed into the water, and Namfah watched on the shore. She could not swim and could not save her other half. That was why she stood and watched the body that struggled for her life.
“What are you doing, Namfon!?! Hurry up and swim towards me!!! Quickly!!!”
I imagined the older sibling shouting furiously at her sister, bobbing in the water.
However, maybe the younger one was exhausted and quit struggling. Namfah realized what her younger sister was going to do.
“You…are a bitch!!! You can’t leave me!!! We are twins, aren’t we!?! We promised! Live or die, we will be together forever!!!”
“I…don’t need you anymore…”
Namfon’s last words tore down their twin’s bond to scraps. Her words screeched inside her sister’s head as Namfah watched Namfon slowly drowned to the bottom of that canal without being able to do a thing.
Of course, the Namfah who was obsessed with their bond to the point of being mad would never accept the fact that she killed her own sister. She created another personality that took over her consciousness. Let reality and imagination overlap. She became Namfon.
This happened because humans possess ‘defense mechanisms’. It will kick off to block any unpleasant memories.
All humans have it. How much it affects them depends on the individual.
But even though she could fool herself, she could not erase the facts.
Every time Namfon in Namfah’s body (from now I will use the term ‘Namfon’s persona’) looks into a mirror, the reflection will be that of the real Namfah. The dimple was a concrete proof.
So, Namfon’s persona who believed she killed her own sister thought that the reflection was her sister’s ghost.
Back then, I thought it was amusing, and got even more intrigued when she created a third persona. This third persona was based on my classmate called ‘Lilith’.
Lilith did exist, but she was the plain ‘Saint Lilith’. Just another one of those ordinary goody-two-shoes. If I would be interested in her, it would be the reason why Namfon’s persona took so much interest in Lilith to the point of recreating her.
Lilith in Namfah’s body (termed ‘Lilith’s persona’) showed the same behaviors as the real ‘Lilith’ down the the very last detail.
Namfon’s persona wanted to be close with Lilith, but was too scared because Namfah’s persona did not want anyone to come in between them.
So, I urged Namfon’s persona and Lilith’s persona to get closer to each other.
To stimulate Namfah.
That was my experiment.
Human had been territorial since the dawn of man. Before, we make wars and kill our own kind for land. Now, we still step on each other to acquire our social space.
Then what about the many people who occupy the same body?
If they had to fight for space within the same body, and ‘only two’ would survive…what would happen…?
Now, I got my results…
I secretly kept her friendship notebook, this black cover book that could be found in any stationary store. This was a record of every results of this experiment, and the truth behind everything.
I slowly stepped away from that patient’s room.
And left the two best friends to be together forever.
I closed the friendship notebook that I finished reading while waiting for a meeting to start. It was the kind of notebook that was sold everywhere.
But the contents inside was unbelievably entertaining, unlike its plain appearance.
Just then, the door opened, and the face of a young woman who was the freshmen vice president peek inside.
She was someone called ‘Saint of the freshmen medical students’.
“Hi, Ariya. What are you reading?”
I gave her a fake smile.
“Oh, a friendship notebook from 12th grade.”
I told her the truth.
But whose notebook it was, I did not tell her.
“Wow… how nostalgic.”
The young woman looked like she was reminiscing about the past.
“By the way, my first friendship notebook disappeared. It’s good that I haven’t let anyone wrote in it yet. I think I lost it when a girl crashed into me. The stuff in our bags were all over the place. When I got home, the notebook was gone. I had to buy a new one.”
“Although no one wrote in it, you did write your personal details in it, am I right?”
The young woman looked confused, wanting to ask how I knew.
“Most people do that, right? Introduce themselves with their full name, nickname, address, and some personal details on the first page.”
I spoke, my palms touching the cover of the black notebook.
“Imagine this. If someone took it, for example, someone who admires you very much, and used this notebook as a reference to create your personality. That person would act like he or she is another you. Have you ever wondered that there is someone like that around you?”
“Ariya, you’re scaring me.”
The young woman rubbed her arms but smiled like nothing happened.
“But it’s alright. I’ve never met anyone like that.”
I did not answer right away, and a sly smile tugged at my lips.
After this job for the faculty is done, I have to thank ‘him’.
…For giving me such a fun book to read.
“I also hope dearly that no one like that picked up your book.”
I smiled, lies naturally spilling from my throat.
This world is a blank sheet of paper.
The humans that struggle in vain,
Is as boring as watching an ant crawl.
No matter how much one struggles, one can never escape death.
Death is life’s final verdict.
That is why I admire it.
The death that is beautiful and tranquil.
But I did not need her death.
That is why I will
Zombie Kiss Vol. 2 -End-