The Demon

Picture a biracial girl starting high school; little freshman, a hair taller than five foot, just turned fifteen, and terrified of what might happen in the days to follow. Now imagine that girl was me, and I knew there was a demon living in me.
I knew of it for years, never being able to put a name to it. I only remembered waking up in the middle of the night and seeing bright grey eyes in the corner of my room. Sometimes I’d hear it, whispering in my ear, telling me things I already knew.
Look at you. Trying desperately to keep working hard. What are you going to do? That project is due tomorrow and you’ve only done a few paragraphs on it. It’s almost ten thirty. You’re not going to have enough time to do this and sleep. You’re going to have to make a choice. What are you going to do, Kit Kat?
Every time I would block it out somehow. I got pretty good at it. I knew it never hurt me, as it only made me stressed and worrisome. Deep down though, I was terrified of the demon. I didn’t want to think about it. I didn’t want to talk to it. I had more important things to do. So I pushed it away.
The demon would only get louder. I felt more tired, irritable and annoyed. The demon was quickly evolving into more than just a catchy song I couldn’t get out of my head. It became a virus. Infecting every second of my life, changing me, morphing me into something I didn’t recognize anymore.
Meanwhile my artistic side peaked. I drew pictures. I didn’t ever really know what they were of but I drew them regardless. My pencil quaked and squeaked as my hand gracefully stroked around the paper.
One day, the sight of my own drawings both amazed me and shook my very soul.
I saw the demon I had only imagined. The way its bright eyes stared at me through its black hair. It looked oddly human. I hated that this...thing, this creature, bared resemblance to me in that aspect.
The demon had long black hair, down to her rib cage. Her eyes were half-lidded and judgmental. Illuminous gray orbs bored into my head. It had an hourglass figure, something I had only dreamed of achieving . The only thing that made the demon less than human was the skin. It was an off-gray. The drawing looked like someone had taken a black and white picture and plastered it onto the paper.
“Dimm,” I whispered. “That’s the name of my demon.”
I thought I could hear a laugh echo in my head.
Weeks passed and I began hearing Dimm’s presence invaded my thoughts more often. While doing homework, while cleaning, while with friends, there was no stopping it. Why was Dimm pestering me so much? I didn’t want to be stressed. I didn’t feel like I had a reason to be. I was caught up with all of my homework, and home life was fine. Why was Dimm finding a reason to keep me unhappy? Why did Dimm scare me more than she should’ve?
Instead of asking Dimm myself, scared of what might happen if I did, I gave my heart and soul into the people around me. More importantly, a boy I cared about. I quickly became a lovesick puppy, my heart fluttering whenever I saw the boy, my face erupting in smiles, trying whatever I could to get his attention and talk to him more.
Finally, a month until the last day of my freshman year, I got the courage to tell him my feelings.
He said nothing for a few minutes, only staring at me with his bright brown eyes. I held my breath.
He let me down gently.
I felt something pang in my chest painfully. I pushed it aside however, elated with the fact that I managed to tell him how I felt. I had never confessed to anyone before. The feeling gave me pride and a sense of accomplishment.
So what if he doesn’t like me back? I thought. We can still be friends! He even said so himself!
The next morning I found it incredibly difficult to get up. I felt sick. I was glad it was Saturday so I didn’t miss a day of school. The odd pang I felt in my chest the day before became a constant aching throb.
Dimm’s presence in my head turned into a migraine. I became paranoid of the thoughts in my head. I thought the boy might’ve realized I was crazy. Who else had demons, demons like this, in their head? I felt more alone than ever before, trapped in a never ending nightmare of insanity with no way out.
Time seemed to fly past too quickly and it was already near midnight.
I felt the need to cry but couldn’t get the tears to fall. My tired eyes looked to the corner of my room and wasn’t surprised to see Dimm’s eyes staring back at me. I only sighed.
Maybe it was because I was so worn out. Maybe it was because I was actually sick. Maybe it was because I was done with running away from my demon.
“Do you want to talk? Is that what you want from me?” I asked, my voice breaking a little.
Dimm blinked slowly.
“Then how do I talk to you? Do I have to go to sleep for you to talk to me in my dreams, is that how this works?”
I got no answer.
I rolled my eyes, “Fine then, I’ll just go to sleep!” I laid down in my bed, facing away from Dimm. Soon I managed to fall into a slumber.
In the land of dreams, I didn’t sleep my usual nonexistent dream. Instead I was transported into an offsetting room.
The room was a dark reddish brown, and the walls were covered in what appeared to be a skin texture. The floor was made of dark wood paneling, and the ceiling had a hole miles and miles away from where I was standing. There seemed to be a light emitting from the hole.
“Hey stranger,” a low, cool voice sounded behind me.
I whipped my head around.
Dimm had her arms folded across her chest, the corner of her mouth only slightly lifting upward.
She meandered over to me. “So. You finally have the courage to talk to me.” She bowed. “What’s it like having a real conversation with your demon?”
I said nothing, my heart beating uncontrollably fast. I didn’t know what to say. I had never felt anything more terrifying my life. I wanted nothing to do with whatever was in front of me. I wanted to get away from this place, to wake up from this nightmare. But I knew I couldn’t. My hurt I had endured the entirety of the year would only increase if I didn’t stop it at the source.
“I...I don’t know how to feel,” I barely whispered.
“Well then how ‘bout I make this easier for you,” Dimm said, “why don’t you tell me how that little confession thing went yesterday?”
Pure rage flared up inside me.
“You saw all that happen didn’t you?” I yelled at her. “No, that’s a stupid question, of course you did! You’re my demon. It’s what you do! You’re supposed to make me feel ridiculous!”
“That’s not all we do,” she told me. “Just look at right now. You’re not afraid of me are you?”
I looked down at my fist. It was trembling. Not in fear, but in anger.
“I’m not here just to make you feel awful, Kit Kat. It’s too boring,” Dimm chuckled.
“But, I can tell you this. It was pretty annoying that you didn’t talk to me for a while. I was beginning to think you wouldn’t ever talk to me.”
“Why me?” I asked. “Why do I have to deal with this alone? What did I do, in this life or otherwise, to deserve this?”
Her eyes glowed brighter than before. “You aren’t alone. You never were, and you never will be. Everyone has a demon.” She put her gray hand on my shoulder. ”You just have to be brave enough to fight those other demons too.”
I woke up from my dream, looking around my room. It felt oddly empty.I touched my face lightly and jumped a little when I felt the tears. I haven’t had the nerve to cry like that in years.
I guess facing my demon brought out the best in me.