Raven

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•Ten•

I walk around earth, watching as some of the Forgotten trip the humans. Some of the Forgotten sit on benches, talking to friends. Some of the Forgotten walk around, as sad as I am, knowing they can never go home.

Knowing they're trapped.

For the past few months, I've been searching for the perfect victim. The perfect person. The perfect clone of myself.

I found her.

She has short hair, like me. She's kind of short, like me. She's always wanted to escape reality. Just like me. People call her Julia. Julia Tellez. From what I've heard so far, she plays clarinet in band and is bisexual. She isn't too good at math or science, but she wants to be a neurosurgeon, so she works hard in school. She's nineteen.

Just like me.

I'm miles away from Tim's apartment. Him and Sara survived, but Sara is in a mental health clinic. Nobody believes she say a demon. Only Tim. Of course, he won't say anything about it, but I still show up at his place every so often. He has a whiteboard on the counter that I write on, and that's how we communicate. My demon chip is useless. It can't even communicate with the other Forgotten. All I need is to get Julia to let me possess her.

I follow Julia to her small house. It has one bed, one bath, one kitchen, and a small living room. It's one of those tiny houses. She's a minimalist, and I love that. She's all about quality over quantity. I agree with it.

Julia starts to walk to the bathroom to wash off her makeup. She does the same thing every day. Wake up, go to work, come home, take off makeup, eat the first and last meal of the day, go to bed.

As I expected, Julia starts to wash off her makeup. She doesn't wear very much. Just some blush and some lip gloss. Nothing more. On special occasions, she'll wear eyeliner. After she finishes, she does that thing girls do to check her size. She puts her hands around her waist and smiles. That's never happened.

My turn.

I step in front of the mirror, letting her see me. She panics for a moment, looks behind her, and of course, sees nothing. When she looks back at the mirror, I've written a message with my marker. It's not permanent, but I'm nervous about how she'll react.

She reads my message out loud, "Can you help me?" She laughs for a second. "Hold on a second." She runs out of the bathroom towards her bedroom. I quickly follow her. She grabs a paper and draws a line down the middle. On one side, she writes "yes." On the other, she writes "no." She places a small marble on the line.

"I'm going to ask a question, and you move the marble to your answer, okay?" She smiles. "Are you an angel?"

I push the marble to the "no" side.

"Okay. Are you a good demon?"

I move the marble to the "yes" side.

"Yay! Are you a boy?"

I move the marble to "no" again.

"Are you a girl?"

I don't move the marble.

"Nonbinary?"

I move to "yes."

After a while, she learns a lot about me. She flips the paper over and lays the pencil to the side of it.

"What do you want with me?" she asks.

I use my marker to write my answer.

"Can I possess you?"

"You want to possess me? Wow. Um. How would that work? Would I still be able to use my own body?"

About an hour passes. Julia soon learns what possession could mean. She'd still be fully aware of what I do, but when I possess her, her eyes will turn fully black. She understands that after I possess her, I can possess her whenever, but she also understands that I don't want to hurt anyone. She understands that when I possess her, she'll have nightmares, but she has nightmares anyways. And it'll be easier to communicate. Whatever I say, she hears.

"Follow me," Julia goes back to the bathroom. She stands in front of the mirror. "I'm ready."

I grab her shoulder, causing her to jump slightly. Death is cold. I must be freezing. I close my eyes and think. I just concentrate. In a few seconds, I'm in control.

"Hello, Julia. Nice to meet you," I say, then leave her body.

She just stands there for a few seconds. Then, she gives a breathy laugh. "Hi! Uh, what's your name?"

I take over again. "I'm Raven. I used to be an angel, but someone corrupted me. Now, I'm this. Banned from the Underworld. So, you sing?" I leave her again. I've seen some of her lyrics. She's got a pretty good voice, she just can't play any instruments.

"Not really. I only write lyrics. I can't sing. I'm stuck."

I take over. "I've heard your voice. You're pretty good." I leave.

"I've gotta make dinner. Wanna help?"

I possess her again. "For one, I can't cook. Two, possession is tiring. Can I sleep on the couch for tonight?" I leave again.

"Of course!" She walks to the kitchen while I pass out on the loveseat.

I'm running. I don't know where, I don't know why, I just know that I have to run. If I don't, I'm dead.

I come to a forest and, without thinking, run into it. The tree branches whip furiously at my face, tangling my little bit of hair. The bushes scratch my almost bare legs. I only wear short shorts and a tight tank top. The ground hurts my bare feet, making them bleed. One of the tree roots trips me. I fall through the ground. I float around, red flames burning my body, incinerating my clothes. A man runs through the flames, grabbing me and throwing me in a lake. The burns completely heal. I start to sink to the bottom.

Black vines begin to pull me to the bottom. I feel as if my head is going to explode. The salty water is burning my eyes, but I have to escape. I have to get to the surface. Just before I black out, I open my mouth, praying for any kind of miracle. I don't get one.

I wake up in a cold sweat. The first thing I hear is a scream. I run to Julia's room. She's still asleep. I possess her, waking her up.

"Are you okay?" I ask, then leave.

"Just a nightmare. I'm used to it by now." She stands up and grabs her phone. She opens TikTok. The first clip to pop up is Timothy. She scrolls past him. I possess her and go back to watch the video.

"Quick update. My surgery went great. I got the news today that I don't need to amputate after all. They got the infection out, and in a few weeks, I'll be back in cosplay. I just wanted to let you guys know. Thanks for all the support and the donations. I didn't expect to get that much help from you. Thank you so much. Have a great day. Goodbye." The clip restarts, meaning it ended. I follow him, then leave her body again.

"Who is he?" Julia asks.

"A friend," I answer, taking over.

"Oh. Right."

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