Ryan wasn't sure when NotRyan had first appeared. He simply couldn't remember a time when he looked into a mirror without NotRyan behind him. Oh, NotRyan had a way of disguising himself, so only Ryan could see or here him, and no one seemed to believe in the existence of NotRyan… well of course, except Ryan.

He placed his lime green and neon pink pinstriped fedora on the edge of the bathtub and looked over at the mirror hanging innocently above the sink. He ducked as he went over to the sink and picked up the red handled hairbrush, hoping to avoid the mirror and NotRyan. But the familiar voice started laughing, and Ryan let out a sad sigh.

"What are you doing?" NotRyan sighed and Ryan watched as his image in the mirror seemed to carry on without him.

"My hair." Ryan replied as he ran the brush through his hair. It was growing kind of shaggy, but since it was always hidden under a hat, he'd never noticed.

"Eww… you need a haircut."

Ryan shrugged. "I think it looks fine, a bit like Troy's almost. But I'm meeting him and the others for a movie night, it might be weird showing up with the same hairstyle… hmm… maybe I should get it cut…"

NotRyan rolled his eyes and shifted. "Ooooh." He cooed mockingly. "Hanging out with the Wildcats hmmm? Trying to be a big jock on campus?"

"We're watching a movie… and no, I'm not trying to be a jock. I might tryout for the volleyball team though. Coach Darwin sat in on gym class today and said with my hand-eye coordination and jumping ability that I've got potential." Ryan brushed his hair a bit faster as NotRyan stared at him with familiar blue eyes and flicked his blond hair out of his eyes. He waited for the inevitable question from his alter ego.

"And is Sharpey going to this little… shindig?"

"She wasn't invited."

"You shouldn't go."

"Why not?" Ryan snapped back. "I can do things without Sharpey." He rested the brush back on the side of the sink. He really didn't need a brush, but his mother had bought it for him years ago and he still used it. What he really needed was a comb of some sorts…

"Since when?" NotRyan laughed. "She's your only friend."

"No, I have others I-"

NotRyan rolled his eyes. "You helped them out in the summer; they're still feeling in debt to you. Wait until you graduate, you'll never see them again, ha, such good friends. What do you have in common with any of them Ryan? They're smart, and athletic, and attractive and popular. You're Ryan Evans, the drama dork, whose mother and sister still dress him and the day you get over a C+ on a math test is the day Sharpey carries a knock off Louis Vutton handbag!"

"Well," Ryan faltered uncomfortably. "fine, maybe we don't have a lot in common, but I don't need Sharpey..."

Not Ryan began tugging at the strands of blond hair sticking out at the front. He looked tired, bored of having the same conversations time and time again. "But you need the Wildcats. So you're going to start following them around like a little terrier. You need someone Ryan, because you are nothing. All you are is a reflection of whoever decides to be nice enough to hang out with you."

"What do you know?" Ryan snapped back angrily as he felt his cell phone vibrate in his back pocket.

"Everything," NotRyan replied rolling his eyes. " I'm you, you dope."

Ryan swallowed nervously and wiped his hands off on his pants. "No, no you're not."

"Well, perhaps you're right. I'm all you can never be and all you want to be! My sole purpose is to sit here every time you look into the mirror and torment you. Face it, you can't even read."

"Once! I was tired, not illiterate!" Ryan could feel his face heating up. He wasn't an idiot, he might be slightly unfocused at times, but really who wasn't?

"Whatever you say." NotRyan replied smirking and Ryan couldn't help but wonder if he'd ever worn and expression of smugness before.

Ryan pulled his cell phone out of his back pocket and looked down at the screen, indicating he had two new text messages. He began clicking buttons while looking up at NotRyan. "What about you? Don't you have anything better to do?"

"Not really."

"So you're so smart and popular that all you can do is sit here and bully me? Some life." He grunted, he was sick of this and he was tired, he'd put up with NotRyan for such a long time… and today he was feeling okay with himself. He wanted to keep that for as long as he could.

NotRyan smirked even wider. "Well, well, well, little Ryanlito, you appear to be growing a bit of a spine."

"And you appear to be butchering Spanish…"

"You shouldn't go."

"Well I am."

"What are you going to wear then? You'll look like an idiot without Sharpey to dress you."

"I look like an idiot when she does!"

"You'll make a fool of yourself!"

"Not anymore than Sharpey already has!"

"You're not going!"

"I'm going and if you don't like it then go to hell!"

In one swift motion he chucked his cell phone at the mirror, successfully smashing the small electronic device into three pieces and leaving a small, barely noticeable crack in the mirror. Swallowing nervously, he tried to think of a good reason as to why he'd just thrown his really nice silver KRZR phone against the mirror.

Ryan picked up the broken pieces of his phone, cradling them, and trying his best to figure out how he could avoid telling his parents this… maybe he could tell them he dropped it and a car ran over it. That sounded all right.

He kept his eyes on the mirror as he did this, feeling blindly for the pieces, and watching NotRyan who seemed speechless.

NotRyan was still there, but for once he seemed startled by the outburst and content to stay quiet.

I do not own HSM. Please Review.