A/N: I am halfway done with the book. This just made its way to my head.

Hi Lia.

She is sitting on one side of my bed. She is pale. She is dead. She is haunted.

I abandoned her. She told me I wasn't her best friend. And here she is – appearing to me in the dark. I'm afraid.

Her hair is still tangled and braided. She has no shoes on. She's wearing a blue dress. The snails are still there on the flesh of her neck and fingers. She follows me everywhere. I can't hide.

My eyes travel to hers. They are misty. Shivers run down my spine.

Hi Lia. She repeats those words in my head. I wish she could go back to the motel room. Or the coffin.

she called me.

she called me thirty-three times.

She's not supposed to be here now. But, still, she wants to ruin me – bring me down with her.

Sweat covers my skin. I feel vulnerable. I close my eyes. Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. Exhale. Open. Her body is still there.

What's wrong, Lia?

"You're not supposed to be here," I mutter. She's supposed to be rotting now. Why aren't those tiny snails drilling into her skin right now?

I see the corners of her chapped, pale lips rise up. Her grin is scaring the hell out of me. I shiver again. I'm a coward.

"Leave me alone," I say in the darkness shakily. It's about midnight. It's windy outside. I'm under my bed sheets. I feel tiny. Empty. Empty is good. Correct. Yes. Right?

She scoots an inch closer to me.

I'm here.

"I don't want you here."

Cassie is dead. Dead. Dead. Dead.

She is in her coffin. She is rotting. She is in her coffin. She is dead. Dead. Dead. Dead. Dead. Rotting. Dead.

I'm here, Lia.

"Shut up," I tell the dead person.

She moves two inches closer. I bring my knees to my chest – searching for comfort.

I needed you.

"Go away," I whisper.

Suddenly, she is by my side. She isn't touching me but I can feel her breath on my neck. The dead isn't supposed to be breathing. Callie isn't supposed to be breathing. Stupid. Ugly. Idiot. Dead. Bitch.

I hold my breath when I see it. She is holding a knife. I didn't see where she got it.

I look at her face.

I can see her cheek bones. I can see cold. I can see the dead. I can see Cassie. I can see myself. I shudder.

She cuts herself. I gasp. Blood appears from the cut. She makes more cuts on her palm. The blood pools in her hand. She lets out a loud, breathy laugh.

Wintergirls. We're wintergirls. You remember, don't you, Lia?

I remember but I don't answer her question. I feel like passing out. I jump out of my bed and run for the door. I am fast. But Cassie appears in front of the door – blocking my way out.

thirty-three times.

I scream. Nothing comes out. I'm trapped in Hell with my dead ex-best friend.

Empty is strong.

Cut. She commands me and offers the little knife.

I flutter my eyes shut. I open it again.

She's still there.

She grabs my hand and cuts my palm quickly. I gasp. My eyes grow wide and I feel empty. And strong. Empty is strong.

she called me.

I breathe in air and look at the blood flowing out of the cut. The corpse is still grasping my hand. My veins feel like exploding. My heart feels like imploding.

Cobwebs are everywhere. They are on the ceiling. The walls. The bed. The laptop. The closet. My jeans. Cassie's dress. Everywhere. Dizzy.

The addict is completely back.

I draw three lines on my forearm.

Swish. Swash. Slash.

Get. Lost.

Another two.

Swish. Slash.

I look up to those two, blurry eyes.

"I'm the skinniest. Skinnier than you," I say to her.

She finds it as a challenge. Her grin comes back and I continue.

I lift up the right side of my orange T-shirt.

I make two, short (painful) cuts.

Swash. Slash.

Crimson red blood oozes out. I press two, shaking fingers on them.

It burns. It hurts. I like it.

Empty is strong and invincible.

I bring the knife to my wrist.


Tears hit the cut.

I'm dead. My fat gets eaten. I'll be skinnier than you in no time.

I cut more in anger.

And more.

And more.

And more.

A hundred times more.

It hurts to harm your own body.

It hurts to lie. Especially about my weight.

I break down because the darkness collides with everything else – I'm being pulled downward swiftly.

"I'm sorry," It comes out broken. Just like I am.

she called me.

It's a gloomy Sunday afternoon. The sun is hiding behind the dark gray clouds.

A man, his wife and her daughter weeps with the new corpse's mother.

The man's wife's daughter found her body in her room – bleeding to death.

No one else seemed to have been there.

Now we're the skinniest together.