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Dayana Sheytanova - April 2010
Dayana Sheytanova - April 2010

I was born on a cold December night in  Bulgaria, back in 1991. Lived practically  8/9 of my life there with my grandparents and little brother. My grandparents, perhaps the most hardworking people on this planet, worked in our baby store downstairs, while we resided on the upper floor, so our house was something similar to a beehive. My first real piece of writing was perhaps my diary from when I was 10, but writing to me has always been a way to escape one world and create my own reality. When I was accepted to the American College of Sofia (which is actually a high school) I began writing in English, and I have always found it more exciting to write in English than in Bulgarian for some odd reason. Then, when I was sixteen, I decided to make a little experiment and move half the world away. Living with my mother here in Chicago has been a worthy of a story experience. And I finally managed to sign up for a Creative Writing class, where Miscellaneous was born.   

The following work is copyright © 2010. All rights reserved. No distribution or reprinting in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.



“No…no! Leave me alone, Jane!” I whispered fervently trying not to look at her. I hid my teary face in the comfort of the pillow. This isn’t happening… I was shaking my head in disbelief.

“Is that how you greet your best friend?” I could just see Jane smirking.

 “You shouldn’t be here…you can’t be back…you can’t,” I said more to the pillow. I felt Jane plop onto the bed close to me. No…no…  I was covering my ears with the pillow.

     “Come on now, don’t tell me you’ve forgotten all the wonderful times we shared that quickly.” There was a warm smile in her voice. 

 “You know you can tell me anything,” I didn’t need to- she knew everything about me, and I- about her. But her voice was drawing me in. As if hypnotized, I raised my head and finally looked at her. I jumped a little at seeing her again, and not because she had changed. I recognized her silky blond hair and characteristic smug smile, her usually emotionless eagle-like ocean eyes, her tall slender figure-she was a complete contrast to myself –simply beautiful.

One glance was all it took me to understand she knew exactly what had happened, yet she wanted me to tell her. She really was my best friend. Looking back, I realized she’d never been actually gone. In truth, I had never wanted her to leave; she was the only one who truly cared for me- I needed her. After I chased her away, I didn’t see her, but I had always known she was around- just laying low…

”Tell me, Mary,” she urged lovingly. I had never seen so much concern in another’s eyes before.  

 “He’s back,” I shuddered. “She just let him come back in, just like that… she’s crazy… it’s like she doesn’t r-remember him,” I stuttered helplessly. Jane’s expression changed to one of sheer determination. 

“You know why I am here then. ” I nodded. “I am going to help you, like always.” Every time, Jane told me exactly what to say or do, so the damage of his beatings was minimal. She was always so strong. I’ve always admired her for it and she knew it…She was the one who helped me survive through all these years. I practically owe her my life and that’s why I have always trusted and obeyed her. She’d never let me down… until that day…

“No…” I whispered, looking at a single spot on the floor. “I have Bianca, she’s my friend.” I uttered the last word carefully. “I am going to tell her and she is going to help,” I attempted fighting, my head bowed down.

“You don’t know what you’re saying,” she continued with a calm voice, though I knew her better. “Have I

taught you nothing? She is just like the rest,” she spat the last word out.” They are all out to hurt you. You can trust only me, you know that, right?” She cooed.  

“But Bianca isn’t -”

“I know better, Mary. Trust me… When she finds out about everything, she is going to leave you, just like everyone else, and you are going to be all alone.” I stiffened at the realization of her harsh words. Curling in a ball, I began trembling violently. I was just a little girl again- completely defenseless. Jane came closer. 

“There, there, my dear Mary,” she started stroking my back. Her touch felt too real. “Everything is going to 

be all right. I am here now. We are going to make it- together…You know that when you hurt, I hurt with you.” 

Jane continued caressing me. “They are all liars. They only want to harm you.” I relaxed under her touch. Jane is right-it is all their fault, they are all out to get me.  As I was thinking, she continued soothing me. Under the surface, however, I was hanging on the brink and Jane was taking control.  Every part of my being was pushing me to let go, and I was about to…when the clear image of my brother flew before my eyes...

“NO!” I yelled and sprang from the bed and out of her reach. “I won’t let you,” I declared, but her expression stopped my breath in my throat. “R-remember w-what h-happened… lasttime?” my sudden strength was quickly leaving me. She started cackling.

 “Oh, stupid Mary, I am already here.” She was slowly approaching me as I was walking backwards to the window. “And have I taught you nothing all these years? Never show fear,” she was towering over me, yet I could feel her pulsing in my veins...I must stop this…

Please, God…

“I..I-I ‘m not going to…to… obey your c-commands,” I barely uttered the sentence I had practiced over a million times.

Please God, please…

           Jane came in front,  looking me straight in the eye. I had to stay still, not flinch, and not show weakness. 

“You stupid girl,” she hissed. “You can’t get rid of me, you weakling. You need me.” I was shaking from the efforts of summoning all my power, struggling to take control… 

Please God, give me strength…  I breathed…

“I can and I don’t need you, so get out of my head.” and to her horror, I said:“You are not real!” Jane shrieked and lunged at me. I shut my eyes, chanting… Shesnotreal Shesnotreal Shesnotreal…

“You never were…and know what? I-I don’t need you anymore!” I shouted out at the top of my lungs.

 Panting, I cautiously opened my eyes. I heard the load thump of the front door downstairs and then peaceful silence. I looked around. My room was full of fresh, bright sunlight.  In a daze, I sat onto my bed, slowly laying my head down.  I listened for her again, trying to feel her presence, but she was gone… Forever, let’s hope.  

Someone knocked on my door and opened it slowly.  My eyelids were so heavy; all I wanted was to sleep. The person uncertainly sat on the edge of my bed.

“Mary?” I recognized my mother’s voice, but I could barely keep my eyes open. “I was wrong, Mary,” she breathed out. “He hasn’t changed and never will. I can’t believe I was about to …the first thing he went for was the Johnny Walker,” she laughed bitterly at herself. “I can’t believe the mistake I was going to make. To make us relive this all over again…” She hesitantly started caressing my hair.  “I threatened him with the police if he ever comes back… ran out as fast as his legs could bear him, just a moment ago… I don’t think he’ll ever want to come back,” she giggled and then sighed in relief.

I couldn’t say a word. I slowly rested my head onto her lap as she timidly embraced me. With warm wetness in my eyes, I fell into calm slumber.