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She sat in her room, the world spinning all around in one dark mass, the voices of memory encompassing every thought. Where could she go to quiet them?

"No where," they answered, "We are you, and you are us."

Tossing and turning, she raged in her sleep, blankets and pillows thrown all over the floor. She finally awoke when her hand hit the corner of the headboard. "Damn," she yelled as she sat up, turned on the light, and examined the gash on her right hand. The blood ran thickly down her knuckle and over her wrist. For a moment, she sat motionless and watched it.

As the creek of blood began to clot, she released herself from her fascination and licked her hand. Her saliva stung the wound pleasantly, and at once, the congealing trickle stopped. She looked at the clock – 3:37 a.m. She'd almost made it through another night.

Getting up and going to the bathroom, she rinsed the wound and poured peroxide on it. Bubbles pushed their way in and around the cut, playing with the still open wound. Small drops of blood fought their way back to the surface. As they appeared, the peroxide engulfed them.

Looks like pink champagne, she thought, smiling to herself and knowing full well that she didn’t have to allow this to go on. Still, the peroxide's sting gave her that familiar feeling, the feeling that just the right amount of pain can give to one's desires.

A couple hours hung in the balance before daylight, the remaining cover of darkness providing so much temptation, but what would be out there at this time of the morning, she thought. She gave the clock another glance – 4:03 a.m.

Rather than leave the safety of her home, she picked up the phone and dialed. The voice answered and obeyed. Within a half-hour, the doorbell rang. It was time.

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