I sat in my room, listening to Annie describe her day while Dante commented. They were my constant companions. Never leaving and always talking to me. Sure, it was nice to never have to be alone, but part of me longed for something that my friends had. Something... Real?
Eve had a new girl she was talking to and, at that moment, Flynn and Makenna were next door watching Lord of the Rings. I would have asked to join them, but it seemed wrong to intrude.... Would I find someone on this side that I could hang out with? A girl?
I shook my head and looked at Dante. "Sorry... what?"
Dante shook his head and gave Annie a toothy grin. "Your brother likes to zone out lately, huh?"
Annie nodded, sending her blonde hair over her shoulders. "Yeah, he's gotta learn to listen more! Big Bro, is everything alright?"
I just nodded and gave Annie a smile. It's what a good brother should do. I couldn't show weakness to Annie, else she might not grow up right and.... Well, never mind. "I'm sorry Annie, it's just all my friends are pairing up and I feel... left out." Annie gave a frown - it was obvious she didn't understand. I didn't either really... Dante, though, grinned widely.
"So...," Dante said slowly, "You finally want a girl?"
I started to protest, but stopped myself. It was true, wasn't it? "... Maybe..."
Annie gave a huff. "A girl? You have me, though!"
Dante waved his hand at Annie. "You don't understand, Annie. Sure, I loved my own sisters, but eventually I wanted a girlfriend."
"Did you find one?" I asked Dante curiously.
Dante winked at that. "Oh I found plenty. I lost count after about seventy or so.... But, I'll never forget Tonya..." A sad smile went across Dante's face. That was a first, Dante being sad about anything.
But, I wasn't about to mention that. "So, who is Tonya?"
"Well.... Tonya is my wife. Back in the day she was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. She had those legs that just kept going and..." Dante looked at his audience nervously. Odd, he usually didn't mind saying inappropriate things no matter who heard. "Anyway, I tried to get her, but she was the first I ever had refuse. It took a ring and ten long amazing years to make me get my fill of her."
I was curious now. Dante had never once spoken of his wife before. "What happened to her?"
"Oh, she's still alive. I saw her a few weeks back. Living in a nursing home and about to hit one hundred."
Annie frowned. "I want to meet her! Don't you, Brother?"
A smile came to my face. It WOULD be nice to see a woman who can mellow out Dante's.... interests. "Anyway, I should get some sleep, guys...."
I nearly jumped at Dante's shout. I was glad Flynn could only hear my words. "What is it, Dante?"
Dante stood from his place across the room and walked over toward me... And didn't stop. What.. what was he doing? His arm touched mine, sending a tingling feeling down it. That... was new.
"I'm sorry, Al," Dante said as his arm started sinking into my own. His hand did not appear below my arm, either. What was he doing?! "I just can't bear to see you always alone. I originally decided to never do this, but the days still young and this is a golden opportunity. That Naomi girl is just downstairs..."
Instantly, I knew what he was talking about....
A few years before, when Annie was still alive and we were just starting to live in the streets, a person from the other side figured out I could talk. At first, since he was a man who had lived on the streets as well, he helped me and Annie get by. We followed his every order, even the ones that made no since. After a while though, the man figured out he had a power as someone on that side. Something he used on Annie and almost got her killed....
And now Dante was possessing me.
It only took a moment for him to disappear inside of my arm. I felt no different after the tingling subsided, but I could not move. Not even a little bit. It was like being in a movie. You saw everything going on, just could do nothing about it.
"Now to find Naomi," I said, though I had no control. Dante was even speaking for me, it seemed. "She will be a good start for Al."
I stood up, once again not actually making myself do it, and walked out of the door. Annie, I realized, was no where to be seen. Maybe she had gone to warn Naomi?
'Please, Annie, just don't hurt her.'
"Oh she isn't going to Naomi, Al."
"That's right..." Dante said through my mouth, "You don't know... Anyway, as long as I have control, I am the one with your abilities, not you. Annie stayed in the room after saying she was going to get me. You make a good shield, Al!" Dante laughed through my mouth.
It only took a second for him to find Naomi. Strangely enough, I wasn't regretful, sad, or even angry at Dante. I think I was just tense. What would Dante say? What would Naomi say? It was all going to happen whether I wanted it to or not... I just hoped it didn't cause any of my new friends to leave me...
Naomi had left her room to tend to some flowers downstairs, apparently, and was making a few pansies regrow to their full bloom when she spotted me. Well, it was really Dante, but there was no way she would know that. Please don't let her find out... If they knew I could be possessed at any time... They might not trust me... Were these fears irrational, though?
Dante spoke with my mouth before I could think any more and before Naomi could speak.
"Your flowers are beautiful as ever," I heard myself say through Dante's manipulation, "But I think they pale in comparison to a beauty such as yourself." Dante didn't give her a moment to speak as he glided my body in closer - nearly a few inches away - and continued his speech. "I truly do not think you have the gift to grow, but that you are so full of life and beauty that you inspire nature to try in vain to reach your level. I fear nature will always fall short of that goal, though, my dear."
Oh God... What had I let Dante do?