A young girl named Hellä is mourning the death of her friend and lover Mikko one cold evening. She is overcome with grief and sorrow, leading to a series of brutal hallucinations that drive Hellä to the brink of claiming her own life. Are the illusions real? Or is the haunting just a memory of the past?

A sky that never changed. An azure that Hellä examined as a motif. A picture denoting nothing more than her own state of mind. It was an iconic element. The colors mixed blue, purple and silver creating a softening atmosphere that engulfed the city and her apartment from which she watched. Through the transparency of the window Hellä watched many things. The snow. Falling in flakes, storms and silence. The buildings old and new, bland and modern, roughened with character. A small flurry of divers circled the peaks and then swooped into the sky, fading into the remaining light. Children passed below, innocent and happy, their minders steely with edge. The evening was shifting to night.

Hellä continued to sit, her eyes gazing down on the city she had known and lived her life. It was without regard, as she was staring at something much further away, so far in fact that she, herself was unaware of its true identity. Hellä was captivated in an abyss. Momentarily her sight flicked upwards, catching a glimpse of the first star in the sky. A crystal hovering over the upraised natural matter above. It sparkled once, and then Hellä's eyes returned to the cloudy visionary state she had held for what seemed like days. Days of anguish and pain. At her desk, the dark room surrounding her began to take on an aggressive tone. The power of darkness loomed around Hellä who failed to notice the shadowy figures creeping across the walls. A low chanting overhead. Dripping water. The creaking of the floorboards. Her fingernails clawing slowly at the desk. Smoke from the burnt out candle. Silence. It evoked something animal, despite the muted feel of the room and now also the roads and people outside, as if the world was watching. The snow had ceased falling. 

It was now very dark. A dead air had gripped the room. The silence was tender, awaiting the inevitable cascade of noise and motion. And it came. As the ascending fumes from the candle entered Hellä's nostrils, her emotion finally revealed itself. She let out a terrible scream. Anger and fright took over, erupting in a psychotic fury that attacked Hellä. She shrieked no words, just disturbance. Her cries were of both a high and low pitch that echoed in the emptiness of a home that no longer was. Hellä fell to the floor in a terrifying way, her body crashing down as she tore at her face and clothes. The darkness gave no mercy. Her voice then became horribly deep, like a monster. The room shook, spinning, somehow larger without light. Outside the storm began to move once again. The contents of Hellä's desk was sweeped to the floor, one object shattering. As if in synchronized fashion the windows exploded under the furious noise, showering Hellä in tiny fragments of glass. It was only then that her crying died out.

For a while nothing happened. The silence had reoccurred, save for the gentle wind now blowing into the study. An icy chill followed, causing Hellä to shiver. Huddled in a ball on the floor, her eyes were clamped shut. tears emanating from her lashes. Only when the storm subsided did she dare to open them. Hellä's vision was at first obscure, taking time to adjust. Then everything came into focus. What she saw was worse than she could ever have imagined. It was a photo. Not an ordinary one. Not a moment frozen in time. This one was moving. The frame had fallen from the desk and broken. Glass pieces still decorated its surface. Mikko was staring back. His face so close, his expressions so real. Hellä reached out but couldn't feel anything, her hand driving straight through the ghostly image in front of her. In desperation she called for Mikko, yelling his name through a bloodshed mouth, her cheeks moist and her hair dishevelled. Then she stopped. A second figure had appeared from the shadows behind Mikko and caught her eye. It was a woman. Wearing white but with black eyes and a hateful look upon her face. In her hand was something long and sharp. Terrified, Hellä froze, unable to divert her gaze. The woman raised her arm the weapon concealed in a cold, hardened fist. As a climax appeared imminent the vignette faded away, denying Hellä her answer, her conclusion. She was soon sobbing uncontrollably, the pain from her injuries was fresh and yet they were miniscule compared to her mental frailty. It was only since the image had disappeared that Hellä had realized. The woman in the photo. The one holding the knife. It was her.


The End

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