Just when I thought I could not see anything worse, just when I began to hope it would be over soon, the visions showed me more.

            I had seen my doppelganger murder Owen and Daniel in the pool, but now I saw those events with new eyes.  I had known that my doppelganger had perpetrated these crimes, a fact that I am certain shocked Daniel and Owen.  I had been their trusted friend, and now it seemed as if I was murdering them.  The demon wearing my face lusted for blood, to exact vengeance for all the slights I had endured in my childhood.  It was fed by my suffering, grew strong on it, as those events empowered my rage, which festered like putrid sores in my soul.  This “Donovan Reza” sought death and destruction.

            I watched this Grim Reaper force Owen to eat himself to death, and saw that he enjoyed every sadistic moment of it.  But on the spiritual plane, as Owen died, two heads of the beast merged into one, bigger and stronger than the others.  It fed upon itself and grew more powerful.  And I saw Owen’s very soul, symbolized by a bright little spark in his chest, absorbed, swallowed and digested inside the monster.  That soul had grown dimmer than it should have been, I knew, after a lifetime of sin, but it was still beautiful.  I hated to see it lost in darkness, and my heart broke for Owen.

            I felt even more pity for Daniel.  He had been sexually abused as a child, though I was the only person he had ever told, and a lot of his problems stemmed from those tumultuous times.  He had needed a confessor one drunken night at our university, and I had been there to salve his conscience.  Part of me hated him for the torments he had inflicted upon me as a child, but part of me knew that he was in need of forgiveness and love, too. 

            With that purer, Christian part of myself lost in the desert, Daniel was now left in the hands of my dark side, the side that loathed him for taunts, for pranks, for beatings, and had delighted in late night murderous imaginings for years, ever since he had left me for dead in the cemetery as a teenager.  It was something no one knew at all; I had told the police that I couldn’t remember enough about that day, after the trauma.  But all alone, I had known it was Daniel.  He knew that I knew, and it had meant something to him, that he had been forgiven during university.  But he would receive no pardon from the demon before him.  Reza tortured him, humiliated him, and let out a rage that had been contained for more than a decade.

            I saw the gleam in my doppelganger’s eyes as he watched Daniel die, and saw the fear in Dan’s gaze.  His spirit was broken at the very sight of my face on his assailant, and fear overwhelmed him.  In the spiritual realm, I saw the soul within him darken, like a fire down to its last ashes, before the beast swallowed it up hungrily.  It was reduced to only five heads now, but Reza’s was dominant over the rest, and the abomination actually seemed stronger, as if every sin compounded on the last, and every death contributed to its life.

            I knew it was my job to kill it.

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