When The Pride Hurts More Than The Injury – KILLtober Short Story

He pulls himself from the water and collapses breathless onto the muddy bank, his side throbbing. He glances quickly down and pulls his eyes away even quicker. Three ribs stick out through his flesh, blood gushes from within leaving him in agony and the perpetual fear of his oncoming death.

He forces his hand into the mud and slowly edges himself to his hands and knees, letting out a long stutters breath as he looks up at himself.

“Crazy how this shit just sorta happened, isn’t it?” He says to himself.

“Y-Y-You make it sound like it was del-del-deliberate.”

He smiles, “of course it was all deliberate Samuel, I told you it was eventually going to happen, if that doesn’t spell deliberate I don’t know what does. You need to be more honest with yourself, otherwise more things like this is going to happen,” he says as his smile broadens.

“You fucked ME!” Samuel screams as he lunges for his doppelgänger, only to end up on the ground in a heaping pile of pain. “W-W-Why? Why a-a-are you doing this to me?”

“Why are you blaming me for something you have brought upon yourself? It is not I who is the one who is to blame for each and every bad decision you’ve ever made, it is you. I am just a version you have constructed from your frail mind to heap your blame upon. But as I am effectively you, I am also too stubborn to take the blame for your misfortunes, exactly like you are for your own. So instead of being a scapegoat I am a resonating soundboard, deflecting your insecurities back upon your own self.”

Samuel struggles to his feet, swaying from side to side.

“You’re not looking too good there partner, maybe you should find somewhere to sit down. Or maybe you could find and nice dry spot where you could curl up for the winter and take a nice long nap.”

“FUCK YOU!”

“There you go again attacking those around you, when the anger should be focused inwards, upon your own shoulders,” he says softly, as he casts a glance down at Samuel’s side. “Oh dear, that looks worse than it did a few moments ago, I’m afraid it might be irreversible at this stage of the game.”

“You don’t know what you’re FUCKING talking about! You’re just a FIGMENT if my imagination! My subconscious working against me! I’ll make it out of here, I’ll get back, and then I’ll make sure I get rid of you permanently!”

He smiles, “Samuel my dear boy, you’ll never get rid of me. I’ll always be here in your reflection, taunting you my perfection while you continue to fail at the simplest things in life. That is of course if you survive that injury

“I-I-I’ll survive,” Samuel says as he pulls his knife free from its sheath, displaying it proudly.

He smiles, “We’ve been though this Samuel, you cannot harm me, for I am just your reflection, you would do better to tear out you…” he doesn’t get to finish his words as he notices the smile grow upon Samuel’s face as he drives the blade upwards.

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