Andie snapped awake. She felt cool and calm – calmer than she’d felt all day. She sat upright and checked on her injuries. She was badly hurt, but she felt no pain.
More importantly, Andie was completely monochrome, just like she used to be. Something must have happened to her ego. Was the bothersome clump of empathy and insecurity finally gone?
No. She could believe that Cedric had been wrong about what happens to shadows when their ego dies… but there was no way in hell she was willing to believe that Dylan’s lunkheaded Shadow Nightmare had done in a matter of minutes what she had been trying for years to accomplish.
So where was her ego?
Andie turned her attention to the jagged obsidian spike she had fallen from less than a minute ago. It towered over her, splattered with a few splashes of the Will to Live her injuries had bled. Not nearly as much Will to Live as she’d expected, though.
Where was the rest of it? She knew from experience her ego didn’t go down easily, so the whole mindscape should be coated in golden orange Will by now.
A tingling sensation in Andie’s right leg drew her attention. There, shadowy tendrils dragged marble sized droplets of her ego’s lost Will into the wound – corrupting the golden orange ectoplasm’s power into shadowy black pride that it used to weave her leg back into its original, healthy state.
Still, something warm lingered after the power was drained from the Will to Live. Something that was kind and hopeful, but also hurt and afraid. Something being drawn into a golden orange light deep within Andie’s chest. The light was weak, but still shone bright and proud.
It was her ego, Andie was sure of it. Dying, but not dead. Not as long as she was there to protect it.
A note from the
Our shadows are made up of all we deny in ourselves.
Most people don’t deny the fact that injuries hurt, so most people’s shadows don’t feel pain.