• "Is there anything we can do for her?"

    The doctor glanced at the white door. Everything was white here -- the hallway they were standing in, the walls, the uniforms. I suppose they wanted to look as clean as possible for a good first impression.

    The doctor I spoke to answered, "There's nothing either of us can do. She's simple far too gone."

    I couldn't take the shear gravity of that word. Gone. Missing. Lost forever. My mind tried to translate the word in a way that I would understand, but to no avail.

    "Are you sure?" I asked. "I'll pay any price, any value --"

    "I'm sorry," the doctor reassured me, "but we've done everything humanly possible; we've exhausted every option. Her mind is simply being consumed."

    "By what?" I hurriedly questioned. If there was a reason, then there might be a way to . . . to fix this. That. It. The problem, whatever it was.

    The doctor hesitated for a moment before answering, "Her conciousness is being taken over by . . . others. Other characters -- other <i>beings</i>."

    I was becoming impatient at his words. "What is it? Be specific!" I snapped.

    The doctor then sighed.

    "Let me ask -- did your daughter have . . . an active imagination?"

    I nodded. "Overly active." My mind showed me snippets of the past -- her asking me what every noise was at night in fear for a monster, she drawing the oddest things that were not of this world, writing constantly about events that had never happened. . . .

    The doctor nodded. "Her mind is being taken over by the characters that she herself had come up with."

    I couldn't take it anymore. I rushed over to the glass window and banged on it, desprete for her to see me.

    "SHELBY!" I screamed through the intercom at her. "Shelby, it's me!"

    The girl behind the glass . . . my daughter . . . she did not flinch at this, she did not even glance over. She still hunched over, still wrote in a provided notebook. My voice was not recognized by her.

    She was not my daughter. Not anymore.

    The doctor dragged me away from her. "I'm sorry, but you have to leave now. I think it's best for you not to see her until you're used to the idea."

    Gone. Disappeared. Vanished.

    I wept at the glass, staring through the glass the stranger I would never know again. Behind it, she simply continued to write, oblivious of the events around her.

    About a girl gone insane from her stories consuming her.