I looked at him. "What do you mean? Alex? The girl who has been my friend since the beginning of the school year?" He smiled a bit and said, "Haven't heard of her, but I'm glad you've made friends at this school." I desperately turned to my mom, who was in the dining room. She was on her computer, most likely answering work emails. "Mom, you know Alex, right? The girl who has been living with us?" She kept her attention on her laptop, but I noticed that her eyes narrowed and her brows furrowed. "I'm sorry hun, I'm not sure who you're talking about," she said as she continued to rapidly type on her computer. I was in shock. What was happening? How could I be the only one who remembered Alex, especially when she had basically become family? I ran to my room, despite hearing concerned comments from my family. I instantly ran over to my wooden nightstand and picked up my phone so violently that I nearly broke my phone charger that was plugged in at the time. I scrambled to unlock my phone; I messed up the password so many times that I almost got locked out. I went into my contacts and searched for Alex. Her phone number wasn't there. I searched on social media and found nothing. I looked through my old pictures, and all of the pictures that used to have Alex and I in them now only showed me. My hand was shaking. I set my phone back down on the night stand and collapsed onto my bed. My thumping heart could be felt all throughout my body, and thoughts seemed to race through my mind with every beat. Thump. Did Alex ever exist? Thump. Was I just dreaming? Thump. This couldn't be real. Thump. Am I going insane?? I sat on my bed and cried so heavily that I began to hyperventilate. I had just lost my best friend. Or did I? Did she even exist? I didn't even know anymore. It was about noon before I had even realized how long this had been going on. I opened my door and made my way down the hallway. They were speaking in low voices. I paused and waited at the end of the hallway, trying my hardest to hear what they were saying. "Should we take her to a doctor?" my father asked. "She has been acting this way since the move," my mom replied. "Well we can't just move back." "I don't know what to do.. she just isn't the same." I couldn't listen any longer. Now my parents thought I was crazy? An idea struck me. If I killed that creature in the woods.. my life might go back to normal.. Before I knew it, I was headed out of my bedroom window, armed with a large hammer that I had found in the garage. I went into the forest with a courage like I had never felt before. My mind had one target, and I was not going to miss. Heavy clouds began to form over the trees. Snow was the last thing I needed, but I wasn't going to let it stop me. I trekked deep into the forest of trees, carefully watching and listening. Far off, somewhere in the woods, an unwelcome yet familiar noise filled my ears once again. The growl, the yell, the screech. I began to question my choice, and I considered turning back. I was shaken.. Ready to go home, I turned back in the direction of my house. Something stopped me. A familiar voice called out my name. "M-Maggie?" I nearly dropped my hammer. "Alex?!" I turned around, expecting to see my friend. What I saw... was strange. I saw Alex, but she looked different. Her typically straight black hair was tangled and matted. She was staring straight at me, not breaking eye contact. And her smile... She was grinning from ear to ear, but not a cheerful smile. A sinister grin. I looked at her. "A-Alex.." She didn't move. Whoever this was, it wasn't Alex. I sprinted as fast as I could. I heard her follow behind me, running on all fours. I continued to run until I couldn't hear her anymore. I closed my eyes and bent over, gasping for breath. I leaned against my hammer and took a minute to regain my strength. After a few minutes, I opened my eyes to find an orange pair of eyes staring back at me. The reflective eyes were watching me, and for how long, I didn't know. I was about to pick up my hammer when two cold hands grabbed me from behind. The thing that took over Alex pinned me onto the ground. I tried to fight and escape, but it was too late. I stared into the reflective orange eyes of this creature, and I slowly began to feel numb. I felt like I was falling. Every inch of my body was in pain, despite me feeling numb. It eventually faded into darkness.... I woke up to the bright moon shining on my face. I was... still in the forest? I was fine. Maybe that was a dream? I went back towards my house, ready to go to sleep in my room and hope that I would wake up tomorrow with everything back to normal. I reached the edge of my backyard and stopped. I looked up at Alex's bedroom window, which strangely had the light on. The house wasn't decorated for Christmas anymore, in fact, it felt like it was autumn again. I looked at my bedroom window, and what I saw made my heart sink and my spine tingle. I saw a terrified girl looking back. In fact, I saw myself. I looked exactly like I had when I had first seen that orange eyed creature several months ago.