A/n: I wrote this for literary writing last semester, and I've started to turn this short story into a full-fledged novella. Review, and give me your honest opinion.



She had made her decision- the pain was too much. An almost physical agony, centered in her chest. She had to get rid of it, no matter the consequences. Kneeling on the ground, a knife in her hand, the cool leather of the pommel searing her flesh, she knew there was no turning back.

She placed the blade with one swift motion, stabbing it into her chest, just between her right lung and her heart, ignoring the wave of pain that threatened to pull her under, her own body, warning her against what she was about to do. Carefully, almost methodically, as if she was performing a delicate surgery, she cut a hole in her chest, just a tad wider then her fist, the blood pouring out, each heartbeat becoming weaker as she moved, swiftly to avoid passing out. Then went about severing the arteries and viscera attaching the heart to the chest cavity. Beat, she was filled with a bone-wracking pain, beat, and then absolutely nothing at all, as if she was floating, equal parts empathy and apathy. She stood at the edge of humanity and nothingness, life and death.

And she jumped, a free fall into the unknown. With a final stroke of the gleaming silver blade, she severed the last thing holding her heart in place, the aorta, then took her other hand and plucked it, almost effortlessly, from her chest.

She felt nothing but a dim weightlessness, as if in dream. Staring at her hand, still quivering in her blood-soaked hand, still trying desperately to pump her life's blood through her body.

The Greeks believed that the heart was the center of one's personality, that everything you were was centered there, and that the blood carried your emotions and who you were throughout your body. And she had just removed it.

Amazed she stared at it, entranced by its futile palpitations. How could all of this pain, she wondered, come from an organ so… small? It fit into her hand easily, trembling for all it was worth, not believing it was useless, not wanting to believe. Trying to remind her that no human could live without a heart.

"Then, perhaps I am not human anymore." She whispered to the trembling organ in her hand, and she new it to be true. She wasn't dieing. Surely, she should have at least passed out by now, but after the first waves of dizziness and pain, she felt nothing. Absolutely nothing. Only a numbness spreading through her body, centered at her still open chest.

The mass of tissue in her hand was realizing the pointlessness of continuing to fight, realizing it was insignificant now. She no longer needed to feel. In trying to stop the pain, by cutting out her own heart, she had undergone a metamorphosis. She was totally without feeling. No longer human. She was both more and less.

She stood, and cast the useless attachment on the ground, her hand becoming a fist around the knife. She left the tiny room in which she had done her unspeakable deed, ignoring the fact she had left what had made her human on the ground.

Her compassion, her empathy. Her heart.

The shell of a once human girl walked down the street, ignorant of the gaping wound on its chest, knife in hand. Her eyes were hollow, but not haunted. Just… absent of everything.