If a hundred years passed, even if mankind would cease to exist, it wouldn't matter; still then would the pain linger and haunt me like a nightmare.

It would still hang over me like a dark cloud; a constant companion shielding all light and happiness away.

Maybe, the only thing that'll never die is pain. Some scars are so deep that you'll miss all the other little ones, which never caused you to suffer as much.

Like a part of me was missing, an arm or a leg was just gone.

But no, not me; not my body, not my life was missing. But hers.

Emma.

It was a hot summer day in august. One of those lazy Sunday afternoons that just wouldn't pass. A day in which Mom, Emma and I (Dad was always at work) would watch romantic comedies and fight over things like what to watch next or whether to order Pizza or Chinese.

But this day, Emma was out with friends, Mom was getting ready to dine with her friend and I was lingering on the couch, watching a lame TV show when the phone rang and Mom got up to answer it. Her usually happy words, formed by her warm voice through her thin lips, attached to her round face surrounded by her chin-lengthened brown mop of hair- sounded different. Cold, worried even uncanny.

I glanced over my shoulder and saw her frozen in the kitchen. With empty, hazel eyes, she dropped the phone and gazed at me. Tears ran down her eyes and suddenly, a black cloud took over me and I felt a cold atmosphere and goosebumps run down my spine.

Within minutes we were inside the car, within half an hour we reached the hospital.

After a painful moment of anticipation we met the doc, and after his low words ended, Mom and I sank onto the cold ground, hugging each other, crying over the loss of Emma.

Emma, my sister; my role model. She was just…gone.


Heading back home, she was on the high road but deviated from the street, broke through a metal fence, fell down a cliff, broke her skull and passed...

Later we found out that she was driving way too fast, which made no sense since she was a better driver than me- and I was a good driver!

But still, that wasn't the main question which confused us, it was the inability to realize that she basically didn't exist anymore;

How could a person with a personality, an individual character, moods, hopes and dreams just be…gone?

Just a week later, surrounded by our friends and family, my parents and I stood at her grave. Watching, how she was put down into the cold, lonely mud. Mom and Dad held me, yet I couldn't feel anything. Nothing but confusion. A cold shiver ran down my back, as I thought that she was now left to rot. We all hoped that she'd miraculously appear on our doorstep one day like nothing happened, even if we knew it would never be this way. It was a comfort to imagine it.

Dad shook his head, squeezing Mom's hand and mine. They lost their child, that was probably something no parent ever wanted to experience.

It wasn't her time to go yet, she was just 16! Plus, she was a part of me! The sister, who shared my tears and laughter and Mom's womb with me.

They say twins have an odd connection, they can feel each other's presence, each other's sadness and happiness. So why could I still feel her? Why did it seem like she was still around, standing next to me, with her happy smile and her bright eyes when she was just being buried?

After we got back home, Mom and Dad stayed in the living room in silence, I went up to my room feeling the need to be alone.

Dropped on my rocking chair, I stared at the empty space before me.

I couldn't cry. Not yet, crying was letting the pain out. But I couldn't even feel it yet. I was confused; just confused. Too confused to think, to cry, to sob, to move or to even think!

It was like my body was a machine working on fuel not on a brain and thoughts. I felt like I was asleep, nothing seemed real and my mind was hazy.

I looked at the ground where I last sat with Emma.

Never again, could I talk to her. Or laugh.

I wanted to hear her voice so bad, her rants about the teachers, her latest scandals. Or how she'd tell me about her boyfriend or the guy who still hoped she'd like him back.

It was so many tiny things that I recalled this moment, like when she snucked into my room in the middle of the night. Once mom and dad would be asleep, she'd get two bottles of beer and we'd sit and talk till the sun rise.

This was my sister. This was her, but now there's only me.

The sleepy me, who was still not aware of her surroundings, but could feel a headache coming. A strong one.

So forced myself off the chair and headed to the bathroom to get an Advil and to wash my face.

Glaring at the mirror, I growled at my red, even swollen face, the pale green eyes, the wavy brown hair and the thin lips which may have looked like Emma's but could never form her heartwarming smile or say her funny jokes or even curse better than a sailor.

Most sibling fought a lot- especially sisters- and we also did. But despite the little quarrels we had, we loved each other.

I remember how she'd always stand up for me when no one else would, how she laughed at my jokes and how she didn't care about her popularity and sometimes sit with her unpopular sister during lunch. She was always the one to count on. What was I now going to do without her? What would I do the next time someone said something mean or stupid or the next time someone would snap at me for now reason like this one guy who practically ran over me in the school hallway, but instead of apologizing he shouted and told me to watch where I am going. Emma, saw it and roughly pushed him against the lockers and said that he better apologize.

I know I never had the courage to stand up for myself, because there was no need for it. I could always count on her.

But those days were over…

With a soft sigh I dried my face and headed back to my room, the place in which we'd sometimes sit till dawn and talk about girl stuff.

That was just so little time ago but now it seemed like forever.

I slouched back to my chair and hugged my pillow tightly. My eyes were on the red fabric, I saw dark spots and realized that I was really crying right now.

This was just not going to work, when would this pain end?

The silence was just as painful as the word that hung in the empty air; death. It was like our house just spread this word.

It was like I spread it and my parents spread it.

Their sad gazes were still before my eyes. Such as Dad desperate face when he came rushing into the hospital, just a glimpse of hope left in his face until he saw ours.

Death. It was going to belong to us now. This silence too.

But the silence changed. My sigh escaped my chest and echoed back to me. I swallowed hard and even that seemed to come back.

Steps returned too, only that I wasn't stepping anywhere.

The steps lead two lanky legs into my sight. A pair of jeans and black converse.

My gaze did not shift, my body didn't move. I blinked but the image did not shift.

I knew this wasn't mom nor dad. I knew who this was but I couldn't believe it.

Had I gone this crazy? Already? Just after a few depressing thoughts? My eyes closed again. I wish I had not slept during religion class and actually remembered a prayer because I was seriously scared right now.

So I just ordered my thoughts, breathed in and out. My the legs were still there, walking back and forth. Like she was waiting for something, impatiently she went and came but never disappeared out of my sight. So I waited, for this craziness to go away.

Eventually though, I noticed that my 'hallucination' noticed my stillness. My headache increased and so did the clarity of her.

"Just get a grip of yourself." That familiar voice mumbled.

She mumbled, just mumbled like she used to when she talked about homework or complained about the chores she had to do. Even if I couldn't see her face, I knew she was rolling her eyes. "Do you really think I want you to become depressed? God!"

I gazed up and our eyes met.

Her bored gaze, widened and her green eyes reflected mine. Eye contact, I shared an eye contact with a hallucination.

What I saw before me robbed me of my breath, that red shirt had no blood stains on it like I'd last seen it, the jeans looked just blue and clean. So was her perfect hair and her perfect face.

I rubbed my temples and squeezed my eyes shut. "You've gone crazy, crazy, crazy!"

"Emily?"

I gazed back up and saw my sister taking a step toward me. "Can you really see me?"

That moment, I couldn't help it; I screamed, shot up and ran downstairs.

I almost stumbled down the stairs and headed straight to my silent parents.

"What happened?" Dad asked, still sitting at the kitchen table. His hand resting on mom's. I guess he heard me scream.

"I," my finger pointed to the stairs, "upstairs, there…she…I saw."

Mom stood up and wound her arms around her shoulder, "sweetie, what is it?" Her red, worried eyes calmed me down; I was certain I'd tell her about what I'd just seen, but then I regained my sanity.

Was I seriously going to tell her, that I'd just seen her dead daughter?

Of coursenot, I was hallucinating! People under stress and extreme sadness can sometimes just go a little crazy, right?

Surely, the moment I go back to my room, everything would be back to normal.

"Emily?" Dad's voice brought me back to reality.

"I…" Blinking, I bit my lip. "I…never mind."

"You sure?" Of course I couldn't fool my lawyer dad.

But I still nodded, spun on my heels and went back upstairs.

I almost sneaked to my room, glancing around every corner just to make sure my hallucinations weren't real.

The hallway was empty so far, my opened door revealed an empty room too.

So, with a sigh of relief , I went back inside…

"Well?" The voice was behind me just the moment I closed the door.

Freezing again, I squeezed my eyes shut and told myself that I was just hallucinating.

But no matter how much I told myself that I was crazy, just didn't fade.

After this eye contact, she knew that I had seen her. Seen her? God what was I saying? She's dead!

But nevertheless, now she didn't shut up.

I shook my head when she spoke, but I couldn't ignore it. Eventually my hands clutching on my ears hurt too much and I had to drop them.

I was forced to confront myself with these hallucinations and face her.

Spinning around, I saw her with crossed arms and wide eyes staring right back at me. "Would you explain this please?"

I shook my head, why should I explain? She's the dead one!

"Why can you see me?"

I gazed down and shrugged.

"Did you see me all along?"

"No."

"Then…" with raised brows she came forward, "I missed you."

I tilted my head away, watching her steps with dubious eyes. "Come on lil sis."

"O...only because you're a few seconds older, you can't call me lil sis all the time." I gazed back down, "god, what am I saying?'

"Em," Emma sighed, "why...I can't believe you can see me."

She spread her arms again waiting for a hug but I did not move.

"I missed you..." She said with a sad gaze but i shook my head.

Her arms dropped at her sides. "What? I am still me!"

Did I just hurt her? DId I hurt my imagination? Oh man, this wasn't only confusing and scary but also paining. Hadn't I hoped for her to magically appear before me again? Now she was here. Even if she was just a reflection of my depressed thoughts, she was here...somehow. So would it hurt to hug an image? Or to talk to a dead person? I mean, people do that all the time. *ahem* Jesus *ahem*

Rubbing my arms, I felt a new set of tears in my eyes. "Are you real?"

"As real as it can get."

"Maybe, I…I'm crazy."

Emma frowned and quickly shook her head, "no, please don't think that!"

"Then show yourself to someone else!"

"But no one else could see me! Don't you think I've tried? Even during the funeral!"

"You were there?" I asked astounded.

Emma nodded, "yes I was. I've been around ever since…"

"The accident." I mumbled and dropped on my bed, "how could you Em? I mean you were such a good driver! Why didn't you pay attention?"

Emma did not answer, neither did she look at me. A deep frown settled on her forehead and I wondered if there was more to it.

"Well?" I was impatient to hear the truth.

"I…" Emma sighed and sat down next to me, I could in her face that she was troubled. Boy, ghosts get troubled?

"I don't remember."

Tilting my head, I glanced at my sister wondering if she really just said this. "You don't remember?"

"No," She looked up at me, "all I remember is this grave impact, immense pain and a flash of light. The next thing I saw was you guys, looking at my body…it was…"

I don't know if ghosts could cry or if I've been just nuts, but it looked like Emma was going to have a break down.

"A flash of light you say? I heard that people who were close to death saw a flash of light."

Emma raised a brow, "but then why am I still around? If what I saw was really this tunnel of light, then religion got a lot of explanation to do."

"Like always." I mumbled, still not sure of what was going on, "And so do I, if I explain I am just talking to the person we buried this afternoon."

"You can't tell anyone! They'll think you're crazy."

I got up, shaking my head, "I already think I am crazy!" I was pacing back and forth mumbling to myself, while sad Emma watched me .

"You still don't believe I am here?"

I stopped and gazed at her.

"Well then," she got up and headed to the door, "follow me."

She lead me to her room, I was watching her with questioning eyes until she finally stopped pacing around and nodded toward her desk. "Open the second drawer."

I sighed, wondering what the hell I was just doing but complied. In the drawer I found a little box with a light blue pattern.

Emma asked me to open it and so I did.

Gasping, I looked at the two silver-earrings I had thought I lost years ago.

"How?"

Emma glanced at her feet and shrugged, "I stole them from you, I am sorry…but I was really selfish."

I was going to be mad but I collected myself.

This wasn't the time to blame her for something she'd done in her living days. This was the time to figure out what she was still doing here…but I was just as clueless and scared as she.

At least it was now proven that I wasn't crazy. I mean, if it weren't for her, I would've never thought of these earrings again. I held the box in my hand and rushed forward to hug her and right through her. So cliché! Mt ghost sister wasn't physical?

But how come I just saw her now, not during the funeral or in the hospital but NOW? And why did my headache increase as I saw her? How come I didn't see any other dead people like grandpa or uncle Pete?

Was this because of our twin connection? Or was there a different meaning to it?

Glancing at Emma, I knew something was definitely wrong here. If only I knew what it was…