Every time I start to feel something, I get headaches. The stronger the feeling, the more physically painful it becomes. It's not always just headaches, either- sometimes I start feeling unreasonably sore as well, and there were a few occasions when I actually felt sick. But I'm becoming- very, very, very slowly, but surely- more like the person I was centuries ago, before I had started stealing true names. Now I'm beginning to think it quite possible that with every name I stole, I was weakening- or perhaps just placing too great a strain on- my own true name, and therefore myself along with it.
But I don't give all that much thought to this theory- soon, it won't matter either way. I suppose I should consider myself lucky; Mevolent has not bothered to manipulate my thoughts and emotions at all yet. Only my actions. It's probably because he trusts my nature is a dark enough thing on its own. He'd be right.
Every night a different city. I choose them at random; wherever I happen to be when night falls. It's important that there be no pattern- no evidence- no clues of any kind except my name, which they don't even know is my name- to tip of the Sanctuary. They'll be forced to spread their forces thin, in an effort to hunt down the mysterious killer behind the disappearances.
And by now, of course, the non-magical American government has noticed, and they're panicking. I heard they've even called in a world famous detective to figure it out. Some anonymous figure only known as 'L'. That'll be something for the Sanctuary to deal with, too. If some prestigious crime-solving genius discovers a magical world existing right under his nose, I highly doubt he'll leave them alone.
The most important part of this- for me, anyway- is Aretha. I know I'm at the top of her hit list now. Funny because I think we both knew this was bound to happen the moment I started caring. It's like one of us always has to be dead- either I'm planning on killing her, or she's planning on killing me. I know she'll know it's me right away. It'll take her a while to find me, but if anyone can I know it'll be her. And when she does, she'll kill me.
Then this whole mess will be over... But she'll have no one left. Marina is still around- for now- but I saw a vision of her death already. I have visions very, very rarely, but I've never had one that wasn't 100% accurate. So Aretha will have lost her family and her best friend. Getting rid of me will be much more of an advantage than a loss, so I won't add myself to that list. At least she's recovered her own free will. She deserves much more than that small piece of happiness.
I've died by her hand before, and I know she cried for hours. I just have to make sure that next time, she feels no remorse for killing me. So... maybe tonight I'll take two cities at once. And tomorrow night, maybe three. Until Mevolent pulls me back I'll kill as much as I possibly can, and when she sees the light leave my eyes again, she'll feel nothing.
Aretha's Note: If any of you guys can guess in the comments what the point of writing this was/what I've revealed in this, you get internet cookies and a page ded (assuming I get one of those, in the future...)!!!