Almost four years...
It is both a blessing and a curse. The longer I develop it, the less my own individuality stands, but the more I get to see. And even as my abilities grow, I still do not know what to choose. The change is too subtle, almost unnoticeable. My mind knows it, but cannot change it. Would you trade off your own sight to see through the eyes of any person on earth, by will?
It started with an uncanny knack to be unnoticed.
I loved reading, so I didn't mind that people could not find me nor disturb me when I was fully engrossed in a book. Later it became more direct, I could choose which people saw me and which didn't. Though one, strangely enough, had always seen me. The one that found me in the rain. I suppose I should thank her for all she's done for me, the house she found for me was not just adequate, it was an experience beyond my wildest dreams.
And all of that without blood.
The detective was a kind man, patient with me even though I rarely did horrible things. I never broke anything he valued and he even taught me some simple pleasures in life. I was kind of sad in the beginning to have lost friends I only just made, but the school that was found and I was assigned to, was pleasant enough. Boys tended to ignore me, which was fine. Girls sometimes talked to me, but seemed more afraid of me than to like me.
And that's when I started to learn an interesting skill. I could predict almost exactly what someone was going to say, word for word. At first this was very haphazard, accidental even. Some girls giggled about it, finding it cute that I was thinking the same they were. To me it was bewildering, it was like I'd heard their thoughts almost literally in my head. And not just their thoughts either, often I could predict where they were feeling an itch, or cold. It confused my body quite a lot, especially when it happened with girls on their period when it wasn't even my own time.
Sometimes I thought it made me lose touch with myself.
This tuning, as I called it, became easier over time. It was interesting to know what was going on in the minds of the teachers especially. Once I knew how to stop my mouth from moving when I tuned in, it was almost second nature. Talking to people became more interesting again, and I did so. A lot of people told me their secrets easily, always feeling I understood their words and offered good advice for their troubled souls.
Which is when tuning became a little dangerous.
See, when I listened really to what they were telling, an experience they've had, I felt it with my whole body. I could see everything as they remembered it, feel everything, even the physical responses. I vividly remember the first time it happened. It wasn't even too bad of an experience, just a girl telling about some nice guy she'd seen in the swimming pool. I'd just been reading a little away, far enough not to be noticed, close enough to listen in.
What she described piqued my interest as her enthusiasm amused me. Then it happened, I almost panicked when I felt the water all around me. You have to understand, I mentally still knew I was sitting there in the library, reading. But I still felt like I was swimming, in water not too unpleasant with the smell of chlorine penetrating my nostrils. Then her mind called up the cute boy she'd seen. I knew his face, but his name escaped me, a few years older, not important. What amazed me is that I felt her reaction to seeing him look back, the blush on her cheeks, the shyness and arousal. Ironically, it didn't really seem that she found him that amazing, but being seen by him, almost exposed with just a bikini. That was the turn on. And she didn't even knew. She just thought it was the boy itself.
I commented. "You just like being seen."
It got a few stares, some laughs and a really angry, guilty look from the girl itself. I moved away, confused by the experience. So the tuning didn't just work on the moment itself, I could relive memories as long as I had something to hold on to. If they told me, reliving the experience themselves, calling it up in their mind, it was there. There for me to read.
Like a book.
It didn't come as much of a surprise when my new dad, the detective, asked me to become a profiler. I just celebrated my eighteenth birthday when he showed me that my marks in school made me eligible to join a police school that would get me a very nice life to look forward to. Usually I didn't like his bonds with the police too much, but this attracted me. In a way it meant I was allowed to tune into the minds of very... interesting people.
I was top of my class.
Don't get me wrong, I'm still a shy girl, something that my teachers in the beginning frowned upon. But my strength was apparent the first time they asked me to interview a convict. He was a murderer, specifically of women, and they thought it would be a good test to put me in front of him. They thought being shy meant I was weak, not in control of the situation.
They didn't know what I'd been through.
Nor my abilities.
The guy was fascinating. At first he tried to scare me, trying to tell me what he'd do with me. Then, moving smoothly into the subject, he told me what he'd done to each of the girls before me. My assignment was to make a detailed report of the killings, purely based on the interview, rather than the known reports.
I had to keep it simple. Tapes were running with the conversation, so I couldn't just write down what I already knew. But it made it very easy to ask the right questions, to keep things going. My mind had developed quite nicely to remember all of it, not that I needed to. I could just relive it. Even if I didn't know the words exactly, his memories were now mine as well. They didn't scare me that much, his quest for revenge was nothing compared to the pure feral ravaging I'd seen in the remains of my parents. And, in a way, the vindictive nature that some girls had at school was even beyond his simple drive.
Needless to say, the teachers first accused me of cheating, which soon turned into admiration. They'd looked at the tapes, they'd just seen me use a very passive-leading tactic to keep the conversation rolling. My calm in the whole situation had surprised most of them. My dad was proud that night. He'd gotten really nice ice-cream for dessert. I was starting to like the education and breath of the world it offered me.
I'd almost forgotten about her when she found me again.
She found out my abilities after such a short time that all the intensity of when I'd met her flowed back again. Memories that had stayed in the back of my mind for so long resurfaced, but this time made me smile. It had all been real. She hadn't changed at all. Or maybe she did. The outside had become slightly smoother, but I couldn't be sure. She looked much too pretty to be real, but in a way she wasn't real.
When I started talking to her again, I realized that no criminal, no human mind would be as fascinating as hers. That is, until I met some of her friends, various types and origins that each had a depth and fascination to me that was unparalleled. It simply wasn't comparable. Still, she was the one I cared for the most, my dark angel. Even if I couldn't ignore the sheer awe I had for the rest of them. She was always at the top. She showed me what she'd written as well, costing me a fair few sleepless nights to get through, my eyes sore from the screen. It immediately made me realize what I was going to do, what I wanted to do.
And she allowed me.
She made me promise to let my studies not suffer under all of this. And, as far as I can tell, it hasn't. It might have caused some more sleepless nights, but I've gained experiences beyond this world.
If I have one regret, it would be that I never got her to tell me the original stories herself. I would have loved to have felt them, to have known that very first kiss of blood, even the hurt of the first jump. Perhaps she will tell me sometimes, it's not like she hasn't given me the world already. So with pleasure it is I do this... These stories.
Amy, this is for you.