Volume 2 – Lost Memories
#63 – Forgotten
The sound was familiar. In fact, it was a bit too familiar; familiar enough to be scary. Even though I recognised the voice, I couldn’t help asking to confirm.
“Who… am I talking to?” I asked.
“No! You too… It can’t be! Have you forgotten me already?” she said with a sad voice. “Tell me teacher, do you not recognise me?”
I didn’t want to say that I did recognise her. That was way too hard to believe.
“I… I suppose I do.” I finally said.
“That’s relieving.” she said. “I knew it. I knew it!”
“I’m having a hard time understanding what is going on, so please be patient with me.” I said.
How? How could it be? It was Cansu’s voice. My lovely student that I sent into death… She was talking to me on the phone. Actually, I was already used to that part; but I was at home, far away from the cursed school building. How could she be with me here?
“Teacher, please tell me that I exist!” she begged in excitement. “I exist, right?”
“Of course you do.” I told her without hesitation. “Look-” I was about to say something to her, but she started speaking before I did.
“No one knows me anymore, but you.” she said. She was sobbing.
“What do you mean?” I asked her.
“Even my parents have forgotten about me.” she said.
“Tell me more, are you serious? What does that mean?” I insisted.
“While you were in bed, I secretly used your phone to call my parents. They did not recognise me, they kept telling me that I’ve been calling the wrong number.” That sentence alone brought many questions to mind.
“By the way, sorry about using your phone.” she said.
“How are you here?” I asked her.
“I feel okay when I’m with you.” she said.
“No, sorry, I meant… How did you come here? How did you get out of the building?” I changed the question.
“Oh… If I were left there, I wouldn’t possibly find any comfort among those evil spirits.” she said.
“Uhm…” I was about to try to apologise to her.
“No.” she said like she already knew what I was about to say. “Don’t. I know it is not your fault. You are not responsible for my death. Well, not entirely anyway… But stop worrying about that right now.”
“Will you ever forgive me?” I asked, crying silently.
“You don’t need to be forgiven. You were only doing what you thought was the best for me.” I didn’t have a clue how, but she surely knew a lot more than I expected from her. Maybe death gives one a lot of freedom to learn everything…
“But still… You didn’t fully answer me. How are you here? How did you get out of the building?” I asked again. If she could do that, The Community could be on top of me as well, without me even knowing it. It was a horrible possibility.
“While we were holding each other closely at the last seconds of my life, I let myself get trapped with your body instead of the building. I’m telling you, if I were left there, I wouldn’t be able to…”
“WAIT!” I yelled. “You are inside me!?”
“NO!! Don’t say it teacher, that’s a very disturbing way to put it!” she yelled in an embarrased tone. “It’s not that simple.”
“Then, please enlighten me, I want to know!” I said.
“Well…” she said, and paused. “Okay, maybe it is sort of like that, but just… please don’t mention it that way.”
“Alright, alright…” I said and sighed. “How did you use the phone though? I thought-”
“You can’t use your phone inside the building because The Community prevents it. While I’m here, I have the power of using devices for outside communication.” she answered. “Isn’t that cool?” That cheerful comment came out of nowhere.
“Hold on a moment. If you can do that… How many ghostly beings are there flying randomly around the world? How do regular people not notice you when you interact with physical things here and there?” I asked.
“No, no, you got it all wrong. It IS about the curse of the building. The only ‘ghostly beings’ that are trapped somewhere on this world belongs to those souls who have died in that building. Having crossed that line and travelled all the way here with you… I’m the only one that made it out somehow, I believe.” she said.
“What about the other souls who died outside the building? What happens to them?” I asked.
“They just… you know, die. They do have an effect when you are, for example, passing across a cemetery alone that makes you feel a bit weird, but that’s about it. There is nothing more to it that I know. That’s mostly because the modern settlements are bursting with people, even if people don’t live in apartments. For you to notice something for real, you probably need to live alone in a lonely house in countryside.” she said. Even she wasn’t sure what she was saying, so I didn’t want to really force her.
“But that’s not how things happen in the school building, is it?” I asked. Something was just not adding up.
“It’s because hundreds of poor souls are trapped in that one place, like a cemetery; except that unlike the said building, they don’t exactly get ‘trapped’ in cemeteries, but they do get trapped inside that building.” she said. “But none of them are innocent now, and they intentionally want to interact with the world, so this is why it looks like hell breaks loose in that place only.”
I had a long moment to process everything. Having encountered a spirit outside of the building was shocking enough already, but everything she told me just now… That was too much for me to fully understand, especially when I was sleepy.
“So…” I said and changed the subject. “Does no one really recognise you?”
“No. No one. No one but you know me.” she replied. “That is, of course, if we don’t count Mr. Kenan and The Community.”
“How did that happen? How does that work even?” I asked.
“The Community is truly a powerful mystical entity.” she said. “Even though you think you know a lot about them, there a lot of stuff that you still don’t know. Even I don’t know.”
“Hey.” I said. “Excuse me, but how do you know so much? Did you learn all of this in just a few hours? The curse, The Community, what I’ve been trying to do all this time…”
“When you are up here, you can see every dimension in multiple dimensions.” she said.
“I was your maths teacher just a few hours ago, yet even I didn’t understand anything from what you just said about dimensions.” I answered.
“I know, silly.” she said. “I know you didn’t. You can’t know everything. You don’t need to.” That was pretty similar to what Mr. Kenan was used to tell me before.
“Woah there!” I yelled. “You can’t boss me around just because you are no longer-”
“You are truly an amusing idiot, teacher.” she said and laughed.
“Cut it already.” I sighed. She kept laughing for a while. Even in this serious moment… She wasn’t ever going to change, eh?
“Besides, a few hours isn’t that short. And Mr. Kenan might not be a very bad person after all. I… I believe he did what he did out of compulsion.” she said. I sighed again.
“You talked to him?” I asked.
“He told me a lot of stuff while he was ‘operating’ on me. Maybe he was just talking to himself, but I happened to hear it all anyway.” she said.
“You were awake during the operation!?” I yelled in my renewed shock.
“Perhaps barely. I didn’t feel or see much.” she said. But that was still horrible… If that was true, Mr. Kenan’s plan was doomed from the very beginning.
We didn’t talk for a while while I thought about it.
“Hey, teacher.” she said, softly.
“What is it?” I asked.
“Are you going to return there tomorrow?” she asked.
“You mean, the school?” I asked back.
“Yeah.” she said.
“Of course I will. I need to, I’m a teacher. Even if no one recognises you, your friends will still be there.” I told her.
“Please don’t, I beg you! I don’t want to go!” she started crying.
“But if I don’t-”
“How can you have the courage to go back there everyday, knowing so much about the curse and all!?” she asked.
“Somebody has to stop it.” I said. “Please help me in my quest so no one ever shares the same fate with us. Your friends are out there.”
“I… I will think about it.” she replied.
We went silent again.
I activated my phone’s screen to take a look at the time, but even at the dimmest setting, I almost went blind. I waited a bit while my eyes adjusted for the light. It was a bit past 2 o’clock.
“I really need to get some sleep this time.” I said to myself.
“Good night, teacher.” she said.
“You will keep calling me teacher, huh?” I asked her.
“Nothing matters, you are my teacher.” she replied. “Just go to sleep.”
I ended the phone call and let my phone slip away from my hands. Yawning, I got inside my bed and closed my eyes.