“It’s all my fault... everything that happened is because of me!”
Heidi had coiled herself up in an abandoned corner of the village, crying her eyes out.
‘If I had been braver Kenny would still be alive and Pip wouldn’t have gotten hurt... I should have never taken this second chance! I’m a danger to everyone! I should have just died that day when that snake bit me!’
Heidi continued to sniff and blubber, so hurt by her own actions that she could never truly forgive herself. Her kind heart just couldn’t take the dishonour. She may not have taken Kenny’s life, but she felt as if she had.
Heidi was so distraught she didn’t notice the figure coming up to her.
Heidi turned her head sharply to see Wendy looking at her. Heidi gasped as she tried to run.
“Wait!” Wendy grabbed the snake spirits arm instinctively.
Heidi stopped, but refused to look at Wendy still.
Wendy just smiled kindly at her friend, loosening her grip on Heidi’s arm, “Heidi, you have to stop blaming yourself.... Pip will live... Besides, it’s not like you did it on purpose... you were forced into it.”
Wendy’s eyes flashed red, her anger becoming more evident, “It was all Nathan’s and Leslie’s fault.... We had no idea he was in league with her, if we had, we would have stopped him far sooner..... Leslie used you as a weapon.... But at least we know that her venom isn’t as powerful as yours... she wouldn’t have used you if that was the case.”
Heidi continued to cry, “.... That doesn’t comfort me Wendy.”
Wendy sighed as she pulled Heidi close, “I know.... I just.... my brain just worked it out. What the important thing is that I’m here. You don’t have to suffer alone.”
Heidi broke down as she fell one Wendy’s shoulder, hugging her tightly.
“I’m so so so so sorry Wendy..... Everything is my fault....”
Wendy rubbed her friends back in reassurance, “No it isn’t Heidi. You don’t have to apologize.”
As Heidi broke down, her mind went back to something Cartman had said to her.
“Don’t trust any of them. I heard some of them are in league with Leslie... I bet they want your trust so they can steal your venom again....... Don’t fall for their tricks....”
“But what about you? How can I trust you?”
“Hey.... I’m honest with my hate for the others... Khal especially. Besides, I don’t need venom... it’s too quick. I have my own tricks I can use!”
“That.... that’s not good Eric! Please don’t joke about that!”
“Sorry Heidi.... But please keep my words in mind.... I trust you... I don’t want you getting hurt again.”
Heidi pulled away from Wendy, “.... Wends.... can I be left alone please... I .... I don’t trust myself at the moment.”
Wendy tried to argue, but the look in Heidi’s eyes made her realise that space was what the girl really needed more than anything right now.
“Okay.... but please, don’t stay alone for too long. You need to be with friends. Closing yourself off is only going to make you worse in the long run…. We’re always here, whenever you need us… don’t forget that.”
Heidi nodded as Wendy walked away.
Heidi curled back into a heap on the floor, her head resting on her tail.
She didn’t even know how long she stayed like that, too absorbed in her own mind and self-hate to really process it.
‘It’s all your fault.’
‘You hurt them.’
‘You destroyed the peace.’
‘You should have died instead.’
‘You are worthless.’
‘I bet you enjoyed it.’
Heidi covered her ears.
She could feel herself slipping. Her spirit mind and her human mind were at war. The human side was losing, but Heidi wasn’t backing down.
She tried to fight back her own mind. Her hands moved to her face as she tried to hide herself, her eyes glowing pure yellow. The snake in her was trying to come out.
‘SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP!’
The darkness in her finally took hold however. Heidi blacked out as her spirit powers took over. That pure animalistic force.
The snake was free.
She sat up as she her tongue flicked out to taste the air. Crawling on her hands and knees she had one thing on her mind.
‘...Mussssst..... eat...... mussssssst.....KILL.....’
Heidi sat up and hissed at the voice, wrapping her tail around the neck of the person. Her eyes were thin slits as her spirit nature completely took her over.
‘... Fooood.... yesssssss......’
The figure clawed at her tail, trying to break free.
Using all its breathe, the figure called out, trying to reach what was left of Heidi in the darkness of her mind.
“HEIDI! IT’S ME!”
Heidi finally snapped out of her trance to see Cartman in her tail. The raccoon was gasping for his neck, his eyes slowly rolling back into his head as Heidi’s tail tightened around his frail neck.
‘You enjoy the power don’t you?’
‘You just have to tighten an inch further.’
‘We must eat!’
Her eyes widened.
Her brain finally calmed as she realised what she was doing. The voices disappeared.
She dropped him, “No.... Eric.... I’m so sorry... I.... I can’t....”
Cartman rubbed his neck and coughed a few times before walking over to Heidi, hugging her and patting her head.
“Shhhhhh, babe..... You’re hurting.... I’m not mad.”
Heidi broke down all over again.
Cartman just sighed as he continued to comfort her, keeping his nice act up.
“I saw you with Wendy.... You did good. We can’t trust anyone as much as we did any more. I promise to protect you from the liars that want to use you. You just have to listen to me and you’ll be safe.... I promise you that.”
If Heidi’s mind had been in the right place, she knew she would have been more careful around the raccoon trickster, the one who had constantly made the other spirits life annoying.
But her mind was starting to break. All the voices in her head returned, stopping her from thinking clearly. They just wanted her to feel bad. They wanted her to die. They wanted her to give up and disappear so they could do as they pleased. Cartman however was giving her hope.
If only she knew that hope was misplaced.
She hugged Cartman tightly, “Thank you Eric.... I’ll do what you say..... I just..... I don’t want to be a monster.....”
Cartman smiled cruelly as he lifted a strand of her hair away from her ear, “You shouldn’t feel bad about Pip.... he’s a liar you know.... He wants to get close to Damien to steal his powers..... I heard him talk about wanting to get the power to give to his alpha........ we can’t trust him. He’s getting the god to fall for him.”
Cartman, seeing that Heidi was shaking started to add fuel to his mind breaking.
“You know what I think? I think Leslie is trying to help Damien.... but since she’s a spider no one will listen to her.”
Heidi pulled back, “.... but she killed Kenny.... Kevin said that Kumo Yōk-”
Cartman placed a clawed finger over her lips, “Shhhhh..... Leslie feels bad about Kenny. She took his powers so he could live on inside her..... it was a mistake.”
Heidi was sceptical, “But....”
Cartman hugged her, “Please believe me Heidi....”
Heidi’s mind was a mess. Who could she trust? Who could she not? What should she do?
Heidi just continued to cry, “.... Okay.... I’ll help..... I want to protect Damien..... if Pip wants to hurt him then I shouldn’t feel bad right?”
Cartman smiled. His plan was working.
“Yes. Pip is an outsider after all.”
Heidi raised herself up and dried her eyes as best she could.
“Okay.... Thank you Eric. You’re a good friend. I’m sorry I misjudged you for so many years.”
Cartman smiled, “It’s not your fault. The others made you that way. And I didn’t really help by saying mean things about you. But that doesn’t matter. The past is the past. Let’s just focus on the future.... we’ll make it so someday everyone is on our side.”
Heidi nodded, “... Yeah...”
Cartman turned away, rubbing his hands together.
‘It’s almost time.... soon her mind will be mine..... then the real fun can start..... Oh Leslie, you have no idea what my real goal is here do you....’
Cartman just had to bide his time.