When looking around on the old Emily Strange website, I found a little section called What If? in which fans wrote stories using this prompt, and the best stories won some cool prizes. Decades later, this is my contribution. Hope you like it.

It was one of those cloudless nights where I was captivated by the moon. During my walk, I looked up, and I saw the bright, ghostly white circle above the horizon, surrounded by its little dots. It shed its light on me, each photon like a drop of liquid silver.

When I finally looked down, I could immediately feel a presence I had never felt before. Multiple presences, actually. For behind me were nearly four pairs of glinting eyes, and a figure in the shadows. But as I turned around, I wasn't scared.

"Like your dress," Emily whispered, as her posse of cats gazed at me, as if trying to tell whether I was a threat. My dress was simple and black, like hers.

"Like yours, too," I responded.

"Where are you headed?" she asked.

"Just out on a walk. Gonna skulk around the residential areas as usual." She had paused me on a sidewalk, surrounded by plants. Miles licked his paw, apparently satisfied. Emily looked to the side, at the road beside us. Then she turned back to me, her eyes blacker than the darkness of the night.

"Wanna get lost?"

Across the empty road we went, usually bustling at day. We crossed yards of houses, jumping fences while making no sound. We sneaked past dog-beasts, and Emily disabled booby traps. The cats scurried and watched us with eyes like the shining moon. Something about being with Emily made me feel more at one with the night. I was able to become a silhouette, and my noises were able to become the wind.

Eventually, we came across an old, broken-down building. The cats immediately went to investigate, hopping through the shattered windows while Emily and I followed. Inside, it was even darker without the moonlight. Sabbath happily scratched at the walls, while Neechee curled up in the corner, beneath the spider webs.

"Am gonna show you something," Emily said. "It's pretty cool." She reached into her dress pocket, and pulled out a strange device. It was like a miniature phonograph, but with some quirks. I could clearly tell Emily had created it.

"What is it?"

"It's the PhonoGrave," she said. "It can play any music you want. As long as it already exists, and you know what it sounds like."

I wasn't going to even begin asking how it worked or how she made it, because the answer was already clear: she was Emily Strange. Instead, we spent the time sharing our music tastes, breaking the silence with the noises of guitars, synthesizers, drums, and whatever else, and pretending to play the instruments and laughing like idiots.

We listened, and she did my makeup. From out of her dress pockets and onto my body came black lipstick, black eyeliner, and black nail polish.

"How do I look?" I asked when she had finished.

She stared, with the faintest smirk. "A little stranger." I smiled.

"One more thing." She dug her hand into her pockets again, and once again, I didn't question how she kept all this stuff in there. Finally, she pulled out a small silver necklace, with a charm of a crescent moon attached. I pulled my hair aside and let her put it on me.

"It's beautiful," I whispered. "Thank you."

"Seemed like you liked the moon."

We spent a bit more time there, until we all knew that the time had come to move on. We shuffled out of that building, leaving it to its own peace. I started heading back the way we had come.

"Wait." I looked at her, and she was facing the opposite direction. At the shadowed trees. "This way."

So in we went, into the woods. The plants rustled around me, and the dirt got onto my shoes. I could not watch my step, but I was determined to follow. I never tripped once. As our path led on, I felt more and more of a sense of ease. And then I noticed we were walking on a downward slope. The plants and trees thinned out, and any car sounds that we might have heard before faded away. Then the slope flattened out again. Soon, I was in utter blackness. Utter silence.


"Are you afraid?" Her voice came from closer than I thought.

"No . . . But what is this place?"

A pause. "You already know."

It was the void. Here, it was almost as if I were formless, with no senses. The only sounds were from our beating hearts. We sat beside each other. Mystery lay on Emily's lap while she petted her softly, her eyes so bright against the nothingness. I petted her, too, feeling fortunate that she let me.

Closing my eyes, I allowed the peace and silence to enter my being. I had never felt so alive, and yet so beautifully dead. The black crept into my soul, and the dark delved into my mind. This was where I belonged. "Thank you, Emily," I murmured softly.

I opened my eyes to see the brilliant full moon. I was on a sidewalk, surrounded by plants, the road on my side. A sharp pang of sadness and guilt hit me. I didn't want our time to end so soon, but all things must die, and my black lips formed a smile as I stared. "Thank you," I murmured again, reaching for my neck and rubbing the silver crescent, before making my way home.

Written July 18, 2022. This is a fanfiction. Emily the Strange belongs to Rob Reger and Cosmic Debris. Also, don't read the fine print.