[Persona 4 ‘Bad True End’]
This started with the question of “Why does Narukami have multiple personas in the first place?” I expanded on the idea and wrote a short “stream of consciousness” fan-fic.
“How dare you…” I gasp as I struggle to my feet.
“How amusing you are, mortal,” Izanami mocks me, peering into my eyes.
“Give them back!” I slash at the god with my katana but my slash does not connect, “Give back my friends!”
Yosuke. Chie. Yukiko. Kanji. Rise. Teddie. Naoto. My friends, whom I’ve spent the last year with, more precious to me than my own life, have been taken from me by her.
In rage, I muster up the power within me, summon my Arcana card, and clench my fist. “Persona!” I yell.
My inner self, Izanagi, leaps out from within me and attacks Izanami.
“Tis a pity,” Izanami jeers as she swats Izanagi out of the air. I feel my ribs scream in pain as Izanagi crashes into a wall, “I thought you the most interesting of the bunch, but you are weak.”
“Don’t mess with me! Persona, change!” I scream. I command Izanagi to change forms into Kohryu, the golden dragon.
Kohryu launches a powerful electric attack at Izanami, straight into its head.
“Direct hit,” I think for a second. That is, until Izanami grabs Kohryu’s head and pins my Persona against the wall once more. I gasp as Izanami chokes the life out of my Persona.
“Curious. Very curious,” Izanami mutters, “All I did to you was awaken your power, but never have I seen someone that can change the appearance of his true self. Your, what do you call them…, Persona, is very powerful indeed. If that is the case, then your Shadow should be quite as powerful as well. Perhaps it was lucky for you that I graced you with my aid and allowed you to awaken your powers without facing yourself.”
Izanami throws Kohryu to the side, grabs me by the collar, and lifts me up.
“Perhaps then, it’s time for you to peer into your soul.”
Izanami is gone. Everything is gone.
Everyone is gone.
Darkness is the only thing I can see all around me.
“Izanami! Get back here, you coward!” I’m desperate to defeat her and avenge my friends.
“Damn it, I couldn’t do anything to help them.”
I fall to my knees and slam the ground with my fist.
One by one, they gave their lives to save me when Izanmi focused her attacks on me.
“That’s right, you couldn’t do anything.”
Startled, I look up to see Yosuke, my best friend and partner.
“Yosuke! You’re alive!” I exclaim.
No. This isn’t Yosuke. This malice. Those eyes. He is a shadow.
“You are correct, my friend. I am not Yosuke. I am a shadow, the true self.”
I thought Yosuke’s shadow was defeated, but it’s back now of all times.
“And that is where you are wrong,” another voice appears from the darkness.
“Chie!?” I call out to the voice. As she steps closer, I realize again that it’s not her. “Another shadow…”
One shadow is already difficult to handle alone, but two?
Yosuke and Chie must be in trouble if their shadows are running rampant like this.
“Ah, how foolish you are,” Chie’s shadow resumes, “Haven’t you figured it out yet?”
“We’re not who you think we are,” another voice continues Chie’s sentence.
“Of course it’s Yukiko,” I direct my attention behind me.
“Haven’t you wondered how you’re able to possess multiple Personas?” This time, it’s Kanji appearing from the darkness.
“All of us only have one Persona, senpai,” Now Rise.
“But you’re not fair, Sensei. You have a whole bunch!” Et tu, Teddie?
“If the Persona is the true self conquered, how do you have multiple true selves?” Naoto steps forward.
“Who are you, Onii-chan?” Nanako is here too? But, she didn’t have a shadow last time!
“The man with the long nose had it right all along.” It’s Dojima-san? In the TV world?
“You are the number zero. Nothing. Empty. But with infinite possibilities.” This time Margaret.
Something’s wrong. I can sense every one of them is a shadow, but there are too many.
“You possess power because you can become anything,” states Adachi as he too appears.
“Able to speak the perfect words,” Ai from school reveals herself.
“Always performing the perfect actions,” Kou from basketball now.
“Perfect, perfect, perfect. You always have to be perfect,” Naoki, Saki-senpai’s brother.
“You need people around you, don’t you, dearie?” the old lady dressed in black, Ms. Kuroda.
“Never having friends before, you changed yourself to become the person you thought others wanted you to be.” Sayoko from the hospital.
“*howl*” the fox.
“So desperate that you even spent your days with an animal!” Yumi from drama club.
“But Sensei, who really are you?” Shu, the student I tutored.
“You were so desperate to be accepted, that you threw away who you are.” Eri, Yuuta’s mother from day-care.
“In the end, you really are like zero,” a final familiar voice declares from the void.
My shadow. He steps in front of the others and approaches me.
“How is it that you are able to form so many bonds in your life?” my Shadow jeers as he whispers into my year. In his hand, he holds a card with the Arcana: the Fool.
“Because like Yosuke, you just wanted to be accepted,” Yosuke’s shadow states.
However, his image flickers and standing where he was is another me, holding a card of the Magician Arcana.
“Because like Chie, you wanted to feel important by protecting people,” cackles Chie, or rather my shadow with a Chariot card.
“Because like Yukiko, you wanted someone to love you,” Yukiko, or again, another shadow of me, this time with a Priestess card.
“Like Kanji, you didn’t embrace your true self.”
“Like Teddie, you didn’t know what you were looking for.”
“Like Naoto, you rejected who your truly were.”
“Like Nanako, …”
“Like Dojima, …”
Each of the people close to me mock and chastise me as they turn into shadows, each with their own Arcana card.
“We aren’t their shadows,” the closest shadow, holding the Arcana of the Fool, whispers in my ear again, “All of us? We’re you.”
“In the end, what are you? You’re nothing but an empty vessel that reflects others’ desire, a façade dedicated to fooling people you meet into thinking you’re someone who’s come to be a hero in their lives,” the Fool continues, “On your own, you’re nothing. You have no true identity, do you? Narukami Yu? Or should I call you Seta Souji?”
“Or maybe just… protagonist?”
Like what you read? Check out my other “Creative Works” here.
Want more Persona? Check out my review of the game and anime here.
Got suggestions on what you’d like to see? Comment below! Maybe more Persona? Maybe another series entirely?