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Emily Reilly

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Emily Reilly is the hidden main antagonist of the award-winning supernatural graphic novel Anya's Ghost. She is a 90-year-old ghost who had died around the same age as the novel's protagonist, Anya Borzakovskaya.



Emily was a girl born in the United States in the early 1900s. During her adolescent years, Emily had fallen in love with a boy around her age, but was heartbroken when he spurned her for another girl. Bitter, Emily murdered the two lovers by setting their house aflame. When authorities arrived, Emily attempted to escape, but fell down a well, where she broke her neck, paralyzing her. After some time, Emily died of thirst. Her ghost became trapped in the well, being unable to move very far away from her skeleton. She remained trapped for roughly 90 years.

In Anya's Ghost

Emily was freed when a teenage girl, Anya Borzakovskaya, fell down the same well where she was trapped. Anya panicked upon seeing Emily, but eventually calmed down. The following day, as a passerby approached the well, Anya was rescued. However, Emily managed to sneak the bone of her finger into Anya's backpack, which enabled her to leave the well and follow Anya.

After some time, Emily revealed herself to Anya during school. Anya initially intended to put the finger back into the well, but relented when Emily proved useful to her. In the days that passed, Emily aided Anya during school, helping her cheat on biology tests as well as spying on Sean, Anya's crush. When asked about her past, Emily lied, claiming her fiancé had died during World War I, and that her parents were murdered while she had died in a well. Anya promised to help find Emily's killer, while Emily agreed to help Anya win over Sean. However, this resulted Anya being ostracized from Siobhan, her best friend.

While attending a party, Anya discovered that Sean habitually cheats on his girlfriend Elizabeth. Disgusted, Anya left the party and abandoned her hopes of winning over Sean, leaving Emily confused. Some time later, Anya decided to read up upon Emily's murderer. With help from her classmate, Dima, Anya discovered the true circumstances that led to Emily's demise.

Anya confronted Emily over the murders she had committed. Enraged at Anya's resistance, Emily opted to threaten Anya's family, injuring her mother and scaring her brother, Sasha. Emily briefly began searching for her finger bone, which had been misplaced by Sasha. However, Anya retrieved the bone and fled through the neighborhood, pursued by Emily. The two reached the well, where Emily attempted to convince Anya to stop resisting her. When Anya refused, Emily pointed out the similarities of the two, but Anya refused to listen and dropped the bone into the well, seemingly trapping Emily once more.

However, Emily possessed her skeleton and emerged from the well in a final attempt to kill Anya. However, Anya reasoned with her, confessing to how similar they were. Anya convinced Emily of the futility of the situation and suggested that she pass on to achieve peace. Heartbroken, Emily complied and passed on to the afterlife, causing her skeleton to plummet into the well.


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