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The Girl in the Mirror

The Girl in the Mirror

A Story by Faria C
"

Carmen goes up into the forbidden attic one stormy night and finds something that changes...her.

"

It was a rainy Saturday evening, complete with thunder and lightning, and being on the unfortunate side of the small town, the electricity in the house kept flickering out every few minutes. Dad was at yet another business trip�"big shocker, I know�"so it was just Cozy and me that night. And of course, that intimidating yet beautiful photo of Mom in all her blonde-haired, blue-green-eyed glory, hung up in the hall leading to the living room. To rephrase, a seventeen-year-old girl and her black-and-white calico kitten�"and her dead mother’s humongous photo�"alone in a house in a small town on a rainy Saturday evening. Already it doesn’t sound good, right?

            Now, I don’t mean to be a bad daughter to a deceased mother, or make it seem as if I’m heartless, so I’ll say right our that I loved  my mother very much, though I’d known her for all of thirteen and a half days. But that particular picture of her�"for some reason or other�"gave me the creeps sometimes, especially when I was home alone. Might I just add that those circumstances were becoming more and more frequent as I grew? Anyway, like every other girl who’d hardly gotten to know her mother due to separation of some sort�"financial issues, death, maybe even their mom running off with some bozo (rare)�"I fantasized about my mom. Very often. Because truthfully, the thing is, losing my mother was like losing my mother and father. And I have no other relatives to speak of, just a pet and one friend.

            So anyway, I lit a candle. And just in time too, since the electricity chose that moment to play hide and seek again. I walked up to the attic for something. To this day, I can’t remember what in God’s name it was that made me go up there, but, as it turns out, it was vital nonetheless�"concerning the end result, anyway. That was when I saw the mirror. It was gold-gilded�"not real gold, of course�"and intricately carved with a Baroque flow, oval in shape. It was a hung up, to my great surprise, in the attic. Then I made the biggest mistake I’d ever make in the whole of my life.

            I stepped up to the looking glass and looked into the glass. The girl that stared back at me was not a girl I recognized as being my own reflected image, but one who was quite the opposite of me in terms of appearance. Her lips were bloodred and extremely thin, whereas my own were fuller in a light tint of peachy pink. The frame of her face was thin with the cheek bones almost jutting out in a strict manner, kind of like someone’s stereotype of a modern supermodel�"but there was nothing remotely gorgeous about her. Her hair was such an inky black, it almost appeared blue, even in the darkness of the attic, with the only light source being the candle held in my quivering hand. Only the colour of her emerald eyes seemed similar to mine. She seemed around my own age, which only made me more wary.

            My face undoubtedly gave away my emotions, and as if in satisfaction, the girl tilted her head just a fraction, and smiled wickedly, taking pleasure from my shocked response.

         

            I wondered if I was going to faint. Then I wondered if I was hallucinating it all.

            “No,” she whispered, as if she’d heard me speak aloud. “Charm.

            She can communicate with me�"physically? I thought to myself. What does she mean by those words?

            “My name,” she rasped, “is Charm.”

             Her face got bigger in the mirror, as if she was stepping up closer to me. I reflexively took a small step back, causing the flame of the candle to waver to the right, which was her left.

            “And,” she continued, “Your name is…Carmen.”

            How did she know? I asked myself fearfully.

            “I know that you would like your father back.”

            “H-he’s away at…” my mind blanked for a moment.

            “A business trip, and will not be back until tomorrow night at seven-thirty,” she finished for me. “That is not what I meant…You want him back from the impassive state he’s been in since your mother…”

            “Since my mother…? Died?” I volunteered.

            “You would like your mother back.”

            I gasped, because she was now speaking in a supernaturally eerie voice that was so clear, it was ringing in echoes through my disoriented head. And the eerily rasping tone spoke volumes to my heart, because she was right�"about everything�"so far.

            “My mother? She-she passed awa�"“

            “She did not.”

            “She did,” I insisted, then thought better of lying. “Fine, she was murdered.”

            “She was not.”

            I furrowed my brows in frustration.

            “She was. I thoroughly and numerously read the articles my dad keeps in his home-office desk draw�"“

            “Her body was never found,” she interrupted.

            “Yeah, but�"“

            “Seventeen years.”

            “Yes, but th�"“

            “And not one suspect.”

            “What else do you know?”

            Now I was the one whispering.

            “I know that your mother would delight in meeting you.”

            “What?” I shrilled.

            “Melanie Willowcreek,” she said. “I see her; she grieves often for her family.”

            “Willowcreek was her maiden name. She died as Melanie Anderson,” I informed the girl, though I was beginning to think that she knew more about that than I did.

            “She calls herself Melanie Willowcreek. Would you like to meet her?”

            After my long pause, she made up her own mind about what I wanted. Perhaps it was written all over my face again�"my best and only friend always told me I was like an open book with an intriguing cover.

            “As a token of your gratitude…”

            What, does she want my voice, like in The Little Mermaid? Or maybe my soul…?

            “Yes?” I asked.

            “A promise is all I seek.”

            “A promise?”

            “Promise me…that you will remember me,” she said.

            What’s the catch? I wondered in my head. This didn’t seem a fair bargain on her part, so there had to be a catch�"right? What could I have been missing?

            “I promise,” I said aloud instead.

            “Alright…Step in, to the darkness of this mirror’s non-reflective surface.”

            The second biggest mistake I’ve ever made, to this day, was obeying without question.

            Specifically, questions like, “What will happen if I do?” or “Why do you want me to remember you?” or “Do you know my mother personally?” or “Why is my mother inside the mirror?” or “Is my mother in limbo?” or even “What are you?” never occurred to me at the time. All I could think was that I would finally get to see my mother who’s been grieving for her family�"that’s  us, Dad and me.  So, as ordered, I pressed my hand in the glass mirroring hers, which was quite an ironic scene, even to me.

            And I never saw my workaholic father, or my sometimes-vengeful pet cat, or my emo best friend ever again�"at least, not in person.

            But Charm sure did. And they certainly saw her, though unknowingly. Who they thought they saw was me, with a charming new personality. They didn’t question it, just welcomed it�"after all, it was much better than Carmen’s “old” personality. Why would they mind that? Only one person couldn’t quite put up with the “new me”: my best friend Tara. She sensed that something was off with “me” and confronted “me” at school one day. And when “I” accused her of being jealous of all the attention “I” was receiving, she flicked “me” off and walked away. She didn’t try to look into it, just gave up. But at least she said she’d never expected this from me, “of all people�"you! I guess people really do change�"for the worse.” And then she said that the generalization of “people” included me, from then on forward.

            Dear Dad only noticed that “I” now had witticism at my disposal, and was getting more friends than “I” had ever had before, as well as excellent grades in school.

            The teachers noticed “my” grades climbing higher and higher, reaching an average of 97 percent. They were so surprised that they called in Dad for an impromptu parent-teacher meeting. All they discussed was “my” potential, “my” newly discovered skills, and “my” improvement from…before�"when “I” was still the real me, but they didn’t know that.

            The cat only noticed that her food bowl didn’t get filled up to the rim like it used to, and don’t even get me started on her litter box. Some days, the bowl labeled Cozy didn’t even get a scrap of food inside, or a tear-drop of water. Sometimes you’re forced into situations where you have to fend for yourself, and only then do you realize something important. As they say in too many great hit-list songs to count, “You never really know what you got till it’s gone.” So Cozy got a bit more aggressive, and maybe even practical.

            Life went on, even for the cat.

            Who knew someone could be misguided by their own deceitful reflection? I do deserve some credit; Charm had honestly looked nothing like me at her fist appearance, except just one thing: her eyes weren’t merely similar to mine, they were mine. Eyes truly are windows to the soul. About one thing she’s lied�"just one thing�"that mirror truly was a reflective surface. All mirrors tend to be. It certainly had reflected her person as what it was, a bony, thin-lipped deceiver. Now I am the girl in the mirror. Or “I” am. I am.

© 2013 Faria C


Author's Note

Faria C
Even I was confused about the ending, but when I was writing this, I didn't know what I actually meant by the absurd ending. I do now C=

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AML
I loved the atmosphere that you created in your story. It gains the readers interest immediately and draws one in. I like the style of your story telling and its elegant straightforwardness. Carmen is easy to identify with and made me care about her and what is happening to her. I also think that the dialogue is very realistic – something that can be hard to achieve but you have done it beautifully.
You should be very proud of your writing – well done. I am looking forward to reading the rest of your work on the site and look forward to you posting more.


Posted 7 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Faria C

7 Years Ago

Thanks, I really appreciate it, especially since you're an amazing writer yourself =)



Reviews

Great story telling. This did justice in the realm of getting the message across. Great message. There's lot of times where a story can have a great message to aim for, and have a lot of under lining things but then no one gets it, and if no one gets it, then the point has failed. But in my opinion this did well to get the message across. You made it clear, which is why I think it's good. Keep up the good work. What was also great was that I could imagine the story as I read it, and that is also a strong point of stories. The ability to have the reader imagine it because after all we're reading not watching it, but it was as if I was there as I read this, and that is great. Good job once again.

Posted 3 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Faria C

3 Years Ago

Thank you, I appreciate the feedback -
and compliments!
[send message][befriend] Subscribe
AML
I loved the atmosphere that you created in your story. It gains the readers interest immediately and draws one in. I like the style of your story telling and its elegant straightforwardness. Carmen is easy to identify with and made me care about her and what is happening to her. I also think that the dialogue is very realistic – something that can be hard to achieve but you have done it beautifully.
You should be very proud of your writing – well done. I am looking forward to reading the rest of your work on the site and look forward to you posting more.


Posted 7 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Faria C

7 Years Ago

Thanks, I really appreciate it, especially since you're an amazing writer yourself =)

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Added on January 11, 2013
Last Updated on January 11, 2013
Tags: finding yourself, deceit, mirrors, thrill, short story, realistic, thriller, girl

Author

Faria C
Faria C

Wouldn't you like to know , Canada



About
When someone asks me to tell them about myself, I panic and have a little identity crisis where I wonder, "Oh God, who am I?!" Bruh, don't do that to me. Well, I'm Faria (which rhymes with "area").. more..

Writing