Monday, 31 October 2011

Tales of Terror: Man in the Mirror - Part Two

Apologies for the wait but here it is a promised; the second part of my Hallowe'en horror tale...

Robert idly tapped his fingers on his keyboard and looked at the screen. Blank. Robert was a novelist and had written several successful novels a while ago. In recent months, however, his imagination seemed to have all but emptied. He tried to focus his mind on ideas but that nagging feeling at the back of his head really didn’t help.
It was now two days since Robert had seen that reflection but it had certainly not left his mind. He had been deliberating over it ever since. He and his wife had decided that the attic room would be best served in its old function so it had become his study. He had felt uneasy about the idea of spending time in the vicinity of the mirror but he had pushed the thought away. He was acting as if it was emitting a sort of malevolent force; which was of course absurd. He had concluded that it had surely been a trick of the dim light; after all, there was only that small window to illuminate the place.

But it wouldn’t hurt to prove his theory.

He peered above the laptop screen and found his eyes facing the mirror.  Almost sub-consciously, Robert left his seat and walked to the fireplace. To the mirror.

He stared at himself for a few moments. And himself stared back. He moved his head side to side (whilst feeling a little foolish) and his reflection did the same.

He laughed. How could he, one who thought himself a rational man, have believed that his reflection could be anything more than that. He let the laugh develop into a full, unrestrained hearty laugh.

But his reflection didn’t.

Robert almost choked at the abrupt ceasing of his own laughter as he watched his reflection.

It was unmoving. No, that was wrong. It was blinking and flexing its eyebrows just as Robert was doing but standing still as Robert was not. He moved his head but the reflection was completely autonomous now. Anything Robert would do it simply looked like it didn’t notice and continued to wear a look of complete beguile; as if it was utterly captivated by what it was seeing.

All thoughts of getting back to his writing and of Sara and of everything else exited Robert’s mind as he kept gazing at the mirror. If anyone had seen him they would have noticed the look of complete beguile on his face as if he was utterly captivated by what he was seeing.


Sara peered over at her husband as he ate his breakfast silently, just staring ahead. He blinked suddenly when he noticed he had finished and stood up. “I’m going to the attic.” He said plainly.

“Again?” He gave her a quizzical look. “I know its good you’re writing again but you seem to be…” She tried to find the words, “…too involved. I’ve hardly seen you over the last couple of days and when I do you have this glazed expression -”

Robert interrupted her. “I’m fine. Really.” He said bluntly. “We’ll go for out tonight to make up for it.” he added. He kissed her affectionately before leaving his wife alone for his attic.

As soon as he reached his study, every thought of Sara cleared his head as he perched in front of the mirror.
Shortly after he had started watching it two days ago, his reflection had begun moving around the room; going to his desk and rifling through some papers. Occasionally, the reflection would leave the room altogether and Robert would sit patiently until it returned. He had found it near impossible to tear himself away from it; yesterday, he had even watched it all day until he had fallen asleep.
As he watched on the third morning, something new happened. As his reflection stood by its desk, the door behind him opened and Sara entered the room. Instinctively, Robert looked behind him to see if Sara had really come in the room but she had not; only in the mirror. Robert marvelled at seeing a perfect reflection of his wife in the mirror. He had never seen her reflection in it before just as she had never entered the attic since the day he had discovered the mirror.
Robert watched intently as his reflection and Sara talked; their staunch expressions telling him it was not a genial conversation; their silent talk quickly escalated into what looked like an argument by the flaying hand gestures. Robert watched over this feeling detached from the scene. He started to wonder once again; what was he seeing? He had to open his mind up to notions he would have thought preposterous a few days ago. A parallel world? He definitely wasn’t seeing the past as he knew this scene had never happened because Sara had never visited him in the attic. More importantly, the two of them never argued.

He was jolted back into (his skewered form of) reality by a sudden shock.

Sara was facing the mirror.

(C) Christian Bone 2011
--------------- Return soon to read the final part. If you dare (cue maniacal laughter)----------------

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