This is what I've got!

Monday, February 10, 2014

The Reflection

Wherever he turned, he found the same reflections staring back at him.

Inside the mirror maze, there was nowhere to run.

Every turn brought him face to face with another reflection. Another dead end.

There were voices around him, fading away with every passing minute.

What if daddy never found him? What if he was left alone?

A thousand questions buzzed inside his head.

No answers came to him, no reassurances. Just a hammering heart and sweaty palms.

The lights began to flicker. His stomach coiled in terror.

Surely, they wouldn’t leave him alone here. Surely, daddy would find him.

The lights kept flickering. He searched around him, groping in semidarkness for the familiar fabric of daddy’s jacket.

He found nothing. Only reflections. Eyes and pale faces staring back at him. All around him, no matter where he looked.
Slowly, the reflections – the eyes, the pale faces- were closing in on him, suffocating him.

His knees buckled, his breathing ragged.
The lights flickered one last time.
And then..blackness.

*********

“Frightened probably..medication..post traumatic hallucination..psychological stress..counselling maybe..”
He caught bits of their conversation as he resurfaced from the void of unconsciousness.

The words made no sense to him. Besides, he was too tired to bother.
The sterile scent of hospital air was thick around him. He sat up, facing the polished glass window of the dingy hospital room.

A chill ran through his spine. His pulse quickened.
The eyes!

The same pale face. As pale as a spectre. A reflection.
He heard himself scream, as if from another dimension.
And then..blackness.


************


Doctors.  They told him hope is the best medicine.

They held endless discourses, urging him to discover his inner self and face his fears.
What are they talking about, he often thought to himself. They never seemed to understand that with every growing moment, the fear had grown with him. Into him.

The fear was him. He was the fear.


************

The rain left him drenched to the core.

But there was something about the sound of splashing rain that set him free. He kept walking on the wet pavement, rubbing his hands together to warm his numb fingers.

The street was full of rainwater pools, scattered like silver polka dots on a dark grey fabric.

His phone beeped. Must be another one of dad's anxious texts. Dad was always worried, always trying to help. Only he knew that his situation was beyond any help.

A quite sigh escaped his lips as he took out the phone from his pocket. Along with the phone, came a coin that landed near his feet with a cling. He bent down to pick it up. His gaze slipped to a nearby pool.

Too late. The eyes, they had found him once again. The face, it was as pale as ever.

Every cell in his body screamed. Silently. Agonizingly.

His legs felt like columns of lead, refusing to move as he willed them to. His teeth were clenched with the effort.

A gust of cold wind blew across the street. His blood turned to ice in his veins.
And then..blackness.

***********


Years of counselling.
Years of changing medication.

Yet, on every reflective surface, he saw the same pair of eyes. The same pale face, as pale as a spectre. In that moment of indefinite terror, he would become the same little boy once again, terrified and alone in a maze of reflections.



********

“Come closer..do you feel my heartbeat?”
Her face was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen.
Their faces were close enough to be breathing the same air.
Her touch, it made him feel complete.
“It says..’I want you’..”, she whispered. Her breath tickled his ears.

Yes, maybe all wasn’t lost yet. Maybe he would find happiness in her arms.
His fingers brushed against her lips. His eyes found hers. Their gazes locked.

In that moment, reflected in her hazel eyes, he saw it again.

Closer than ever.

The same pale face, as pale as a spectre.
Quickening pulse. A scream.
And then..blackness.




This story is an attempt to explore the mind of a person suffering from Eisoptrophobia, the fear of one's own reflection. The reflections are of many kinds, but the reaction never changes.  

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