Musa laid on her bed staring at the ceiling, eyes red and puffy from the tears. She had been crying since she woke up and crying before she went to bed. So they weren't much of a surprise. The first rays of sun peeked over the forest's trees. Wiping her eyes she sat up and stood. Same old routine; up, get a shower, dress. She walked to her mirror. Her reflection stared back at her accusingly. "Don't look at me like that. I can do better." She put up her pigtails, and covered the mirror with her jacket. It was Saturday, so everyone was sleeping in. Only thing she could think to do was walk. She walked down the halls, up some stair and before she knew it she was up in the tower. The ceiling of the tower was made completely of glass. It reflected her image perfectly. A sad and lonely little girl, who's pride had lost her someone dear to her.
She had to stop looking up. No matter where she went, there it was that reflection. That person she couldn't believe she was. She had to leave, to go to the forest. In the woods there was nothing that could show her the hard truth. Here she was alone with her self-broken heart. She must have been walking for at least an hour when she sat down by a large tree. Her thoughts went back to last night at the party. She had been dancing and Riven asked if he could join her. Of course she said yes. Her heart had fluttered in the breeze like a little eight year old, with a crush on the cute boy next door. This happy moment lasted for an hour or two. But then "It" happened.
She bumped into a guy who cursed at her. Riven swore at the guy and went to hit him. She said she didn't need him standing up for her. At first Riven looked a little hurt but then said "Excuse me for breathing." Then he walked out, Musa followed him. She said she didn't mean it like that. Riven said he didn't care. Then they argued for a good five minutes. Then out of no ware Riven yelled rather loud as he turned to leave, "Why do I care anyway? I'm not one of your snot nosed servants! I am out of here!"
Musa clenched her fists, and said nothing. She lowered her head. "I…" she said as her voice cracked. Riven turned, a look of surprise. He hadn't expect her to sound that upset. "I…" she sobbed, then yelled at the top of her lungs, "I hate you!" Then she turned and ran without looking back.
She now knew why you shouldn't go to bed angry. It left a hollow place inside her. Silently she stood and began walking. "This is what you get, Musa." She said to herself. "When you let yourself destroy the possibilities of happiness, all you get, is a lot of what you don't need." She hadn't told her friends what had happened. When they got home she was already in bed. Not asleep but in bed, snoring in the most obvious fake snore. Bloom had tried to get her to talk but all she did was snore louder. Now here she was, alone and sad. Suddenly ahead she saw a flicker of light. She began to walk faster. When she found what was shimmering she burst into tears.
There in the middle of the forest was a humongous tree, and embedded in it's bark was a mirror. All the trees from that tree on had the same thing. Slowly she walked to the mirror and touched it. It glowed with a bright light. Slowly the reflection changed. Her eyes grew wide as a transparent Riven appeared next to her reflection. The Riven in the mirror smiled and put his arm around her. Waving the pair faded away. Then it changed again. This time it was just Riven. He on the roof of what she recognized as Red Fountain. The boy's back was to her and he was looking out over the grounds… Then she heard his voice. "Why should I care?… Why should I care?…" Slowly he stood up, and clenched his fists. "DAMN IT. I just do." Slowly she reached out for the mirror Riven, and touched the reflection of his shoulder. He slowly turned toward her and his eyes grew wide.
"Oh god…" he said in a low voice. "I must still be dreaming." He reached for her, and cupped her cheek with a transparent hand.
"No. We're both just crazy." she whispered, making a noise between a chuckle and a sob, perhaps a hiccup.
The image began to fade and she heard Riven yell her name. He took a hurried step toward the other side of the mirror and the image disappeared completely. Then the mirror itself faded and all that was there was a knothole. Slowly she backed away then turned an ran back the way she came. The trip back only took a few minutes. She burst through the door to the dorm. Techna sat on her bed, "What happened? You look like you've seen a ghost."
"Techna have you ever heard of a tree with a mirror stuck in it's bark?" Musa asked hurriedly.
"Yes. As a matter of fact I did a paper on it in magical history class." She said pulling up her report on her computer. "See? It's a tree that only appears when your heart is in despair. It shows you something that will make you happy."
"Are the things the tree shows you real?"
"As real as you and me. It could be a million dollars, or something simple, like… A cookie, or a puppy."
"Then I have to go." Musa ran to the door.
"Go? Musa, go whe-' Musa cut her off with a slam of the door.
Outside at the gate Musa pulled on her jacket hurriedly, when she heard a voice just outside it. "Musa I- No that won't do." Musa stopped short. It was Riven. "Hey Musa, I was just- No that's stupid. Musa-"
"Yes?" she said poking her head outside.
"Wah! Musa! You damn near gave me a heart attack."
"And I was so close to." she said sourly.
Riven got an angry look, but took a deep breath. "Musa, I have something for you." He pulled out from behind his back a dozen roses. Musa's eyes glimmer at the beautiful flowers. "Can we go for a walk?"
They walked through Alfea silently. Down halls and up stairs and before they knew it they were in the tower. They looked out over the school silently. Finally Musa couldn't take it anymore. "I'm sorry!" Musa blurted out and gave him a big hug. "I-don't-hate-you-I-just-said-that-cause-I-was-hurt-by-what-you'd-said-and-I-really-really-didn't-mean-it!" she said hurriedly. Riven looked down at her as if she had just told him that bugs tasted like ice cream, then taking a deep breath, she finished. "I let my pride get in the way."
Riven stared at her, then smiled, "That is pretty much what I was going to say. Except you forgot something."
"This." he said and kissed her gently on the mouth. It only lasted a few second but it felt like an age. Then he pulled his mouth from hers. "I love you. And I will 'till the last of these roses wilt."
Later Musa arranged the roses in a vase and hummed herself a tune. Flora and Bloom walked into the dorm. Bloom looked at her suspiciously. "You and Riven made up then?"
Musa looked at her surprised. "How did you know we were fighting?"
"Yeah well we made up."
Bloom put her arm around her and hugged her, "That's great."
Flora examined the flowers in the vase. "Musa, there's something I should tell you."
"One of those flowers is fake. See," she pointer, "That one."
Bloom looked angry. "The cheapskate! I can't believe him!"
Musa however stared at the roses, and became teary.
Bloom gave her a look of concern, "It's okay Musa we'll teach him a lesson. Don't you worry. He ain't good enough for our Musa anyway."
Musa smiled, and said softly, "'Till the last one wilts." Bloom and Flora watched her, confused. "He'll love me 'till the last one wilts."