and what she found there

His hands are as cool as glass, as cool as a mirror is to the touch. She had half expected to find him flat and two-dimensional as well, but no, he has depth and substance and three dimensions, and even a fourth one if one counts time, for he said that he knew her past and would shape her future.

The part of Himiko which hates and resents and nurtures bitterness has been distilling poison inside her for a long time. Ban has kept her in ignorance. He knows, he has always known, who she is and what she is, but he has not told her. He has left her to rot in a hell of impotent struggles and hopeless guilt. He knows. He knows. But he cares more for his own righteousness and his own long-past promises to Yamato than he does for her as a living person, as a real person.

It seems that the only choice she has is into whose hands she gives herself. Either she must be Midou Ban's victim or she must be Kagami Kyouji's pawn.

She has exchanged one sacrificial altar for another, but this time there are no screaming crowds, there is no burning sun; there is just her and Kagami Kyouji and their reflections in the mirrors. The room is shadowed and hung with white silk, and she is a stain of colour against its purity.

She walks slowly across to look into a mirror, laying her gloved hands against the glass as if she could reach through it. The Himiko who looks back at her has secrets in her eyes.

Kagami's reflection folds his arms around her reflection. She can feel his touch on her body, and leans back against him in surrender, but it is their reflections who truly embrace, who will couple in the shadows and who will lie amid the tangled folds of silk. It's the reflection who is real, the reflection who is the Voodoo Child, the reflection who will be queen.

Kagami's eyes hold the same reflections as the glass. She watches his eyes in the mirror, and he never takes his gaze away from her as his hands drift down her neck and across her body.

She's falling into mirrors. She's chosen it, she's prepared to pay the price, just to have an end to it; she doesn't believe his promises, she doesn't believe the sweetness of his words, of his lips, but she does believe that he knows what the Voodoo Child is. That's enough. Poison knows snake; she has no illusions about him, but she has chosen this and now she is caught in these dreams of glass and silver with him, in an endless caress in darkened rooms, where their reflections are awake and they are the ones who sleep.

He holds her gaze in the mirror. He does not kiss her lips. He brings her fingers to his mouth and strips the gloves from her hands and leaves her bare to his touch.

In the mirror, she is smiling.