A/N: Hey there, this is Spices. Yet another story I wrote for my creative writing class. Heh, I just channel fanfic like a lightning rod, lol. Yes, the title is from the song by t.A.T.u. I guess the story is kind of inspired by it as well.
"Toshiro, what's going on?" Momo gently touched her husband's hand. "Why is everyone here? Did something happen?" She moved to take a step forward, but Toshiro caught her arm and pulled her to his chest, pressing her face to his shoulder. "Don't look, Momo. Don't look. It's Izuru. He's dead." Momo let out a soft gasp, and Toshiro stroked her hair soothingly. His voice shook slightly as he continued. "I was the fist Captain called to the scene. It's not pretty. What ever, or who ever it was that killed him, it sure scared him first. The look on his face…" he shook his head wearily. "It will haunt my dreams for many long months." Momo let out a strangled sob, pulling away from Toshiro and pushing through the rest of the Captains to the font of the crowd. Toshiro called out to her, but she ignored him; perhaps she didn't even hear him. All the world was lost to her at the sight of Izuru's bloody form, sprawled out on the floor like a broken doll. "No…" she moaned. "Izuru." She fell to her knees beside her old friend, stroking his blonde hair with trembling fingers. Tears dripped down her face, splashing in the crimson puddles of blood that stained the hardwood floor. "Renji." She managed to choke out. "Somebody get Lieutenant Abarai." Strong hands fell on her shoulders, and Momo turned her tearful face upwards. "Renji!" she cried. He helped her up, patting her back in the best gesture of comfort he could offer. "Oh Renji, why him? Why Izuru?" Momo sobbed, clinging to the front of Renji's robes. "He was so sweet and gentle, what could anyone possibly have against our Izuru?" Renji touched her hair softly. "I don't know. I just don't know." Renji, Izuru and Momo had remained good friends, even after their academy days. To lose one of their own was a fierce blow to the heart.
Off to the side, Toshiro's hands clenched into fists, jealousy at seeing his wife in another's arms burning in his bright green eyes. Rangiku squeezed his shoulder gently. "No disrespect, Captain, but let it go. Her best friend is dead on the floor, murdered. Of course she'll seek comfort from somebody familiar, someone she can relate to in this situation. Besides," Rangiku gave a playful smile. "Renji is engaged to Rukia. You've got absolutely nothing to worry about. Trust me, Captain." Toshiro sighed heavily. "Yeah, I guess you're right, Matsumoto." Rangiku beamed, flipping long, coppery hair over her shoulder. "When am I ever wrong?" Toshiro let out a soft snort of laughter. "If Momo comes looking for me, tell her I've gone home." Rangiku bowed. "Of course, Captain."
The next hour went by in a blur of insanity. Izuru's body was taken away, preparations for a military funeral began, investigations on his murder were started. In the bathroom washing tears from her face, Momo was alone for the first time all morning. Pressing cold, wet hands to her cheeks, she stared blankly at herself in the mirror. Closing her eyes, she let her head fall so her chin rested on her chest. Heaving a deep, shuddering sigh, she looked back up at the mirror– and nearly jumped out of her socks. Her reflection stared back at her with flaming magenta eyes, so very different from her own chocolate colored ones. Slowly, the face of the Momo in the mirror contorted into a wide, sadistic grin. "Look at little Momo!" the reflection rasped. "Poor, lost, helpless Momo, who always needs other to protect her. Go run to Toshiro. Go cry to Renji. They can't help you now. They can't protect you from yourself."
"Who are you?" Momo demanded. "What are you?" Her reflection laughed darkly. Don't you know, dear? I am you. I am the dark half of your heart. The half that always despised being protected. The half that wanted to fight your own battles. The half that lusts for blood!" Momo stumbled back from the mirror, frightened. "You're n-not r-real!" she stammered. "Th-this is all j-just some…some…some insane dream I'm having, brought on by too much paperwork, not enough sleep, and grief over Izuru! You don't exist!" she insisted. The Momo in the mirror shook her head and smiled sardonically. "Oh no, my dear, I assure you I am quite real. To you, at least. To others, you are right. I don't exist, to them. But to you, in your mind, I am real. As real as the blood on your hands and the guilt in your heart." Momo frowned. "I don't have a clue as to what you're talking about." She said firmly. The reflection's grin widened, twisted, contorting into something even sicker and more disturbed than before. "Dearest little Momo, don't you understand? Very well. Tell me then, where were you last night?" Momo glared at the mirror with defiant eyes. "If you are truly me, Dark One, then you should know."
"Do not question my motives, you foolish and insolent child!" Mirror Momo snarled, eyes ablaze. Momo jumped slightly, and the reflection seemed to compose herself. The Momo in the mirror sniffed slightly. "Just answer." Momo chewed her lip nervously. "I-I had dinner with Toshiro as soon as I got home. Then I went to see Captain Aizen to pick up the paperwork he wanted me to finish. I brought it home to do it. Toshiro went to bed early, around eleven, while I was still working. I– I…" Momo swallowed hard. "I must have dozed off, because when I looked up at the clock next, it was nearly three. Then I went to bed. That's…that's all." Momo's reflection threw back her head and laughed manically. "But that's not all!" the reflection crowed gleefully. "That is most certainly not all! You really don't know what happened for those few hours, do you, little Momo? You can't remember a thing, as if you blacked out, isn't that right?"
"Y-yes." Momo stammered "That's right." Her reflection's magenta eyes flamed. "In your soul, deep in your soul, you are beginning to understand. In your heart, you're beginning to realize the truth. I should know. I am your heart." Momo's eyebrows knitted together in confusion. "I don't understand."
"Still?" the mirror cried. "Dear, you can be quite slow. Must I spell it out for you?"
"Please do, though I'm not quite sure I want to hear what you have to say, you…you thing."
"You would be correct, child. I can assure you that you won't want to hear what I have to say at all."
"Tell me anyway, Dark One."
The reflection's smile was a twisted blend of pity and sadistic delight. "It was I, child. I killed Izuru. I carved out his heart. Or, more accurately, you did it. You, you, you!" Momo clenched her eyes shut. "No!" she wailed. "No, oh no! It can't be! It's not true, you're lying!" Tears spilled for Momo's tightly closed lids. "Your heart never lies, Momo." the mirror cooed, voice sweet as poisoned honey. "I wouldn't. I would never." Momo whimpered. "No," her reflection hissed "but I would, and I did. However, you had the thought. All those times that Izuru stood up for you, you hated him. You hated him because you could not protect yourself. You wanted to kill him. I simply acted on your thoughts. I can do no more. I am, after all, a figment of your imagination." Momo clutched her head and began to scream, while the Momo in the mirror laughed. Laughed, as her host screamed in terror. Laughed, as her host screamed because she knew the truth. "NO!" Momo wailed, scrambling for the door.
Pelting down the hall, cold, terrified, sweat dripped down Momo's face, mingling with the hot, salty tears. "I would never!" she moaned "Never kill my friends. I would never…never even hurt them. Never…no, never…" Mocking laughter echoed in her ears, pulsing through her veins like fire. "Gotta…" Momo gasped "Gotta…gotta get away!" Throwing open the next door she came across, she slammed it shut behind her, pressing her back to it. Momo let out a heavy sigh, sliding down the cold wood of the door until she was sitting on the floor. "Safe at last." Looking up, her eyes locked on the mirror that occupied the entire wall opposite from her. "Oh, no…" she whimpered. "Oh, yes!" her reflection cackled. Slowly, Momo saw her reflection morph. Soft brown eyes turned to harsh magenta, black robes became frayed, bloodstained, and torn, strands of dulled hair pulled loose from her normally neat bun, silver Lieutenant badge tarnished to black, skin grew chalky, face became gaunt. Momo let out a terrified squeak. The reflection smiled, and spoke as if admonishing a young child. "My dear, you will never be safe from yourself." Momo's scream reverberated throughout the room, down the hall, through the entire Squad Five barracks. "Momo! Momo, where are you? Momo!" Toshiro had heard her scream. "Thank God!" Momo wept in relief. "Thank God…" Her reflection's face screwed into a mask of pure rage. "This will not do." she spat. "This will not do at all." Toshiro burst into the room, his hand resting on the hilt of his zanpaku-tou. "Momo!" Seeing Momo sitting alone, facing the mirror with her back to him, he relaxed. "You're alright." He breathed. "I'm glad. Why did you scream?" Momo stood fluidly, still facing away from him. "You should be worrying about yourself now, dear, not the pathetic child you came to save. What a darling, but you can't save her. No one can save her now." Her voice was raspy and cold. She turned on her heel, Tobiume drawn, eyes a clear, raging pink. "Momo?" Toshiro said hesitantly, taking half a step forward. "Momo, what's the matter with you, Momo?"
"No Toshiro, don't! Run, please! Please, please Toshiro!" Momo screamed. While she still couldn't control her actions, Momo had wrested control of her voice from the Dark One. Confused, Toshiro took another step forward, ignoring her warnings. "Momo, my Momo…what's wrong? Momo, what are you doing?"
"Please…" Momo raised her zanpaku-tou above her head, huge, hot tears pouring from magenta eyes. "Just go. Go, she'll make me kill you!"
"Momo! Momo, I don't understand! MOMO!"
Momo screamed as her zanpaku-tou plunged down. Screamed as hot, sticky blood splattered her face. Screamed as Toshiro whispered her name with his dying breath. Screamed as his body hit the floor. She fell to the floor beside him, sobbing, cradling his head in her bloody hands. "No…no, not my Toshiro. Not my little Shiro! Why, Dark One? Why him?!" She whipped to face the mirror. "I never, never once had a thought to harm my Toshiro! Not ever!" Her reflection laughed humorlessly. "You pitiful, pathetic, worthless creature. It is people like him, people you love," the mirror spat the word out as if it were poison. "It's them that make you weak." Momo let her breath hiss out between clenched teeth. "I. Am. Not. Weak." She bit off each word sharply. Picking up Tobiume, she made as if to sheath it, but at the last second, hurled it at the mirror. It struck with a deafening crash, piercing the mirror where the reflection's heart would have been had it had one. A look of utter shock registered on the reflection's pale, pinched face as large, glittering pieces of the broken mirror began to fall to the floor, shattering on impact into thousands of tiny shards. Momo laughed half-heartedly. "Die, vile Dark One. Torment me no more." Her eyes dulled, and she stroked Toshiro's cheek, kissing his forehead. "Leave me to grieve in peace." No sadistic laughter rang in her ears, no voice pierced her skull. Momo began to weep softly. Pressing her husband's rapidly cooling hand to her cheek, she wept for all that she had lost. She wept because she had killed them, and she wept because she could do nothing about it.
Minutes ran into hours ran in to days; possibly. Momo wasn't sure how long she sat with Toshiro, mirror fragments, spattered with blood, scattered across the floor reflected an eerie red light throughout the room. However long it was, Momo finally found she could shed no more tears. Finished? An irritated voice inquired in her mind. Momo's head snapped up. "Who's there?" she demanded. No on that hasn't been here all along. "God no, not you!" Momo gasped shrilly. Foolish, stupid child. You can never be rid of me! The voice snapped. Momo clutched her head and moaned. "No…no…I killed you, I killed you! You're dead!" You can't kill me! The voice laughed delightedly. I am, after all, just a figment of your imagination.