The Mirror Lies
This is not her.
The image reflecting back at her, the subtle curves, the not-so-subtle curves…none of it belongs to her. It can't.
It is impossible.
The mirror lies, she thinks.
With the military uniform on, she looks like a man. She is used to being mistaken for one. Does it bother her anymore? Gender… What is gender, she wonders almost bitterly as she covers her breasts and watches the lie in the mirror do the same. Why can't she just become genderless?
Wouldn't life be much simpler if it were possible?
Why does society dictate what a person should or should not do based on…on this?!
She uncovers herself and sighs. It's only flesh. Her eyes rove over her reflection critically. Certainly, it is a lie. These breasts, they cannot be a part of her. They're small, she thinks, and unnoticeable under her uniform. But when she touches them, hiding them under hands calloused from fencing, the lie in the mirror does it also, and she realizes that she can feel it.
Her legs, her hips…it is all a part of her and she's not so sure that the mirror is lying anymore.
She turns away and covers her nakedness, pulling her shirt over her head as tears form in her eyes. Is this the reason that Gerodère wants to marry her? Had he somehow managed to glimpse what her military uniform kept, and tries to continue to keep, hidden from the world?
She is a woman.
She knows this, and yet she still tries to deny it. What else is she supposed to do? How many times as a child had she been told by her father that she was a man, that she would grow up to become a fine general, a "man" like no other?
She's known her entire life that she would have a man's job and wear men's clothing, but André had been right, as much as she had denied—and would still love to deny—it.
A rose is a rose. A woman is a woman. A woman cannot become a man.
Why, then, was she born with the body of a woman when God must have known her father would raise her to be a man?
And after more than thirty years… Thirty years of being treated like a man, thirty years of acting like a man… Thirty years of struggling to suppress emotions and every feminine thought and desire…
Thirty years of this not-quite happiness.
Has it all been in vain?
Now… Now, her father wants her to change again.
She is a woman.
She can become Gerodère's wife. A bride. Her. Former Commander of the Royal Guard. It is laughable, but she cannot laugh anymore. She's run out of smiles.
What kind of sick idea is this, she asks herself. It must be some kind of disgusting joke. It has to be! How can he expect her to just turn away, turn around and become the very opposite of what he himself had insisted she become? A lifetime has been spent trying to change from a woman to a man, and now, after all of that work, after harsh punishments that were normally given to boys were given to her, after studying fencing and military strategies instead of embroidery and cooking… after everything she's done to please him…
He's changed his mind.
She continues to get dressed and wonders what it will take to get her father to…what? Love her? Be proud of her? She doesn't know. She thinks he already loves her, but she can admit to herself that she is afraid that he might be disappointed in her.
She is a woman. She can't help it. It's not as if she picked her gender. But is it a bad thing that she does not really mind being a woman, sometimes? Would her father be angry, would everyone hate her, if they knew she wished she could live like a woman and still wear men's clothing and do men's work?
She shrugs into her uniform jacket and stares back at the reflection again. It looks as if it has changed. A man stands before her. His hair is long and blonde, his eyes blue, posture straight, wide shoulders back with the tassels perfectly even… She reaches out to touch the image. This is her. This is what everyone sees, what they all know her as.
They cannot recognize her in women's clothing, though she is a woman.
She is, isn't she? She looks this reflection up and down critically from the seemingly flat chest to the tips of her polished boots.
Any stranger who saw this image would say that it belongs to that of a military man. She is, perhaps, a little disappointed, when she salutes and this man in the mirror does the same.
A knock on her door startles her, but she does not turn around.
"Oscar! Oscar, are you in there? The horses are ready whenever you'd like to leave."
"I'll be there in a moment, André," she answers, and freezes in place at the sound of her own voice, because it is that of a woman. Feminine and soft, her tone gentle.
She blinks and peers at the image in front of her again, at this supposed reflection of herself.
And she thinks, as she quickly turns away, that the mirror lies.
This was inspired by so many things, it's crazy.
It was inspired by a Disney song, by real life, by myself, and by a lot of people, including Oscar herself. She's always so confused about if she wants to be a man or a woman, if she is a man or a woman, et cetera. It's actually very sad. She denies being a woman, seems to get angry when André mentions feminine intuition, but at the same time, I think she does want to be one. Her biggest dilemma is really that she likes what she does, but she can't do that and be a woman at the same time. Poor Oscar! Also, when she goes to her mother in tears in the manga and asks about her father's sudden change of attitude... That just about broke my heart. She was so, so confused, and I wondered if maybe...some of the thoughts might have crossed her mind that I had cross it here in this lil' fiction.
I had fun with this. Something different, in a point of view I rarely ever write in. Feedback is very much appreciated.