The Girl in the Mirror
In a town, in the woods, at the top of a hill, there's a house where no one lives. A young man just out of school nearby bought the house. He was about twenty; he had graduated from collage early, so he could be considered very smart. He bought the house in the forest because he was training to be an artist, and he imagined living in the forest would be inspiring for his paintings. In three days he had unpacked all his belongings by himself, and had settled in quite nicely. The house was a fairly good size. It was a two story house with two bedrooms, one and a half baths, with a den, a sunroom, a living room, a kitchen, a dining room, and a basement. There was also a room that was locked. Of course he was curious as to what was behind the door, but it was stuck shut, and there was no key to be found, anywhere.
The young man was a little on the tall side. Well built, but not too large. His hair was messy light brown fluff that grew just past his ears and slightly on his face. His eyes were a pale blue, like the sky in the morning when the sun was rising. His skin was just between pale and light tan, and he wore casual clothes. His clothes would often have paint splatters or charcoal smears on them, as did his shoes, which much to the annoyance of his friends, often left paint footprints on their floors.
After settling in all the way, he unpacked his art supplies. He had plenty of different things for all styles of art. He had sketchbooks and canvases, paints and charcoal, oils and watercolors, and even clay. He placed all his art supplies in the sunroom upstairs. The large amount of light would help with his artwork, and the windows and skylight brought in plenty, as well as being beautifully inspiring. He set up one of the bedrooms for his own and let the other be empty; maybe he'd turn it into a guest bedroom someday. He made his house as comfortable as possible, trying his best to ignore the door that wouldn't open. Occasionally he'd find himself stopped right in front of the door, and just stand and stare. It was right in front of the staircase, so right after one would climb the stairs, they'd see the door. He let his imagination run wild; guessing what could possibly be behind the door. Of course, he was no where close....
One night, about a week after moving in, he was downstairs in the kitchen, making some tea. He couldn't sleep, and he was hoping that it might help. It was dark outside, and from where his house was, he couldn't see the lights from town. The house lights were dimmed at the moment; he didn't plan on staying up much longer. He went to take a sip of his tea when he heard a loud noise upstairs. Startled, he jumped, nearly spilling the tea all over him.
"What could that be?" Thinking an animal might have gotten in; he put the cup down and climbed up the stairs. Naturally, the first thing he saw was the door, and he was going to pass by it but the noise sounded again, right from behind the door.
Curiosity getting the best of him, he tried to open the door, thinking it might open. Of course, doesn't budge.
The noise sounded again. It sounded like something was moving in there.
Slightly frustrated, he tried again, jiggling the knob. After a moment, he sighed and let go.
The doorknob jiggled by itself.
The young man yelped in surprise and jumped back, staring at the door, wide eyed. After a moment to collect himself, he tried jiggling the knob again. He waited for a moment, and it jiggled by itself again.
Amazed, he knocked on the door. A moment later, a knock sounded back.
"Is there someone there?" he asked, nervously. There was no answer.
He quickly made a decision and grabbed two clay molding wires from the art room and a flashlight. Using the wires, he carefully picked the lock to the door until he heard a click. After taking a deep breath he turned the doorknob.
The door creaked open. He pressed the door open further. The door protested loudly as he did, the sound making him cringe. He felt the wall for a light switch. He found none, like he thought that he might. So he turned on the flashlight and walked into the dark room.
As he walked in, he let out an impressed whistle. The walls of the room were covered, top to bottom, with mirrors, and different types of mirrors were standing around the room. The light of the flashlight bounced of the many mirrors, illuminating the room slightly, but still leaving some parts in darkness. In the high-vaulted ceiling was a mass of black gloom, adding more of an eerie edge to the room. Being careful not to have the light from the flashlight bounce off the mirror and back into his eyes, he explored around the room.
The room was built like a funhouse maze, the placement of the mirrors making it seem like there was more than a million pathways. He wandered around for quite a while, finding nothing but more mirrors, and his own reflection. Eventually, he decided to head back.
But which way was back? For a moment he seriously thought he might be lost.
"Don't be silly," he quickly reprimanded himself softly. "It's my own house, I can't be lost. Plus I doubt this room is that big." 'All I have to do is keep walking. I'll find a way out.' He kept walking, silently cursing himself for not bringing a watch.
After a long time- thirty minutes he was sure! - he came across some strange plaque in the middle of a one of the mirrors. He pointed the beam of light at the plaque to read it:
Each to each a looking glass,
reflects the other that doth pass.
He had heard of that saying someplace before, he just knew it. But the next part was completely unknown to him:
But when you look at looking glasses,
what you see is not what passes.
He was confused. Of course what was in the mirror was a reflection of what was in front of it. Why did this say otherwise? It didn't make sense. He stood in front of the mirror with the plaque for a moment. He looked at his reflection. He looked exhausted. He let out a stressed breath, using his fingers to comb the hair out of the way of his face. The mirror reflected his tired eyes.
'Wait, a minute. What was that?' Movement, behind him in the mirror. He whirled around to see nothing but more mirrors.
"But, I thought...." He turned back around to the mirror. He had seen something, he knew it. But what? He stood and stared, trying to figure it out. With a huff he started walking again.
After walking for awhile, he was really beginning to tire. Yawning, he stopped and stretched, the light of his flashlight stretching over toward the blackness at the ceiling and being swallowed in it, unable to pierce through.
This time he was positive he saw something. He jerked the light in front of himself, the light bouncing off a mirror and momentarily blinding him. Something had moved, in front of him, in the darkness. He shivered, but it wasn't because he was cold. He heard something behind him.
"Who's there?" he called out as he turned. He found nothing. A moment passed, and nothing happened. Though he was sure the temperature dropped a bit.
With a sigh, he turned to walk again. Then he stopped, staring.
The mirror in front of him was like any other in the room. Tall, rectangular; those kinds of things. But what he saw made him freeze. He wasn't reflected in the mirror. Instead, a girl about the same age as him was there.
He almost dropped the flashlight as his jaw dropped. He closed his eyes for a second, and then opened them. She was gone.
'I'm going insane,' he thought with a tired chuckle. 'That or I'm really tired.' He sighed and kept walking.
After a while of walking he saw her again, out of the corner of his eye in another mirror. He froze, staring straight ahead, but watching her as she seemed to watch him. She didn't move. He whirled around to face her, expecting her to disappear.
She didn't. Instead, she smiled.
Her eyes were sliver- literally sliver, pupils darker than black. Her hair was long and wispy, pale sliver in color. Her skin was pale, very pale and seemed to shimmer. Her teeth, which showed through her smile, were sharp, the canines long. Her clothes were simple. She wore light grey jeans, and a white blouse. She was also barefoot. He began to think that he passed out and was dreaming something very odd.
"What....?" The young man walked slowly up to the mirror, waiting for her to disappear, but she didn't. For a while, they just stared at each other. The guy shifted uncomfortably.
"Um.... Hi?" he said, desperate to break the silence.
"Hi!" she chirped back, tilting her head and smiling even more.
"Who... Who are you?" he asked, cautiously.
"Tell me you're name first!" she sang.
"Um, okay..... My name is Jonathan."
"I'm Lirril," she crooned, nearly purring her name. Jonathan just stared at her for a while as her sliver eyes seemed to glimmer.
"What are you?" he asked.
"I'm a Mimicriee," she stated, proudly.
"A what?" Jonathan said confused.
"A creature from the Mirror World," she said with a shrug, as if it was obvious. "Looking glasses are the portals between. Mimicriees can shift they form to what ever they want, and often mimic other beings for fun. That's what you see in the mirror if it's a proper walkway."
Jonathan stared for a moment, sure this conversation was a sign of pure exhaustion. He wanted to go, and fall in bed to sleep. He felt that he should be polite in leaving anyway.
"Look, I would love to stay and chat but I'm really tired and I can't find my way out of here."
"Follow!" With that, she ran off, appearing only in the mirrors as she ran, nearly gliding. Jonathan ran after as fast as he could in this maze, unsure why he even was. Eventually, he found that he was led back to the door.
"Thank you. I thought I'd never get out." He turned to the girl.
But she wasn't there. He looked around for her. Not being able to find her, he left, feeling very confused. Was she even real?
He was tired, but he felt that he couldn't go to sleep yet. Instead, he went to the art room instead. He took out the paints, all pastel colors, sweet and soft. And he got to work.
Much later, the finished canvas stared back at him. In it was a portrait of himself, standing in front of a full-length mirror. And looking back was a girl with sliver eyes.
With a satisfied sigh, he placed the brushes down. He left the paint to dry and went to his room to go to bed. Looking at the clock, he groaned. It three in the morning, if he was to get any sleep, he would have to sleep in late. He lay down in bed.
Maybe he'd go there again someday, just to see if it was all real. He rolled over with a laugh.
'But next time, I better come prepared!'