Title: Through A Glass Darkly (with apologies to St. Paul)
Author: Starsea aka sea_thoughts
Theme: "Bury My Lovely" by October Project
The mem'ry and the mirror
Nothing but what came before
Nothing but a closing door...
It had been in her family for many years, that was all she knew. It belonged to her obaa-san , and when she was a little girl, she liked to take it out of its oak case lined with crimson velvet and trace the symbol on the back of the mirror, trying to catch her reflection when it wasn't looking. It was a strange symbol, like a fork crossed through underneath, fortified almost. Whenever she traced it, something inside her mind seemed to soften, a door swung open and she walked through it into a different world. It was as if everything around her was nothing more than a film, a cover for what existed inside her head. And what existed inside her head? The rhythm of the sea as it pushed back and forth; the curl of the wave as it became too heavy and crashed with a futile roar upon the sand; the glimmer of marble beneath her feet and silver eyes smiling at her.
"Put it back, darling, it's valuable."
One voice and the door would slam and she would be thrust back into herself, sitting on the floor, her finger on the shimmering green of the symbol and her eyes wide and dark in the glass. She would put the mirror back face down, chest tight with frustration, her mind a complete blank. Then she would slowly close the case and give it to her obaa-san. Her obaa-san had eyes the same colour as hers and her hair waved in the same way. Their hands would meet - obaa-san's grip was cool and dry - and they would look at each other for a moment.
"One day," obaa-san always said. "One day."
A picture worth a thousand lies
A thousand words
A thousand eyes...
Drawing was another way to get into that world. She would try and sketch what she saw and dreamed about. People admired her drawings, complimenting her on her "imagination". She got sick of being complimented so she started to paint seascapes instead and kept the sketches of her other world for herself. A whole drawer filled up with the details: dresses, crowns, sceptres, palaces...
People were different. She couldn't capture them. Their features slid out of her grasp, leaving only eyes, mouths, glimpses of profiles. She could draw their clothes but it wasn't the same. Clothes were only the surface and she wanted to get beyond the surface. She wanted to dive deeper, see what lay behind that surface, understand the invisible currents that drove her life and pulled her out of this world into the other one. What lies under the skin? What lies beneath the waves?
She couldn't discover these things with everyone watching her. She was always watched. She was on display. She had to shut them out. Drawing couldn't do that.
Music. Music took her away from everything, a current that carried her out to sea. She floated in it even as she created it. It was the perfect medium. She didn't mind performing for other people because she could shut them out if she wanted to. Their applause washed over her, she was immune to it. She didn't really care about what people thought of her. There were few people who could influence her. Her parents, perhaps. Ojii-san. Obaa-san. Silver eyes flashed in the murk of her memory and were gone again. She couldn't get near her.
One day. One day.
Bury my lovely
Bury the lies
Bury me under
A thousand good-byes
A shadow from another time
Is waiting in the night
Something happened long ago
Something that will not let go...
Obaa-san died. An aneurysm, they called it. The mirror was hers now, but Michiru didn't want it. When her mother put the case in her room, she took the heirloom out and threw it at the wall, her throat clogged with salt water and rage. There was a dull thud as it fell to the ground. She stood there, cold with the terror of the moment, then she ran forward and dropped to her knees, picking it up with dread heavy in her stomach.
The glass was smooth and whole. She saw herself, eyes wide in shock, mouth slightly open. For a moment, she stared at her reflection, uncomprehending, then she hugged the mirror to her chest and cried, tears raining down her face. Silent as the sea.
Sayonara. Sayonara, obaa-san. Sayonara.
She lifted the mirror and kissed the glass, smudging it with her breath and tears. "Sayonara."
As she pulled away, she saw that the eyes looking at her were not aquamarine but silver. They were gentle and understanding. Michiru caught her breath. "You..."
The eyes vanished. The mirror was clear again.
That night she had her first dream about the end of the world.
I won another award!
I find it amusing that I did an entry for every theme in February and I only got one award. I didn't do that many for January and got loads of awards! The irony.