An original piece of fiction inspired by this weeks prompt MIRROR over on mum turned mom
I could sense the change in the conversation before it happened. I’d had years of practise yet I still couldn’t stop what would come next. I gulped my drink ready for it to take hold. The slightly overzealous chardonnay warm my throat as it worked it way into my system. The flush in my cheeks instantaneously warming me from the face down.
I looked away. Couldn’t bring myself to meet his eyes. He was just sat there you know. Chatting away as people do. Other people not me. I sit silently wishing higher ground would open up and swallow me whole. Based on the heat emimating from my cheeks there was a strong possibility I could spontaneously combust instead. Right now I willed it.
Chewing on the inside of my mouth my eyes darting back and forth from my slightly sweaty and trembling hands to his rounded jawline and up to his chocolate eyes. A chocolate brown so intense you wanted to jump right in. They remind me of the willy wonka film, that chocolate lake, I thought as I stifled a giggle. How I wanted to just dive right in in that moment. Forget the world forget it all and seek comfort and solace right there in thosearch eyes.
But I didn’t. I sat there as I always did. Nervously fumbling. Spinning my wine glass round like it was teacups at the fair then fixing my fringe which I knew for a fact didn’t need touching but was quite possibly ruined now. God I need to go and check it in a mirror.
I realised he was looking at me. Those chocolate pools fixed onto me and my fidgeting fingers. I smiled well made some half twisted grimace at him and wondered why I was here. Not for the first time tonight either.
He was a thing of beauty to look at he really was. I could see him now in a catalogue modeling the latest sportswear holding a football all broody and serious. Yet no one had he spoke to me. Not once had he asked about my day. And I had let him. Let him talk at me. Not to me. Let him fill my brain with words and stories that I refused to absorb.
I made my excuses and left the table. Heading to the bathroom I noticed I had my bag with me. Could I? Should I? I didn’t I went onto the bathroom and let the scent of pine and lemon wash over me and seep into my pores. The lock on the stall clicked behind me and I just sat there. Staring at the door where it seems josie spent a lot of time too if her name scrawled all over the fresh varnish was anything to go by.
Time disappeared and eventually I moved. Yet no one came knocking for the new girl who had taken up residence in Josie’s hangout. I had to freshen up in the mirror before I left here. Only I couldn’t my face. I was in front of the mirror. Looking, searching but I wasn’t looking back. That person wasn’t me. I couldn’t be me.
Sure she had the same black chin length bob as me. Flecks of midnight blue shone through where the fluorescent lighting caught it. But that wasn’t me. Under the shiny blue hair she looked tired. Worn out and beaten down. She looked sad. Her eyes vacant but a stare that told a thousand stories. If a life lost and direction unknown. I wondered who this reflection belonged to but I can’t see anyone else in here.
She continued to look back at me. The pink flush in her checks now subdued and almost hidden under the blusher haphazardly applied. She should take more I thought she was actually quite pretty behind those lost eyes and downward tug on her lips. Not a frown just a slight turn. Her face was a just a screen she thought. A picture to present to the world doll like almost. But I could see someone in there. Behind blank sorrowful features I could her in there. Hi I said how are you?
The girl looking back at me held my gaze. She didn’t flinch. She just looked at me as if she could see inside my soul. I shifted my weight from one foot to another she was making me feel uncomfortable. My arms reached out, fingers approaching the mirror. I had to get her out. I couldn’t leave her there she looked so sad so lost. I had to help her. But I couldn’t reach her. As my fingers got closer she began to leave me I couldn’t get her I couldn’t reach.
I grabbed my bag of the wet counter and made my way back out into the hustle of a busy lunchtime rush in our favourite bar. He was still there preoccupied by his phone and unaware of the girl stuck in the mirror. I couldn’t reach her the same way he couldn’t reach me. The girl in the mirror was gone.