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Mirror Mirror (Short Fiction Contest 2019)

The mirror was her sick and distorted reality.

It screamed out her insecurities and shortcomings, even while the world tried to sugarcoat her with sympathetic lies and wonderfully woven reassurances. There were times in the depths of the night that she would dare to pray that those lies were in fact truths, and that she was every shred of what people claimed she was; but her reality was not too fond of those silly little dreams. 

As her mask peeled off, bit by bit, the mirror tore her down to the insignificant gnat she was. Tears teetered at the edge of her vision as the vomit-stained floor began to sway from under her, slowly morphing into a blur. Nausea began to bubble to the roof of her mouth. The more the ground twisted the more the mirror fed on her, flesh and all. 

Was this what her life had led to?  Her newly furnished bathroom floor stained with the remains of her insides while she contemplated why she even bothered to keep breathing. Everything around her was crumbling at the seams. It did not matter how many bandages she shoved onto her bleeding wounds; the salt just wouldn’t stop burning. Her anxiety would always have its way, smothering her with its everlasting love until a blue corpse was left in its wake.

Her hands were quivering as she tried to focus her fuzzy vision on opening the container that held her pretty little pills. The white tablets tempted her with their grand promise of a numb night, where all her issues would just be put on pause; however, the more she tried to unlock the container, the sweatier her hands became against the resistant child lock. Anger erupted from her gut as she let out a yell of frustration and threw the container against the mirror with a loud smack. She sank to the vomit infested floor and leaned onto the bathtub as she desperately gulped for air. Sweat trickled down from her forehead; she would be lying if she didn’t wish that she could drown in her sweat. 

Everything was wrong. Her life was a blurry reflection of what it was supposed to be. The path of bliss was in front of her, yet she couldn’t reach it. This sick routine that consisted of bottling up her anxieties and shoving the recurring nausea down with any pills she could get her hands on had run its course. It was disgusting, and she knew just how disgusting she was. Everyone told her to just go and get some help, try to fix herself and get her life back on track. Those suggestions slowly became fantasies as time went on. 

__________

As she sat on the wretched tiled floors, all she could do was feed into her thoughts and let them swallow her whole. 

Was it that hard to be happy; to be content with the hand that she had been dealt and enjoy every bit of it?

Why couldn’t she be beautiful?

Why couldn’t she just move on from the past? 

Why did nobody love her? 

Why was she left alone to fend off the suffocating demons that tortured her in the night? 

Why did she push everyone away? 

Why couldn't she just be happy? 

These questions swirled through her mind as her stomach churned and she let out another round of yellow vomit. Tears began to resurface as the hole in her heart grew larger with every passing second. Her mind was swarming with flies of hatred and self-deprecation that gleefully ate away at the rotting carcass of her head. They whispered that maybe if she hurled enough, she could lose the fat in her thighs. If she cried enough, then her eyes just might turn a beautiful shade of blue instead of their dirt colour. If she bled enough, that maybe her mind would finally stop screaming. 

She didn't want this, not anymore. Once upon a time, happiness was all she could feel. Those were better days. She just wanted beauty and love, yet both were restricted from her; both had been forged into a forbidden fruit that she would kill to gain, even if she had to pull the trigger on herself. 

The puking stopped and the room went silent, the only noise the ear could hear was the quiet sobbing of her lost soul. Her numb heart was aching for just a glimpse of joy, but instead it felt the dull ache of the knife that had been lodged in it for far too long. 

The silence dragged on, leaving the apartment in an uncomfortable state of waiting. Then, a quiet humming eased the unsettling silence of the room. The soft vibrations of her phone jolted her mind out of the self-deprecating chant it was in for just a moment.

She lifted her phone to her ear, trying to hold her hiccups back and maintain a steady voice.

“ Hello! This is Rachel Drummond from Dr. Moretti's office returning your call. How may I assist you today?”

“ Hel-Hello? I called a few days ago, and I feel ready to make an appointment with Dr. Moretti. Does she have anyone booked for tomorrow morning?”