Saturday, May 3, 2014

The Friend in the Mirror 

I discovered her long ago, when I was just a child. Old enough to have an "imaginary friend" but too young for anyone to believe the truth. It was only after I got to a certain age that I stopped speaking of her to anyone. They said it wasn't "natural" for a kid to have still have an imaginary friend. So now she's my secret and I'm hers. Evidently in her world, it was similar.

She looks just like me. A little different, but we have the same eyes, the same nose, the same dimples when we smile, and the same color hair. Our voices are the same, our mannerisms are mostly the same, and we have the same sense of humor.

She's dirtier than me, but I think it's all from her lifestyle. I find her life so interesting; I would give my left arm some days to switch for just one day; she has the same wish. It has yet to happen as I still have my left arm. But we tell each other everything about our lives; our worlds.

Our worlds are so different. I don't understand why, but she tells me her world's history and it's not quite the same as ours. Many of the same incidents happened in both our worlds but the outcomes were different and a few different incidents, which I guess can greatly influence how our worlds evolved.

I discovered her in my mirror one day; my parents thought my "imaginary" friend was based on my love of Alice in Wonderland and the Wizard of Oz, not to mention my overactive imagination. Over the years as we've gotten older we've had to be careful of meeting up so our families didn't think us crazy and in her case, that she wasn't caught by anyone else.  She says the lawmen in her world are strict concerning behavioral issues that arise.

She's a farmer in her world. I work for the Department of Agriculture. Only a few members of her family have ever chosen to not be a farmer. My sister is a lawyer and my brother is a Chiropractor. Water use is highly restricted in her world, none gets wasted; otherwise you could be punished to the fullest extent. Water is still widely available and while we are in a drought, no one is in danger of being arrested for wasting wasting a drop of water. People have a "station" in life, although they have an ability to leave it if they wish. Nobody has a "station", anyone can choose what they want to be. 

We've discussed the guys I've dated. She wishes she could have dated, but that's not quite how they do things. She's now married and has a baby on the way. I am still waiting to find Mr. Right.

We have no idea how we're able to communicate between our worlds and we speculate there have to be other worlds where we exist, but for some unknown, unexplainable reason, our mirrors connect us. We used to meet up nearly every week; we've become our own best friend. The last time we spoke was six months ago when she was going to tell me the name her and her husband had decided on for their baby. But she was scared someone was watching her and she disappeared in a rush.

Tonight, as usual, I spend a few minutes at my little mirror, hoping she'll come back. Just as I turned it, I saw her. She looks so different.

I grin and greet her with our usual greeting, "Hi me!'

She looks confused as she stares at me. "Is this a trick?"

"No, no of course not." Something's not right. "Do you remember me? I'm you, but from somewhere else." She only vaguely alluded to what her lawmen did to those who had "behavioral" problems, but it usually involved messing with their minds and even erasing their memories. She always told me that if she acted strangely to break the mirror to ensure safety.

"I don't understand. How are you speaking to me through a mirror?"

"We've never known how. I've been so worried about you. Please tell me you and your baby are okay."

Her answer shocked me. "What baby? I don't have a baby."

I broke down in sobs and grabbed the hammer that I always kept near the mirror. "Please forgive me."

"For what? What is going on?"

I don't want to lose my best friend forever. If I swing this hammer I will never get her back. But I don't have her now, this isn't her. If she was in danger before she could wind up that way again and Lord knows what her world will do to her.

I stare at the hammer.


  1. This bears further exploration...

  2. Awww. She has to break the mirror and lose her friend. What could have happened to her? Nice ending, J!

  3. Good dystopian twist on the prompt!

  4. THEN WHAT HAPPENED?! hahaha That's the problem with short stories, I always want more!
    I'm imaging she broke the mirror, and out popped her twin, forced into her world....


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