Story – ‘The Self Reflected’

I moved, it moved.

I smiled, it smiled.

I watched its shadowy hand reach over for the switch and light up the room, drawing my attention to the ceiling fan. The light danced shadows over the ceiling as it shone through the blades, circling, circling ever outwards for those shadows to finally rest on the wall. The wall with is creamy colour, its smooth look, yet rough feel, the wall that leads nowhere in its bleakness, the wall that makes my eyes dart, searching for release. To find the shelf.

Books. Things that he has from a bygone era, from an age before now. Things that I craved, things that shone with history. A rock from a waterfall, a jewel from the desert. A book from a birthday, a game from the store. All history. Good memories. I wish for them to be mine. Bad memories. My eyes yearn to leave the misery. I move down. To the chest of drawers.

The stacks of files, mountains of study, a million numbers, a thousand words. Not mine. I grin. I never had to do that, I feel superior. But he grins back and taps his head. He learned, he knows what I know not. I frown and hold my brow in regret. I can not beat him. My eyes continue searching for victory. To the desk.

I laugh. The piles of junk, glasses of drinks finished, metal soda cans, empty milk cartons. A beer bottle somewhere behind. A bible. Books and paper filling space not used. I laugh at his uneasiness. He will not find his life in there, on that desk. He reaches and picks up the bible. He sweeps the rest away. And smiles back. A tear in my eye. He found it. I can not win, he is too smart. I yearn for something. The bed.

A source of weakness to all that live. A home to all that sleep. A refuge for all that cry. A place to find weakness, a place to find hidden treasure. I look carefully, not wanting to give away my advantage. A sheet, a quilt, a pillow, a pillow. Two pillows, why two? I point and smile. He smiles. He shakes his head. I sniff. A male odour meets my nostrils. No other smell but one meets it. I glare at him in hate. I must win. I have to. My eyes shift to the floor.

A shirt, a racquet, a bag, a jacket, a book, a paper, a phone, a sheet, a bottle, a clock, a receipt, a ball. So much. The space is small but the contents many. A dog chews the ball. She eyes me for a moment and returns to gnawing. Not much space left, not much area left. A pathway from door to desk, from desk to bed. So much life in so little a room. Why so little room? Why so little space? Why so much life? I smile broadly. I understand. He grows fearful.

I look through the mirror.

I am trapped, it is trapped.

In glass, in life.

We are different, the same.

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