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Mirror, Mirror, On The Wall

Author's note:

The girls I interviewed asked for their names to be changed. 

Author's note:

The girls I interviewed asked for their names to be changed. 

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Chapter Six - Narcissus

The image in the mirror has haunted the human race for as long as we were vain, which has been most of history. We have always found ways to look at ourselves and gaze on the features that either make us proud or depressed.
The earliest mirrors were pools of water naturally formed in springs or captured in clay bowls. In ancient, there was a story of a vain and foolish hunter who happened upon such a pool deep in the woods. I imagine he stopped by it in much of the same way I pass my reflection in a car window. I walk by and then stop. I look to make sure no one is watching. Then I sidle back and bat my eyes at the glass, lift up my lips and check my teeth, and collect myself like Sharpay by blowing a few raspberries, before continuing on down the street.
Narcissus had been hunting, chasing after a deer with a bow and arrow, when he happened upon a still, clear pool surrounded by draping vines and lush grass. He looked in and smile, his brilliant white teeth almost blinding him in the reflection. Already deeply vain, it didn’t take much for him to stop and smooth down his peacock feathers.
“Hello, handsome.” He turned his head to the left and winked.
Then for an awful a moment he thought there was something stuck in his teeth. But it was only a dark pebble. I can’t have that ruining my beauty, he thought.
He reached into the pool to move the rock, but as soon as his fingers touched the water, the pool rippled and convulsed, scattering his reflection.
“NOOoo!” Narcissus jerked his hand back and bit his nails. Come back, come back. The water slowly settled and his face again appeared, just as beautiful as before.
Narcissus stayed by the pool, day and night. He could not leave his reflection because it was just too beautiful.
There are other stories attached to this one. The nymph Echo, cursed to only repeat spoken words, falls in love with the Greek hunter and haunts the pool-side. But for our purposes, all we have to know is that he dies. Narcissus dies. The means is debated. Some say he committed suicide. Others say he simply keeled over because no mortal can only look at his reflection for all eternity with no thought of exercise, midnight snacks, or even a bathroom break. Another ending is that gods took pity on him (I don’t much care for the gods who were just as vain, if not more, than our conceited hero), and turned him into a daffodil, a flower that hangs its head in a continual state of misfortune, gazing at its own reflection in the mirror of water.

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