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Inside the Reflection

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I'm about to tell you of a girl I once knew. She wasn't anything special to look at, and she didn't have the greatest amount of friends. She was different in an unusual way. Her name was Lufera, her hair looked like burnt twine and skin of beech tree leaves in the winter. She lived in a village in ancient Africa, nowhere in particular just another sandy village. Her diminished waist and normal height thrusts a nose as if it were a tiny weapon. Though she wasn't the prettiest rose on the bush, she had eyes the hue of emeralds that on a full moon twinkled like the stars above. Her voice, a voice not even angels could compete with. Lufera had the purest lineage anyone Could conceive, yet she was thrown aside as if she were a stuffed animal a child had out grown. Lufera found no comfort in anything but her alone time, when it was her shift to watch camp, for no other soul could understand and none had ever tried. She would run to the thick of the forest beckoning to the animals along the way, her song called all creatures, friend and foe alike, to a stump centered clearing. When all had gathered, Lufera would retell The stories of the griot. She never feared the safety of her village, for every animal was entranced by her tune. When the sun would rise her company would scatter except this one lion. He always took her swiftly back to the village, before any could discover her absence.


On a day like any other, Perry, who's indifference tips the Balance of Life on its side , decided her beauty wasn't enough to impress the warriors. And so, she decided to use her oh-so spiteful lips to toy with Lufera. Perry was gorgeous, her red hair feathered like a phoenix and her height only extenuated her long, pale, marvelous legs. Her voice pierced the air like the knife into Caesar's back as did her laugh, a laugh hyenas would call brethren. She stared into your soul with almost black eyes, eyes so close to black only a close encounter with the sun could reveal their true color.


"Not even your own family wanted you! You're so fat, what kind of girl are you, a girl elephant?!"


Lufera looked up upon her with tearing eyes. "Why do you talk to me like this?"


"You're such an outcast, you don't belong he, if you think this village is your family, well, we'll do to you what your real family did...throw you out like garbage!"


Perry's split tongue stung Lufera's eyes as she began to bawl like a small infant. Insults never ceased. This girl only wanted to live her life reticent. Perry, the devil that she was, toyed with her as if she were a rag doll. As if the only thing inside her is cotton and the only heart she has is plastic. Lufera looked down in gloomy rage and flung the sand at the demon Perry hoping it would act like holy water. Perry's eyes filled with the tiny particles causing her to smack onto an unsuspecting pitchfork. Blood drizzled from her back as the light began to fade and her last hateful words slithered from between her blue lips.


Mothers gasped and blinded their children as men gathered their weapons on the hunt. Lufera dashed away knowing her life was in peril, the cool, salty tears running down her face just as fast as she was running across the land. The recent deforestation had pushed the forest back for what seemed miles.


'I must run. Don't stop. My family has failed me, my village has failed me, but not my feet. I refuse, feet, don't fail me now.'


Her thoughts refueled her empty legs. The mob screaming and hollering pushing he faster. That's all she did, thought and ran. The landscape cut and tore at her like had for so long before. Her legs finally gave driving her into the mud, she laid there waiting for the gang following her to snatch her up and feed her head for dinner. But there was none, no grabbing, no cutting, not even a shout. She just laid in the mud until she fell asleep. When she awoke everything was dark and the only light came from a spring nestled just inches away. She just gazed in amazement. Lufera eventually reached out and felt the warm, cozy water. She bathed in it and drank from it. A voice suddenly spoke to her. The voice was a feather pillow to her ears. It told her that her life had been hard enough and that all her wishes could be granted. All she had to do was ask. Lufera wished for silk as soft as a cloud and gold shinier than she had ever seen. She wished for the waist she had always wanted and a mirror. Dressed in her fines, she gazed upon herself in this mirror. She initially loved what she saw, but then her eyes met themselves...they had lost their luster. They didn't twinkle, they didn't even glow. At that moment, she understood. All the luxury was nothing more than the damper on her fire. She spoke to the voice.


"Voice, you have given me all my comforts, but now, I ask, that you take them back. I don't need them, all I need from you is the courage to meet my fate."


The voice did so and sent her back from whence she came. As she strode back to the village she absorbed the last beauty she would ever see. She said goodbye to all the creatures of friend and foe. She finally reached her village, she stood on its edge. Then, she took a deep breath, said her last goodbye, and took those last few steps to the center.


"HOW DARE YOU EVEN CONSIDER RETURNING!" the man shouted at her with no pity or regret. A crowd ambushed her and laid her head on the stump she had once stood so proudly on.


"Speak your last words, for they will truly be your last," said the executioner indifferently.


"As I here ready to pay, I must send a message to all who feel my pain or will feel my pain. The wounds may never heal, but you are who you are, embrace it. You will always have yourself, No matter what."


"Enough of your poetic tongue you vile snake!"


The executioner swung his ax with full force and dead accuracy. When he had followed through, she left, she went where there is no hate, no pain, no tears, no suffering.



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