August 13, 2011
Shiny glass. A flash of black hair. Long, gnarled claws reaching, reaching. Bloodred eyes looming. An ice cold voice whispering: “Soon…Soon…” The claws, growing ever closer. Snatching now, snatching at black hair, red eyes burning into brown ones, razored teeth gnashing, gnashing at porcelain skin.

Madison Hays bolted awake in her bed, her breath escaping in terrified gasps, for the third night in a row. Shakily, she brushed her long, raven hair from her face and trained her blue eyes on the glaring green digits of the digital clock on her bedside table- the only light in the room. 3:14 am. Still feeling uneasy from the nightmare, she hesitantly ran her eyes around the darkened room, an effort which proved futile due to her eyes not having adjusted yet. She blinked a few times to speed up the process and caught her breath. There, between blinks, she had seen… something... about her height in the mirror, standing with its head bent. Pure, cold terror grasped her chest. She froze, afraid to blink or make even the slightest movement. Her heartbeat roared in her ears, blocking out all rational thinking. The figure had disappeared, but for how long? Her incapacitated brain recalled at that moment only the reasoning of a child’s imagination and she felt the desperate urge to burrow into all her blankets and reach safety. Realization of her inability to think clearly gripped her and she flung herself down into her bed, pulling the thickest afghan up and over her trembling figure. It was like this, rigid with fear, sweating from the heat of the blanket and certain of her impending doom that Madison finally faded into the sweet oblivion of slumber.

Her eyes opened for the second time that day to rays of sunlight flooding in from the window over her bed. Sitting up in bed and stretching, she sighed. She recalled faint strains of terror from the night before and marveled at her own imagination. As she pulled herself out of the nest of sheets and blankets on her bed, she noticed the mirror that had so frightened her earlier. She walked up to it and stared at the glassy version of herself. The same old long black hair, boring brown eyes, gawky figure and pale skin stared back. Yea, there was nothing wrong with this mirror, except for maybe the person standing in front of it. She mentally berated herself for her panic earlier and turned away, reaching for her radio dial, ready for the sweet release she could only allow herself while alone. She cranked up the volume on her favorite heavy metal album and closed her eyes. Standing in front of her mirror, she swayed to the beat of the music as the high-pitched vocals screamed into her mind and soul, clawing through her with serrated edges, taking her over and erasing, for the moment, the memories and thoughts she was so desperate to forget.

Eyes closed, however, she couldn’t have known that she was not, in fact, alone. There was another being there, just inside the mirror: her reflection. A being that stayed absolutely still despite Madison’s movements with the music. One that, instead of mimicking, watched with bloodred eyes and an expression on her face that would send chills down the spine of even the most hardened criminal. Her fist clenched and then relaxed, and she slowly extended her arm to the thin barrier between her and Madison. Met with no resistance, it passed through easily and began to grasp for the oblivious girl with gnarled fingernails. Reaching, reaching for that raven hair and porcelain skin. Gnashing her teeth with anticipation. Ever reaching.


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This article has 48 comments. Post your own now!

writerfreak21231 said...
Aug. 22, 2011 at 4:13 pm
WOW this is great! I may not have a mirror by my bed but I will always be on guard. . . in other words it was awesome! It is very simlar to my story that I'm writng today. The girl in the mirror. :)(:
rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 22, 2011 at 6:05 pm
How cool is that :)
Mystiecub said...
Aug. 22, 2011 at 12:13 pm


Uh....holy friggin c.rap?....

the imagery in here is half of what makes it so creepy O.o great job

rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 22, 2011 at 3:40 pm
Thank you so much!
Garnet77 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 22, 2011 at 7:19 am
That was absolutely terrifying. Oh, if only I had been reading this in the light of day! I love this piece, though. You were definitely able to hook your reader into the story. I will be wary of that mirror next to me bed from now on.. :) But well done!!! 
rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 22, 2011 at 3:38 pm
Thank you! This is exactly what I was going for :D
StrangeJade This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 21, 2011 at 9:04 pm



Okay. a mirror...on the wall...behind me. Thanks to you, no WAY am I ever looking in that thing. Again.


In other words, this is fantastic. :D One little quibble, though: after Madison first wakes up, you say she has blue eyes, but in the mirror her eyes are brown. Other than that, it's good! :)

snaomi This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Aug. 21, 2011 at 9:31 pm
So I'm completely afraid of mirrors as it is, and this didn't help.  I like the idea that her own reflection could somehow turn against her, even though you don't explain why (don't! I like it that way!).  My only critical thought is that certain descriptions are kind of over-used, e.g. "raven hair".  The story is wonderfully creepy, and a little revamping of some of the descriptions in it, so they are just as original as the story, could add the icing on the cake.
Danealle said...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 11:04 pm

okay so I am now too terrified to sleep in my room.... 

The start of the story is a little shaky, but I like how the story went in a circle and ended how it started. Great job!

rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 11:13 pm
Thanks :D Shaky how? If you don't mind. I want to know what I should correct in the future. I thought the stunted sentences were good for a nightmare.
.Izzy. said...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 10:19 pm
I have a mirror right next to my bed....I'm going to make a mental note to move it before I go to sleep tonight :b
rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 10:21 pm
I take that as a compliment :D
Megan.J.B said...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 9:20 pm
Very creepy idea; similar I suppose to the movie Mirrors, but I find yours more terrifying because it was her own reflection and she felt so safe, because it was her. *shakes with chills* Well done.
rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 9:25 pm
Thanks :) Just what I was going for.. and I didn't even think about parallelling that movie! 
Megan.J.B replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 9:26 pm
Your plot is much more intriguing believe me, the only reason I was able to sit through that movie was because I enjoy Keifer Sutherland :)
rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 9:30 pm
Haha, well color me flattered :D
youngpilot said...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 9:08 pm

I have a mirror right behind my door...hmmm, might keep the door open over it tonight....

Alright, well, enough with futile attempts at humor. It was very good, description wise and also with action. There was not too much where it gets choppy and hard to read, but you tend to do the same thing as I; have very long sentences that seem to go on for a bit with descriptions. In a short piece like this it is fine, but if you ever into book-length writing, longer descriptions will give the ... (more »)

rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 9:11 pm
Thank you, I have noticed that I tend to do that, however I fluctuate based on my mood. Good thing I am not looking into writing a book yet. 
youngpilot replied...
Aug. 21, 2011 at 7:19 am
I actually enjoy it more than short story writing because you have the same characters and don't have to over decribe thier past all at once for the story to make sense and you can also really develop them and its easy to become attached:)
rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 21, 2011 at 9:19 am
That is very true!
lucygirl26 said...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 8:24 pm
ooh, very scary. Chills still running up my spine. I used to always be scared of mirrors after hearing the story of bloody mary. It seriously CREEPED ME OUT. Really, near the end I was like two inches away from the computer, reading quickly like I do in real novels to see what happens next. I love how I was waiting for the creature to be there again, but it still gave me the creeps. 5/5!
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