Welcome to one of my few ventures into the real world. No, this has never happened to me or to anyone I know; the idea simply came. Be warned of angst and a bit of blood, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel, as it were.

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The Demise of a Reflection

By Lomiel

She lay unmoving, staring up at the ceiling, a watercolor mix of shapeless shades through the tears. The silence rang in her ears. She could hear nothing: no air in her lungs, no strain of sound from her throat, no movement, no music, no wind. She felt dead.

Pregnant.

It was the only word in the emptiness, formed by her trembling lips.

Pregnant.

The word that told her she was still alive, and made her hate that living.

Pregnant.

Impossible, she thought. Not the way it's supposed to happen. I'm dreaming. It's not true. Any second I'll wake up and I'll be just myself, with nothing growing inside me…

Pregnant.

She shut her eyes and felt the tickling warmth slide down her cheeks. She curled up on her side, covering her head to ward off the awful, inescapable reality, but it found her, beating on her ears, pulling at her heart, hacking, slashing, screaming, cackling at her helplessness.

Pregnant.

She tumbled off the bed, struggling towards the door, but it weighed her down, dragging her to the floor. I can't get away. My life is over. This isn't supposed to happen.

Slowly, she knelt, pushing off the thick-carpeted floor to face the mirror. It was convoluted, twisting back and forth, allowing views of an incomplete person. That's me. No one can see the real me, they only see the parts, like the mirror. She looked down at her hand, resting on the floor, bracing her. The intertwining bands of platinum glimmered back, the inset diamonds twinkling with an unwelcome brilliance. She stared at it, thinking of him. He will be so happy. He'll say great, that's wonderful, and he'll hug me and kiss me and laugh and I'll want to scream.

I want to scream.

This is not what's supposed to happen!

Rage flooded through her, compounded by her own unexpected voice falling flat on the carpet and poster-coated walls. She clenched her fist, feeling the ring press gently into her skin. I don't want this to happen. I don't care. I don't want it.

NO!

A sharp sound in the silence, shards falling on her knees, nicking, cutting. She knelt, choking on the rage and the fear, the side of her tightened fist at the center of the shattered web of broken glass. The death of a reflection; the demise of pretense, of what I want them to think. Her sudden strength waned, and her fist slid down the wall, over the razor edges. Something warm slithered down her arm and dripped off her elbow. The diamonds glittered through a sheen of crimson.

I don't want to give up my life.

You already have.

She blinked back the tears, trying fight them off. I don't want to die. This will kill me.

You accepted that from the beginning.

I didn't know it would be like this. I hate it.

I'll help you.

Nobody can help me.

I can do anything.

I wanted something else. I don't want to take care of a child.

Trust Me.

I can't go through with this. I never wanted this. How can I face them now? I'm supposed to be strong.

You can't be strong without Me. I'll help you.

He wanted this. I hate him. I don't want it.

He loves you. You need to return to him the love and devotion he's given to you. I can do that.

Why? Why a child? Why now? I'm not ready to be a mother. I never will be.

You need to trust me.

She searched herself, hunting for some emotion, something to connect with the life in her stomach. I don't love this child.

I do. You can have My love. I have plenty.

I don't want to love it.

Yes, you do.

She fell in slow motion, laying on the floor, eyes shut tight against the light. I do. That's what I told him. I do. I meant it.

I know you did. You love him, and you love this child.

Not enough.

Trust Me.

She shook her head. It's too much. I can't. I can't do anything.

Trust Me.

How? The agony was fierce and desperate, tearing through her as if her heart was being ripped out. I can't do it.

You can't. I can. Trust Me.

A rumble shook the floor slightly. She clenched her fists again, and something jabbed her mind, a red-hot sword of pain. She looked numbly at her hand. The shards of glass were imbedded deep, their edges sparkling in the dim sunlight.

Look at this. He'll think I'm crazy. He'll think I'm suicidal.

Is he right?

She closed her eyes and didn't answer.

You have to trust him, and you have to trust Me.

I don't want to trust.

You need to.

I prefer the pain.

I'll help you. Get rid of it.

I know the pain. It's familiar. This…She touched her stomach, feeling nothing different in the skin. A spark of something comforting lit in her mind. I don't know this. I'm not prepared.

I know. I know the pain and the child.

I'm scared.

I love you.

I can't believe you.

I love you. Let go of the pain.

Why do you love me?

I made you. I made him, and I made your child. Trust Me. Let it go.

Slowly, she lifted her other hand and grasped the biggest piece of glass. It bit her fingers, rebellious, wanting to stay in. It was small, tiny even, but it hurt. She shook her head again, tears blurring and obscuring her vision. I can't.

I can.

She tried again, and pulled. The glass slid out painlessly, but the blood flowed more freely.

Stop the bleeding.

Why? She stared at the crimson liquid as it trickled from the cut and across the back of her hand.

Trust Me.

She heard footsteps, a voice calling her name. She was suddenly ashamed, lying here in blood and terror, when he loved her and their child and had done so much. I can't face him.

Trust Me.

She took out another shard, then another, until they were gone. The blood flow was slowing, but not enough. She wrapped her hand in a cloth and sat. It's gone. Now I don't know what to do.

Go to him.

I don't want to.

Trust Me.

He's coming this way. She heard his voice in the hallway, and the tears came again, hot and pure, at the sound of the concern in his voice. The footsteps quickened. She heard her name.

He's here.

Trust Me. I love you.

I'm sorry.

I know.

Please forgive me.

I forgive you. I love you.

Help me love them.

I AM.

She nodded, unable to speak. She heard the door open and his voice exclaim in shock. She was trembling, her heart torn, eyes tightly shut. Suddenly she was in his arms. She had nothing to say, but he was speaking. The spark in her mind leapt suddenly into flame.

She looked up at him. Her lips moved.

I'm pregnant.

And she smiled.