A/N: I wrote this years ago as a piece of coursework, but I think I'm ready now to share it with a wider audience. I hope you enjoy this, and if you do, please don't hesitate to leave feedback - it can only help me improve!
Every day starts with silence; every night, that silence is held. No noise, no disturbance - just the insufferable inaudible that encases her ears. Though if she were honest, perhaps there was a soft whistling of passing air as it was inhaled… But of course, she can't possibly know for sure. It could just be her mind playing cruel tricks upon her, and she can't give in to those.
Her eyes flicker from her quivering hands to the ethereal flame licking the wick of the candle not five feet from where she sits; lips pursing into a child-like pout, she raises her flat palm mere inches from her face, opening and closing it three times exactly as if attempting to grab the cream-coloured wax. Her efforts are a waste. But still she wiggles her fingers at it, the reason why unknown even to her.
Minutes pass. Five, then ten - before long half an hour has gone by, and then that half hour turns into a full one. If she had been timed, then perhaps one could say that her eyes did not blink for an entirety of several minutes; she continues to stare, unaffected by anything except the distorted glow of the enrapturing fire. Even when she does blink, her gaze does not waver - she holds onto that one image, almost as though her head and her eyes are physically locked in place.
Shadows cast by the flame slither and sway and dance as the light does; she pats the air, trying to ensnare them within her grasp. Three times exactly her fingers stroke what isn't there - until tips meet smooth, polished surface, and her head tilts a full right angle in perplexion. And then, a most peculiar thing happens: a thick liquid substance - its density nigh on that of blood - begins to slip from where her fingertip joins the transparent cage. Cobalt in colour and perfectly shiny, it trickles across her hand and down her outstretched arm. Her eyes widen. A delighted gasp finds its way from her mouth. In a mixture of awe and wonder, her mind is awhirl, cart-wheeling with questions that she is bursting to ask. But surrounded in solitude, so finds no better use for her tongue than to act upon the one fervent thought that is burning up the forefront of her mind. With a flick of the apex, she laps up the blue liquid.
Her lips smack three times in quick succession. Tastes… good. Like chicken. But what doesn't taste like chicken? A grin of reminiscence mutilates her delicate doll-face, and with what is left of the blue substance, she smears a heart upon the glass sheet. Detailed painting. Leaves room for the ventricles, the arteries, and even the tricuspid valve. Once finished, her eyes trace the picture, glazing over with serene happiness and a pride one can only receive from completing a troublesome task. In this calm bliss, her mind wanders - she finds herself moments later waking from the happy trance, with her painting finger stuck rigidly in her mouth. It still tastes like chicken. She smiles, her eyes flutter closed.
The passing of time is something she holds little concern for - although if she turns around, she may be able to see a disfigured clock hanging on the nearest wall, she has no desire to do so. Time means as little to her as breathing with conscious effort does to the everyday being. How long she's been trapped here is irrelevant - upon her leave, she will commit as glorious an act whether she has been inside her prison for five minutes or five years. A sprightly grin dances across her lips as her heart starts to sing euphoric songs to her head. The never-ending thump is her beat, the divine liquid flowing through her veins the symphonic melody. The oxygen inhaled mixes with the haemoglobin, granting her, in its flowing, wordless lyrics. When her eyes finally reopen, she's at peace. But her smile quickly vanishes.
Her thoughts think themselves - she is blank, oblivious to them with their absent language; they are but neurons sparking inside of her brain, passing incomprehensible cognitions from one to another in a wave of senseless garble. No translation connects to these transmissions - not a single thing that could be summed up in any existing word. Her picture is gone. Somehow, that realisation breaks through the unknown jumble and registers to her. Eyes beginning to tear, she sniffs. Her hand finds its way back to the glass and splays over it.
Copper-brunette ringlets fall in tumbles to curtain her face as her head drops down as suddenly, and as lifelessly, as if she were a rag-doll. A dead rag-doll. The teardrop slipping down her cheek plummets to the floor, becoming an alligator, sprouting wings and ascending through the air. It drifts through her draped tresses… and is gone. She's lonely once more. Her eyes squeeze shut a fleeting second to force out the water that is welling up inside them - upon opening, she finds the soaring alligator has reverted back to a salty droplet.
Motionless she remains - back curved, shoulders hunched, head downcast - and nothing can stir her from that pose. Even the candle with its effervescent flame cannot tempt her to glance upward. After a while - she knows not how long - her eyes droop closed, heavy with the fatigue of thought. But despite the appearance of her slumber to outside eyes, she is anything but cathartic.
The spectators - beyond the glass box, behind the candle and the safety of their one-way mirror - have always failed to see just how wonderful the world is through her pretty brown eyes. They do not see the rainbow of snakes dangling from the ceiling; the flowers made from the feathers of a black swan; they do not hear the sweet chorus of delightfully excruciating screams that, although deaf to a listener's ears, resound vociferously inside her head, nor do they see the delicious crimson ripples undulating around her. And the hearts, beating more harmoniously than an angel's wings, bitten into and collected at her knees - no, they didn't see those, either.