The Mirror (flash fiction challenge)

Well here’s another flash fiction challenge courtesy of Fractured Faith Blog. I was going to wait a couple of days before I published this since I only just published the story Rekindling An Old Flame around 15 hours ago, but I changed my mind. The challenge was to write a story from the following docket:

2039

The Mirror

It was quite a large mirror for such a low price. A full length mirror with a dark wooden frame with a 75p sticker on it. It was such a bargain, what could possibly go wrong? I walked up to the man at the till, some short guy with black untidy hair that was balding on top and wearing a long brown coat.

“I would like to buy that mirror.” I said pointing my long red nail towards it.

“Certainly madam. That will be 75 pence.” he said. I pulled out a crisp £10 note. He looked at me angrily. “Have you got anything smaller luv?”

“I’m afraid not.” I answered. He snatched the note from me and rung up the purchase, then handing me the £9.25 change with a sour look on his face.

“There we go madam.” He said grumpily.

“I’m afraid I’m going to have to get you to help me take it to my car.” I informed him. He rolled his eyes.

“Righto.” He muttered under his breath. He managed to pick it up while I led him to my car that was parked outside, about a block away. He panted and grumbled as he carried the mirror while I listened to the sound my new black boots made when I walked down the footpath. When we got to my station wagon he loaded the mirror into the back and then wiped his hands. He gave me a filthy look and then walked back to his shop.

“Some people.” I said to myself as I got into the car.

I drove to my apartment wondering whether I should get some petrol on the way. When I got home I knocked on my neighbour’s door. He helped me get the mirror up the stairs and into my apartment. We put it into my bedroom and I immediately began checking myself out in it.

“Thanks Bill.” I said to him.

“That’s fine. By the way that £10 you borrowed from me a few days ago, are you able to pay me back now?” he asked.

“No I’m afraid not.” I told him. He looked disappointed and left.

Later that night I was woken to the sound of footsteps in the hallway. I got out of bed and investigated. The sound was coming from the kitchen. As I got closer it sounded like someone or something was hastily eating food. I grabbed a stick and turned on the light. In front of me was this short looking thing that sort of looked like a man. It had a protruding belly and was utterly hairless and it’s skin looked soft and slightly oily. And it exuded a nasty odour. I was repulsed by what I saw. It stopped in mid bite of one of my bananas and looked at me in surprise. Around it’s feet were bits of food. It quickly ran past me. I chased after it only to see it hop straight into the mirror I just bought. I ran to the mirror and tried to follow it, but ran straight into the glass instead. Luckily it didn’t break.

The next morning I looked in the kitchen. The thing had eaten all my bread, most of my fruit and had even drunk all my Diet Coke and eaten the mints I had stashed away. Knowing Bill had good knowledge of bizarre things I went to see him. I explained to him what I saw and he put on his reading glasses and consulted some of his books. After looking through them he looked at me.

“I’m afraid you have what is called a Hungry Spirit. They live in mirrors and at night they come out and gorge on food till they are full.”

“No wonder that mirror was so cheap. Who would have thought some really cheap mirror would have something wrong with it? How can I get rid of it?” I asked him.

“You could always just leave it somewhere.” He suggested.

“No not the mirror, the Hungry Spirit. I would prefer to keep the mirror as it’s exactly my height.” I told him. He shook his head and looked through his book.

“It says here if you can grab the Hungry Spirit before it enters the mirror the Spirit will then be unable to re-enter it and will just start dissolving.”

“Ok.” I said. “I hope it doesn’t make too much of a mess.”

That night I didn’t go to sleep but just lay in the bed in the dark listening for the Hungry Spirit. When I heard it come out of the mirror and softly walk to my kitchen I followed it as silently as I could. I walked up to the kitchen and heard the sound of packaging being opened. It was getting into my macaroons! I turned the light on and it let out a squeak and quickly tried to run past me. I attempted to block the way but it managed to duck under my arm and run into the hallway. I quickly followed. I managed to get a hand onto it’s arm that felt like it was covered in rancid oil. Trying to overcome my nausea I tried stopping the Hungry Spirit with both my hands. It had got to the mirror. I tried pulling it away, but to my surprise it instead hopped into the mirror and then pulled me into it with unbelievable strength. The next thing I knew I was inside the mirror. I tried getting out but I couldn’t get through the glass. I looked around me. It was dark and the Hungry Spirit seemed to have gone. I knocked at the glass hoping someone might hear me.

The next morning Bill came into my bedroom. He looked at the mirror and smirked. He pulled out a book and held it near the mirror, pointing at a particular section:

Hungry Spirits are very strong. If someone manages to hold onto one and then get pulled into the mirror, they then become a Hungry Spirit themselves and replace the original one.

He smiled and went over to my handbag. He opened my purse and helped himself to all the cash I had in there, which happened to be £9.25. He then walked out of the room, flipping me off as he went past the mirror.

“Bastard!” I screamed when he walked past.

I was getting hungry. I couldn’t wait till it was dark.

Joanne Fisher

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11 thoughts on “The Mirror (flash fiction challenge)

  1. Good one Joanne. Just wanted to ask when you enter the mirror does your appearance changed too. Like did you become similar in appearance to the hungry ghost.

    And in continuation of your story, how many hungry ghosts are there in the mirror or can they become human again

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Your appearance eventually changes over time. I think only one hungry Spirit per mirror. A new one replaces the old one. What happens to the old one I’m not sure. Maybe they become human again or just disappear. I never really thought about that in any great detail.

      Liked by 1 person

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