“Oh, I can’t believe you did that!” Solomon protested as he sprang from his chair, eyes burning fiercely like Greek fire.
“I didn’t mean to, but you don’t have to give me that look, you know? It’s just a mirror.”
“It was an antique that was in my family for countless generations, Barbara! But that’s not the worst part! You know what’s in store for you now, don’t you?”
“Seven years of bad luck? You’re not actually that gullible, are you?” she smirked.
His expression became even more somber as if she had added yet another rock to an already growing mountain of misfortunes.
“Just pick up the pieces, will you?”
“Fair enough, but a little help would be nice!”
“No way! It’s bad enough that you broke it inside my house. I’m not going to touch the shards and risk getting some of your bad luck rubbed on me…”
“Oh, the bad luck is also contagious, now? That’s a first!” She sighed. “Can you at least get me a broom and a shovel, please?”
The anger in his visage turned into a strange mesh of confusion and embarrassment. “What’s wrong?”
“I…” He gasped, his tongue wrapping around on the inside of his mouth, as if too ashamed to complete the sentence. “I… don’t know where they are.”
“I wish I was, really.”
She shouldn’t be surprised. Solomon was a messy collector of useless trinkets, with an extreme ease to misplace the simplest of things. He wasn’t exactly hoarder material yet, although things seemed to be heading that way quite rapidly, and the vehicle in his mind had no brakes.
Barbara looked around the various semi-cluttered divisions of the house, to no avail. All she could find was a kitchen glove and a paper bag. Not the most elegant of solutions, but the most efficient given the circumstances. Upon crouching next to the mirror’s frame, she began to pick up the shards.
Immediately, she took notice of a rather striking visual spectacle. As she held piece by piece of shattered glass, the light hitting them and reflecting off various other surfaces in the room, such as clock faces, crystalline monitors, and even silverware, created fleeting sequences of prismatic rainbows. The configurations produced were never the same but retained a sense of constancy in the way they dissolved into soft whispers of whiteness shortly after coming into being. The beautiful frailty of it all made her smile.
It took her longer to realize Solomon’s reactions, though. Focused on her cleaning chore, she failed to witness the moment when the first pattern flashed before him, the split second when he blinked and seemed to absorb some of the light itself, and all the subsequent mesmeric glimpses evolving into a spiraling vortex of passivity.
Only when she was about done with the task at hand, did she come to terms with the fact that he was standing so very still behind her, looking less like a real human being, and more like an anthropomorphic statue meticulously chiseled by genial hands. Echoes of orange and red could be seen swirling in his pupils as if they had taken permanent root there.
“What the…? Solomon, are you okay?”
He didn’t respond for statues aren’t exactly known for their speech abilities. His posture stayed rigid, hardened, and strangely sexy in all its lifelessness.
Barbara bit her lip as she placed the last shard of glass inside the paper bag.
“Stop being an ass and get rid of this before I cut myself!” she said louder than usual.
The commanding tone prompted him into action. With the bag in his left hand, he moved mechanically to the kitchen and, after disposing of it properly, returned to his initial place and stance to wait for further instructions.
“What’s gotten into you?” Again, no response was exteriorized. His reality had been tightly constricted to a very small number of directives, and no reaction was conceivable unless a direct order was issued.
“Look at me when I’m talking to you!”
This time, he had no qualms complying, and Barbara’s everyday mind put the pieces together and finally understood what was happening, even if the actual reasons for such a mysterious event would forever remain a mystery.
The Romans, along with the Greek, Chinese, African and Indian cultures, believed that a mirror had the power to break and confiscate part of the human soul. Perhaps, some of those superstitious beliefs of yore were in fact true.
“Solomon, take off your pants!” she found herself saying, and very much enjoyed doing so.
She liked it even more when his obedience came forth once more, and his manhood gracefully mimicked the rest of his body.
Totally rigid. Utterly subservient.
“And all mine to play with…” she concluded mentally, regal dominance beginning to exude from her every pore. “What other things shall I do to you, now?”
Yes, what other things, indeed? Too many to tell, I’m afraid! Let’s just say that, contrary to popular belief, during the seven years that followed, she was the luckiest woman alive.