Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Drip (04/25/13)
TITLE: The Man in the Mirror
By Tyler Harris
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Jason slowly slid out from underneath the covers and began to walk towards the adjacent bathroom, feeling the walls for guidance. He reached the bathroom door and pushed it open. His hand immediately found the light switch and flicked it on. Light flashed through the bathroom, the brightness forcing Jason to slam his eyes shut. Drip… Jason’s eyes snapped open…Drip… and followed the sound to the sink.
The faucet was dripping.
A wave of relief and embarrassment washed over him. “It’s just the faucet leaking” Jason thought as he tightened the handle in the off position. The water dripped once more and stopped. Jason let out a small chuckle, “Back to bed.”
As Jason turned to leave, he glanced up into the mirror above the sink and froze – a dark figure stood behind him. Jason whipped around, throwing himself backwards towards the sink, the back of his head smashing into the mirror. A sharp pain winced through his scalp, but he barely noticed. His heart beat wildly, as fear clawed at his mind.
“Hello, Jassson.” The man said in a deep, seductive voice. As he spoke he exposed long, sharp teeth that reminded Jason of a vampire. His face was elongated, almost alien-like. The man’s eyes were bloodshot, and his skin was dry, cracked, and oozing some sort of thick, grey mucus. And he smelled. He smelled rotten.
Jason stared, paralyzed by fear.
“What’sss the matter?” the man asked, “scared?” at this the man began to laugh a hideous cackling cough-laugh that made Jason cringe.
“What do you want?” Jason whispered, shifting his eyes to the floor.
“The question issss, what do you want, Jassson?”
“Who are you?”
“You know who I am; look closssely, boy.”
Jason looked up at the man. Truthfully, there was a familiarity to him. Somewhere beneath the repulsiveness, Jason recognized something – he just couldn’t quite grasp it.
“I am YOU!” the man hissed.
Realization struck Jason’s mind like lightning. Though distorted by age and the macabre features, the man was indeed Jason himself. Jason felt vomit threatening.
“I am here to open your eyes, boy. I can give you a life of pleasure you didn’t think was possible. Power, women, wealth, and fame. All these you can have, just follow me.”
“I – I – I don’t understand.” Jason stammered. The initial shock of the man’s appearance had abated, and Jason actually found himself slightly curious – even drawn to the man’s words.
The man’s eyes narrowed and a pointy, black tongue slipped out of his mouth to wet his dry lips. “Trussst me,” he said. “All of the secret, deliciousss desires of your heart – we can make them happen. Come with me.”
Jason’s fear was fading now. He took a step away from the sink countertop on which he had been leaning. He felt pulled toward the man. After all, they were the same person, right? Jason, albeit a disfigured and repulsive version, wouldn’t harm himself.
Jason glanced back over his shoulder at the sound. A drop of blood had fallen from the smashed mirror and splashed into the sink; he remembered the pain at the back of his head. He took another step towards the man. At that moment, a blazing white light rushed the room, blinding Jason. His mind suddenly flooded with an image of a wooden cross, streaked with blood. The blood flowing down, into the dirt…Drip…
A booming voice spoke out, “The heart of man is relentlessly evil, but behold, I have made all things new!”
Jason bolted upright in his bed, the room dim with the beginning light of dawn. He looked around frantically, feeling the sweat soaked sheets.
“Whew. Just a dream.” he said to himself. Jason got out of bed and walked to the bathroom. He hesitantly turned on the light, but the room was empty. “Man, what a nightmare. This is all Adam’s fault, giving me that Bible yesterday and blathering about sin and a ‘Savior’. I just need to get a grip on myself.” Jason flicked off the light and walked toward the door. “It was just a meaningless dream.”
A small bead of water fell from the faucet... Drip… Jason froze.
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