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Mirror, Mirror

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Be wary of reflections, dear. Look too long and the cracks will start to show. 

Don’t worry, though. You can tell those people what you want. We won’t say.

Let the girl smile in embarrassment, and whisper, “I’m still shaky around them, too,” when she sees the covered glass and the empty walls.

 Let the man mutter, “What the hell?” when he finds you cradling your shredded hand, shaky fingers plucking glittering slivers from the cuts. 

Let the woman be weighed down by her pity; let her promise, “There’s nothing haunting you anymore.”

Let them believe their truths. Let us keep yours.

It’s such a simple thing, but that’s what makes it painful. 

It’s not a little boy with his roses and thorns, his questions and fears. It wasn’t an accident, nor your own clumsy hand. It’s never a haunting, at least in the way that matters.

It’s only him, that man looking back at you in the mirror.

No matter how you contort his face, you cannot make him feel regret. His tears are not for the sister who died because you could not protect her, and who died again to protect you. His mouth may move, but it’s not his voice hoarse as he begs for forgiveness for those unsaved. He does not feel the impact of the punch, and it is not his blood smeared across his shattered image. It’s not his anger in those eyes, multiplied by fragmented glass.

You hate him, and that you cannot lift the burden of these sins from your back and let him deal with it. You hate that doing so is your first instinct. 

Oh, how you wanted to shatter when you found that recording. We almost pitied you, little lost boy. You found yourself at last, only to realize you didn’t much like what you discovered. You’d much rather hide in that guise a little longer, give the pain to someone else.

But he is only a forgery, and as empty as a doll. He cannot bear your guilt, Kazuo; he cannot bear your name, Masamune.

No matter how much you wish he could.