The Glaring Mirror :

I’m not one for superstition or believing in the paranormal. But some things can’t be explained. I suppose we resort to the “Supernatural” as a last resort. Well, after what happened to me, I’m still not sure what to believe. I guess I’m in denial, just shrugging it off, assuming it didn’t really happen. Who knows?

It started when I was 12. I was living with my parents in an old manor in England. It was a home for the elderly and owned by my Grandmother. MY parents both worked there full time and I went to the school down the road. It was a quiet town and not much happened there. So naturally I turned to exploring the old house, checking out the attic and cellar, wandering around the corridors.

The old people in the home scared me, I won’t lie. They’d often shriek and scream in the night and for a young boy, it was pretty unnerving. My parents and I lived on the floor below the attic, reserved just for us. They were always so worn out from work that they’d often sleep through the scary wailings of the old women, and the scratching noises on the old wooden ceiling above my bedroom.

I was scared at first, but fear eventually turned to curiousity and I worked up the courage to explore the attic again, searching for this scratching sound. Mum and Dad were down in the kitchens, helping the other staff cook lunch for the residents. I borrowed a chair from my Mum’s dressing table and stood on it, fingers outstretched, reaching for the door to the loft.

With an old creaky groan and a waft of dust and mildew, the door swung downwards and the rusty metal ladder rattled noisily down. I took a deep breath and climbed up.

It was the same as it had always been. The untouched boxes of old resident’s belongings were stacked in uneven rows, looking a bit ominous in the dull grey light from the small window at the far end of the room. It was silent. Then the scratching began.

I turned around, standing solid and my eyes were searching frantically for the source. I could see nothing. I walked back past the ladder and to the darkest end of the attic, the hairs on the back of my neck prickling. I carried on and just walked past more and more boxes, until at the end of the room, leaning against the wall was a pristine mirror. An intriguing thing with an intricate pattern carved into the frame, resting on two legs and it had one of those pegs in the middle so it could flip over. It was as tall as I was when I was ten.

The scratching had stopped, but I walked towards the mirror anyway. I was fascinated. It had some chips around the edges and there was a crack in the top of the oval, but other than that it looked in pretty good condition. I instantly decided that it would live in my room in that house.

Later that same day my Dad carried it down for me, unsure as to why I wanted such an odd thing in my room. I mean, let’s be honest. Old antique mirrors are hardly the things coveted by a ten year old boy. But still, this mirror had a charm about it. It was the same night that it was in my room, that it held my reflection in the light, that the ‘paranormal’ things began to occur.

I woke up to the scratching noise again. I instantly looked upwards, but it wasn’t coming from the attic. It was the mirror. Perplexed, I flicked on the lights and stared at the mirror. I stared back at myself. But then in the corner of my eye, I saw the face of a man, Chinese, glaring at me from underneath my bed in the reflection of my mirror. I swung my head over the side and saw nothing. There was nobody there. I thought I had just imagined it. But then I looked back at the mirror, and the same man, angry and glaring, his presence malevolent, was staring at me from outside my window. I rubbed my eyes and gaping, started for the window. Of course there was nothing there.

This continued as I grew up. We moved out of that house and down South, into a smaller home for the elderly. Again we lived on the top floor and again, the mirror went with me. It scared the crap out of me, but I was still curious. Who was this man inside the old mirror? Angry. He never spoke or moved, he just glared at me, his head poking out from random spots each time I looked back at him. It was when I reached 17 that I decided I was going to find out more. Who was this man? What was he doing? But nothing came to me.

I asked my Grandmother if he used to be an old man who once lived at the home. He wasn’t. She didn’t even know where the mirror had com from. I did research on the internet and came across a website that warned of spirits in mirrors. I couldn’t help but laugh at that. The site was constantly popping up with reminders and offers of voodoo instruments and stuff. I just ignored these. I didn’t bother asking my parents for advice either. They were still working flat out trying to keep this business going.

It was on my 18th Birthday that the man inside the mirror did something unusual.

He moved whilst I was looking at him. I wwas lying in bed the morning after a night out drinking with friends. I was feeling pretty worse for wear and I was just watching him with an amused expression. His expression however remained angry. His head was peaking out of my wardrobe door. But then my eyes widened as a withered arm reached out. Then the other, and then his legs. This angry Chinese man, was moving in my mirror. He wore nothing but a pair of black shorts. His skin was pale, like he hadn’t seen sunlight in many years and his eyes, seemed angrier than before. I stared wide eyed and shocked. A cruel smirk turned up on his lips as he walked towards the mirror.

I slowly stood up from my bed and walked towards the mirror. My reflection changed before my eyes. I couldn’t believe it. My reflection became the man inside the mirror. I stood now only a few feet from the mirror, staring. He glared back, his eyes now shining a vicious crimson. The smirk was back and he raised his right hand towards me and I did the same thing without any thought. My fingertips were reaching for his, his for mine. His eyes were widening, his smirk extending. I could see his yellow teeth between his gnarled, cracked lips. We kept eye contact. The split second before my fingertips touched the mirror and the man, my door flew open with a bang and stunned I spun around. It was my Grandmother with a portrait of the Chinese man.

There was a deafening roar of unmistakable anger,the noise was so loud I dropped to my knees and covered my ears, my Grandmother gritting her teeth and still focusing on the mirror. The disturbing sound stopped and I stood up, panting for breath. I looked at my Grandmother who smiled at me before gasping and dropping the old portrait of the man, who even on canvas, looked as angry and terrifying as he did in the mirror. The frame snapped and the canvas flopped face down onto the floor. I turned around, half expecting to see the man standing right in front of me. But I saw only the mirror.

There, scratched into the mirror in sharp, elongated letters was the word ‘SOON’.


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