Chapter 2

Written by: Hemali Ajmera

Alice slept fretfully the night after seeing the apparition. She felt connected to the characters she had seen and had a strange sense of dèja vu. She had a lingering feeling that they had appeared to her for a reason. 

Alice decided to visit ‘The Attic’ once more to unearth any information she could on the origins of the mirror. She could probably rummage through the contents tucked inside the old chest by the now-deceased old lady.

But when she reached ‘The Attic’, she found the place was closed. The antique pieces that she had leisurely admired outside the shop were gone and even the large, artistic sign board was removed. Alice was puzzled. It was only a few days since she last visited this place. Surely they couldn’t have possibly moved so fast? 

Alice stepped into a neighbouring shop to enquire. When she persisted, the exasperated owner shrieked, “Miss, this is the hundredth time I am telling you that there was never a shop called ‘The Attic’ here. Maybe you got the address all wrong”. 

Alice walked away in utter disbelief. 

***

Alice vigilantly waited in the hall for nightfall. She wanted to ascertain if it was her mind or the mirror that was the origin of the ominous happenings in her house.    

At midnight, an apparition appeared again. 

This time it was the Captain of the sailors and the young lady. They walked out of the mirror and settled on the sofa in the hall. The Captain was holding the young girl’s hand and they were engrossed in an animated conversation. 

“Forgive me, my dear Oliver, for betraying your affections. I was betrothed to Lord William against my will when you were at sea and will be married to him shortly. But you must know that my heart and soul shall forever yearn for you. I sacrificed our love at the altar of my family honour,” the young girl said tearfully.

“My dearest Emma, do not weep. Our love cannot die. Trust me, I will find a way for us to be together,” the dashing sailor promised earnestly.

The spectres seemed completely oblivious to the silent witness in the room. Alice was confused. Just last night this Captain was commanding a sinking ship and today he was talking about saving his doomed romance. Clearly the apparitions didn’t follow any particular order of appearance.

Just then a reflection of an old lady appeared in the mirror. She determinedly walked out of the mirror and stood glowering over the two ill-fated lovers.  

As Alice moved closer to take a good look at the faces of the visitors who had been haunting her, her throat dried up and she staggered to the floor. 

Emma's face bore a striking resemblance to her own and the old lady looked identical to the old lady at ‘The Attic’ who had sold her the mirror.

Comments

Oh what a terrific twist at the end and a wonderful lead into the story. Dialogue is always tricky. I find the best way to stop it from becoming like narrative is to keep each speaker's sentence short. In this case it was the perfect tool to deliver the back story.
Great chapter and very clever!
Oh, this is delicioulsy creepy! Great chapter, Hemali.