Published in Daily Frights 2012

Pill Hill Press, November 2012

I watch her every day: in the morning, in the afternoon, but mostly at night. Lost in ignorant, blissful sleep, she knows I’m there, but she doesn’t know I’m watching. Her eyes are closed, but mine are open.

They are always open.

I pass the nights imagining her death, fantasizing about shattering the flimsy barrier between her world and mine and snuffing out her life with my bare hands. I’ll take my time so she’ll see my face; I want her to see me—really see me. I want to savor the moment when fear and understanding meet in her feeble mind. She’ll gasp, too terrified and disturbed to scream; self-preservation will desert her. She’ll lose control of her bladder and lie paralyzed in a pool of her own urine.

I’ll start with that pretty face of hers, the face I’ve watched for twenty-seven years, the face that transitioned from a pouty, wide-eyed little girl to a cold, hard-eyed little bitch. I won’t touch those eyes—yet—instead, I’ll use a sewing needle and black thread, and stitch her lips together carefully, before she can plead for her life.

When she’s silenced, I’ll pick out the longest, sharpest shard of glass and cut her open beneath the ribs. I’ll examine her insides: the heart, the liver, the kidneys; holding them in my cold hands, I’ll feel their warmth rush into my hollow, vitreous shell.

Once her slow, excruciating murder is complete, I’ll drag her corpse to my world, collect the splintered remnants of the barricade that contained me for so many years, and restore it to its original condition. The shard of glass I used to disembowel her is the final piece of the puzzle; I’ll wash it carefully in her kitchen sink using dish soap and a fresh sponge.

I imagine I’ll be too excited to sleep, so I’ll clean the bedroom, sop up her blood, and eliminate the stained blanket, mattress, and rug. I plan to redecorate once I’m settled, and I won’t miss those items.

Her family, friends, and acquaintances will never discover what I’ve done; they’d never suspect I’m capable of such a crime. They see me every day too, just as she had, but they paid me no attention. They were too busy watching her. But they’ll see me now.

I’m her reflection.And you have one too.Go ahead—look. Tell yourself it’s only an image: constant, harmless. Tell yourself that when you blink, it blinks too.