This is the second installment of a series called “Doppelganger.”
Still reeling in disbelief, I felt my limbs freeze up and lock into position, physically unable to move away from the small glass window presenting my impossible twin. After what seemed like hours but in reality was likely only a couple of minutes, I blinked. The heavy, iron latch holding my eyelids suddenly vanished in the light of this terrifying revelation.
The eyes of my second-self remained open, eliminating my theory that the window was simply some type of distorted mirror that only reflected back the image of a living organism. In the depths of my befuddled mind, I faintly recalled an article I’d read on those types of looking glasses—it had said they were used in dark and crowded areas, specifically old ruins or messy crime scenes, to determine if the user and any assistants were the only living beings in the vicinity.
Almost as soon as I had conjured up that memory, my clone emitted a spastic jerk, the eyeballs rolling about like ping pong balls before stopping, nearly as quickly as they had begun to move. Suddenly, a splitting, gut wrenching pain began to pound its steely fists against my skull, and I sunk to the ground like a ship in an ocean, too agonized to even whimper. Then, strangely, the sensation abated, and a ripping noise sounded inside my head.
Gingerly, I reached upwards and ran my fingers across every surface on my head; my face, my cheekbones, the knotted masses of red locks, the seashell like contours of my ears, but found no mark or point of injury. In fact, I had no recollection of what I had been doing prior to the onslaught of pain. For a brief instant, the blurred title of a book or magazine materialized in front of me, and I caught a glimpse of the word “mirror” before the image faded, and I was left lying upon the cold stone floor.
Wincing slightly, I grasped the door handle for support and hoisted my weakened body upwards, until my still unsteady feet were all that held me above the floor. Lifting my head, I glanced for a second time through the small window, scrutinizing the sight of my clone. She remained in the same position, yet, her posture seemed taller, her mannerisms more defined, and her eyes brighter. To my shock, she turned her head towards me, those twin piercing blue eyes boring straight into my own, as she mouthed a single word through the glass: Thank you.