I soaked in the shower, letting the steam from the hot water fill the room. The heat felt good on my neck and shoulders. It helped wash away memories of the dreams I’d had while sleeping.
Eventually, I turned the water off. I reached past the curtain, grabbed my towel, and pulled it in. I liked to stand in the warm shower to dry off before opening the curtain, letting the cold air outside the curtain in. Getting the water off my body before the cold air found it, and felt colder than it was.
I pulled on my underwear, then my pants, then pulled a t-shirt on. That’s when I noticed something funny about the mirror. It didn’t look right. The mirror was coated in condensation from the steam of the shower, that was normal. But there wasn’t suppose to be anything written on the mirror, and there was.
I faced the mirror, read the writing, “Mystica”. That’s all it said. “Mystica”. I recognized the handwriting. It matched what was on the bottom of the sketch. The same hand had written both places.
I used my towel to wipe the mirror clear, grabbed my hairbrush, started brushing out my hair. I froze as I stared into the mirror. Floating a foot above my shoulder was the fairy from the birdcage. “Her name is Mystica.”
I dropped my brush.
“Her name is Mystica.”
Then, she was gone.
I stared into the mirror for a while, trying to understand what I’d seen. It couldn’t be real. It couldn’t have happened. Fairies aren’t real. They don’t exist. They’re just beings in fairy tales.
But I’d seen her in the mirror. She’d said, “Her name is Mystica.” And how else could the writing in the condensation on the mirror have gotten there? I couldn’t explain it.
I was realizing there was a lot I couldn’t explain.
I finished brushing out my hair, left the bathroom, pulled on my shirt, buttoned it up, put on socks and shoes, packed a lunch, and headed to work.
It couldn’t have been real. Had to have been my imagination. Or a dream. Yeah. A dream.
Fairies aren’t real.
Everybody knows that.