The summer sky turned dark. Myra could see the overcast through the large arched windows of her cavernous living room. She could hear the rumbling distant thunder and spread her arms, letting the sound reverberate through her body; standing naked there, but for a sheer white cape that offered no real cover. This was her time and her experience.
As this illusionary night descended, candles lit the room. One flicker at a time, their light reflected by mirrors. There were mirrors on all three windowless walls; large, identical, full-length.
Each mirror showed that while Myra was no longer truly young, she still possessed a body most gawky teenage girls would envy; supple and slender, hairless but for the chestnut waves flowing down from her scalp.
The legal document lay on the table, neatly folded. It was a fair accounting of her life, and not the first such decree. But she wondered if one ever truly gets used to divorce.
Years of loneliness had changed her. Happiness was a rare and fleeting thing. The void she felt could not be filled by either financial comfort nor the occasional, brief euphoria brought upon by spending some of that money. Friendship and love could not be purchased; this despite her past attempts to do so. All those were dismal charades, opportunists wearing the mask of concern.
Finally there was a calming sense of resignation. She was learning to embrace her loneliness. It no longer mattered what the rest of the world was doing. In this place, a splash of rococo amidst bland suburban sprawl, she created her own world. Her nudity was her own law, and the cape, held in place by a silver clasp, was a symbol of respect the world had denied her.
She was the one lover who never disappointed. Her demands on herself were simple; to be there always to love and truly care. Gazing at the divorce decree, she considered the words that still haunted her; "to love and respect." Of all those who had shared her intimate caresses, it seemed she, herself, was the only one able to fulfill that vow.
And so began the holiest of rituals in her personal theology. She sat back on the white chaise lounge, sinking into the pillows. Her eyes gazed over at the mirrors, showing every motion of hand or body. She mused that mirrors might be like cameras and on some astral plane full-length movies of these moments were being created.
It was an exciting thought, wondering what the mystic cinematographer on the other side might be thinking.
Then she noticed something wrong with one of the mirrors. The image seemed slightly off-kilter. Some flaw in the glass, perhaps? She stood up and approached, watching her own reflection with every step. But instead of the confused frown she was sure she actually wore, her reflection bore a soft smile.
She put her hand up to the mirror and felt the warmth of human fingertips pressing against her own. Surprised, but unafraid, her fingers interlaced with that of her reflection and she pulled gently, bidding the image to enter her world.
Her mirror image complied, stepping out from her own world, and wrapped her arms around Myra. They looked in each other's eyes for a long moment, knowing the full content of each other's soul. Then they kissed, softly, gently, but passionately; quickly growing more intense, more loving.
She led her reflection over to the chaise lounge where they both sat down and began their lovemaking. Everything flowed together in perfect synchronicity. Touch, taste, and response; perfect and fulfilling. And when it was over, they lay there for moments of eternity, wrapped in each other's arms, lost in the connection they shared.
Myra drifted into a calm, restorative sleep. In that time the storm passed and the sun returned. When she woke up, her reflection was still there beside her, ready to satisfy whatever need required. Here was a partner, a friend, a confidant, and a lover. Myra found something she thought she had always taken for granted. She found herself.
-- Dan Mulhollen