Changes

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It was doing it again.

Narcissa was sitting on the end of her bed but her reflection was standing in the mirror, watching. Waiting. It beckoned her closer with the same curling finger as before.

She glanced at the door. Her mother was already awake. The living room T.V.'s volume was turned low, but Narcissa could still hear the news anchor spouting off the week's weather report.

Her reflection grew mildly impatient and crossed its arms.

Perhaps Zoe was right. There was the possibility that it was friendly. Maybe all Narcissa had to do was ask it what it wanted.

She slid off the bed and tiptoed closer to the vanity. Her hair and her reflection's hair were messy from sleep. Messy, but flat at the roots.

Her reflection picked up the mirrored brush and began to run it through the brown tangles. When Narcissa merely stood there and watched, her reflection indicated she should pick up her own brush and do the same.

Narcissa contemplated what to do. She usually brushed her hair last. Her reflection was telling her to break her routine.

With an encouraging nod from her reflection, she picked up the brush. When both of them had sleek, straight hair, her reflection began to weave a braid down the center of her head in a pseudo-Mohawk. It gave her reflection an edgy appearance. Narcissa couldn't help but admit that it looked good.

Maybe Zoe was right.

Five minutes later, Narcissa's hair matched her reflection's, and when her reflection wagged her finger at the ivory foundation, Narcissa didn't put any on. That was a first. She'd worn foundation every day since earning the vampire moniker. Weekends weren't any different. 

Something inside her was telling her to be brave. She would try not wearing foundation for a day and then she'd know for sure if her reflection was being helpful or not. After all, a day was like a blink of an eye for a highschooler's memory. 

There was movement in the mirror. Her reflection may not have wanted to put on foundation but that didn't mean it didn't want to apply some makeup. Narcissa copied her reflection's thick wings of black eyeliner, added the same amount of mascara, and turned to her closet to get dressed.

The trusty black hoodie received another finger wag.

Narcissa debated. The hoodie was comfortable and kept her warm in school. They tended to blast the air conditioning even in winter.

"I like this," she told the mirror.

The finger stopped wagging and instead pointed at the closet. Narcissa went over to the opened accordion door and began touching every article of clothing she had until her reflection gave her a thumbs up.

In her hand was a red blazer she'd bought two years before. Zoe had encouraged her to get it but Narcissa hadn't worn it even once. It was too bold of a color.

She wanted to be seen, though. Wasn't that what she had said just the other day? People couldn't avoid looking at something bold.

So Narcissa put on dark jeans, a white t-shirt, and the red blazer. She grabbed her backpack and phone, and after a slight hesitation, smiled and waved at her reflection.

Her reflection blew her a kiss.

Narcissa ran to the kitchen, trying her hardest to ignore the way her mother looked her up and down. A slice of buttered toast hung from her mouth.

There was a crunch, another glance of Narcissa from head to foot, and then Rose asked, "You're already ready?"

Narcissa felt compelled to lie. "Woke up early."

Because her mother refused to buy anything with too much sugar, Narcissa poured herself some of the healthy cereal that tasted like cardboard and began to eat. The rest of the morning carried on as normal until school. As soon as she walked through the double glass doors to Woodrock High, strange looks were sent her way. It made her face burn. Why had she listened to her reflection and left the house without her foundation? 

She stopped in front of the trophy cases and caught sight of herself in the glass. Her appearance hadn't changed that much and yet there was something in her posture that made even her do a double-take.

The same sea of teen boys flooded the hallway and broke apart. Bobby continued onward, his line of sight on the distant door of his homeroom like usual. As he approached, his eyes roamed slightly to the side. He saw Narcissa, smiled just for her, and carried on walking.

Unsure if she had imagined that too, Narcissa stood in the hallway watching Bobby's back until he disappeared from sight. Only then did she go to her homeroom. There was a spring in her step.

"Aw," said Zoe as soon as Narcissa sat down. "Is that the blazer we picked out ages ago? It looks nice." She touched the braid and added, "Fulfilling your Viking heritage? Should I do the same and put some African braids in mine?"

In a low voice, Narcissa said, "It was my reflection's idea."

Zoe's eyes widened. She blinked once and then, as if talking to a child, said, "Okay."

"I'm not crazy."

"I never said you were, Cissy."

Narcissa allowed a moment of silence to pass before telling Zoe what happened in the hallway. "Bobby smiled at me."

"That's great, Cissy."

The rest of the day was great as well. Narcissa earned several compliments in every class. Mr. Turner even gave her a diplomatic, "Looking confident, Narcissa." To top it off - it was Friday. Her weekend was only just beginning. 

"Can we go shopping?" Narcissa asked once in the car. It didn't seem so appalling of an idea to add more color to her wardrobe.

"Sounds like a plan," was her mother's happy reply.

Two weeks flew by before Narcissa admitted to herself that her reflection had adopted a kind of casual-sophisticated style Meghan Markle would appreciate. It hadn't mattered that she bought mismatched clothes at the store. The reflection was able to piece together an outfit out of anything. Somewhere along the way, Narcissa even started talking to it. Her reflection listened intently but never replied. Sound, it seemed, only worked one way.

Late one night after Narcissa had bid her mom and her reflection a good night, she laid in bed wondering if there was a real person trapped within the mirror. Things like that happened in stories. The unexplainable occurred even in real life. Miracles, some people called them.

The thought of someone being trapped forever weighed heavily on Narcissa's mind. Was her reflection a friend, or a slave?


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Preview for next chapter: Narcissa and Bobby get closer. The reflection takes over as Narcissa's number one confidant. What's a best friend like Zoe to do?

Can't end this without giving props to gertyb and bringreaner for beta reading. They make me sound like I know what I'm doing when it comes to writing. 

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