In response to: Twin Peaks
Abi, a 30 year old woman is holding a mirror out in front of her, staring into it. She is alarmed by what she sees. She looks away, then back up at her reflection. Her face begins to contort, in horror. There is a knock at the door.
Abi looks towards the door, then back at her reflection. She begins to panic. There is another, more urgent knock on the door. Abi puts down the mirror. She slowly walks towards the door and hesitantly opens it. Miriam, a 35 year old woman enters and walks straight into the room, holding two plates of food. She barely glances at Abi. She puts the plates on the table and sits down. She starts to eat.
Miriam: There’s a documentary on later. About American prisons.
Abi closes the door but does not move.
Miriam: I always thought it’s weird in those programmes how the black people and white people hang out in separate little groups. It’s like when you start school and you’re too scared to make friends so you just hang out with the girls who are wearing the same kind of shoes as you.
Abi stares at the door.
Miriam: Anyway, I thought we could watch it later. If cow-face isn’t hogging the TV.
Miriam turns and looks up at Abi, who is facing the door.
Miriam: Come and eat.
Abi turns around. She slowly joins Miriam at the table and begins to eat.
Miriam: Tell me you did something other than cry today.
Abi stops eating.
Abi: I did something other than cry.
Abi: Do I look ok?
Miriam: What do you mean?
Abi: Do I look like me?
Miriam: Abi, I met you five days ago. I have no idea who you are.
Abi: But I don’t look different to you? Different than I did yesterday?
Miriam: Your hair’s a bit greasier. You should watch that. A little shine can very quickly turn into something you could fry chips in. Slippery slope.
Abi: I want to tell you something.
Miriam: So tell me.
Abi: Promise you won’t think I’m crazy?
Miriam: I can’t promise I won’t think something. I can promise I won’t say you’re crazy.
Abi: Seriously. You’re my only friend in here.
Miriam: That’s not my fault.
Abi: Have you ever looked in the mirror and seen -?
Abi looks at Miriam and gestures with her hands.
Abi: Seen – not you.
Miriam stops eating.
Miriam: All the time.
Abi: No I don’t mean like that. I’m talking about seeing a completely different person.
Miriam: Abi, look. I know it’s shit, but you did the right thing. We all did.
Abi hangs her head, frustrated.
Miriam: Who we are now is so much better than who we were then. We were scared shitless all the time. I was, I know you were too. My boyfriend, your husband, they’re the same kind of person. They like seeing people scared. I know it’s crap in here but maybe being sad is better than being scared.
Abi: (raising her voice) You’re not listening to me.
Abi: When I looked in the mirror just now, it wasn’t me. It was a man. And he had long grey hair.
Miriam stares at Abi and laughs.
Miriam: Well that’s not what you want to see.
Abi: Don’t laugh at me.
Miriam: What do you want me to say?
Abi: Has anything like this ever happened to you?
Miriam: Can’t say that it has.
Abi: Will you look with me? In the mirror?
Abi picks up the mirror and holds it in front of her. Miriam stands up. She slowly walks over to Abi and looks into the mirror with her. Her eyes widen.
Miriam: What the hell –
Abi: You can see?
Miriam: Yeah I see. I’m growing a full blown moustache here. Man, Abi. You could have just told me.
Miriam laughs. Abi puts the mirror down and sits down at the table.
Abi: I see him. Every time I look.
Miriam sits down.
Abi: You must think I’m mad.
Miriam: Is he someone you know?
Abi: No. But I feel like his name is Bob.
Miriam: You feel like that’s his name?
Abi: I know how it sounds.
Miriam: I’m not sure that you do.
Miriam breathes deeply.
Miriam: What do you want me to say?
Abi: Just say you believe me.
Miriam stares at Abi.
Miriam: I believe you.
Abi: It’s the weirdest thing. I can feel his presence when I look in the mirror. He’s really there.
Miriam: Inside the mirror?
Abi: Maybe. The worst part is, I’m sure he’s –
Miriam: What? What is he?
Abi: I think he might be –
Abi leans closer to Miriam and lowers her voice.
Miriam leans away from Abi.
Abi: He’s not a good person. He’s done – bad things.
Miriam breathes deeply.
Miriam: Ok. I’m starting to not like Bob very much. Can we give him a different name? He doesn’t sound like much of a Bob.
Abi: But that’s his name.
Miriam: Bob’s are supposed to be friendly. Bob Marley, Bob Hoskins, Bob the Builder.
Abi: I don’t know what to tell you.
Miriam gets up and paces up and down the room. She looks at Abi, then looks at the mirror.
Miriam: Maybe we should break it.
Miriam: You said you think he’s inside the mirror. Maybe if we break the mirror, this Bob character will disappear.
Abi: I don’t know.
Miriam: Well have you seen him in any other mirrors?
Abi looks around the room.
Abi: I don’t have any other mirrors.
Miriam: Don’t you have a make-up compact?
Abi shakes her head. Miriam reaches into her pocket and pulls out a smartphone.
Miriam: Here, use my phone. Check your reflection.
Abi holds the phone in front of her face and stares into it.
Miriam: Well? Is he there?
Miriam: Ok, good. So it’s just that mirror. Let’s do this.
Miriam picks up the mirror and lies it, reflective surface facing upwards, on the floor in the middle of the room.
Miriam: Hang on a sec.
Miriam leaves the room. Abi crouches over the mirror and looks into it. She rocks back and forth, distraught at what she sees. Miriam re-enters, holding two large wooden rolling pins. Abi looks up.
Miriam: I guess they think we have all the time in the world to make pies and shit.
Miriam hands one of the rolling pins to Abi.
Abi: I don’t know if we should do this. It belongs to the refuge.
Miriam: They’ll understand. We’ll say it was part of the healing process.
Abi: What about shards of glass?
Miriam looks around the room. She picks up one of Abi’s shirts lying on the bed and ties it around her head, covering her eyes like a blindfold.
Abi: What if we miss?
Miriam: It’ll be fine. There’s like three things in this room anyway.
Abi picks up another shirt and ties it around her head so that her eyes are also covered.
Abi: Wait, how do we know this is going to work? What if it makes things worse? What if breaking the mirror releases Bob or something?
Miriam: If that happens, we’ll come up with a new plan. Ready?
Abi: Wait, isn’t breaking a mirror meant to be bad luck?
Miriam: That’s if you do it by accident. We’re doing it on purpose.
Abi: Oh. Are you sure?
Miriam: Hundred percent. Come on now, let’s get rid of this bastard.
Abi: Ok. Wait –
Abi: I can’t tell where you are. I don’t want to hit you.
Miriam reaches out one hand towards Abi.
Miriam: Here, grab my hand.
Abi reaches out with her hand. Her hand meets Miriam’s and they clasp them together.
Abi: Miriam, what kind of shoes did you wear at school?
Abi: You know, that thing you said before. About when you start school and want to hang out with the girls wearing the same shoes as you. I wore lace-ups. All the others wore pumps. What did you wear?
Miriam: Isn’t that funny. I wore lace-ups too.
Abi: Let’s do this.
Miriam: On three. One, two, three –
Abi and Miriam swing their rolling pins towards the mirror with full force. The sound of an almighty smash. Blackout.