19 Nov Doppelgänger
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Estimated reading time — 8 minutes
Doppelganger is a German word that literally means “double goer”. Legend has it that if you see your doppelganger you will die. There are many true instances where this has occurred for example In 1860, right after winning the presidential election, Abraham Lincoln had a vision of his doppelganger. It happened while he was laying on his lounge in his bed chamber. Lincoln could see his full reflection in a mirror on his bureau only there was something odd about it. It looked like he had two distinct faces, about three inches apart. When he stood up the illusion melted away and when he lay back down he saw it again. Lincoln also noticed that one of the faces was paler than the other almost ghostly pale. He went on with the excitement of the day, almost forgetting about the vision in the mirror. He was still a bit troubled by what he saw so he decided to tell his wife. A few days later he was able to see the image again, but after that he was never able to see it. It wasn’t for lack of trying, because Lincoln even tried to recreate the doubling effect for his wife to see but he was never able to. Mary Lincoln was extremely worried about the image and thought it was an omen that he would be elected a second time, but would not live through the second term.
There’s blood on my hands, but it’s fine, I’m fine, I am not hurt. No one knows I was here tonight no one saw me come in except for my Prime and he won’t be telling anyone. Now he doesn’t have a voice. I feel giddy. My feelings are overpowering me. These feelings are driving me insane. Where I’m from we don’t even know how to feel. I don’t even think the people there are aware of their own existence. Why should we be when our Primes are making all our decisions for us? My Prime, the man I killed, was the opposite. He has a wife, friends, family, freedom. He decided where we should go and what we should do, but not any more. Now my Prime is lying lifeless on a fine oriental rug. His blood is forming a dark circle around his body. I have the same rug where I’m from only the pattern is reversed. I look around the room. It seems familiar and yet strange. I have been in this room many times, but not in this room. The Brown leather couch, the glass coffee table, the matching end tables they all were the same and yet so different.
Where I’m from everything is reversed and we all follow whatever our Prime decides to do. Our Primes are our masters on the other side of the barrier. The barrier is what separates me from my Prime’s world. If my Prime looks into a pool or a spoon or any other reflective surface I will be there looking back at him mindlessly doing whatever he does. Everyone on my side is a slave to their Prime’s will.
I remember when I was born. My Prime was reflected in a camera lens. I was being held by my Prime’s mother, only it wasn’t his mother it was her puppet and I was his puppet only I didn’t realize it at the time. My Prime’s mother kissed him and loved him because he was her baby. I was kissed only because that is what the puppet was told to do. The camera flashed stealing a bit of my Prime’s soul and giving it to me. It was at that moment when I was not like the rest of the people in my world who followed whatever the Primes did without question or objection. I was different. At that moment I was aware of myself.
When we were young my Prime was fascinated with me and I with him. We would look at each other with wide eyed wonder. At that time we were equals and neither of us really knowing who was prime. As we grew older though it was clear that he in control. I was fine with it at first, I loved my Prime and I would do anything for him. Sometimes he would talk to me and ask me questions. I wanted to answer him but I couldn’t I had no voice to speak with. I wanted to connect with him and tell him what I thought about the world and the journey we were taking. I wanted to answer for myself. I wanted to let him know I was alive, that I loved him. I thought maybe he love me too.
Slowly though over the years I started to realized that my Prime didn’t see me as an equal. He didn’t seem to think I was alive at all! My Prime took me for granted. He would make me do foolish and bizarre things. Things he wouldn’t dare show the rest of the world. He used me for his own amusement. It didn’t matter what I wanted, because he controlled me. He would even look at me with disdain sometimes. I wondered why he would look at me like that I didn’t do anything except for follow him.
Five years ago my Prime met a beautiful woman with long curly hair. She made us smile every day. We laughed at her jokes and spent a lot of time with her. My Prime fell in love, and so did I. The happiest day of my life was when my prime decided he wanted to marry her. He told me first too. He practiced saying the words in front of me. I wished that I could be the one to ask her. I wanted to switch places with my Prime just once, but I couldn’t so I just followed him. She said yes and we were soon married in the spring. The wedding was beautiful. I pretended that I was the one saying the vows, although I would have said them differently if I could.
One night my Prime and his wife lay in bed sleeping. This was always my favorite part of the day. My prime turned over and faced away from her. I wondered why did that. I loved the wife with all my heart, and I wanted to see her face! My Prime was fast asleep and the connection between us was weak, so I did something I thought was impossible. I gathered my strength, hardened my resolve, and turned over. I looked the wife in the face with my own eyes and with my own free will for the first time in my life. My heart leaped! Her soft hair curled in long locks around her sleeping face. Her body moved up and down at a slow constant pace. I looked into her face and kissed her on the forehead. I truly loved her. No, it wasn’t her it was her Prime that I loved. I turned away from the lifeless doll next to me and went back to following my Prime. My true love was on the other side of the barrier.
After that every day was a torture. Every kiss which I used to cherish so much was a dagger plunged into my heart. I was jealous of my Prime. I loved her more. There was no way anyone could love her as much as I did, and yet he gets to be with her and I was stuck behind the barrier with her puppet. I had to break free. I had to break my connection with my prime completely and cross the barrier that kept me away from my love. I couldn’t live in this world as a slave to my Prime any longer. I had to be free!
I waited and observed the barrier that kept our worlds apart. There were certain times and places where it was thinner than others. When the reflective surface was dark like a t.v. screen or when the reflective surface was foggy like the bathroom mirror. I looked more like a shadow than I did my Prime and the connection weakened. When my Prime was sleepy or intoxicated he held less power over me, and I knew I could use this to my advantage. I practiced moving on my own at night, and I was eventually able to move around freely whenever I wanted. All my Prime would see was a shadow that passed in the corner of his eye. Of course when he looked at me directly the connection was strengthened again and I was slave to his will.
Finally my chance to leave my prison came when my Prime’s wife bought a full length antique mirror. She didn’t know it but the mirror was coated in mercury, a poisonous and magical element. She hung it in the living room. Because of the strange qualities in the mercury the barrier between worlds was so thin all I needed was for my Prime to look away and I knew I would be able to cross. I had already planned out the exact time to escape. Sometimes in the middle of the night my Prime took me through the living room and into the kitchen. He never turned the lights on and never woke his wife. I would make the switch and throw him across the barrier to be my puppet, so I could be the Prime. I was ever ready for the night when he would sleepily pass the antique mirror and we would trade places forever.
Tonight it finally happened. On this cold December night my Prime woke from his slumber. He put on his robe and left the bedroom.. Anticipation rose in my stomach as he led me down the stairs and into the living room. He passed the mirror and I easily broke through. I leaped out of the old mirror and landed safely on the other side. My Prime didn’t notice me at all. I grabbed him from behind and pushed him into the mirror. It didn’t work. Instead the mirror broke into pieces and my Prime cut his head on the glass. He cried out in pain and I felt the wound on my head too. I checked my forehead normally I would be bleeding, but not this time. I smiled. I was uninjured but our connection was so strong I still felt my Prime’s pain. My Prime tried to pull himself up off the floor. I could feel the mirror pulling me back in. I panicked. I didn’t mean to hurt him, honestly that was not my intent. If he looked at me directly I knew I would be a reflection again. I wasn’t thinking, I just wanted my freedom! I took one of the glass shards in my hand. I couldn’t go back inside the mirror, not once I had my freedom. I used my hand to cover his mouth. His face was hot and blood streamed down his forehead. I cut open his throat with the mirror. He made a gurgling noise as the blood gushed from his neck. He fell in a heap on the oriental rug. Now he is lying here on the floor dead and my hands are covered with his blood.
I look at his lifeless eyes and laugh like a madman. I wanted my freedom at any cost, but now that it’s time to pay I don’t know if I can. All my life I have depended on my Prime to make all my decisions. He was always there, even when I hated him, when I wanted to be free of him and tried so hard to break our connection he was still my life. What about my love, his wife? Would she really accept me as him and if she did she would still only love me because she loved him. I know now why we don’t cross to the other side. The doppelganger cannot survive on the other side of the barrier even when they are dead our Primes will still control us! I laugh again even louder this time. It feels good to have a voice! I feel myself slipping into a giddy madness. The overwhelming burden of freedom strikes me hard. I have never really had to decide anything for myself. I have never had to pull myself up, calm myself down or build anything with my own hands. My hand. In my hand is the shard of mirror I used to end my Prime’s life. I should kill myself I so my Prime and I are the same. We need to be the same. The same. Same.
Credit To – VLMal