Estimated reading time — 3 minutes
The next time you’re alone in your house, go into your room and turn off your lights. Stand in front of your mirror and light a white candle, let the match burn until the flames are about to touch your fingers. If it goes out before this point, leave your room and turn on every light in your house. Lock any doors that can be locked, bar them up, do anything. Leave the house and do not return until morning. You are not safe.
If the match does not go out on its own, blow it out and set it aside. It is time for the next step. Hold your candle in both hands, and keep it at chest level. You are to remain quiet for one whole minute, and keep your eyes closed. Do not open them. If the wax drips and burns your hands, do not make a sound. Count down in your head. When you reach one, stare into the mirror. Lock eyes with yourself. Whisper out one thing you can’t live without, this is your safe word. Don’t worry about your reflection, how its lips don’t move when you talk, the way it’s staring back at you. Next, utter the thing you desire most, this will be your end goal.
Look down at the candle in your hands, “The light in my hands is my ally, and so it shall protect me, and so I shall do for it.” You must whisper out. Blink once, look back up at the mirror. Resume immediate eye contact with your reflection. No matter what you see, keep eye contact and don’t blink. You must do this for one minute, but this time counting up. Don’t get distracted by your doppelgänger’s horribly disfigured face, the razor sharp teeth in its mouth that’s curled into a terrifying grimace at your betrayal, choosing the calming glow of the candle over it.
Ignore the urge to blink, the burning in your eyes like searing hot needles carving away at you. Once you reach sixty, and only when you reach sixty, you may blink. Now you must complete the last step. You must say goodbye. Keep eye contact, and say “You must leave now, or else the light will expel you.” Of course, your reflection will not go immediately, but don’t worry. This should always work. If not, follow the same steps as before and leave the house. Don’t come back. You must now fulfil your end of the bargain, assuming the candle has kept you safe thus far.
Do not blow the candle out. Stay awake all night if you have to, wait until it burns on its own. When the candle finally dies out, sleep. The next morning, open your door and the thing you need will come to you within a week.
If you happen to look away at any point not specified in this ritual, or blink, you may see the shadows behind you, crawling in your peripheral vision. The thing in the mirror will know. A dreadful crackling will fill your ears, and you must blow out the candle immediately. Do not say goodbye, do not look back to the reflection and most certainly; do not look into its eyes. It’ll smile at you, whisper your name. Close your eyes and pray, pray to God that you may get through this night. Speak out your safe word three times, and sleep.
You might be wondering what the safe word is for, right? If you fail, they will take something from you. You best have chosen wisely, because after all, you can’t live without it, can you?