I catch him glance at me before he looks away. My first instinct is to free him, but I know that isn’t an option. Besides, my mother would skin me alive, and feed the leftovers to the dogs.
“So, you see,” she says, pulling me from my thoughts. Her words make me cringe. “We have plenty to keep us fed through the coming winter.”
More moans sound off, bringing attention to my mother. The noise of their anguish and tortured pain get under my skin. “Come, I’ll show you. This is how we normally quiet them down.”
Grabbing a key from the wall, she takes the man that has tried relentlessly to break free from the cell chamber and places the key in the lock. She points. “See this one? He’s going to give me trouble. Perhaps now is the time to free him.”
Is she really going to let him go?
With the flick of her wrist, she suspends the man motionless, only his eyes move. “First, you keep them immobile.” She unlocks the cell door, and we walk inside. “Then you open his mouth like this.” She pinches his jaw, forcing it open. “These creatures are quite the delicacies. Of course, the human variety are best of all. But this hybrid half wolf half man will do.”
She moves towards his lips but doesn’t kiss them, instead she takes in a deep breath, and I witness his very skin begin to dry out.
I’m horrified at what’s happening. “Mom, stop, you’re killing him.”
She breaks away from the man, and turns, glaring at me, her eyes glowing blue. “Perhaps you should try.”
Horrified, I take a step backwards. “No. I’m not hungry.”
“Very well.” She tilts her head studying my reaction. “I see you’re not ready. You will be. You’re eighteenth birthday will be here soon. By then you will know how to pull the essence from your victims.”
“Why are you doing this?”
“My daughter have I not taught you anything?” She drops the man, and he falls to the floor, who is too weak to stand.
I step backwards more. “Please, mother. I’m sorry. I promise I’ll learn how to do it. I’m honestly not hungry right now,” I lie again.
Mother stiffens, and I know deep down she doesn’t believe me. “Very well.” She turns back around saying, “We can’t have food going to waste, now, can we?” Picking the man up like a ragdoll she finishes him off, until his dehydrated skin clings to his bones.
I want to run away, get out of there as fast as I can, but I know that isn’t going to happen. This isn’t the mother I remember. No, this is the malevolent wraith that tried to possess me as a little girl. My real mother saved me that day. Ever since then, I’ve been trapped here with her—the wraith in the mirror. She calls herself Sarmira. I don’t think she would ever harm me but seeing what she just did to that poor man, has me rethinking my options.
Shortly after my mother took on the wraith –this thing possessing her, who came from the mirror, my father suspiciously died, and I have my theories. Mother said he fell over the cliff and into the ocean, but after seeing this I have no doubt in my mind, that this evil entity ate him. I still call her mother out loud for fear of what she will do to me. She doesn’t know I see her true identity – she’s Sarmira.