As he allowed her entry Mr Mugsey did nothing but glance up lazily, a mannerism that appeared rather odd, as the old dog was usually at the door in an instant. His curiosity and a new scent always getting the better of him. Perhaps he was tired after a long day’s exertion of lounging on his pillow and feeding off of Tom's nervousness and all-consuming anticipation. If truth be told the reunion started out better than he could have ever imagined. She was just as he remembered her. She was still slender with a wicked grin (which caught his attention the very first time they met), curvaceous in all the most remarkable places, brunette and to top it all off a total package that was still very easy on the eyes.
After an initial rather awkward embrace the conversation began to flow as easily as the contents of the two wine bottles now sitting empty upturned on the carpet between their feet, it was if they had never parted at all. Time flew by as together they caught up on shared times, shared memories and laughed at the same time in the right places at the same events. Then the conversation shifted, as deep down he feared it might though he kept his fingers crossed that it wouldn't. In only a moment the atmosphere itself transformed souring as if the last hour or so had been but foreplay for the verbal beating that was about to come.
She was standing now pointing, accusing, cursing and blaming him for all that he knew he was guilty of ever. Actions and deeds he wished he could take back and forget but knew he never could. She continued to berate him in what seemed like an endless litany of admonishment, a diatribe of misdemeanors all aimed at tearing his spirit down to the very core (and all without taking a single breath) as he stood and strode purposefully from the room. Then her tirade stopped suddenly.
"Where are you going? You invite me over only to leave while I'm pouring out my heart to you?!?"
She raised an eyebrow. "Really?"
"I'll be right back." He replied dropping his chin to his chest he added, in a lower volume, "I need to take a breather."
"What was that?" She yelled as he closed the bathroom door softly behind him.
"I'll only be a minute!"
"Damn straight! We still have a great deal to discuss!"
What had he stirred up? Now she had his number there and would be relentless. He could still hear her, not surprising really as cheap apartments were renowned for many things sound insulation not appearing anywhere on the list.
..."and then you proceeded to..." On and on she went.
Why had he contacted her? Of course, he was lonely that was it. The copious amount of alcohol he had consumed didn't help matters nor his reasoning in the slightest either.
..."then you expected it all to blow over..."
Why? He had learned his lesson, hadn’t he? It was a decision he would have to struggle with for the rest of his days. If he closed his eyes and wished hard enough would she disappear? It was very doubtful, life wasn't at all like it was in the movies. Pity! As he vividly remembered she hated Beetlejuice and he knew exactly how to summon him.
..."and just what is it you are doing in there? Are you touching yourself pervert? I can see it, you're touching it. Pathetic! You're drunk and horny. You expected me to just come over and clamber all over it like a cheap cock hungry whore!"
Please just shut up already! Tom shook his head in an attempt to shut out the droning sound, a persistent mosquito searching for an opening in which to sate a blood thirst to eventually weaken its host. He looked up suddenly. Directly into the reflection hovering over the sink in the dirty mirror's shiny surface. It wasn't his face that stared back. It was her! Or rather some crude representation. A brunette wig, askew, thick makeup smeared around dark shadow shrouded eyes and a swath of vivid crimson covering a mouth wide open in surprise, a wicked slash.
"Are you done yet? Should I wait whilst you clean up or just leave already? Are you even listening to me or have you nodded off with that limp noodle maggot between your fingers? I swear you're just like a freakin' teenager! You disgust me!" She continued her chastisement from the other side of the thin door.
Unable to stop himself Tom lashed out. The mirror shattered under his clenched fist but her voice finally stopped. Tom waited watching as the crimson fluid ran filling the dry cracks and crevices of his folded hand. He turned his head slightly in concentration listening for footsteps instead he heard only the soft drip, drip, drip of his own blood as it fell in fat drops onto the sink's marred surface. Still nothing. He glanced back at the mirror. Rather than one reflection there were now several dozen fractured images like a fly wearing broken glasses.
Each reflection a smaller version of what before was the whole, now all jeering and shaking their collective heads from side to side. There was even a shard in the sink speckled in his blood that leered at him.
"You went and broke a decently good mirror for no reason. Wait... scratch that! Aunt Mildred bought it for us to celebrate our engagement. I never did like it. What's your next move worm?"
Tom reached for the single drawer below the sink. He had an idea of what lay in its furthest depths, an implement he could never dispose of, for it was his father's. A relic and a utensil he could never see himself ever using, it was scary enough just to look at. He hardly thought he'd ever find a use for it... until now that is. It was there as he knew it would be. For a split second he actually believed he'd tossed it out without thinking about its significance.
"Reaching for lube Thomas? You disgusting pig!"
He didn't look up but could well envision her single raised eyebrow. She used his full given name when belittling him, he often believed she had the power to communicate beyond the grave for his dead mother was also guilty of that same thing.
"A pocket pussy perhaps... oh no that's right… I threw it out!"
"No!" His fingertips finally made contact sifting through a landscape of various other miniscule scattered junk that also claimed this wasteland of a drawer as home. He pulled his hand free and with it a soft leather case. He opened it carefully. For a split second the room was on fire, a blinding reflection of light originating from the unsheathed object.
"That's a shiny antique Thomas what do you plan on doing with it?"
The steel was cold in Tom's grip but it felt good. It felt right as if it was exactly the right moment for its true purpose to be revealed. Tom looked back at the kaleidoscopic images in the mirror, smiled and lifted the straight razor to his throat.
“You haven't got the guts you pussy!”
As he drew the razor across his throat the voices became louder. Moments later, as he crumpled into the shower stall, they became a dull murmur before finally stopping altogether.
Mr Mugsey lifted his head as he heard the crash from across the hall. It took him a few tries but eventually he managed to rise knocking the coffee table as he did so. An object toppled from its surface to land softly on the carpet. The phone’s screen lit up from the jarring drop displaying a single message, two simple words, as yet unsent, “I'm Sorry.”