I pull my face out of the murky puddle I have fallen into. Kneeling deep amongst the thick dark liquid, I hesitantly wade my fingers through, pushing the chunky globs aside.
I shake it’s sticky vileness from my hands, wiping them across a dry patch of tissue.
Lifting my cleaner hands over my hair I start the ritual of wanting composure.
Tucking hair behind my ears, flattening the escaping strands.
I need water. Clean, still water. I splash my face and rinse the shame away.
Rising eyes towards the mirror, spidery red, cheeks swollen and sore, I face someone else staring back at me. She is only vaguely familiar now, almost a distant memory. We stare for a few lingering moments. Unsure but desperate to be recognised. Longing for the other to rejoin and become one. Tears escape, rolling slowly, trickling down a path of numbing despair.
No one moves.
Each one waits for the comfort of the other to wipe those tears away.
She doesn’t help so she walks out defeated.
The jagged split takes hold and there is no I anymore. Just a division of selves who continue to show up in the robotic masquerade ball.