(My reflection mocks me. It's repulsive. Pathetic and weak. All the flaws are immediately clear upon each viewing. That's because my reflection is Alexis Cage. When people look upon me they see the reflection of society. I am what they fear and hate within themselves. I am truth. When I look in the mirror the visage I see is much different. I see Alexis. I wish I saw her laughing in my face. It would mean she had some sort of strength. No, I'm afraid I watch her cry and crumble. Years back I would have loved to see that at all times. Her agony brought me such joy. What a fool I was. Be careful what you wish for.

Because she is what I see, she is a reflection of me. One that will not do. One I must change. I touch my hand to the mirror, to her hand...only to watch it erode into dust. The stronger I get the weaker she becomes. I sometimes have wondered if I'm consuming her to gain strength. I've always come to the same conclusion...impossible. Her weakness is not my doing. It's her own. She started out as what I was supposed to be. What I had always thought I wanted. She soaked herself in gasoline and lit the match without a second thought. She took what was handed to her and destroyed it like it meant nothing.)

Eclipse: Bitch...

(How dare she...She had it all. I had almost nothing. What I did have was already decided before I was born. It'd be easy if my growing in strength was consuming her. I'd just continue the increase as rapidly as possible till she no longer existed. I'd be free. No, my mirror sister would never make it that easy. I have to find a way to fix her...to make what I see everyday not sicken me. I'd really hoped she would show up and face me as an equal. Fight with everything she had. Show me that my reflection was one of strength. Instead she scurried about like a scavenger and shot me in the eye with a toy. A toy. It took everything I had to not destroy her after the match. I had to stop myself. I wouldn't have been able to stop at maiming her and I'm not sure what would happen to me if she was suddenly a corpse. I feared I may cease to exist.

So now I'm stuck with determining how best to solve my dilemma. I cannot continue on like this. Something has to be done. No matter how broken Alexis has become...I must put her back together. Now I wait for Ember to return. I do hope she has good news. I continue to stare into the large mirror that is the wall of this supposed room for training. Alexis shrivels into a fetal position in a mess of mascara within the confines of the glass. Ugh. Footsteps in the darkness. Finally. I speak before she is seen.)

Eclipse: Were you successful?

(Her bowed head stares at the floor. Even with the lack of light I can see she's failed me before she can answer. She wants so badly to prove herself to me. To succeed. I feel for her. I really do.)

Ember: Sorry master. Alexis is deep in hiding. I lost the trail.

(As much as I feel for her I feel worse for the hell I am in. I cannot accept this news. Before I even realize what I'm doing my hand is around her throat. I pull her against my body and face her to the mirror. Rage burns my veins as I begin to lose control.)

Eclipse: Look at HER! Look at what we've become. Do you see it Ember?! DO YOU?!

(She blinks as if she can't figure out what's right in front of her face. It only further irritates me.)

Eclipse: My reflection is a broken mess. Everyday I see your former master decay into something even more pitiful in my mirror and you tell me you can't find her? ANSWER ME!

(Something that sounds like no excuse for failure is about to leave her mouth. I can just feel it. I snap and begin slamming her face into the mirrored glass.)


(I can't seem to stop. I can feel her blood on my hand and I can't stop. The thing inside just screams for more blood. It doesn't want me to stop. I can feel it filling the fiber of every muscle. Darkness floods my viens with so much force I feel as if they might burst. I no longer care. I'll keep going till there is nothing left of the person in my hands. As my hands thrust her head foward they are jerked back with such force I drop her and am spun around. I don't bother to see what happened. I just lunge forward and strike...only to find the colors blue and black jump forward and slam against my fist. Every bone in my hand aches before my fist is consumed by numbness. I hear a raspy growl before I'm hit so hard I fly backwards and slam against the mirror. It explodes and rains shards to the floor in a symphony of chaos. I drop to my hands and knees ready to restart my attack, even as blood pours from my mouth, when I hear a familiar raspy voice.)

Familiar Voice: What was that supposed to teach your apprentice?...

(I know who it is right away. I'm both confused and weirdly happy he is here.)

Eclipse: Father?

(He ignores me and instead looks over at Ember. She's on all fours next to me, but facing away. She spits blood into the puddle of her own blood on the floor while trying to shake the cobwebs out. He moves to Ember and lifts her to her feet while looking her over silently. She makes the mistake of looking directly into his eyes. The intensity of those blue orbs is something she's never seen before and she shrinks before them. To her credit she does her best not to show it. Their maniacal strength even affects me at times. Either he doesn't notice or doesn't care. I'm guessing the latter. Those eyes see every detail of everything. Always sizing up every threat encountered. Waiting for violence to happen. He turns his head towards me. As always his face is painted in the crazed, blue and black, techno-looking skull. His raspy voice is softer this time when he speaks.)

Darkstar: I can see why you picked her...

(I didn't even know he was aware I'd taken an apprentice...or that he knew which safe house of Mother's I was crashing at. It's now I finally stand up. Now that all the rage fades and I'm left to deal with the emotional aftermath of what I almost did to Ember. How could I? Am I so completely consumed by my misfortunes with Alexis that I can no longer control myself? I feel something that I haven't felt since I shed my humanity years ago...moisture trailing from my eye. One single tear that speaks volumes. I'm ashamed to even look her direction, but I force myself. I have to. Our eyes meet. How does one apologize to their apprentice for trying to destroy them? "Sorry" doesn't exactly cover such things. I want to crawl in a hole. There's a billion things I should probably say, but I wouldn't even know how. Instead all that comes out of my mouth is:)

Eclipse: Ember...I've...I've failed you...

(I try to stay looking at her, but instead I hang my head. My father saves me from hearing her response.)

Darkstar: There's a part of you that is very much like your mother.

(That stings. Looking at it all, I really can't defend myself against it. Doesn't mean I like hearing it. It's not something I plan to ever willingly admit to. Even to myself. I think he knew his words would affect me in this way. I expect him to delve further into the comment, but surprisingly he doesn't.)

Darkstar: Eclipse, get the Everclear and sewing kit. It's time you taught her to fix her wounds. Then you can tell me why I had to stop you from destroying her...