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  • Aarna Bothra

The Reflection of Tomorrow

The day dawned bright and sunny. The birds chirped in the trees and white, fluffy clouds hung in the sky. Mia looked out the window and took in the unfamiliar surroundings. She sighed and wished she could go back in time, to her hometown and her friends, before they shifted. In a time where her parents were still alive and the car crash had not happened. 

Aunt Emily broke into her reverie. A crash sounded downstairs and her aunt shouted, “Mia, get over here this instant! For god’s sake!” Mia ran down and saw a huge mirror being lugged in through the front door. “All this useless stuff my sister kept.” Aunt Emily scoffed. After Mia’s parents’ death, she had to live with her mother’s sister, Aunt Emily. She quite despised her sister’s tendency to keep old and useless stuff, just for ‘nostalgia’. 

Mia was quite fond of all these belongings and she had pleaded with Aunt Emily to not throw it away. She helped her Aunt move the mirror upstairs in the attic and unpacked her possessions. She was to attend the local high school the next day. 

Mia soon got settled into her life. She had made some friends, her aunt had gotten a job and the house was lovely. One day, she got into an argument with her aunt and stomped upstairs in anger. Thoughtlessly, she went all the way up to the attic and sat there for a while, to cool down. Her attention went to the big mirror on the far end of the room. Lots of boxes and paraphernalia were strewn around the room haphazardly. She picked her way to the end of the attic and stood before the mirror.

For a few seconds, she saw herself, her eyes red and her long, brown hair falling in waves down her back, and then her image shimmered. She saw herself again but this time she was standing in the kitchen, the remains of a shattered glass plate around her. Her aunt was looking at her in dismay. Mia stared in disbelief, wondering what the mirror was showing her. She ran downstairs and apologized to her aunt. She was dying to tell her aunt what she just saw but her aunt was still mad at her. Aunt Emily told Mia to set the table for dinner and in her excitement, the glass plate slipped from her hand and crashed onto the floor. Aunt Emily came running and surveyed the damage with consternation. 

Mia was spellbound. The mirror had prophesied the future! She apologized profusely to her aunt and helped her clear the mess. Mia went to bed but sleep was a long time away. Her mind churned with the possibilities of a mirror that could predict the future! She would now know about a pop quiz in school or if her aunt would get upset with her again! In the morning, she ran up to the attic as fast as her legs would allow. She saw her overjoyed face looking back at her in the mirror but the scene changed. A school setting showed her that there was going to be a surprise test in geography and that most of the class had not studied for it. Ecstatic, she got ready for school with a spring in her step. She studied for the quiz and got the best marks in her class. 

A few weeks passed by. Mia was getting popular among the teachers and her classmates. She led a happy life with her aunt and peace reigned. But in story books, when this happened, it usually meant that something big was coming. It was no different with Mia. One day, as she went to check on the mirror, she caught a glimpse of the sky outside. Dark gray clouds were gathering and a strong wind gusted the leaves. She dismissed it as an unexpected storm but the mirror told her otherwise. A dreadful scene greeted her. A cacophony of fierce winds descended upon the unsuspecting community, unleashing havoc as buildings trembled and trees bowed before the tempest's might. Roofs and street lights were torn asunder while pedestrians hung on for dear life. In the middle of it all, Mia spotted her aunt, pressing against the wind, her scarf demanding to join the array of debris, glass, and gravel. Her heart beat loudly and she could feel goosebumps all over her arms.

Mia was torn. She desperately wanted to warn all the townspeople to get to safety but the town would want to know about this prophetic mirror. What if they take it away and use it for themselves? She would not be popular anymore. Eventually, she ran down and confessed to her aunt. Mia told her about the tornado that was to come. 

Together, they went to the Town Council and informed them about the tornado and all the damage it would cause. They told the Council that Aunt Emily used to work as a weather-forecaster. Thus, Mia was able to get everyone to safety and minimize the casualties of this disastrous event. She kept her secret and the town was saved too. 

The mirror, a mysterious conduit to the future, revealed not just a predetermined destiny, but the power of choice and agency. Mia learns that the mirror is a reflection of possibilities rather than certainties. With newfound understanding, she decides to shape her own destiny, embracing the uncertainties and challenges that lie ahead.

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