"what in fuck's name are you doing?" i ask.
"i.i really have no clue." comes the hesitant reply.
"do you want to, i don't know, maybe stop?"
"no. No i don't think i do."
"and why's that?" i ask, annoyed and concerned all at once.
The other turns away, reaching for her menthol lights. Instead of taking one out though, she traces the sides of the box with her index finger, just runs over it, again and again.
"because," she says carefully, setting the box down, and placing the lighter directly in the middle of it, "because she makes me feel all these things that i never thought i could feel."
There is a beat, a slow exhalation of breath neither of us knew we were holding.
"because she makes me smile. Because she makes me feel. Because," she pauses, pulling out a cigarette and tapping it lightly against the box, "because she makes me want. And she makes me want to want," she lights up and turns away to expel the smoke,
"even though i know full well that i shouldn't. Even though i know that i can never hold on to this."
"It's going to hurt, you know." i say to her, "it's going to hurt like a bitch."
Her eyes hold mine for a second, and she nods slowly, taking it in, letting the energy between us drop.
"I know," she says with a half smile.
"and the problem is that it doesn't change anything."
And mirrors, sometimes they don't give you the reply you expect.