Can you hold up a mirror to yourself and say that you are entirely innocent? That you are not in some way to blame?

That was the thought that had brought Dominic out onto the street.

He hadn’t been the one shouting, taunting, calling her the names: ‘Fatty’, ‘Chunk’, ‘Porky.’ He hadn’t laughed while watching on like some of the others.

But he had seen it happening and he had done nothing to stop it. They could all see how upset she was. Her tears and anger only brought more insults and still none of them stepped in to defend her.

It had all seemed like a joke. Part of growing up. Playground bullying, sure, but doesn’t everyone suffer from that at some point?

He walked with his classmates now, with her family and the local community. A silent walk through grey streets. The worst offenders were not to be seen, but many knew they had been complicit.

They reached the pond where she had been found. It was still, like glass. Their faces were reflected back at them, a mirror that forced them to confront what had happened. A silent vigil of the shamed, the guilty and the bereft. The silence was broken only by the sobs that could not be contained.

Drowning, the coroner had declared, suicide, no suspicious circumstances.

Dominic knew better. They all did.

Copyright Sue Vincent

This is a response to the #writephoto Prompt – Mirror curated over at Sue Vincent’s Daily Echo. Click on the link to read other stories inspired by the image.

I’m excited to announce my second novel, ‘State Of Denial’, a sequel to last year’s ‘A Justified State’, will be published on the 27th September 2019.

The Amazon Kindle version is available to pre-order now through the following links:

Amazon.com    Amazon.co.uk    Amazon.ca    Amazon.com.au    Amazon.in

The paperback version will be published simultaneously on the 27th of September.

Thank you to all those who have already bought and read ‘A Justified State’ and for the many kind reviews and comments. I hope you will enjoy the sequel and how the story continues just as much.

For those who want to see how the story begins, ‘A Justified State’ is available now on Amazon in paperback and on Kindle:

Amazon.com    Amazon.co.uk    Amazon.ca    Amazon.com.au    Amazon.in


57 responses to “MIRROR, MIRROR”

  1. Chilling; there must be plenty of people who have to face up to what they have done. They might be lucky and get away with meeting their victim as an adult, but they may have to live with the guilt of a life lost.

    Liked by 2 people

      • I had it with my gym teacher. She was forever picking on me, making me run further and faster, then telling me in front of everyone I ate too much, even to the extent of standing by my chair in the dining hall. I had a dizzy spell on the athletics field and she said that if I wasn’t so fat, it wouldn’t have happened. I was taller than most of my classmates and lighter than a lot of them. I blame her for my lack of self esteem and weight worries. She was a bully and I feel for kids today who have problems.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. A tragic tale that is too real. Well written, as always!

    Talk about going from one strong emotion to a totally different one! Congrats on Book 2! Can’t wait to read it! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      • I am sure I will …. I mean you didn’t do anything crazy, like killing off Gabriella did you?? That wasn’t the plan in my mind. 😃

        Editing is what drove me the most crazy about writing a book! LOL! I am sure it feels wonderful to being so close to having it done!

        Liked by 1 person

      • It is. I wont give away anything to you. Great to be almost done, although I may go on to the final book in the trilogy straightaway while it’s all fresh in my mind. We’ll see!


      • Oh man, this is a trilogy! So this book will leave us hanging some? Yes, you better get started! 🙂
        But if there is a 3rd book then I am going to guess that Gabriella still lives. LOL! And …never mind, I won’t ask about a possible romance between…. I will just wait and see. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. So much power in so few words. Sadly, I saw what was coming when I read the bullying words. While some will feel remorse when their actions result in a suicide, I’m afraid there are all too many who will never acknowledge their culpability.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Wow, gave me chills. So sad and true that this kind of thing happens a lot. I really liked how you used the mirror to reflect their guilt, even more so when I found out it was the lake she jumped into.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It happens way too often, and too often we stay silent. And there’s so much we don’t see because it goes on through social media. How do we teach kindness? (K)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for reading. I would like to think we are born to be compassionate and kind. It is the other side that is ‘taught’ and it is how to stop it being taught that is the problem.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. This is so good Ian. It touched me. I was bullied in childhood. I was a fat child I was pushed to my limits. I lost lots of weight when I was twelve I thought ” they will except me now”
    They didn’t the children bullied me the nuns did too. Luckily I was strong and I survived. But yes children can be cruel as can grown up too.
    This is a very worthy and worthwhile post… I thought long about commenting . But it is a thought provoking post. I only people stop and thought about their words and actions.💜💜

    Liked by 2 people

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