Reflection

Excerps from A Treatise on Reflection, by Sabacus, Master of Rituals at the Abitaan Temple of Isis:

I have spent many years studying and observing the mirror-realm. Between my own experiences and my discussions with my associate Tychaeus (scholar at the Museum Meditatus in Confluence), I have gathered here most of my knowledge and observations on this world behind the mirror.

In its basest form, a mirror-realm may exist behind any group of mirrors. I know not why a given mirror can have an associated realm, nor what exactly determines how the mirrors are connected. A group of mirrors with a connected mirror-realm is known as a “constellation,” and each constellation is completely separate from every other constellation. Here in Abitaan, we possess a mirror with access to a mirror-realm constellation: the mirror is quite old, and it and its fellows all possess frames carved with a horse motif. The mirror has been in the temple’s possession for centuries, and its knowledge has been repeatedly passed down through the temple leaders. In fact, it was a prior Master of Rituals that christened this constellation: Capistro.

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…and I can verify this, for I have seen two other mirror-realm constellations. The mirror-realm consists of hallways of varying heights, widths, shapes, and side passages. At each hallway end or intersection stands a mirror that leads back to our own world. One can view our world from these mirror-doors while being completely undetected (provided there is light on the side being viewed). The hallways seem to be constructed of perfectly fitted, cyclopean stone blocks. I use the moniker “stone” for lack of a better one; the blocks are smooth, blue-black in color, neither hot nor cold to the touch, and cannot be scratched even with the best of tools…

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…for once a sentient being enters the mirror, a double comes into existence somewhere on the mirror-side. This double is near-identical in appearance, has all of the same belongings carried into the mirror (save for carried mirrors), and seems to possess all of the memories of the original up to the time of entry. The only known physical difference is a person’s favored hand; a left-handed person’s double is right-handed, and so on. The danger lurks in the double’s demeanor: where the original is benevolent, the double will be terrible and vengeful; an ordered and rigid person will spawn an impulsive and chaotic one. Making matters worse, the double seeks to find and slay the original person, and then proceed to take that person’s place back in our world. The double seems to also know the original’s exact point of entry into the mirror realm. Luckily, if a person defeats their dark counterpart, that person never need worry about facing them again (within a given constellation, that is). I myself fought and defeated my Capistro double, after my establishment as Master of Rituals; I still bear the scar on my left side…

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…their proliferation is still a mystery. It is as if the mirror-realm itself spawns these infuriating mirror imps. Luckily, crushing weapons and sound-based spells make quick work of them; I always have a shatter spell at the ready whenever I visit a Capistro mirror. I believe there are other mirror-creatures as well, neither mirror-doubles nor mephits, but something (or someone) else entirely. Tychaeus and I have heard of a few such reports: reports of mirror-men and mirror-hulks. The existence of such beings are difficult to confirm, for they, like the mephits and doubles, appear to shatter into glass dust when killed…

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…often wondered this. But what form would it take? Perhaps its mirror-realm is so vast that entering is followed by a great fall. Tychaeus does not believe that the sea possesses such a realm, for it was not a mirror manufactured by mortal hands. I, on the other hand, believe that there is a mirror-realm “beneath” the Mirrored Sea; as evidence, I point to the numbers of mirror mephits that can be found there. Unfortunately, this is my one and only piece of evidence on the matter…

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…still a surprise that only a few of the destinations are known. After all, our Capistro mirror has been used for travel for a number of years now. The Confluence mirror is a known destination, as is the mirror in the Catacombs of Nephthys. However, the fourth mirror in the constellation looks like it’s half buried somewhere in the desert, while yet another mirror appears to be at the bottom of a great ocean. Of course as I write of my surprise on the lack of exploration, I realize that our temple currently has neither the time nor the resources to mount such endeavors…

Reflection

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