Through the mirror of my mind
Time after time
I see reflections of you and me
Reflections - 1967
Susan Wu let out a loud sigh of relief as she collapsed into the cushioned recliner in her small studio apartment. It had been a really bad day for the twenty-five year old, capping off an even worse week.
A major project upgrade, one that she had been sure was going to make her name in the company, had unexpectedly gone to another associate. This despite the fact that she had already done all of the preliminary work. When she had discovered the reason for the change, it had taken all of her self-control not to quit on the spot.
It wasn't that John Mahoney was more talented; the senior partner had told her at the late afternoon meeting in his office two days ago when he broke the news. It was just that the client felt more comfortable with having John work on the assignment.
What Ronaldo Lupo didn't say, was that the client, who Susan knew accounted for a good half million a year in revenue for the firm, was also a Neanderthal who still thought it was a man's world. Politically incorrect as catering to his prejudices might've been, Lupo and the other senior partners weren't about to take the risk of having J. Morgan Pierce take his business elsewhere.
Of course the fifty-nine year old partner had tried to sugar coat the lost opportunity by saying that there would be other chances for a talented young engineer like herself. A statement that Susan knew was a load of crap.
After spending the last few years proving that she was something more than great legs and a nice set of boobs, as she had heard someone refer to her during her first week on the job. She wasn't naive enough to think that another assignment like this wasn't pretty remote. Not with the number of eager associates who had come on board after her, nipping at her heels.
One of the other female associates, who actually was little more than a nice body and a face that looked good on the company roster, had immediately suggested to Susan that she might be able to take legal action over the decision. It was an option that had already been considered by her and discarded.
The dark haired woman had no doubt that the senior partners had a long list of sound business reasons to back up the change in associates. Ones that would make it clear that it wasn't a case of gender bias, or murky enough that it would give them the benefit of a doubt.
Challenging that decision in the courts, with little chance of winning, would be enough to trash the rest of her career. No one would ever hire her after that she was sure.
Then today, after having her professional life shattered, her personal life followed down the same road. Of course she never imagined that was going to be the case when Rob Fortuna, her boyfriend of two years, had called her and surprisingly invited her to lunch. Normally, they were both too busy for such things. Figuring that no one was going to miss her since she was without any work on her desk at the moment, she told him she'd meet him at twelve-thirty.
They hadn't even gotten past their drinks when Rob dropped his bombshell. It seemed that the twenty-nine year old had just had his career counseling session with one of the senior lawyers in his firm. A meeting that he'd left with the news that they wanted to make him the newest junior partner.
At first, Susan had been overjoyed, thinking that at least one of their careers was going right. Also factored into her elation was that they'd often talked about getting married if he'd ever made partner. For a few minutes, she'd even found herself wondering if it was possible that he'd asked her to lunch to propose.
Then, all her illusions had been shattered when Rob dropped the almost inevitable 'small reservation' that his reviewer and the other partners had.
Miller, Calvin, Reeve and Wayne was one of the oldest law firms in the city, if not the state. It was also one of the most conservative. As such, they felt that they had to maintain a certain image, one that they expected every partner, even the most junior ones, to project as well.
At the meeting, Rob was reminded of the unfortunate incident that had occurred at the previous year's Christmas party. Susan had gotten into a disagreement with a senior partner's wife over the older woman's charity work. Disagreement was a polite word to use, seeing as Susan had called the woman a fat cow who cared less about helping people that seeing her name in the society column.
When the expensively dressed woman had retorted that she expected that kind of comment from someone of her limited background, a thinly disguised reference to her ethnicity, Susan had shown her own displeasure by dumping a bucket of melted ice over her head. Then, much to the chagrin of the other guests, Susan had refused to leave in disgrace and instead sat down to dinner as if nothing happened.
"Screw them," Susan had said when Rob finished his story. "I'll bet there are a dozen firms just as good that would be glad to have you work for them."
"But they wouldn't be Miller, Calvin, Reeve and Wayne," Rob retorted, the tone of his voice saying much more than his words as he hoped she would draw the obvious inference.
A conclusion that hit Susan like a brick wall. In a choice between making partner or staying with her, she came in a distant second. Miller, Calvin, Reeve and Wayne expected their partner's wives not to be too unconventional or free spirited.
His message had come across loud and clear. She'd been good enough to share his bed, but not his life.
"Well screw them all," Susan thought as she got up from the chair and walking over to the small liquor cabinet, poured herself a drink.
A half hour and a few drinks later, Susan was beginning to feel a little sleepy. She was debating calling it an early night when the phone rang, waking her from her twilight state.
"Hello?" she said, shaking away the drowsiness.
"Miss Wu please," the voice on the other end said.
"Miss Wu, this is Mr. Fong," the man said, "I hope I'm not calling you too late."
"No, not at all," Susan said as she glanced at the clock and tried to place the name.
"I'm not sure if you remember me," he offered, "we met at the lawyer's office after the reading of your grandmother's will last month."
"Oh yes, now I remember," she said, picturing the elderly white haired gentlemen who had approached her after the reading to offer his condolences. "What can I do for you?"
"If you remember," he began, "I own a gallery that specializes in Chinese antiquities."
Susan said she remembered and wondered what he wanted from her.
"I could not help but notice that your grandmother, blessed woman that she was, left you a rather old mirror as part of your inheritance." he explained. "At the time, I felt it was somewhat inappropriate to approach you about it. Now that some time has passed, I hope you won't think it too forward of me to inquire if you might be interested in selling that particular piece?
Susan couldn't help but be impressed by the old gentleman's style. She'd had friends who'd also inherited family heirlooms and been put upon by collectors before their relatives had even been buried, hoping to take advantage of their grief to get a bargain before they knew the true value of their inheritance.
The mirror in question had been one of two artifacts Grandmother Wu had left her, along with a small cash bequest. It was a stand-alone mirror that stood almost as tall as Susan's five foot one height. She wasn't really sure how old it was, but it had been the only thing her grandmother had saved when the family had fled China following the revolution back in 1949.
"Mr. Fong, I'm really not sure that I want to sell..." she started to say, only to be interrupted.
"Yes, I understand," Mr. Fong said, "but still I would like the opportunity to stop by and talk to you about it, perhaps tomorrow morning if possible."
Saturday mornings, Susan normally liked to sleep in. Of course, she was usually sleeping in with Rob on the other side of her bed. Still, she really didn't think she was in the mood to listen to Mr. Fong's sales pitch right now. She was about to tell him just that, but quickly changed her mind when the dealer mentioned the dollar figure that he would suggest as a starting point for their negotiations.
Susan had him repeat the amount one more time, to be sure that she had heard it correctly. The amount staggered her as she considered that it was enough to pay off the last of her student loans and still bank a considerable amount. She really wasn't sure if she wanted to sell the mirror, but felt she should at least give him the chance to present his case.
Agreeing to see him the next day, she gave him her address and hung up the phone.
The brief phone call had left her fully awake, negating most of the effects of the few drinks she'd had. She could have a few more, she told herself, then decided against it. There were other ways to help herself fall asleep, including one she'd been meaning to try for some time now.
Susan walked over to where her grandmother's mirror stood and pulled it closer to the foot of her bed. She took the time to admire once more the intricate craftsmanship of the piece, right down to the numerous characters cut into the polished wood. Many of the characters were unknown to her, but she simply put that down to the fact that she had never spent all that much time learning the language of her ancestors. Having grown up in the United States as a second generation Chinese-American, she never saw the point.
Running her hand along the smooth polished wood, Susan remembered with a smile how angry her sister-in-law had been that day at the lawyer's office when she found out that the mirror had been left to her. Especially since the older woman had made no secret of the fact she expected her husband to inherit it.
Personally, Susan never understood what her older brother had ever seen in Su-hang, except that she appeared to be the sort of traditional Chinese wife that Susan could never imagine herself being. Yet, behind that facade, was a scheming bitch that Susan well recognized. Undoubtedly, she had more of an idea what the mirror was worth than Susan did.
Standing in front of the reflective glass, Susan took stock of herself. She was still wearing her clothes from work, being too angry when she first got home to even take off her suit jacket. Something she corrected now, dropping it on a nearby chair.
Beneath the black jacket, Susan wore a white, pleated long sleeve blouse with puffed cuffs at the ends. A matching black skirt reached down to just past her knees, decorated with diagonal white stripes. Her long black hair was tied back with a small gold clasp, which she reached up and removed, letting it fall about her shoulders. The only jewelry she wore was a pair of small diamond chip earrings and a jade ring that had been the other of her grandmother's bequests. It was something that she rarely took off.
Susan brought both of her small hands to the open top of her blouse and brushed her fingers against the soft exposed flesh. The sensation of flesh against flesh, even of her own hand, was enough to excite her. They closed on the uppermost button of her blouse and slowly undid it. The button below followed, then the one after that and so on.
In her reflection, Susan could see the lacy black bra that held her small breasts. She reached in and slipped an extended finger inside it, stroking the nipple of her left breast.
A soft sigh spilled from her lips as she felt the tip react to her touch with an electric surge that she felt all the way down to her toes. A jolt that resounded between her legs as well. It reminded her that it had been almost three weeks since the last time she and Rob had gotten physical. A period that was likely to be a lot longer given what had happened this afternoon. No problem, she thought, she'd taken care of herself before she had a man, and could easily do so now.
Her other hand joined the first as she cupped both mounds, squeezing them tightly. A louder cry followed as she pushed up her bra, displaying the small globes beneath. Adept fingers massaged her flesh, tweaking her tips and filling her chest with a warm glow.
The smile on her face looked back at her in the mirror, adding to her self-enjoyment. One hand continued to play with her breasts as the other worked its way down her stomach until it passed over the waistband of her skirt. Moving even lower, she pulled up her skirt and slipped her hand beneath it, her fingers closing on the sparsely haired mound between her legs. As was her norm, she wasn't wearing panties.
Soft sighs became louder moans as she felt her fingers pass the tight entrance to her womanhood, making contact with all her familiar and most sensitive spots. That was one thing she wouldn't miss about Rob. No matter how many times she showed them to him, he never seemed to get them right.
"Oh yes," she purred to the empty room as her fingers worked their magic, stimulating her nipples and clitoris, the heat within her building in intensity.
Normally, Susan closed her eyes when she played with herself, letting her imagination wander. This time, however, she was actually getting more turned on watching herself doing it, an idea that had only occurred to her recently. As a building wave of delight passed over her, she made a small mental note to look into buying a less expensive mirror to replace her grandmother's. That was if she did decide to sell it.
That reminder was quickly put aside as felt her sugar walls contract around her fingers. Her thumb brushed against her clit once more, even as torrents of erotic energy flashed through her. She brought down her other hand down to join the first, her pace quickening with the rising level of excitement.
"Oh yeah," Susan panted as her entire body began to move in unison with the motions of her hands, riding the cascading waves on the way to orgasm.
She could feel the beads of sweat forming on her chest, legs and back, her body temperature rising with each racing heartbeat. Waves crashed against the hidden shoals of her sex with ever increasing intensity, until they finally exploded, causing her body to quake with joy as her orgasm washed over her.
She went over the edge loudly, her breaths coming in short gasps, interlaced with frantic moans. Every inch of her small body vibrated with a fevered intensity as she savored the transient rapture. Then, almost as quickly, the glow faded and her legs grew weak beneath her, causing her to drop back onto the bed for support.
"That was really nice," Susan said to herself as she stretched out across the bed.
Her eyes closed for a minute and she was sure she was about to drift off to sleep. Then to he surprise, not only did sleep not come, but she felt even more wide-awake then before. In addition, she also felt more aroused than when she had started.
"Oh, so it's going to be one of those nights," Susan laughed as she sat up and again looked at her reflection in the mirror.
It didn't take long for her to rid herself of what clothing remained, leaving them on a pile by the bed. Now totally naked, she rolled over to her night table and pulled open the bottom of three drawers. From within, she withdrew her favorite toy, a nine-inch plastic vibrator. It had been a gift on her sixteenth birthday, from her grandmother of all people. The then seventy year old had reasoned, quite correctly as it turned out, that her granddaughter was better off learning how to please herself than letting the wrong boy talk her into something she might later regret. Grandmother Wu was a great believer in self-gratification.
The soft hum of the vibrator quickly translated into multiplying waves of delight as Susan placed it between her legs and up against her mound. She gasped loudly as she rubbed it up and down against the fold in-between, gently slipping just the tip in and out of her pussy. With each new entry, the force behind the ripples passing through her body grew, and after each withdrawal she penetrated herself a little deeper.
"Who needs assholes like Rob when I have Duracell," Susan thought as she closed her eyes and enjoyed the ride.
Susan's left hand held the base of her toy tightly, sliding it back and forth with ease. The fingers of her right worked their magic against her clit, adding to the amalgam of pleasures coursing through her.
Never totally down from her precious high, it didn't take much to return the young Asian woman to a state of arousal. Faster and faster her hands moved, becoming almost a blur in an onlooker's eyes. If there had been an onlooker, rather than only her own racing heart to bear witness to her desire.
A single stream of sweat ran down her rising chest, sliding between the shallow valley of her breasts. The pert nipples atop each of her mounds cried out for attention, for the touch of a lover's hand. Unfortunately, both of hers were occupied.
"Oh yes," Susan cried out softly as she felt an even stronger orgasm crying out for release. "Yes, yes, yes." she added, each repetition rising in volume.
Then, just before the rising wave could explode across her body, the dark haired woman felt a cold, almost paralyzing shiver grip her instead. Despite every certainly to the contrary, she had the inexplicable sensation that she wasn't alone. An intangible conviction given reality a heartbeat later, when she felt a delicate caress against her nipples.
"Omigod!" Susan cried out at the top of her lungs as she jumped up in the bed, her eyes flying open, to look into ... her own eyes.
Unable to believe the evidence of her own eyes, Susan blinked twice, shaking her head as she did. When she looked a second time, it was just as hard to accept, but now impossible to simply dismiss as an erotic daydream.
The woman with her face, even with her body, was as naked as Susan. The only exceptions being the diamond chips in her ears and the jade ring on her hand.
"You looked like you could use another set of hands," the mirror image said, a familiar smile on her face.
The shock of hearing the apparition speak was enough to totally send Susan's mind into a tailspin. It took a few moments to even realize that her counterpart was speaking in Mandarin rather than English.
"Who ... what are you?" Susan finally managed to ask.
"I am Lin Yao," the other dark haired young woman replied, "and I am also you."
"Lin Yao," Susan repeated, mentally making the translation into 'beautiful jade treasure'.
Certain there was a connection, Susan's looked down at the ring on her finger, then at the counterpart on Lin Yao's hand. In the back of her mind, she remembered her grandmother once speaking of a dear friend with the same name this doppelganger had just given. A friend Susan had often heard of, but never met.
The memory of her grandmother's voice shifted Susan's attention from one bequest to the other. What little sense of equilibrium she had managed to pull together these last few minutes now totally deserted her. She took one look into the large mirror still at the bottom of the bed and, upon realizing that her reflection was now gone, promptly fainted.
Consciousness returned a short time later, but it was nearly a full minute after she was sure she was awake before Susan opened her eyes. When she did, it was with a feeling of apprehension at what she would see.
"You're still here," she said, the inflection of her voice giving strength to her hope that the opposite would've been true. "You're real."
"As real as you are," Lin Yao smilingly replied.
"And you come from the mirror?" Susan asked, amazed that she was taking what had to be the most bizarre situation of her life so calmly.
"The mirror is but a portal," Lin Yao explained, "a passageway between what you know as reality and what is beyond."
"This is unbelievable," Susan said, still trying to accept that it was indeed real.
"Su-ling had difficulty accepting me at first as well," Lin Yao said, "but we quickly became friends."
The mention of her grandmother's name reinforced the notion that this was indeed the Lin Yao of whom she had once told her.
"And when you appeared to my grandmother, you..."
" ... took on her appearance as well." she answered the incomplete question.
"This is like something out of the Twilight Zone," Susan said.
"You felt me before," Lin Yao reminded her. "Did I not feel real?"
"Did you ever!" Susan gushed, remembering the moment of ecstasy she had felt before pulling back from the brink. "Do you normally interact with people like that?"
"If that is what they want," the mirror image said. "But most of all, I am here to help them improve their lives. To correct what is wrong."
Susan's second thought was that there was an awful lot in her life that needed correcting. Her first thought, however, was the one that she actually gave voice to.
"Did you interact with my grandmother like that?"
The even broader smile on Lin Yao's face gave Susan the answer before words could leave her mouth.
"Over all the years of her life," she replied, "Su-ling and I shared many such moments."
"Damn, no wonder the old lady was so willing to buy me my first vibrator," Susan laughed, glad to know that whatever this was, it had brought happiness to a woman she loved above all others.
"Moments that I would be happy to share with you as well," Lin Yao continued.
"Wait a second, let's take a step back here," Susan quickly said when the implication of those words hit home. "I'm not into girls. I don't have anything against those ladies that are, but I like a man in my bed. Nothing personal, you understand."
"I do not understand," came the reply from her double.
"It's really simple," Susan explained. "If you could come out of that mirror as someone tall, dark, handsome and endowed, then we might have something to talk about."
"But, were you not pleasuring yourself when I arrived?"
"That was different."
"In what way?"
"I was just masturbating."
"Bringing pleasure to yourself," she repeated.
"Yet if I am also part of you, is not the pleasure I might bring the same thing?"
Susan was sure there was a counter-argument to that theory, but for the life of her, she couldn't think of what it might be. Instead, the idea that it would be the ultimate form of masturbation filled her mind.
"This is all too confusing," Susan said instead.
"Then let me help clear away the clouds of confusion," Lin Yao said as she moved her body higher on the bed so that she was now only inches away from Susan.
A hand so like her own reached up and gently stroked Susan's cheek, running down across her neck to gently glide along the side of her breast. The soft, almost intangible touch of flesh against flesh was enough to send a surge of excitement through Susan that she hadn't felt since the days when she could call herself virginal.
Lin Yao's fingers stroked the sensitive flesh beneath Susan's breasts, running her middle finger up between them. She leaned closer, so close that their faces almost touched. Identical lips brushed against each other, the briefest of contacts, with the most lasting of effects.
Their lips met for a second, longer moment, and for a heartbeat, Susan felt her reflection's tongue press against her own. She had no words to describe what she felt, only the knowledge that no one had ever stirred her the way this woman had. There was a connection between them, as if each was merely half of a larger whole.
"Do you wish me to stop?" Lin Yao whispered as her fingers worked their way up the other side of Susan's face, gently pulling her closer for a deeper kiss.
"No," Susan murmured as she responded to the press of the doppelganger's lips, "please don't stop."
The black haired young woman let the warmth of the kiss wash over her, even as she wrapped her arms around her twin, pulling their bodies together. Up until this moment, she had never felt a desire to be with another woman. But then again, she had never met a woman so like herself. How could she not want her?
Their tongues interlocked, passing back and forth between their mouths. At the same time, two sets of hands explored identical bodies, producing much the same reactions in both. The forms might've been the same, but not the spirits within them, at least not totally.
Susan felt Lin Yao taking control and uncharacteristically, she didn't seem to mind. It was as if the more aggressive half of her own mind had been given form.
She felt herself being eased back on the bed, as Lin Yao climbed on top of her, straddling her across her waist. She reached out and ran her hands up the sides of Susan's body, caressing the flesh with her fingers until they reached her small breasts, working their way inward to their center.