Blood trickled in long lines down her fifteen year old skin, following the harsh bite of her fingernails as she raked them across her own face in desperation. Tufts of silky hair lay strewn across the bed and around her feet where she had torn them from their roots with clenched fists.

The voices were here again.

Silently screaming she bashed her head against the cold wall again and again. They wouldn't leave. From the depths of her own personal hell came the painful moans and sobs of agony no-one else would hear, no-one else would know, no-one else would ever understand.

She fell to the floor and crawled under her bed in an attempt to remove herself from their existence, if only for a few precious seconds. They followed her, relentless with their sickly sounds, born from neurons misfiring inside her head. Gnawing, clawing, slashing their way down to the very fibre of her being.

Crying out to be heard, to be helped, she summoned her deepest breath and screamed a cry like that of a tortured banshee.

No-one came, no-one heard.

She picked up a lamp and threw it against the dressing table mirror. It bounced off with a crack and skittled across the floor.

The mirror had broken. Fracture lines snaked their way outwards radially from the point of impact leaving a distorted, warped reflection of herself staring back at her.

That instant she realised how her life, her sanity, is the same as that mirror. It started out beautiful, like her, grew older, like her and now a shattered, smashed and broken thing, like her. It had been there when the voices first came two years ago, they started out as whispers. Fleeting, skipping by like the hiss of a distant rainstorm when dreaming. Now they consumed her, screaming tortured cries of agony they twisted her to their will, slowly breaking her until she submitted.

They would not have her, not this time.

Lifting her chin up, she looked at her broken reflection again and reached out towards the mirror. Taking a long sliver of glass from the stained wooden frame she turned it over and over slowly in her hand, mesmerised by its primal beauty as it sparkled, glittered and danced before her.

She gripped it tighter and felt its sharp edges bite into her palm and fingers. Blood trickled along it's length and dripped onto the carpet.

She brought it down hard across her left wrist and dropped it on the bed in shock, eyes wide, as the first spurts of life gushed from her and wet the dressing table. She watched it flow in silence.

The voices hounded her;
They shredded her brain with their ragged cries and screams but she just sat there watching. Her head felt light, she felt warm and safe.

Then for the first time since the cruel torture began, her world fell silent.

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