She felt dim, stupid, her words had fallen wide of the mark, missed by miles and now she was alone with her thoughts. The way it always seemed to end. She looked across the room and found herself hidden in the mirror, there, tortured and weak. She stared into her own eyes and tried to recognise herself in the shapes and in the dull sparkle. That was always the hardest part, looking in and facing that thing that was neither a lie nor a truth but a wraith and fogy piece of existence that sat undefined and unlabelled looking back. Looking back for all the world like some rare animal caught on camera in the jungle, captured by the intrusive lens, frozen in that moment and then hidden away in the black box until the shining image was released, days later at some more civilized spot where the animals were held at safe distances. So she tried to out stare herself, watching and concentrating, freezing and goading herself not to blink, or dip or look away. Just to stay, ride in the equilibrium of the moment and be that wonderful, tragic, ghost of a person for seconds longer, for as long as time counts and makes time a real thing. She held the look until exhausted and madly hungry, till the pain took hold and then she allowed the excitement, the shame and the remorse to roll over her like a great troubled sea with all it's uncontrollable waves and currents. She fell back as if accepting the impact of a bullet or the recoil of a weapon, backwards she fell, into sleep and the swimming world of the unconscious, her body's moves making no sense, so out of control and wounded she slumped and began to just hang somewhere. Suspended in the suspense. It grew dark and time passed, she was aware of other things now, “time to tidy up”, she thought.