TITLE: A Better Image
AUTHOR: Susan / apckrfan
DISTRIBUTION: My site, AO3, FanFiction.net, LiveJournal, Yahoo Groups. Anyone else, please just tell me where it's at.
DISCLAIMER: I don’t own any characters. These stories are based on Susan Kay’s novel Phantom, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical The Phantom of the Opera and Gaston Lereux’s novel The Phantom of the Opera. No copyright infringement is intended and no profit is made.
SPOILERS: General spoilers for Phantom of the Opera
SUMMARY: The Phantom grows despondent that his experiments with mirrors cannot net him the one thing he wants.
CHARACTERS/PAIRING: Erik aka The Phantom of the Opera
STATUS: Complete
DATE WRITTEN: March 2011
FEEDBACK: Please, I can't write better without it.
NOTES: This is written for LJ community fanfic_bakeoff Challenge 14: Distort. I’m Team Pie, even though it’s been forever since I’ve submitted anything.

He cursed loudly for there was no one in his lair to hear him.

Years of experimentation, dabbling, building, and creating things. Beautiful things that people fawned over.

And yet, the simplest of things eluded him.

A mirror that would show him what he wanted to see not what truly was to see.

He understood how they worked, that wasn’t the issue. When most children were playing with blocks he had been a menace to his mother, experimenting on anything that wasn’t nailed down. If it could be taken apart, Erik figured out a way to do it. And when he’d taken it apart, he had to figure out not just how to get it back together again, but how it worked to begin with.


They had always fascinated him because there were none in his childhood home.

But one.

He’d never forget the first time he saw his reflection. The cruel words his mother had spoken when she informed him that it wasn’t a monster, something distorted in the mirror, but his very own likeness looking back at him. What she saw every day when she looked upon him without the mask she’d given him as an infant.

The only gift from her he’d ever received.

Always since that day, he lived with the hope, the desire, to create something that would show him the man he should have been. A normal man, one his mother would have loved and cherished as mothers were wont to do with their children.

He would never come to grips with the fact that such a thing wasn’t possible, that a mirror simply could not turn something ugly into something beautiful.

He would succeed.

He would one day look upon a mirror and see a swan.

~The End~

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