On his throne the tyrant laughed, the body of my naked wife at his feet, her bowls unfolding upon the cold, grey floor. The crimson pool bleeding from her began to run off at right angles, her life seeping into the grooves of the cobblestone. He had done it with some hooked blade like the kind fishermen use to gut their gaping victims whose lidless eyes gaze out in empty horror.
His dogs were soon at her, the mulish brutes wrestling over the body, their bristling backs arching as they jerked and teared the listless form, as they contended over their share of the carcass. Their bloody snouts dripped with grounded chunks of her flesh.
As the magic of the mirror faded, and for all extents and purposes it became a mirror again, I saw a new man’s face in place of mine. The wizard, with his stars sewn into his cloak, those white crystals dangling around his neck, watched me worriedly. It was good he did. I looked at him with murder in my heart, for Aries was my new god. In that moment there was no reason in me, only death.
“Who was that king, that laughing butcher upon his lofty chair?” I demanded, turning back towards my reflection. It was no longer my face: the contours no doubt measured the same; the teeth hadn’t moved; I’m sure my eyes were the same color. Something under the skin had changed, something time would unveil as it peeled the dead man away.
“The latest villain who imagines he’s God,” said the wizard. “And your wife was just a moment of his unfathomed villainy.” A hint of my passion I heard in his voice, his words harmonizing with my heart.