Arnold Schintz is a reclusive man who has had several episodes of insanity in the past. He recently disappeared in a puzzling manner, from a locked room with no windows (perhaps even his cell in an asylum or prison), leaving only the shards of a large, broken mirror and strange symbols drawn with blood on the walls. The police would suspect murder or suicide, but no body has been found and the room would seem to have no possible means of entry.
1 Arnold Schintz was a wizard or cultist engaged in magical warfare with his enemies. One evening, a member of a rival cult used Schintz’s mirror as a portal to enter the room and murdered him. He took the body with him when he went back through the mirror, and drew his cult symbols on the walls with Schintz’s blood as a warning to others.
2 Arnold Schintz’s insanity was brought on by his obscure researches into occult practices and non-Euclidean geometry. At some point in his studies he found a ritual to open a gate through a mirror, by drawing special geometric symbols on it in one’s own blood. When his family and friends became worried about the odd directions his research was taking, he feared that he would be committed to an asylum and used the mirror gate to escape to another plane. He may now be literally anywhere in the universe, perhaps even in Limbo.
3 During Arnold Schintz’s previous episodes of insanity, he exhibited an intense fear of mirrors and refused to stay in any room where one was present. He became obsessed with the idea of his own dark side, which he believed he had awakened through some seemingly innocent ritual or party game involving a mirror. Lately he had begun to abandon these ideas as childish fantasies, but it turned out that he was right all along. Last night, Schintz’s shadow-self crept out of the mirror and killed him, then dragged his body back to the strange, twilight world which exists behind all mirrors. Anyone who closely examines the symbols written on the walls will soon receive a visit from their own mirror image, which may try to kill them or take them back to its own world and then replace them in this one.
Copyright (c) 2008 Emily Johnsen