I have decided to only write on days of particular significance. I came to this decision not through reason, but because I forgot to record the last few days.
Nothing interesting happened. Whilst time seems not to exist in the Chambre, neither does anything of interest. There was the writing table and sconces as I saw in the painting, but also a whole dimension to the room not shown before I came inside.
The Chambre was larger than the painting portrayed. The walls extended out to include a bed, a French easel, some blank canvases, and a set of drawers. Within the drawers was a little hammer, a few spare nails, and a wide array of oil-based paints, and fine horsehair brushes.
And just as before, the Dame de la Chambre hung on the dark-bricked wall. However, unlike before, it was now right-side-up. Not only that, it looked back at myself. It moved! Since I was now the lady in the painting, when I moved, the painting moved as me. A mirror of paint.
As I lifted it off the wall, the floor shook. Or rather, I did. I felt a shift in gravity that nothing else did. No brush rolled, no blanket churned. As I turned the painting ninety degrees, I was not swept off my feet, though I felt I should have been. As I finished the full one hundred and eighty-degrees, my vision went blank.
And I awoke where I had been standing in the real world, the Dame de la Chambre at my feet.
What far-away memories these seem now. If time does not pass, then I have already spent a thousand eternities here. It sure feels like it. This is only day eight? Preposterous. How do I know that when I sleep, that equals a day? It could be year for all I know! There are no windows, no doors, no light but for the eternal candles.
I am Tantalus. Though I have diced and boiled no little boy, I have been eternally trapped under a metaphorical fruit tree which, whenever I reach for the fruit, raises its branches away. I have not eaten for six days. Six eternities. Thankfully, I am not cursed by hunger, though I sorely miss the warm fill of mother’s stew and the sweet juice of a Harvey apple.
I wonder how my family is? By now my disappearance must have been noticed. Are my sisters combing my estate, is mother sick with angst? The thought of their worry outweighs even my miss of them. Edith, Olivia—if you ever read this, I wish you to know how sorry I am that I ever found this painting.