Short Story: Confronted

Confronting someone is exhausting.

You know you must say something.  It has been troubling you for so long, eating away at your soul, nibbling, chewing, gnawing.  You can hear the munch munch munch while you try to sleep.  You can hear it while you walk down the street.  In the background, the constant presence, a shadow that falls over you when you just want to enjoy life.

One day it hits you, a plan, a way to confront this person and make everything okay again.  You know you’re going to have to find a way to tell this person, this person that you love deep down, that they are failing and dragging everyone down with them.  They’re the hole in the middle of everything, where light can’t escape, where sound is elongated until it snaps, reduced to beeps and bops that barely register in the ear. 

You know everyone agrees with you but nobody else has the courage to speak up.  Instead they stand in the corner, looking over with sly eyes, their mouths drawing up in the corner, their white teeth concealing the hissing words that spill over their lips and into the world, half formed, deadly and without consequence.

You’re not that type of person though.  You like to think you’re strong, that you can find a way forward that enlightens everyone involved.  Gossip is a currency you have no interest in investing in.  You’re above it all but thinking about it isn’t doing it.  You look at all the possible ways this could play out.  Screaming, crying, sighing, shaking, yawning, lying, genuflecting, praying, diving.  No matter what you do, even if the moment of confrontation is a success, it is so exhausting. 

You wish it didn’t have to come down to you.  You despise your friends for being weak or even worse, encouraging the behaviour.  You look at the truth speakers and nay-sayers and you shake your head at their weakness.  They shine the best when the spotlight is on them but when it comes to the dirty work, they’re nowhere to be found.

It is up to you.

This is the moment you’ve been preparing for.

Your mouth is dry.

Your forehead is wet with sweat.

You look at yourself in the mirror and declare, “Stop being a fuck face you dumb fuck head.”

And it begins.


Copyright Justin Hamilton 2017