I'm just going to post another story.
Why are you Afraid of People?
I sit at my computer, brand new and still downloading the files from the old one. Jennifer Knapp plays in the background, her blasphemous praise fills the silence. Den lies on my bed, reading one of my literary journals.
“I thought you were staying at Raven’s tonight.” I remark.
“Too difficult.” He turns the page. “Her mom constantly comes in her room.”
“I see.” I say, staring at the copy pending window on my screen and thinking more of my stories.
He closes the book, turning to me. “Do you want me to leave?”
“No.” I say. “You can stay if it’s easier.”
He stares for a moment, it seems he has more to say. But he slowly turns back to the journal. An hour passes before he shuts it again.
“Why is it easier to hide here then it is at Raven’s? Don’t your parents care about you?”
“I’m sure if I asked they would hang out with me.”
“Why don’t you?”
“I’m not a people person.”
“You socialize fine.”
“At school, where I need too.”
“You hang out with me and Raven all the time.”
“I like you and Raven.”
“But not other people.”
“Why are you so afraid of people?”
“It’s just the way I came to know them.”
“But you don’t want to be alone.”
“I don’t want to be hurt even more.”
“You don’t seem to have that fear with Raven.”
“She’s already done her worst.”
I sigh, opening a drawer in my desk and rummaging through. I pick it up with a careful caress and toss it to Den. Confused, he opens it and I watch as his eyes trail across the page, widening with each word.
“Raven did not write this.” He drops it like burning coal.
“Ask her about it.”
“Not Raven Lynn.”
“It was around the time Trish died.”
“But still…” His face scrunches. “She’s too nice to write those words.”
“She’s grown so much.”
“Had I gotten that note from anyone, I would never speak to them again.”
“I didn’t have many options at the time.”
That statement in it of itself was so incredibly lonely.
He looks at me with pain, I don’t show signs of a reaction. It was a long time ago and I really don’t care about it anymore. Everyone does stupid, hurtful things to the ones they love the most. I’d be stupid to claim to be any better.
After a while I return to the computer where everything is downloaded and pull up a word document, getting to work. All is silent again.
“…But what about me?” He whispers, like it’s a secret.
I stop for a moment and think of the words I could use to explain it, why I don’t push him away. But the words come to me naturally, it seems obvious in fact.
“You just seem as invisible as me.”