Here’s another ‘100 series’, inspired by Scott’s blog. This time, they aren’t funny, or witty, but they’re not supposed to be. I hope you like them.
He was always in the back of the class. Head low, silent, face hidden away in his palm. His clothes smelled funny. I’m sure that was what set it off. He said it was gasoline, an accident, we knew he didn’t wash them. Who doesn’t wash their clothes? It’s only plain courtesy not to stink, right? We didn’t know he couldn’t afford it, he never told us. We didn’t ask, but still. He kept smiling, no matter how bad it got. How could we possibly know he cried about it at home or that he would... It’s not our fault.
II. Cause He Loved Other Ellens
She looked at her reflection in the mirror and pulled up her shirt. Maybe if she lost a few pounds, she wouldn’t be so invisible then. Be more like everyone else. Not having to be ashamed in the locker-room. She knew they were laughing behind her back. Sometimes not even waiting till she turned her back either. She’d skip desert. And dinner. That way, she’d lose a pound by morning. Wouldn’t she? She’d be sure to catch his attention, this time. She ignored the distressed alarm signals from her stomach. She’d be so much thinner for it. So much prettier.
It was hurtful to see him come in. He was upset, it was all over his face, but he didn’t say anything, not a word. I had to hear from others, teachers, principals... It made me afraid to pick up the phone or go to that school, that office yet again and listen to the awful things they did to him. While not being able to do a single thing about it. I tried talking it over with him, but he kept his mouth shut, pretending everything was alright, hiding his intentions. That must be when he bought the gun.