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Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Microstory 1038: Ernest

You are probably going to hear a lot of crazy stories about the things Viola did for people, if you have not already. Well, I guess you will hear more of them, even if you already have. I do not know about all those other rumors, but I can fill you in on my personal experience with her. You may notice that I am quite...serious, if you will. I have excellent posture, and I cannot speak in contractions. I do not enjoy comedy movies, or amusement park rides. I do not ever smile, and I am never relaxed. All this, I believe, was a mistake. You may not know this, but not every part of our town is something out of a 1950s family situation comedy. We have poor people, and we have criminals. I grew up in an exceptionally unstable environment. My bloodline is messy and confusing, so I will not bore you with the details, but when my real parents were unable to care for me, relatives were required to pick up the slack. Unfortunately, no one I am related to is particularly refined either, so I simply did not have a chance. I started smoking cigarettes when I was nine years old, drinking alcohol when I was eleven, and smoking marijuana when I was thirteen. I was even addicted to opioids for a good long while. I was failing all of my classes freshman year, and was going nowhere with my life. Even if we could have afforded college tuition, there was no way I would be accepted anywhere better than a revolving door institution. Even then, I possessed no motivation to succeed, nor natural talents I could have used in the workforce. One day, Viola approached me with a frown. She said that she was not certain she could help. A disease of the body is easy. It is easy to spot, and given the right tools, easy to correct. But my problem was a disease of the mind. I was not raised to believe in myself, or that the world had anything to offer me, other than drugs, of course. Still, she tried, and though I am not convinced I am now better off, I will forever appreciate the effort. She worked harder for me than anyone else before. You see, she was trying to make me whole; to clean the slate, as it were. She was trying to make me normal. Sadly, she went too far. In giving me ambition, she removed nearly all feeling. I am not uncaring for others, and I would certainly do anything I could in an emergency, but I can no longer relate to people. Their issues are more trivial to me than ever, and this is a character defect that I have been unable to change. Perhaps, in time, I could learn to be more like I was before, but not too much. For now, however, I am stuck as this distant..numb..robot. I achieve perfect grades, and have been accepted into some astonishingly impressive educational establishments, but I am unable to make friends. I would like to think that, if Viola had survived whatever it was that happened to her, she would have eventually figured out how to balance me out. No, that is a purposeless thought, for it cannot be. Thusly, becoming a better person is all up to me, just as it is for everyone else. Is that all you need? I truly must return to my studies. Just because I am going to college no matter what, doesn’t mean I can stop trying. Did you hear that? I’ve used a contraction. Twice!

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