He was an enigma, a person I came to regularly talk to, yet know of so little. Since we were never close, the lasting cold intimacy he showed me was intriguing. Everything about him enthralled me. He was cool, and likeable, yet so stoic and impervious. No word could describe him. He held more power than them.
As a member of the school’s paper, words for him were pillars of a person’s imagination. Words can entrance, stimulate, and manipulate. That was what caught my attention. Who knew people like him still existed? He was so liberated by words that everything that flows out of his mouth is enchanted, full of meaning. And his deadpan demeanor of a voice adds up to his spicy way of saying words.
I don’t notice him around enough for me to keep track of his daily appearance, but other than his blinding blue eyes, pale complexion, and coal-black hair, it was notable that he always had bandages. He wore them anywhere, sometimes in the weirdest of places. One day, during lunch, he decided to accompany me going to our classroom from music class. And when I asked him why, he only said that if he walked alone, it would be weird. He was right. And I didn’t want to be alone anyway.
Along the way, I couldn’t resist looking at a small bandage across his left cheekbone, just underneath his apparent eye bags. The bandage only covered half of the scars. A cluster of light red, scabbing, lines sat there, on his hollow cheek, forming the letter J. That day, he rambled to me about his allergies, and he bluntly called me ‘cool’. It was a first.
That was only one of the memories of him I kept. I knew our small encounters by detail from the coldness of his touch to how he brightens up my day with rampant stories that he writes. That was his pastime—writing. He loved it, and I loved how he longed to write during the waking crack of day. He told me he couldn’t write when the sun was up. Most of his prompts and inspirations come to him at night, leaving him sleepless.
He was such a great writer that most of his short stories were posted on the school’s site which was convenient for someone like me who was in love with his matchless writing. I used this opportunity to stalk his writing progress.
But as days went by and as I read more and more of what he writes, I’ve realized that I truly do not know him. He was silent, and socially passive for some reason. He has scars every now and then for a reason. His writings, poems, and excerpts screamed out the same thing all over again.
He was a misunderstood soul. He cried for help. No one heard him or saw him. He tried his best to conceal all the bottled up feelings that even I hadn’t noticed or paid attention to. I never really got to pay attention to what he was really saying. I never really got his philosophical moments of questions on existential concepts. I thought he was deep. I thought I’ve been digging deep, but I was too careless and I only saw what superficial. All I felt for being so blind was remorse.
I know deep in me that though I’ve forgotten what his face was like, he’ll always haunt me. I remember him whenever I hear the word—pretentious because it was his favorite word. I feel him alive in the books that I read.He was definitely cool.
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