There are two types of people in this world. Those who make themselves look bigger by making others look smaller, and those who become smaller from the ones who think they are bigger. However, one single girl made a category all her own.
It feels good being on the top, being the king. There were always people trying to please you, be you, or date you. I didn't need someone to make fun of to make me feels strong, it just came naturally.
I confidently strode down the hallways of my school. Everywhere I went, there were girls swooning over me.
Speaking of girls that swoon over me...
I turned around and was met face-to-face with Kairi and Selphie, they were probably the biggest fangirls in the school. They walked up to me, each one taking grasp of my arms, Kairi on my left, and Selphie on my right.
"Nothing much, we just wanted to know if we wanted to come over and hangout." Selphie said several pitches above her normal voice range.
I had to think for a minute before saying, "Sorry girls, but I have something planned."
A look of disappointment washed over their faces before brightening again.
"That's okay, maybe next time." Kairi said.
They released my arms and walked off. I actually don't have anything to do, but I remember my mom saying something about a really bad storm coming and I don't want to take my chances being caught in it.
Kairi and Selphie went farther down the hall where my next class was. As I casually walked, I heard Kairi and Selphie shouting. This peaking my interest, I swiftly walked around and hid behind the corner of the lockers. They continued yelling and I saw them with another girl. I've seen her around before, she's one of those anti-social kids that do well in school and always where baggy hoodies. I don't even know her name.
"Can you believe Riku turned us down?! It's somehow all your fault [Name]!" Kairi shrieked.
Kairi raised me hand and slapped [Name] right across the face. Selphie joined in and soon, [Name]'s entire face was covered in red marks and scratches. And yet, [Name] didn't retaliate or do anything. All she did was mutter a "yes, I'm sorry."
[Name] walked off while Kairi 'hmphed.'
I can't believe Kairi and Selphie would do something like that! I know they're not saints, but still.
The bell rang, and everyone scattered to their next class. All throughout the day, I couldn't help but think about [Name]. She kept herself covered with her hoodie drawn over her entire body, so I couldn't see her face, only her long [h/c] hair. But what I found most interesting was her personalty. She didn't fight back or cry like most people would've, she just took it. The rest of the day went by without my notice. And just like that, the last bell of the day rang.
On the walk home, I could already see the dark clouds rolling in. My best friend, Sora, walked with me and kept blabbing about something.
"Oh well, see you later Riku! I hope the storm isn't too bad." Sora shouted while running in the direction of his own house.
Once I got home, I changed into a T-shirt and sweatpants. No one was home, both of my parents were at work, so I had the whole house to myself. I plopped down on the couch and turned the TV onto the News channel so I could hear about the storm. Just as I had turned it on, thunder boomed outside and raining began to heavily pelt the roof.
"Well as many of you can see, there's a bad storm today. I'd advise you not to go outside because there's strong winds and freezing raining outside." Said the Weather Lady.
Good to know
I got up and sat by the window in the front of the house, just watching the heavy rain come down. The was so much, I almost couldn't make out a small figure walking on the sidewalk. Wait... that figure, and that hoodie... [Name]!
I ran outside to the slow moving figure, and sure enough, it was [Name], same [h/c] locks. She was completely drenched from head to toe. And the weather report didn't lie, the cold rain was spread everywhere due to the powerful winds. [Name]'s lips were a blue-ish color and her whole form was shivering.
"What are you doing out here!? Come on!" I grabbed her arms and dragged her inside my house.
By that time, we were both soaked. I was still holding onto [Name]'s arms and she seemed uncomfortable so she squirmed in my grasp.
I finally let go of her, and I took in her appearance. Her [h/c] hair was dripping wet, and she had the most memorizing [e/c] eyes. The color was so vivid, and yet so empty.
Then I remembered why she was here.
"Why were you outside during a huge storm like this? You realize you could've caught hypothermia?!"
All she did was nod, probably unable to form words since her teeth continued to chatter. I sighed and led her upstairs to the bathroom.
"Take a shower." Was all I said.
I shut the door and heard the water turn on so I left to find her some clothes. But first I changed out of my own dripping wet ones. I left a shirt and sweatpants outside the door and I waited for her to finish downstairs. A few minutes later, [Name] came downstairs with the clothes that I had given to her on, but she was still wearing her hoodie for some reason.
"You do know that wearing your wet hoodie defeats the purpose of me giving you dry clothes to wear, right?"
I walked over to her, "Then take it off."
As I tugged on the sleeves, she suddenly resisted. She must really like this hoodie. After a long struggle, I finally managed to get the hoodie off, but after I did, I somewhat regretted doing so.
[Name]'s arms were marred and littered by numerous cuts and gashes, some even looked fairly fresh. [Name] held her arms close to her body while her head was down. I thought back to when Kairi and Selphie suddenly began hitting [Name]...
"Did Kairi and Selphie do this to you?"
"No, I did it to myself."
My eyes widened. Not only from what she said, but how she said it. It was said so emotionlessly, so heartlessly, like she didn't care about that fact.
"Why?" I asked with confusion evident in my voice.
"I'll tell you a story, that is, if you want to hear it."
I nodded, waiting for her to continue.
When I was little, my father took me for a helicopter ride over a crowded city far away from the islands. In that city, were tons and tons of people, each one being someone different. There were business people, homeless people, tourists, and children. I was amazed at the huge number of people in the city and then my father told me that this world in home to billions and billions of people. I felt so small...
And that's when I realized, my life was so small and insignificant. My life was just one among billions of others. I realized that my life wasn't as important as I thought it was.
But then I also realized that there needs to be many types of people in this world and that people will always have problems and want to push them onto someone else. And so, on that day, I decided my destiny would be to bear people's burdens. I found out that when people are burdened, they lash out at people and can become violent, I've seen it happen to my mother quite often after my father died a few days after our helicopter ride.
Everyone wishes for a scapegoat in their life. Someone who they can dispel all their problems onto whichever way they please. My life is unimportant, so why not give it to those people who's lives are.
So ever since then, I've allowed myself to be bullied and picked on by other people. I'm sure it makes them happy, and a happy important person is better than a happy unimportant person.
I looked at [Name] in disbelief. How could someone think like that? It's just about the opposite to how pretty much everyone thinks. She just allowed other people to downgrade her because she thinks it's making their lives better.
"That still doesn't answer the cuts and gashes."
"Oh, well as I carry the burdens of others, I must also carry my own. And since I'm the one people push their burdens into, I don't push my own onto other people, I instead keep them within myself. But sometimes, all the burdens accumulate, and I find that cutting and hurting myself eases my internal pain. I don't bother cleaning my wounds either, because I know there will be more the next day." She said, so emotionless and yet there was a small, fake smile on her face.
She wants to make it look like she's fine...
"But what happens when one of the cuts get infected or something?! Then you could die! You think you're helping the world by letting yourself be bullied, but you're really being selfish! What about the people who care about you? They would be sad if something happened to you!" I asked/screamed.
But [Name] was unphased by my lecture.
"You needn't worry about such people, Riku. Because there are no people like that in this world, nor in the next."
My eyes widened, and my mouth a slightly agape.
"My mother was the one who helped me decide on my destiny. And I'm sure my father never particularly cared for me." She said with the same fake smile on her face.
Though there was a smile on [Name]'s face, I could see in her eyes she wanted to cry. I could tell all she wanted to do was curl up in a ball and give up on life. But she believed in her so-called 'destiny' and kept mulling through life.
"My pain makes others happy, it's the reason why I live."
Suddenly, I sprang forward, and captured [Name] in my arms. I held her close to my chest before I started speaking.
"But what if, someone said we were unhappy because you were in pain?"
I felt [Name] relax in my arms before she said, "There's no one like that."
"But I'm here. And it makes me unhappy to hear you talk so lowly of yourself, [Name]..."
"You're lying. Don't feed me false statements," She said while struggling on my hold, "you aren't really unhappy, you just pity me, and I don't want your pity."
I kept a firm grip, not wanting [Name] to leave.
"Do you want me to prove it to you?"
Before she could respond, I covered her mouth with mine. [Name] remained froze, she didn't kiss me back, but she didn't push me away either. When I pulled away, [Name]'s eyes were wide open. I pulled her back into a hug with her face against my chest.
"Why you smile when you want to cry? It's okay to cry [Name], I'll always be here if you a shoulder to cry on."
And just like that, [Name] began to silently cry. She didn't whimper or whine while she cried, she only took grip of my shirt. It was while until [Name] stopped. When I looked down, I realized she had stopped because she had fallen asleep. I chuckled, and I too fell asleep.
It's been a few weeks since my fateful encounter with [Name] in the rain. She's been looking at the world in a new light, and I've been supporting her throughout it. Kairi, Selphie, and just about half the female student body became upset once our little relationship was found out but I'll always be by [Name]'s side, so she has nothing to worry about.
"I don't want to burden you though, Riku. I can handle those girls myself." [Name] said.
"It's not a burden, and from now on, your burdens will be my burdens." I whispered in her ear.