Tag Archives: short story

On Finding Yourself In Bars

Monrey was, by all appearances, a typical Monday’s child. They lived under this impression until their tenth year when they witnessed a bully push their friend to the ground.

Monrey was so angry that all they could think was darkness. They concentrated on this darkness and three testicles appeared from nothingness and wrapped around the bully, a tiny Tuesday’s child with hair like molten gold. With a great slurp the tentacles vanished, dragging the bully into their nothingness.

From that day on Monrey felt themselves put apart from the world. They felt people’s eyes on their back like fearful knives. They heard the heavy hushed whispers whenever they walked past.

Monrey… well, they did their best with what they had left. They worked to find contentment with being a part of nobody, and peace with whatever darkness their mind could call. And if there was nobody in the world like them, well that’s the only world Monrey knew.

That is until the day they met the Other.

On this day Monrey, yearning for even the slightest crumb of human society, makes their way to a dark bar on the corner of Lafayette and Third. They sit in the darkest corner, their burnt clay hands clasped too tightly together, and wait for the stares to reach them.

And they wait.

And they wait.

But they don’t feel the prick of eyes and look about the room. Absolutely nobody in the room has yet noticed them, instead they are looking at the Other who smiles a smile that does not reach their eyes.

It is perhaps typical, Monrey thinks, for smiles not to reach your eyes when you don’t have any. But does the Other have eyes? They are easy to look at but hard to see. Something about them shifts and swirls, obscuring the very them of them. It is an effect as dizzying as peering down the side of a cliff only to see yourself smiling up at you.

Smiling. The Other is smiling at Monrey now, the kind of smile that makes the sun rise, the earth spin, and Monrey’s stomach to feel like a ship lost in a storm.

Should they smile back? Wave? Worse yet, say something?

Before they can decide, the Other is there, sliding a drink towards them.

“I know what you are,” the Other whispers.

Their voice is so smooth, the type of voice that should be reserved for snakes who whisper gardens, but Monrey shakes their head, rejecting the notion.

“I am a person, and people aren’t whats. They’re whos.”

And thus the night ends like many other nights will end. Monrey goes home alone, feeling less alone.