Modern angst - Editor
by E.J. Tett
I’m bored now. Now that they’ve gone. I’m bored just sitting on my own in a darkened room, drumming my fingers on the arms of my chair.
Although I’m not entirely on my own. It’s there, staring at me but not seeing anything. It will see, if I want it to. But I can’t... I can’t let it see me. I’ve seen what it did, what I made it do, and now that they’ve gone... I’m afraid I’ll be next.
The smack came so hard to the back of my head that my nose hit the desk. I didn’t make a sound but they all laughed. I looked down at my notebook. There was blood on it now.
“Loser,” I heard.
I ignored the voice and dipped my pen into my own blood, trailing it across the page. I heard more sniggering and then a clatter of chairs as everybody rushed to take their seats when the teacher entered the room.
Somebody tapped me on the arm and when I looked a piece of paper was shoved into my hand. Gay boy it said. I screwed up my nose and the piece of paper.
“Uh... give me that, please,” the teacher said, thrusting her palm towards me. I hadn’t even noticed she’d stopped speaking. I put the note in her hand without looking up.
I heard her sigh. “Look at me,” she said, and when I looked, she sighed again. “Go and wash up, you’re bleeding.”
She said it as if it was my fault. I pushed my chair back and got up. I left the room and didn’t go back that day. My parents were angry.
“What are you building?” he asked, peering over my shoulder as I tinkered with my tools.
I couldn’t be bothered to reply, he wouldn’t understand anyway. So I said nothing.
I picked up a spanner and tightened a bolt, frowning that he wasn’t leaving me in peace. I sighed loudly, hoping that he’d get the idea and leave.
He growled impatiently. “I asked you a damn question, you can at least have the decency to answer it!” he said. “Son!”
I gathered my things, packed up my toolbox and walked away. He threw a wrench at me. It hit me squarely between my shoulder blades.
For a moment I stopped walking. But I didn’t turn around.
I’d been frowning over my notes when she came up behind me. I was sitting outside under a tree, trying to get the last of the light. I’d thought I was alone.
“Boo!” she said. And she sat herself down beside me. I ignored her and wrote down something else in my notebook. This was important stuff; I needed to get it absolutely right for when I came to putting everything together.
She said nothing for a while but I knew she was watching me, I could feel her eyes on me. “They think you’re gay, at school,” she said. “Are you?”
I gave her a look and then turned back to my notes. She was one of the popular kids, I wasn’t about to speak to her, I was sure that no matter what I said it’d be turned back against me somehow.
She grabbed at my crotch suddenly and I gasped and hurried to my feet, dropping my notebook on the ground. She laughed. Loudly.
Anger bubbled up in me and I snatched up my book and marched back towards the house. “I guess that answers my question then!” she called after me. She was a bitch.
I was going to be a very rich and powerful man. I decided that a long time ago. My project was going to get me the recognition I deserved.
I took apart the computers at school to get the parts I needed. They only caught me once and I was given a detention for it and ordered to give the parts back. I didn’t bother. They soon replaced them anyway.
The boy who I sat detention with beat me up and called me a loser. I kicked him in the groin and he responded by punching me until I blacked out.
I remember waking up in the hospital and hardly being able to see as my eyes were swollen almost shut. That put my work back for some days. I lay in bed and thought of nothing but motherboards and gyros and motion sensors.
I went back to the same school. My parents didn’t want to move me anywhere else. I suppose they didn’t think I was worth the bother.
“Freak!” This was from the boys at school. Then one of them put his finger and his thumb to his forehead, forming an L shape. “Loser!” he said. And they all laughed.
Personally, I thought he looked like an idiot. I smiled and moved on my way down the corridor. I believed in Karma, and they’d get what was coming to them.
After all, I’d nearly finished it. My baby, my pride and joy. I was going to be famous.
I felt like laughing like a maniac. I wanted to throw back my head and laugh like one of those crazed scientists that I’d seen on TV. Instead I grinned like a school boy and ran to get my mother.
When she came up to my room and I unveiled my masterpiece, she was silent for some time. I waited patiently.
“That’s... very nice, dear,” she said. Her pause was enough to tell me that she was lying to me. I’d worked hard on this and she couldn’t even be honest with me! Or lie well.
I frowned and looked from my creation back to my mother. She had a look of vague disgust on her face. “I think we should put it in the garage,” she said.
When I didn’t respond immediately she said, “Well? The garage! Go on, put it away.”
I picked up the remote control and pressed the activate button. I’d show her what it could do...
I remember watching as it speared my mother through the heart. I’d given it legs so it was able to go downstairs. It killed my father too, though I missed that.
I hid in my room, my heart pounding, as my baby took on a life of its own. I’d poured my love into that thing and my hate. It was murderous. That’s not what I had intended but I took pleasure in hearing the screams fill the street as my creation destroyed everyone I knew and loathed.
When I peered out of the window I saw it carve up the girl from school. I think that she screamed the loudest. That turned me on more than anything and I slid a hand down my pants as I watched.
Then everything went quiet for a while and I went to sit at my desk to wait.
When it returned to me, the once shining silver metal was crusted with dried brown blood and other matter that I didn’t like to hazard a guess at.
I reached for the control and turned it off. Then I sat and stared at it, wondering what to do next. I was bored now. Now that they’d gone.