Moment of Calm

Aaron

I’m laying on my bed, scrolling aimlessly through Tumblr, when the smell of popcorn drifts into my bedroom under the closed door. I sniff the air as the scent fills my mouth and nose- today, this is what home smells like. I glance back down at the screen of my phone and see a new post from one of my favorite blogs. I smile again- this night is going so well that it’s impossible not to at this point.

The picture on the blog post shows two of my favorite characters holding hands; one of them is also holding a rainbow-striped flag. It’s always mesmerizing to see how much detail an artist can put into something, as well as how complex a work can be, though to the unexperienced eye it seems so simple.

The smell of popcorn once again fills my brain. Mom must have eaten half the bucket by now. My stomach aches with worry- she’s been dealing with so much lately.

Last year, I made a promise to myself that I would tell her, but now that the time has come, I can’t.

My gaze returns to the phone’s screen once again. Even though I can’t see the characters’ faces, I know that they’re happy. I only want to be like them; to have that same happiness in my heart. But how will she react when I tell her?

I look down at my chest, which has become the biggest of my problems. Tears come to my eyes when I think about how badly I just want to change it. That one thing would make it so no one would know who I was when I was born. They would only see who I am now.

When I was a kid, I was normal. I ran around with everyone else, played every sport that I could, and made sure to get in on all of the Nerf wars- until one day when I got hit in the chest with a Nerf ball. That was the day that changed my life. After that, my chest looked different- there were now two rapidly growing lumps that, for some reason, prevented the other boys from playing with me. Mom tried to show me the good in the situation by encouraging me to wear dresses, talk with girls, grow out my hair, and take dance lessons, but I didn’t want to be a part of any of it. All I wanted was to have my friends, and my identity as a boy, back.

The clear, concise thought of what I want pushes itself through my brain until it has full control. It spurs my legs into action, pushing me off of the bed and into a standing position. It makes my feet step on the tufts of carpet as I make my way to the door. My arm reaches out and my fingers turn the handle ever so gently.

“Mom? I have something to tell you.”

That was the last moment of calm in my life before the kerfuffle that now ensues.

Author’s Note: This story was written for the monthly short story contest on The Sims Forums. If you have an account there, we’d love to have you! This month, we were given a list of unusual words and had to choose one to use in our stories. The word that I chose was “kerfuffle”.

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