Sunday, August 23, 2009

Bad Influence (a short story)

Bad Influence © 2007
By David Williams III

Do I care what other people think of me? The answer is no shocker. Yes, of course I care deeply about what other people think of me. But that doesn’t make peer pressure a really big deal for me. I care what people think, but no one is forcing me to do anything I don’t want to do. I know it sounds strange, but that’s me: strange.

So, if I do anything, it is my choice. That’s the scary part.

The scene, Chad’s graduation party; the people included Chad, Lisa (Chad’s girlfriend), Lucy (Lisa’s best friend), Rob (Lucy’s on-again, off-again boyfriend), several of Chad’s roommates as well as several friends of friends of friends.

I should have put two and two together much faster, much earlier. I mean, it wa s right in my face. Once Rob and Lucy left, Chad and Lisa let me in on the secret of the night. And I joined in. I could feel it. Part of me knew I should really be angry with myself for giving in to temptation; but we only live once, right?

Then, I couldn’t stop thinking about the fact that Chad and Lisa didn’t seem to trust me, because they didn’t tell me until the others left. I should have, well, I don’t know what I should have done.

But I had fun. And got a good look into myself. It let me step out and see myself fro m the outside. I could, from a third-party point of view, understand what I was thinking and then tell myself it was just in my head. From that rational point of view, I didn’t have anything to worry about. But it still stuck in my mind. And it wanted to grow like a cancer. It wanted to take me down the path of hate and distrust. And, no matter what they said, I felt, for whatever reason, they didn’t trust me.

But they did. Because they told me when they felt okay telling me. They turned on the light to a whole other world. They had done it off and on for the last few months. Didn’t tell me. But trust is a two-way street. If I want them to trust me, tell me things, and really think of me as a friend they can t
rust with everything, I have to trust them when they say they had their reasons for not telling me until they did.

It’s not a matter of me not approving of what they were doing. It was really about Rob and Lucy. Chad didn’t want to let on to them anything was happening. I understood that, and I love Chad, so I just took it on his word; a friend’s word.

So, after a couple of lines, other people started showing up. It was crazy to be there (even if I wasn’t really there) with people, and I had no idea who knew what, who was doing what and all that shit.

Overall, it was great. Not that I know if I want to partake again. But I have a baseline. I understand. But I also understand how people get hooked on this. It really did numb me. I guess the whole gateway drug thing was true.

Can I say why it upset me and made me feel guilty afterward? I felt a deep guilt. Not for doing it, but for not feeling bad about doing it. It shocked me to think that I really did not have any problems. A great understanding of whom I was and what I could handle. Life is short. Have fun.

The downfall is I know worry that I am depending on chemicals to support my life. I worry about it simply because society states I should worry.

And after all this mind searching, experimentation, and hanging out, I was only left with one clear thought.

I love Chad.

Well, I guess no story ends well, but Chad has Lisa. And I have at least two great friends. But the basic truth will never change. I love Chad, and I always will.

Was he a bad influence? No. Like I said, it’s all me. It’s my choice, my problem; and I will deal with any shit that comes. Life is short, if you worry too much about planning out a great life, it may be over by the time you look up.

Love, friends, and mind-altering drugs; what more could anyone ask for?


So, I have been reading through some old stories I wrote. I always love my stories years after I right them. So, I thought I would start sharing some.

Hope you all enjoy. The first of many.