Letter of Testimony, Exhibit A: Your honor, this is my truthful account of what happened on the day in question. You may choose to believe the version of events being spread by gossip and rumor—that I was a battered wife … Continue reading
I wish everyone would choose love and kindness and a genuine desire to understand differences and extend compassion over divides instead of hatred, outrage, or violence. However, I also believe… Continue reading
At first glance, you might think my sister is cold. She isn’t. No one who has truly mastered fire is. Behind her compulsory composure is an immense capacity for love. It’s not the ebullient love of a puppy or doting … Continue reading
I wish I had my sister’s magic. She’s already wielding flames like an Alpha, and this is only her first semester at The University. As twins, we couldn’t be more different. Sometimes I imagine we’re really a whole that was cut into halves, because aside from body parts, everything she has I lack—and vice versa.
It’s her calm mind and temperate emotions that allow her to master fire so effortlessly. She is not easily distracted or provoked. She’s unreachable when she’s focused. I, on the other hand, I contain a tempest. The slighted thing spurs me on. My moods are a maelstrom, and they bring everyone and everything around them down—down to the depths of my turbulent conscious.
My sister once told me that she’s jealous of me. I didn’t believe her until I saw the fatigue behind the focus in her eyes. I had always wanted to be like her so that I could have fire. There is so much I want to burn down. I was surprised to discover that she wants to be like me. My powers are so rudimentary. Seeing the surprise and incredulity written all over my face, she pointed out that I have freedoms she can never enjoy. I can rage and cry and fight and laugh uncontrollably. Alpha Incendiaries can’t do any of that. They are never allowed to be weapons—only vehicles or vessels.
Just the other day we were walking towards campus when a racist, upon seeing us, hurled some explicit words as well as his coffee cup in our direction. Both the contents of his statements and his cup were hot—hot enough to burn. I felt my skin and then my temper boil.
My sister could have set him ablaze with no more than a glance. She could have manipulated his mind so that he would think himself on fire. That’s what I would have done with her power. I would have sentenced him to seeing consuming flames whenever he uttered words full of hate. But that’s not how my sister operates. She just took a slightly deeper breath in and kept the pace at which she was walking while we healed. That is the serenity of my sister. She lives like a lake that can only be mildly disturbed—no matter what you throw at her. I, however, wasn’t feeling so generous towards the bigot, so I made him mute for a month.
I find it quite satisfying using mortals’ maladies against them. Speak out of turn, whether it be a racist rant or sexually explicit language, and I can take your voice with chronic laryngitis. Touch me or someone I care about inappropriately, and I’ll give you the flu—preferably the day after you get the vaccine shot. If you’re unkind towards a child, you’ll get a dose of pink eye. Greed will get you allergies. Infidelity an STD. Ulcers and kidney stones go hand in hand with abuse of any variety. And I love using diarrhea for unchecked vanity.
I try to abstain from the degenerative and the deadly—but not because humans aren’t deserving; they are—and more. The world is full of people who are teeming with hate and unbridled cruelty. I could afflict them all. I don’t simply because such manipulations would lead to severe consequences with The Faculty. My sister doesn’t have to worry about such things. As someone on the Alpha track, she can quite literally do no wrong. And once she self-actualizes, she’ll be living above the law.
I recently rediscovered one of my mother’s DayMinder appointment books. It’s from 1998. Back then the Twin Towers still had three years left. We were watching Seventh Heaven, ER, and Friends. I was a sophomore in college—my brother and sister … Continue reading
I spend a lot of my life straddling a dichotomy. I am simultaneously assured of my greatness and afraid of my mediocrity. I am at once full of despair and hope for our world and our country. I am both … Continue reading
“Why does my heart feel so bad? Why does my soul feel so bad?” ~ Moby I haven’t slept through the night since the eve of the election. I have seen three a.m. and then dawn come and go just … Continue reading
If you are incapable of expressing anger, then your emotional repertoire is incomplete. Every emotion has a place and both healthy and unhealthy modes of expression. Love can be contorted into lust or lead to infatuation or codependence. Anger can … Continue reading
I’ve never seen my father loose his temper. I’ve never heard him raise his voice or witnessed his silent anger. Not once. Not ever. And while my mother was a more passionate presence in my life, I’ve never seen my parents … Continue reading
Just as some are in love with the idea of love but are unwilling to do the work of cultivating it, some enjoy being furious just for the fun of it. Their ire has no focused direction. They are ready … Continue reading