I was like a ghost or something less significant. People were not able to walk through me but they certainly couldn’t see me. They didn’t acknowledge my presence and even if I shouted loud and clear, they wouldn’t even turn to look at me with disgust. Nothing. All my fears have come to pass although, to be honest, this hadn’t been different from the actual truth. Daily, I felt ignored. Maybe that was it…
Late one night, tired of being overlooked by everyone and for everything, I decided to wish for a life of being absolutely invisible. I had no urge to become suddenly popular because that had never been true and I would feel just out of place if that had happened. I would have known, very fast, that people were lying or at least trying to deceit me to get something from me or to mock me. No, no popularity for me.
I wished to be invisible, in order to feel actually free from everything that had to do with people. But clearly, I had made a mistake or hadn’t been clear enough about my desires. I just wanted to be able to ignore people, to not feel bad if they looked at me funny or if they said hurtful things. But I believe the word invisible may have been a little too literal. Now, I was a half-ghost or maybe just transparent.
Somehow, I woke up at school like that and it was very effective as no one looked at me, not for talking nor looking. They just couldn’t see me. The sun outside those buildings, that seemed like the ones from a psychiatric hospital, was shining very bright but it felt cold or at least I didn’t feel any warmth or comfort if I got any close to the windows. I made a couple of people trip and fall, which was funny, but by the fifth time, it had lost all its interest.
I went down to the cafeteria were I stole some food and ate it but it was simply disgusting. Food, in this state, had no flavor whatsoever. It seemed like chewing cardboard or plain paper. When I got sick of it, I spent most of lunchtime hearing other people conversations. That was fun because; as they had no idea I was there, they would say anything and I found out about some big secrets about people.
But thinking of it, most of them were obvious secrets. They were only teenagers at the end of the day; they had nothing of real interest to hide. They hadn’t stole anything significant, although some had taken iPods and cellphones from their fellow student’s backpacks. They hadn’t had any crazy relationships either. They were really dull to be honest. Yes, some girls were not virgins any more but that I could have known without my transparence.
In order to have some fun, I went down to the school’s coliseum and saw several of the guys I really liked play football. But that got too old very fast, as I had no idea what there were doing all the time. I was almost asleep when they all entered the showers. That was the moment I was waiting for so I went behind them and saw them got naked which was the first nice and fun aspect of being practically invisible.
I could see a lot of behind and penises and their wet bodies as they went out the showers. I loved it to be honest. But it was kind of a disappointing to know that, except a couple, all the rest really look like kids still. No body hair, no big anything anywhere, not even a stubble. I don’t know why I had thought of those though “sports guys” as men when they were clearly not men still. Some of them were really cute but that was it. Besides, like I had a chance with any of them!
I decided to leave the school and walk home. That would be fun or at least it would be distracting. I had no idea how much time the wish would last so it seemed like a good idea to explore all the possibilities before the effect of the magic was worn out. My house wasn’t too close, nor too far so a good walk was perfect at that moment. As I started to walk I felt, for the first time, I cold rush through my spine. It felt as if icy cold-water travel all the length of my body and it didn’t feel good.
The best thing to do was to step up the pace and get going. On the sidewalks, as on the school, no one looked at me. I thought they had at various moments but it was because too many people were around me and it was obvious they all couldn’t be seen the same things around. Some people look down as they walked and others looked up, as if checking the rooftops of the nearby buildings.
Again, I stole things from various stores I crossed along the way: a necklace for mom, a ring for my sister, a videogame for my brother and a nice vest for my father. I held this in various bags and, although it looked as if the bags were floating, no one seamed interested in them nor, again, in me. Maybe, I thought, the spell hadn’t been put on me but rather on everyone else. Maybe it was about them not been able to see me and not me having gone invisible or transparent.
Any which way, it didn’t mattered. I just hoped, for the first time during the day that it wore off rapidly. I didn’t want this anymore. I’d rather be insulted or mocked that altogether ignored. Besides, watching all of those kids and hearing what they had to say when they were with “friends”, I realized they were all just children, all equally scared to death of everyone else. That’s why they say so many mean things. I won’t say they are not to blame but now I can say I understand them.
When I got home, I left all the gifts on the living room sofa and screamed my family member’s names but, apparently, they were not there. That was very strange as my mother rarely left the house and my brother had to be there from school already. I turned on the TV and watched some cooking show for the mean time but eventually I felt asleep. The day had left me tired and a bit dizzy.
I woke up to the sound of people cheering and laughing. My family was all reunited, sitting by the table, having what looked like a really nice dinner. They were all so happy, smiling and telling joked and anecdotes about their days. I noticed they couldn’t see me either because I said their names but none responded. I got closer and realized something was off: we normally had a big table, with six spots on it. But this one was round, not rectangular, and was only four seats. Mine was missing.
I also realized that the gifts I had brought were nowhere to be seen. They seemed to have vanished during my nap. They kept on talking and I got desperate. I shook them and yelled and scream and threw plates and other things to the floor. But hey remained the same: just happy, having dinner. Maybe… maybe that was it.
Checking my theory, I walked down the only aisle and I noticed my room was missing. Nothing was there; the change was that the remaining rooms were larger. It was as if I had never existed and that was what I was afraid of. What if I wasn’t transparent or invisible? That it wasn’t that people couldn’t see me or just plainly ignored me. What if I had just never been born?
Maybe that was the way the wish had been misunderstood. I wanted to be invisible to everyone else and what best way to be invisible that to have never been visible, ever? This was too shocking for me and then, again, the icy feeling ran through my body but this time it felt so much stronger. So much that I collapsed on the floor, unable to stand or to keep moving. Besides, I didn’t want to keep moving. I was too hurt.
I closed my eyes but I didn’t sleep. It was like closing your eyes to encounter a foul dark world behind them, were I kept falling through holes and rings and colors surrounded me everywhere. My mind felt like exploding and my body was still numb. I was only a witness of it all, not capable to do anything to stop myself from falling.
That was until I opened my eyes again and realized I had been in my bed all the time. I felt my body and the bed sheets and my pillow, impregnated with my smell. It was real. I was real. I was somebody and no one could ever take that away from me.