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Henrik-László Kabai participates in the “Short Prose” Section of the English Category, International Literary Creation Contest, 3rd Edition, from Nușfalău, Sălaj County, Romania and is 19 years old. He is guided by Prof. Diana Ileș at National College “Simion Bărnuţiu” Șimleu Silvaniei. We thank him for this participation and wish him success.
Noli nimis alte volare! (Don’t try to fly too high!) Kabai Henrik The weather was no longer fine: the sky was clouding over. Soon it would rain. It was the first day of our spring break and I was going to meet Z. He was such a good person and talkative enough: I had never been bothered by the way he described his situations, views. I had nothing to say as long as he had a good topic. However, it had been a while since we last met. I was excited, but also nervous that evening. I wondered if I should put unmatched or normal socks on: if I should be myself or an ordinary guy. Eventually, I decided not to leave the real me on the shelf and waited for his call. It was already 7 PM. I gazed long at the sky whilst I was rocking back and forth in my chair with my hands lying in my lap like two fallen moths: the churning clouds had an iron-dark beauty. I even downloaded Facebook Messenger on my phone because it was not installed for a long time. I thought it was going to be a bright, special evening: my device was not on mute anymore because someone made me step outside my comfort zone. Though I made this significant progress, I was still skeptical about the Internet. Every single time I looked at kids around me, like, their profiles, stories or their posts, I realized they were all simply fucked up, too. They all just had a reason to hide it, whether it was their relatives, relationships, or their hashtag activism. And they were just reaching for something to make it all seem meaningful. But sometimes I just sat and thought, like, what was the point of all of those pretenses? For me, that was the creepiest fact about the Internet: some people might feel like the whole world. I hated myself, too. But the problem with hating myself was I could not really talk about it. Because at some point recently, the whole world joined a self-help and -love cult and would not shut the fuck up about it. Honestly, this difficulty was always on the tip of my tongue. I only stopped myself from saying it telling myself it was not the right time or something dumb. 8 PM. He had not texted me. I sighed and started taking off my shirt which was specially ironed for this event. I even shed a tear, but it was something I had already got used to. It was not the first time I felt disappointed in others. For the first time it used to cut like a sheet of paper. It hurt so bad then that I gnashed my teeth due to the pain. But that day I felt like this shit just rolled off my back. Like it was only another paper or page from a novel: from The Lord of the Rings, for example. I could run my hand over those things which had happened to me, but they could not cut me anymore. I was way too naive, my skin was so pale and sensitive that I had to laugh about it then. I stayed home that evening in the arms of the person I actually loved: the only one I had not screwed up. Well, he was so hard to please, but he was also a forest fire. I did my best to meet his demands, we even slow danced in the living room! However, all that a stranger would have seen was one boy swaying alone, swallowing the tears crowding his throat.