This my linkalicious (and late) February entry for the assignment from Wordsmith Kingfisher. Never heard of Wordsmiths? It's great fun, and you should play along! ================================ “What's the matter, Billy?" I asked my roommate, sliding another beer in front of him. The dark and slightly smoky bar was mostly deserted, except for a few regulars. He was obviously upset, and becoming a little drunk.
“My life sucks. I want to help people, and I have some real gifts. This world needs me, but nobody wants me around.” His shoulders shook a little as he heaved a sigh.
I did my best to cheer him up. “Aw, c’mon. Everybody loves you. Why do you think they call you ‘Smiles?’ Now listen, that thing you did at the gravel pit? That was amazing.” I reminded him of the time he rescued the little girl that had drifted out to the middle of the lake in a tiny raft. Now, this may strike you as odd, but… Billy Evans can fly. He can’t do anything while flying, because it takes all of his focus, but he can go places in a hurry. Since there was a big crowd for a July 4th party, and he’s got a bit of a messiah complex, he decided to walk out to her. The showoff. I could tell he was faking because his feet weren’t really touching the water most of the time. But the crowd went wild with cheers and applause, even before he got halfway there. He reached the raft and almost tripped over it, breaking his concentration. He sank into the water, grabbed the raft, and swam back with the girl in tow.
He groaned. “Yeah, that was cool. But afterward they all turned on me. I was lucky to get out of there alive.” He was right about that. He was mobbed upon his return to shore, and the crowd pressed in on him all night asking what other special powers he had. He tried to blow them off, but they wanted to be healed and levitated and dazzled with magic tricks. He finally relented. Touching his temples and closing his eyes, he began to glow a little. After a very brief moment, nothing happened. “There,” he said. Everyone looked at each other and shrugged. Then someone took a swig of beer. It had turned to water. He miraculously converted all the alcohol in the park into water. His ability to fly came in very handy that night.
I tried again. “Look, all heroes have their problems, but they don’t whine about it. Peter Par… I mean, Clark Ke… Take Bruce Way… Ok, they all whine. But everyone still wants them around when there’s trouble.”
“They think I singlehandedly put Blatz out of business. I’m banned from Wisconsin for life. Nobody invites me to parties. I don’t have health insurance or a girlfriend. I’m a total loser!” he sobbed.
I had to admit I was running out of bright sides to show him. “Hey, at least you’re unique. No other superhero has a burlap costume. Now fly away home and pick up some beer on the way, would ya?”