Flumes Vol. 5: Issue 1, Summer 2020 - Page 102

DISLIKE

By Zeynep Canbolat

The sneer on the woman's face as Parker walked past was like a knife, twisting into their gut. The way that woman turned to her friend, said under her breath, "Is this what the world has come to?" That hurt. Every sideways glance, quiet whisper, derogatory word slung carelessly through the air felt to Parker like another blade entering their skin, digging deep, leaving a wound that bled for hours if not days. But the important thing about wounds was that they scarred. They never really left, and sometimes if you moved a certain way the pain ripped through you again, just as sharp and enduring as when they were still raw, still fresh. But after a while, a scab formed that made it a bit easier. And a while after that, there was no more wound. Just a scar. And even scars, given enough time, would start to fade. Parker was wounded a lot, by those glances and whispers and slurs thrown their way. But they fought for the life they lead, fought for the identity they held dear. And they wore the scars they earned along the way like badges of honor, because that's exactly what they were. People could glance and whisper and cry and complain all they wanted, but it wouldn't change a thing. Parker was never going to stop being who they were. Given enough time, scars would fade, and opinions would change. And until then, those people could dislike Parker all they wanted. Given enough time, those people would fade, too.

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