Something Essential

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
just a quick short story i wrote one night.

Submitted: January 22, 2017

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Submitted: January 22, 2017



The room was dark. No lights within it were being used. The only source came from the television, which stood as the centerpiece of the room. The people in the room sat completely still and silent, enveloped in the centerpiece’s content. The silence had set in three minutes ago, when a reporter began her thoroughly-written, yet poorly executed, piece on a man by the name of  Martin Hagel, age 23. Martin had done what all depressed men tend to do (or did) when they have been subjected to said torture for far too long and with far too little aid. Martin blew his fucking head off.

I find it funny that people will often describe suicide as a selfish act. They get all worked up about how the person didn’t care about his/her loved ones, yada yada. Not coincidentally, I find irony funny as well. 

So there they sat, all five of them, sitting and listening and thinking. They were surprised, but how could they not be? After all, this had been the first suicide in centuries.

Out of the five, only one was truly moved by this sudden news, although all were silent and seemed to be pondering over the unprecedented occurrence. David Robins, age 22. He, alike all others, had the chip buried deep within the back of his neck. It had been there ever since he could remember and was a part of him.'* He was now trying to understand the thought process of this Martin Hagel, having removed such a vital organ from his body. Furthermore, Martin had killed himself, an act that David had only read about in books from The Age Before;'* ones that were hard to find and always boring to read. Ones that spoke of many things people thought and did long ago. He didn’t see them as boring, but any positive expression he had towards the writings were perceived as so, and thus he never talked about them. 

*In fact, the chip was defined as an organ in every science textbook since its implementation. It was known scientifically as the essential. 

*The period of time before the implementation of the essential.

David had lived a happy life thus far. He had to live a happy life. He loved his morning workout; his slightly-hotter-than-your-average-shower shower, where he would spend time thinking; his breakfast of three eggs topped with cooked spinach and fried salami over two pieces of slightly burned toast, and then followed by, what he liked to call, the addict's breakfast*; and, of course, his let’s-try-to-be-happy life where he was indeed happy. They were all happy, as it was essential. Martin had been the first to live and not be.

* This comprised of a Marlboro cigarette with an excessively large cup of coffee, brewed deliberately in ignorance to the recommended prescription of grounds that was presented on the rump of the bag.


That must’ve been quite the fuckin mess. Shootin his head off with a high-caliber revolver. Why would he remove his essential? I mean, I get it I guess...


For the first time in his life, David had empathized with a man who had removed his essential. There have been a few cases of people removing the organ, but the criminals were always caught and their actions hidden from the general population. Martin was the only person to go public with his fuckery-of-the-essential. This was only due to the fact that he committed suicide in a park.


The thing can make you mental, occasionally. I mean, I’ve never understood it completely. I’m not dumb, but, objectively speaking, what is happiness? What does it mean to be truly unhappy? I wouldn’t know, I suppose, or I wouldn’t be here right now, doing this weird intermonologueing thing that I know isn’t really that weird because I think everyone kinda does it but maybe not this bad since I can’t stop doing it all the time and always asking questions and observing minute things and more rambling and pondering until my thoughts are almost incoherent to myself which seems kinda impossible now that I think about it considering you’d have to kinda trick your brain  a little although I’ve heard people tricking their brain in order to achieve certain goals but I don’t believe I can do that myself considering once I said I was going to trick my brain I would know I was doing so thus not tricking myself at all. Like playing chess alone.

I also suppose it is odd that I am here among friends yet feel empirically and perpetually isolated. It probably has to do with the fact that everyone in this world is out to gratify their own wants and needs and desires. Every story they tell is either to brag or soak in all the attention they can attract. Every opinion they have is not of their own, and only exists to emulate those with actual opinions in a pitiful effort to convince others and themselves that they, too, have opinions. Of course, everyone needs this attention and satisfaction in knowing everyone around them thinks of them highly. They need to know their abilities are appreciated by others, but never by themselves. They can only be convinced once the others are convinced. All this in the everlasting struggle to find happiness. 


This is the furthest David had gone the last time he decided to analyse his friends and others to such an extent. He always tried to think positively about people. The back of his neck grew a bit sore.


It’s so superficial. The happiness I mean. Making sure to always be happy, even when despair is in view. It is like the aforementioned chess game. 

And they complain about being offended and about needing this or that or how someone is to blame for their misfortunes or how someone needs to give them something, while failing to give a valid reason behind such reasoning. It’s all “ME ME ME ME ME”! What is this, the fucking opera? People need to grow up and stop acting like the world revolves around them and that their needs are more important than those around them. They need to stop acting like no one else on the planet has a life; a long history that, when brought together as a collective, makes more coherent sense than a quick observation of a single slice in their timeline. Regretfully though, I am well aware that this sort of understanding is folly to the world.

People want to be happy. They need to be happy. I certainly recognize this fundamental necessity for life. Our body demands it. But why must we be restrained to only finding happiness in the self? Why do we always have to be so internally cynical? Who decided that this was the best way to live our lives, and who decided that the man who made the previously stated decision had been objectively correct, or even capable of making such a decision in the first place?


Martin Hagel had apparently knocked a screw loose in David’s psyche. He knew he shouldn’t get so frustrated, so pessimistically analytical of the world. His body wouldn’t allow it, after all. And even if it could, the expected outcome would not be unalike...

I don’t blame the poor fool. I mean, I blame him for fucking with his essential, which I’m sure had a lot to do with it, but I can’t blame him for feeling that way. I can’t blame him for blowing off his damn head either, in that respect. For too long, people have searched for happiness by caring primarily about themselves over others and requiring more than is truly needed. I also can’t blame people for that either, though. We have all seen the greener meadow. We all want more because we have seen it and we know it is achievable. But, is it worth it? Is it necessary? They say it always looks greener for a reason. However, I can not sympathise with those who search for greener meadows with a scorch earth policy. 


At this time, the television program had concluded. For the next few minutes there would be a moment of silence on this specific station. No one moved.


And I see these arsonists for who they are: slaves to cynicism and fear, specifically the fear of losing something essential. Frankly, it’s fucking stupid. Ok, I’ve said it. Fuck the chip fuck the people fuck the mindset fuck the cynicism fuck the...


And finally, the room fell completely silent.

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