Strength in Truth

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic
A short story about two best friends and the facades they created.

Submitted: May 23, 2012

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Submitted: May 23, 2012

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No one knew Annabelle. She was scared, alone, broken. She’d struggled, and cried. She solved everyone else’s problems. She ignored her own. She put on a façade every day. She was loud, hyper, outrageous. She never stopped talking or moving. She opened her heart to everyone around her and she forced a fantasy world on her friends every day. Nothing was out of their reach; no task was too ridiculous; no plan was unachievable. She hid behind a flurry of confidence and extremism.

No one knew Genna. She was hidden, unnoticed, shattered. She’d stayed out of the spotlight and in the books. She solved everyone else’s problems. She ignored her own. She put on a façade every day. She was quiet, courteous, studious. She aced all of her classes and stayed out of trouble. She opened her heart to everyone around her and she forced her friends to stay grounded and in reality. Everything could be reached practically; tasks could be formed rationally; plans could be achieved within reason. She hid behind a wall of logic and practicality.

Everyone knew “Gennabelle.” They were fearless, joyful, well-known. They’d laughed, and smiled. They transcended problems. Everyone loved them. They were a façade. They were open, comforting, playful. They were always there for their friends. They played the crowd like a piano. Each movement struck a key; each note strung together a melody; each melody combined their lives into a symphony of deception. They hid behind a poster board of popularity and fun.

As the clichés would have it, on the fateful day that Gennabelle died, their worlds stood still. It was a terrible fight. The disagreement has long since been wiped from the memories of all who witnessed it, although the ending scene is engrained into their minds: a screaming match, characterized by red faces and terrible tears. In the end, their notebook was left on the ground as rain came pouring down, smudging the writing, softening the pages. Gennabelle would never be rekindled. It was gone, broken beyond repair, the lie torn in half.

The notebook, in its watery grave, was their truth. It was unfinished and developed, tattered and colorful, torn and rebuilt. It had stood, for three long high school years, as the foundation of their friendship. The little amount of writing that covered the pages was not deep or insightful. The true reading was written between the lines, in the stumbled words, and the self-questioning tones. It was the diary of a friendship. Ask a question; receive an answer.

That was why Genna and Annabelle, separated from “Gennabelle” and released from the facades of their daily lives, were not strangers. Genna knew Annabelle’s weakness for Gerard Way, and her desires to relax in the unfamiliar waters of a calm and patient lifestyle. Genna knew Annabelle’s struggles with stage fright and her hope for a life of her own doing, away from the pressures of her parents. Genna knew Annabelle’s unfortunate love-life, her heartbreaks, her losses. Annabelle knew Genna’s preference for nerds and her inability to talk to others about her own life. Annabelle knew Genna’s struggles with death and her dreams of one day being under the spotlight, despite all of the difficulties of being a stage actress. Annabelle knew Genna’s biggest fears, her frustrations, her regrets.

What no one knew about Annabelle and Genna was how similar they really were. Their lives of hiding behind one another had bred a pair of best friends whose relationship had been tested by more than just their differences. Their similarities had forced them apart as often as they had linked them together. They stood together, resolute and unyielding. No one knew Annabelle, except Genna. No one knew Genna, except Annabelle. They bore the same scars. They suffered the same strife. They comforted the same friends.

Annabelle and Genna never wavered. Weeks of recovery and one dry-eyed reunion later, and the two were linked once more, arm in arm. Gennabelle died, as do all facades given enough time. But Genna and Annabelle never gave up on one another. It was a friendship that tested the boundaries of Genna’s logic and stretched the limits of Annabelle’s imagination. Truth proved stronger than any lie.


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