(As Shakespeare has rightly said, "Don't judge a book by it's cover", I request you to read the entire piece)
I sit at my desk with my head in my hands. Because every time I look at my blank computer screen, the blinking cursor gives me a mini panic attack. With every blink passes every second and I have like what, 8 hours before going up on the stage?
"Is it done?", asks Stefan, coming out of nowhere. "Not everybody has superpowers, Mr. Superman," I snap at him. "Umm, it's Superhuman actually", he laid his words carefully. "Whatever, I don't care. Consider it as your nickname", I snap again. That's my most favourite pastime recently.
" Okay, Ass," I glower at him as these words utter out of his mouth. But he stands with his stupid smile, acting like nothing happened. "What?", he says with a frown on his face and continues, " Superman for Superhuman and Ass for Assher", he says with his twinkling eyes, as if he had discovered water on Mars.
"I think Superhuman sounds perfectly fine", I say, calming myself down and continuing, "Now will you tell me how you would help me clear up YOUR mess?", I say, banging my fist as I say the word YOUR.
"Ah, for that, I have something", he says, raising a ray of hope inside me. He picks out a page from his weird maroon bag which might have been cool in the 90s but definitely isn't now. He hands the page to me with a smirk on his face and puts his hands in his pockets, giving an unbeatable look.
I look at the page. It's the speech. The one which I was trying to write. "You really think writing the speech was the problem?" I say, to which he replies, "I don't know," eyeing to my blank computer screen. I ignore his mockery and start pacing around, not able to explain what the problem was.
"Are you insecure?" He asks, raising his eyebrows. "No, it's just that I have stage fear," I say, my eyes not able to meet his. "Isn't that the same thing?" He says, trying to maintain contact with my eyes. I turn around and say, "If you're so confident, why don't you go and give the speech yourself. Anyways, it was you who helped everyone."
He turns me around and dramatically says, "Real heroes don't wear capes." and continues, "I don't want any medal or trophy for what I did. Plus if anyone knows about my superpowers, the next thing they do is forget everything that I did and start exploring me."
He's right. He couldn't be put in limelight. How did I become a part of this mess? There's no way of going back. How I wish he wouldn't have saved me in the first place. Okay, wait. No. Maybe I wouldn't have even been alive, if it wasn't for him.
He snaps his finger to bring me back to reality. "I really think you should get this done ASAP", he says, coolly moving his hands as he speaks ASAP, probably to show me how he is trying to become one with the modern world.
I look at the page in my hand and sigh. “Also, if in case you have forgotten, you have to meet the police commissioner to discuss your speech at 7 in the morning”, he says looking at his watch and continues, “ and, you definitely don’t want that groggy face for your big day.”
He starts picking up his things and walks towards the door. But turns towards me before leaving and says, “You’ll do just fine, Ass.” “When will you stop copying me?” I say as I pick up the yellow cushion on my couch and throw it at him. And obviously, it doesn’t hit him. Perks of being a superhuman.
But this mere line that he said, it reminds me about a lot of things of the day we met. How he saved me and how things changed completely after that day.
I was barely alive as I put flowers to my mother’s grave. I didn’t have a reason to live anymore. Everything was over. I had no one except her, who could understand me and my problems.
But she was gone….forever. I didn’t have any motive to live for. I kept on walking under the dark rainy clouds, who were just on the verge of breaking down like me. I wasn’t aware where I was going or what I was doing. I just kept on walking.
Suddenly, I was pulled inside a black van by four strong hands and a duct tape was quickly stuck to my mouth. The clever one also suggested blindfolding me. Now, I could do nothing but moan for help and when I knew that was not reaping any benefits, I stopped doing that too.
They took me to a weird place, barely having any light source. But enough light for me to see 20 of other girls like me, almost beaten to death. I gasped as soon as I realized what was going to happen.
My mind stopped thinking. I started running towards a random direction. “Stop, or I’ll shoot you!” the clever kidnapper shouted. I turned for a second to see if he really had a gun. He did.
But as I said, my mind wasn’t working. So I kept on running. I not only did hear him trigger his gun but also the bullet which he shooted. But the bullet didn’t pass through me. I turned around to see a guy with the bullet held in his fist.
In the next couple of minutes, the girls were freed and the kidnappers were tied up instead. I wasn’t sure about what was happening until I saw him make everyone forget what had happened and started making them believe that I was the one who helped them. He had SUPERPOWERS!
“The police are on their way. Just tell them that you were the one who helped them", he said hastily and was just about to leave. But I stopped him and asked,"Why didn't you make me forget, like everyone else?" I asked out of curiosity. "I need your help", he said in a serious tone and continued,"You would have already figured out that I'm a Superhuman. I'm here to save people, but I cannot be in the limelight. I want to keep helping and need someone to take my credit. And if you're gonna do this, I don't really need to hide anything from you."
"And what if I deny?", I asked him, because that was exactly what I was going to do. "You won't. You're Ava's daughter. She loved helping people, didn't she?" He said and it was enough for me to agree to him.
As soon as the police sirens were heard, he rushed through the door and vanished. Perks of being a Superhuman.
I did just as he said and obviously I felt guilty, taking all his credit. As soon as the police were gone, I turned around and saw him there, smiling at me.
"I really wish my powers can prove to be as worthy as your humanity", he said dramatically. "You'll do just fine, Superman," I mocked.
"Stefan",he said putting his hand out for a handshake."I think Superman sounds perfectly fine", I said as I ignored his handshake and started moving.
It is 6:55 a.m in the morning and I have no control over my heart rate. But I am not nervous for the speech. I am nervous about what would be Stefan's reaction when he gets to know what I was about to do.
The commissioner comes right at 7 and I introduce Stefan as my manager so that he can come in with me inside his office. "I'll just quickly take a look at your speech and then we're good to go", he says with a relaxed face. I hand over him a page. And no, it's not the same page that Stefan had given me. In fact, it is blank.
The commissioner gives me a 'confused combined by furious' look. And then, I finally reveal, "I don't want any medal or trophy for what I did," I say and I can feel the smirk on Stefan's face without even looking at him. "Real heroes don't wear capes," I say and walk out.
"When will you stop copying me", Stefan mimics me with the exact same tone as he follows me behind. I only roll my eyes as a reply.
I stop in my tracks and say,"I think we're doing just fine, Superman."
"I know right, Ass", he says to piss me back. "Actually I was wondering if we could open a firm together. My powers and your humanity," he says with his same old dramatic tone.
"And name it what, SuperAss?" I say, we both don't speak a word for a minute and then burst out into pits of laughter.