'So, we finally meet, do we?'
'Yes, we do.'
'You know, I've admired you quite a bit, but now that your here in front of me, I feel as though the word admire doesn't quite fit. No, it would be more fitting to say I love you, like a brother, like the brother of mankind, like him.'
'Oh, but you shouldn't say that.'
'No, I shouldn't, and of course you would say that... But still, you also won't say that you're flattered, even though you most certainly are; you must be.'
'… I'm ashamed to say so but... I am...'
'Ha-Ha! He's even ashamed to be flattered! Truly beautiful! You are such a beautiful man... But, that’s not the point, and it only makes this confrontation harder. Why, it’s as if I’m the devil, the enemy of mankind. And knowing that… Well, how can I continue? I must truly be evil, wouldn’t you agree?’
‘But surely you jest? And what’s worse is you… …’
‘I what? Well, go on. You can’t stop now Edward.’
‘Well… I was going to say that you know that you’re doing it. You know that your jesting… Please forgive me, it’s only… I knew you’d feel ashamed for doing so, and even still I…’
‘Brought it up? But that is you to a tee; you cannot help but speak without thought. That’s what makes you beautiful. Well, no, that’s not quite right… In fact… now that I think about it, why is that even a good thing?’
‘Probably because it makes me seem simple, which in turn makes me seem innocent and consequently beautiful.’
‘Ha-ha! Exactly right! Bravo Edward! You’re no simpleton. You put that quite elegantly! But still… we’re getting away from the topic again. But it’s so hard to talk to you seriously; to confront you as an adversary. Seeing your simple and innocent face, one just wants to hug you. Like a baby. You’re like a child, a baby; it’s the same affect. One feels great joy seeing the innocence and beauty of a child. All that potential!’
“Johnathan, you should stop this…’
‘… … My name is John… Call me John…’
‘Sorry. John. I just meant to say that we should stop this’
‘You mean I should stop. Don’t patronize me Edward.’
‘I’m sorry, yes, you should stop this swaggering and we should get down to business… Which by the way, what is your business?’
‘You mean I should get down to business… But why must I have any business? Because I said I did? … Oh, but you would fall for that Edward, you really would, ha-ha-ha! … But relax Edward, I really just wanted to meet with you, to talk, man to man, to share ideas, see what you were like. I’ve heard so many interesting things about you. Like how you haven’t been able to finish a single piece of work in your class, and that once the teacher asked you to read one of your pieces aloud and you started out so meek, but getting further into your idea you became so fervent you simply lost yourself. Ha-ha-ha! Is that true? Did you truly turn beet red after you finished and realized what you had done?’
‘Yes, I did. I don’t know what came over me, but all of the sudden I imagined, well, imagine that all the sudden I thought that what I was saying… but no, that’s not quite right… It was more like… I had changed into someone else… Though, honestly… it was more like I had become no one. Yes, that would be the best way to explain it; I became so immersed in my words and the page that… Well, no… because I was still conscious of everyone around me, though I was fully focused on the page… Hmm, it seems that I really can’t explain it.’
‘Hmm, I couldn’t make heads or tails of that. But why are you so afraid of expressing your opinion anyway Edward? After all, it’s merely your opinion. Do you put so much weight on your words?’
‘But I can’t believe you are asking me this!? … …’
‘I apologize… But, yes… My words, my opinions… they really do weigh heavy on me…’
‘But why Edward? Why should someone as brilliant and as beautiful as you be afraid to share the hidden gold he has in his heart, soul and mind? Why should you of all people be so meek? Why if I had your love and innocence… The things that I wouldn’t do. But because I am depraved, I can’t even imagine correctly. Simply put, I just don’t know what it’s like to be you.’
‘You are more like me than you know John… If only you’d embrace it!’
‘Hm… It seems your about to get into your fervor again.’
‘But it’s true! If you could only admit it! … Oh, there I go again… I’m so sorry!’
‘Don’t apologize… You’re a strange one… But seriously, tell me why you don’t like to express your opinion? Even just now you failed to say what you wanted to say.’
‘… It’s because I’m afraid to influence anything…’
‘I’m afraid because I don’t know how I’ll affect things… Even now, I’d rather not speak at all… And I’m afraid I’ve already said too much!’
‘Ha-ha, you sound as if you should take a vow of silence. And perhaps you should. But really, how much bad could someone as insignificant as you do?’
‘But you don’t really mean that! You know you don’t! … But to answer your question John, I just don’t know what gives me the right to speak on anything… What do I actually know?’
‘Why, I can’t believe this! Is that really why? It can’t be! But oh Edward! What the hell do any of us know?! … … But interestingly, I know just what you mean. It’s something only a writer understands, only a creative one… Our work, so psychological, philosophical, and you’re right, how can we dare to utter a word on such complicated things? The very things themselves?! Many of us haven’t the slightest clue what life actually is, what it means, not literally of course but empirically; we lack even experience, let alone knowledge, truth and fact. How many times have I said to myself before publishing a paper, what do I actually know about this, and looking it over and having the sinking feeling that its all garbage, trash, the style, the prose, but mostly the topic; for what on Earth do I know about it?! I’m certainly no expert. How can I be an expert on so many different things? … No, I long to be an expert in psychology, the human mind, but even here I’m afraid I’m severely lacking. What do I know of anything? Why, I’m afraid that everyone will see through me for what I really am! Just a pretentious idiot!’
‘Oh, but John! You are not an idiot! You are not that at all! You are terribly smart, in just realizing what you just did, you’ve opened the door to so many possibilities! You just have to stick with it!’
‘… … Oh, enough of this folly! I can see I was a fool to come here! … To think I could gather anything of importance from… an idiot!’
‘But Edward, give me your hand; let me kiss your cheek. I am terribly sorry. My head is in a terrible whirl; I must go; I must… …’
‘… Poor man, the wound in his heart is festering with arrogance and hatred… The poor man…’