Author's Note: I wasn’t originally going to make a sequel to this story but then I realized the prompts were flexible! So it all just kinda worked! Thanks for reading!
I couldn’t take all the guilt. I had lied to the whole world. People thought I was a hero when I was only a watcher. I needed to come clean to the public. I had become famous throughout the country for something I didn’t do. I was having trouble falling asleep at night and I was having terrible anxiety that someone would figure out who I really was. I was Nate Harrington after all, I didn’t lie.
I was going down to the studio where they were going to interview me. I have been on television almost every night now. I had moved out of my crappy house and into almost a mansion. People found out that I was living in a crumbling house in a terrible neighborhood and they decided to donate money to me. Soon it started piling up, and I became rich.
My plan was to give it all back once I came clean. I wasn’t going to keep a big secret like this forever. I wore my fanciest shirt with some sleek black pants. I put on my navy tie and hopped in my car.
I pulled out of my driveway and headed for the studio. Once I got there I got pulled in abruptly. “You're late!” My manager yelled at me.
“I’m here though,” I said impatiently. I walked into the building and did as the people instructed me to. The makeup people came over and applied a light coat of blush over my cheeks. They fixed my curly hair out of my eyes and I sat up straighter.
We were on the air in no time and the host started. “Hi, America! I’m Tim Nickelson and you're watching “We Are The Talkshow’. Or just call us W.A.T.T. Today I’m here with a special guest, Nate Harrington. Now Nate told my crew that he has something special to discuss with us. Now spill your guts,” He let out a chuckle.
“Yes, Tim! That’s correct. I have some very deep secret that is killing me. I have to tell the public.” I paused for effect. Tim let out a loud ooo. I nodded deeply and then continued.
“You see, I did something I shouldn’t have.” I paused once again when my throat went dry.
“It’s alright Nate! We’re all family here! No one will judge you!” Tim said through a fake smile.
I opened my mouth but before anything came out I darted off stage. I was too afraid of what people would think of me. They would call me a liar or a terrible person, and I knew it was true.
I ran to the elevator but realized the crew was chasing after me. I ran into a small closet with a bunch of switches. I switched all of them off in the hope they wouldn’t find me in the dark. Underneath one of the switches, it said ‘all power’. I turned the switch off and all the lights went out. I heard some people scream and run.
I had caused a distraction, now I just had to escape. I opened the door slowly but that was clearly a mistake. The door squeaked very loudly and footsteps came closer to me. I tried to move but I couldn’t see anything. Suddenly I felt a hand on my back. Then a soft voice that spoke. “I know your secret.” The voice was gone as soon as it appeared.
I put my hands out in the hope to find a wall. I found the door to the closet once again and turned the power switch back on. I made a run for it. The cameraman instantly saw me and ran after me.
Unfortunately I wasn’t fast. The cameraman had long legs and was very tall. He came sprinting at me and I knew I had lost. I came to a sudden stop and put my hands up.
“What’s going on Nate?” Tim said as he came running down the hallway.
“Okay, I’m just gonna say it. I can’t live with the lie!” When no one responded I kept going. “I never saved a little girl. I lied. An old man jumped in front of her and was killed. I didn’t know what to tell you so I just said that I saved her.”
Everyone surrounding me looked at me in disbelief. Then Tim started laughing as if I had made the funniest joke ever. When I didn’t start laughing he stopped and looked at me more seriously. His smile turned to a frown and then he called security. I was lifted off my feet and placed outside the building. I could feel the wrinkles forming in my clothes.
So much for telling the truth. I got back in my car and drove home. I sat on my couch and turned on the television. Tim was talking about how I had lied and how I was such a terrible person. I heard a knock on the door and went to answer it.
It was my old neighbor. The one who called me famous. She looked hurt and sad. Seeing her face made me feel mad at myself. “You lied!” She said. She didn’t sound mad, just sad. Those two words were enough to hurt me very much. She left, I guess she said what she needed to say.
A week later, I was still at home. I hadn’t left once since the incident. I was miserable. I never should have told the lie in the first place. I went back to my couch and lied down. Once again I turned on the television. It was me, again. This time it was good news. A tall blond woman with glasses was talking. “Did Mr. Harrington tell a lie? Well, yes! But we all tell lies sometimes. If we didn’t forgive a small lie, where would we be? And yes, this was a big lie, but that doesn’t mean Nate is any less of a man. I think we should be honoring Mr. Harrington! He told us the truth after all. It takes some guts to do that.” She paused to lift up her glasses. “Now does America agree? That’s a tough call, it’s up to you.”
She smiled and left the scene. Tim appeared once again. I had grown to not like that man very much. He always wore a fake smile and tacky ties.
“In that case, I say I forgive him. In a way he is more of a savior now than he was before,” He laughed, “No, I’m just kidding!” Though I didn’t find it funny.
I heard another knock at the door. I was afraid to answer it but I did so anyway. It was my old neighbor again. I opened my mouth to try to apologize but before I could say anything she reached out and gave me a hug. I hugged her back, knowing my pain had vanished.