Sometimes I think I want to be the main character – I always wake up from the nightmare screaming. You ask why; I ask why you ask why, because I think it is quite self-explanatory.
You won’t know my story, not specifically at least. But I’d wager you’ve seen it written throughout the pages of many books. I live through every one of them.
It’s rather fabulous. Secondary characters are fabulous. Main characters are the weapon that strikes the killing blow, but sidekicks and secondaries are the hands that drove the blade home – give or take. I make the story happen, and the fans love me; they all pick me for their favorite so not to be basic, so alternatively they’re all basic not wanting to be basic.
Thus, why I address this to my creators.
Gorgeous authors, you really must stop making me so brilliant. No, really. I’m flattered, but I’m truly starting to become a main character in a sense, and it sucks.
If it wasn’t for me, it all never would’ve played out the way it did. Now, I thoughtfully and selflessly recognize that it would be quite confusing if I continue to refer to myself as a symbol for many, and speak only generally about my troubles, so for your sake I am going to be specific. Let’s name the main character Bob, for the sake of the argument. That’s always a classic.
Bob and I are in a restaurant – figuratively, you see, as it could be anywhere, depending on the story, and depending on who Bob represents, but, gah, I must sacrifice my own comments and allow you to get into the zone. I’ve heard I can be quite disruptive. Admittedly, I do pop up, like, everywhere. Fictionally.
So, Bob and I are in a restaurant. He absently pokes at his scrumptious Thai red curry with his fork, indubitably allowing the rice to become soggy so it is no longer scrumptious. I, perky and an angel who doesn’t waste food, have a clean plate, which I will to be filled again. Unfortunately, in this scenario I am not truly an angel, and so nothing happens.
“Hey,” I say, touching Bob gently on his shaking knee. I doubt he realized he was doing that, and I’m proven right when an invisible glaze seems to crack across his eyes. He looks at me, but there still seems to be some of the glaze left, for the gaze is wild and unseeing. I try again, softly. “Hey, man. Is everything alright?”
Bob blinks fiercely, and unconsciously reaches for his glass of wine. He takes an inhumanely large swig. “It’s nothing.”
By authorial magic, I find my gaze drawn to Bob’s neck, where a pendant usually rests at the top of his ribcage. The pendant is the colors of fresh, exciting – also known as fictional – love: deep crimson for passion, a scarlet for the desires of the heart, yellow for the joy brought, gold for the richness of life with them, and ringed with black for the feeling gotten when they are gone. How I know this, I am unsure. Albeit, I do know that Bob’s lover got him that pendant, that he never takes it off, not even if they are fighting. It is a strange wonder to see Bob’s neck so bare, like a child fresh out the womb. He looks just as lost as one.
“Your pendant,” I comment. “You never take it off.”
He follows my line of sight, and blanches. Clearly, he feels just as naked as a newborn, too.
“Bob, what is it? What happened between you and” – again, for the sake of argument – “Linda?”
‘Blinda’. Everyone ships them. Madly.
“We broke up, we had to.” Oh, Bob. You didn’t have to do anything, the authors just made you for the character development. Gag. “We… it’s just… we’re over. For good. There’s no chance for us.”
“How can you have so much faith, and then so little?” I muse, mostly for my own thoughts. I sit up; stare Bob levelly in the eye. “What did she do?”
Bob matches my delightful stare with an equally blank one.
“What,” I correct myself, “did you do?”
Here my good friend blanches again. He really must be deprived of some vitamin. “Linda’s reckless,” explains Bob cautiously, like approaching a magnificent lion or a frightened puppy. I tend to have either effect on people, depending on the novel. “She’s gone searching for him”– the villain –“in his lair.”
“I’m not following. That’s your girlfriend, going on a suicide mission, and you’re sitting here with me in a Thai restaurant.” And then it hits me like a plot twist, because, thanks to mine and Bob’s lovely and intricate past, our long friendship, I know Bob incredibly well. I voice my thoughts: “You pushed her away before you could lose her.”
Bob’s expression gives me the confirmation I need; his red curry is now oddly intriguing, and he’s analyzing it scrutinizingly. I’m excellent at guessing games.
“If you love her, Bob, then you’d go after her. You’d rather die to protect her than let her die alone, heartbroken by your callousness.”
Awakened as if by some twist of a lever, Bob draws himself up from the shoulders, sense clicking into place. He mutters one word – a dramatic and determined “Linda” – and turns Macho Hero Mode. I hate Macho Hero Mode. All main character’s have it, deep down in their innermost heart of hearts.
I don’t need to explain what happens after that. Bob manages to save Linda, right at the last, most cliff-hanging moment. You ask why any of this matters to me. Why, oh why, I ask, do you ask why so! Bob manages to save Linda’s life, thus saving his own life from wallowing in misery or death by heartbreak, thus getting the fan’s favorite couple back together - bonus points for an adorable reunion scene. And you see, if it weren’t for me, ‘Blinda’ would be oh-so tragically no more.
And this is why I plead, majestic creators, for you stop making me so crucial and brilliant. I cannot bear the weight of the fandoms. I cannot stand all the fanfiction, where I am so cruelly depicted. Next you will be writing something entirely in my perspective! Awake me, authors, from this vivid nightmare, I beg!
I am on my fictional knees…