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This writing piece attempts to encapsulate the humanity of a narrator, who normally exists only as a foil for the people who the story is actually about. I wanted to bring to the fore-front the kind of thoughts that are often glossed over, or ignored in favor of an exciting story about someone else.


We were all sitting around the kitchen table when the first report rolled in over the radio. There were at least a dozen of the things. Reported sightings all over Stanford Campus. About the size of a dog, but pitch black, and leaving trails of bubbly tar-like goo in their wake.

We looked at each other over our various interpretations of breakfast – An omelette with everything but the kitchen sink, a poppy-seed muffin, cheerios and milk, cold pizza, and just a cup of coffee, black. “They’re back…” Wanda muttered.

“Go?!” I demanded, torn between amazement and annoyance that my companions were still sitting around the table.

In a heartbeat, I was sitting alone. I slowly got up to clear the dishes. I’d take the long way around to work. It was like this all the time. Whenever something happened, my four best friends went to fix it. And I went to work. Because you see, my four best friends control the cardinal elements. And me, I’m just Norma. Nothing special about me.

Compared to them, I am nobody. My friends are on the cover of Time. They fly around the world to meet famous people. I don’t know why they still stay in this dinky little house with me, other than that they are too busy saving the world to move into more fashionable digs.

As far as anyone knows, those four just woke up one morning with their powers. Nobody knows the truth.

As I lock the front door and head for my car, I think back on the how and why. Of course it’s my fault. You wouldn’t be reading my story if it weren’t. But the only thing you can blame me for is how it all started. It’s in the rules. A deal cut, in a time of great despair, with a demon of pain.

Thus was the deal: Power. Enough power to save the world. Imbued in those close to me, because I trusted them not to misuse it. The cost? That I should be denied that power. Normal. A mouse in a house of giants. I feel the breath of the demon on the back of my neck as I put my seat-belt on.

It feeds.