Ok, this is depressing, involves suicide, and is generally bleak. Don't read it if you don't want to.
Also this is a one-shot.
Uh… I don't own… Nike? Yeah, no I don't. Damn. But yeah… um.. I think that's it.
Oh! Right, that's obvious. This is based on the song Perfect, by Simple Plan. I've inserted the lyrics as I went. I don't own that either.
The room was dark, lit only by the dim bulb of the desk lamp, illuminating an almost bare desktop. There were only three objects on the desk: a thick sheaf of papers, a pen and an envelope.
The figure sitting at the desk stood slowly. Tear tracks streaked his face, but he no longer cried.
The man – no, boy – stood and walked to the closet.
He opened the door and dug out a small shoebox. Nike. He traced the familiar black and red pattern as he shut the door – no loose ends.
He had tried. Damn how he had tried. Nothing worked, not focusing on school, not on his writing, not trying to fixate on one of the cheerleaders. It all came back to him. He was nobody special, not the lead quarterback, just an average guy.
Hey dad, look at me,
Think back and talk to me,
Did I grow up according to plan?
He hadn't wanted to. He had tried, goddammit he had tried. But he couldn't suppress what he was feeling. And eventually he had given in to the inevitable.
Average. But so extraordinary it hurt. They had become friends for a short time. Then more. And for once in his life, he had been happy. He wasn't trying to live up to his father's expectations, the school's expectations, societies' expectations.
His novel progressed, he was happy, and he had the two things that meant the most to him firmly in his life.
Then his father had read some drafts he had left out.
And do you think I'm wasting my time
Doing things I wanna do
But it hurts when you disapprove all along
His father, the straight-laced working man who cared for his only son after his wife's tragic death from cancer. He wanted his son on the football team in the fall, the basketball team in winter, baseball in the spring and soccer in the summer. His son would be star player of all sports, and well reflected upon. People would see his son and think, what a great boy, his father sure raised him right.
But he couldn't help that he was better at academics then athletics. He couldn't help that he loved to write and loathed team sports.
He tried, again he tried. But he was never really up to par with his athletics, and he wouldn't give up his academics.
And now I try hard to make it,
I just want to make you proud,
I'm never gonna be good enough for you,
He opened the box. Inside rested a single razor and a smuggled kitchen knife.
Can't pretend that I'm alright
He remembered two nights ago. He had been kicked off the basketball team. They had had too many players. His father was livid, and had made him go for a five mile jog after a light dinner. With a half hour time limit.
And you can't change me
Cuz we lost it all
Nothing lasts forever
I'm sorry I can't be perfect
When he had returned, he was exhausted, and over the time limit by ten minutes. His father wasn't happy and had started yelling again.
He held up the razor blade and watched his reflection in the dim lighting. He twirled it for a minute, then let it drop back into the box.
Now it's just too late
And we can't go back
I'm sorry I can't be perfect
The fight had ended when he had walked away from his father. His father, who shouted after him. 'You're a disgrace to this family! You don't deserve to be called my son!'
I try not to think
About the pain I feel inside
Did you know you used to be my hero?
He had sat in his room, in this very spot, remembering the better days. The days when his mother was still alive. When he was younger, he and his dad would go out back and throw the baseball around, or maybe the football.
His mother would putter about in the kitchen, laughing and smiling at their antics outside the window.
All the days you spent with me
Now seem so far away
And it feels like you don't care anymore
When was the last time they had done something like that? He couldn't remember. It didn't matter, as long as he was on the team. As long as he was a part of the team.
And now I try hard to make it
I just want to make you proud
I'm never gonna be good enough for you
He remembered going to the closet that night. Opening the door. Staring at the black and red shoebox. Shutting the door.
I can't stand another fight
And nothing's alright
Today school was a drag. His extraordinary average boy wasn't in school. He waited impatiently for school to end, then rushed to his house.
Only to find that his extraordinary average boy was with someone else. A girl. A few acid comments from him had set him at the edge again.
Nothing's gonna change the things that you said
Nothing's gonna make this right again
He had gone home. Went to his room. Opened the closet. Stared at the black and red shoebox. Taken it from its spot on the closet floor. Sat on the bed and stared at the lid.
He had taken it back, buried it in the back. Then he had taken the meager evidence of the relationship and burned it in the bathroom sink.
Back in his bedroom, he found a picture. They were both smiling, arms wrapped around each others shoulders. He couldn't help the tears that escaped.
He didn't realize his father was there until the photo was wrenched out of his hands and the air was filled with anger filled yelling.
Men don't cry!
Wimp, pull yourself together!
My son would never cry!
Then he had seen the picture. The yelling had stopped. He watched as his father's face had turned a deep shade of red. He watched his father turn and walk out of the room without a word.
Please don't turn your back
D-Dad! But he just kept going.
I can't believe it's hard just to talk to you
But you don't understand
Cuz I lost it all
I'm sorry I can't be what you want me to be. I'm sorry I hurt you so much, that I couldn't live up to what you wanted. Don't blame yourself, and tell Michael it's not his fault either, if he cares.
I'm sorry. I love you.
He picked up the kitchen knife, traced a vein on his wrist.
I'm sorry I can't be perfect