Changing The Bulb

It was the first Sunday of May.  The sun had returned, but the wind still refused to leave.  The best friends sat on their usual bench and soaked up the view of the river.

“Do I have an undeniably positive glow?” Aaron broke the silence.

Holly struggled not to spit out her coffee.  The question was not only totally unexpected, but also rather ridiculous.  Aaron hated people and emanated a cold, threatening aura that made this perfectly clear.

“Is this your creative way of telling me you’re pregnant?” she finally asked because she knew she couldn’t say all that about his threatening aura.

Aaron sighed and took a long sip of his Snapple.

“I’ll take that to be your diplomatic way of replying in the negative,” he scoffed.

Holly’s beautiful face contorted into a frown.  Aaron could be so fragile at times, and it was a challenge to say the right thing without lying to him or hurting his feelings.

short story, humor, Modern Philosopher“You’re not exactly radiating rainbows and unicorns, but I wouldn’t say that’s a negative,” she answered honestly. “Why do you ask?”

Aaron shrugged and took a long sip of Snapple.

“As bizarre as it might sound, I’ve been making an effort to be more social, but you’re still the only one who seems at all interested in spending time with me,” he confessed sadly.  “I read somewhere that the best way to attract new friends is to radiate positivity.  Needless to say, that’s been a challenge.”

To Holly’s relief, he chuckled at his self-depreciating humor.

“I don’t think you radiate negativity, either,” Holly clarified.  “You’re more like one of those houses on Halloween that doesn’t have its porch light lit.”

Aaron raised an eyebrow to the comment.  “Intriguing.  Tell me more.”

Holly blushed slightly as she powered on.  “Trick of treaters can’t tell if there’s anyone home, so most of them will continue on to the next house with the porch light on.  The more daring ones, however, will take a chance and knock on the door.  They might not get a reply, but what did they lose by trying?  Then again, they might discover that this is the one house on the block that gives out king size candy bars and the risk was worth it.”

Aaron grinned.  “So are you saying I’m the king size Mounds bar in your life since you took the time to get to know me?”

flash fiction, relationships, Modern PhilosopherHolly rolled her eyes and drank some of her coffee.

“Positive people have it much easier,” Aaron commented.  “People are more likely to approach them, and less likely to run screaming when approached.”

“But what you need to remember is that sometimes that super bright positive glow is everything a person’s got,” Holly reminded him.  “Once you get past the shiny surface, you discover there’s nothing inside.  That’s why we’re taught as kids to never take candy from strangers.  We absolutely do not want to find out what’s waiting inside that windowless van where the candy is kept.”

Aaron’s jaw dropped.  “This conversation just took a very twisted and dark turn.  Are you trying to warn me that your beautiful, welcoming, thoughtful outer shell is merely a distraction from the abject horror that lies beneath?”

Holly smiled.  When she did so, she somehow became even more beautiful.

“That’s for you to figure out,” she replied with a wink.

Now Aaron smiled.  “Actually, that was your way of almost making me forget that I’m socially awkward and not at all a positive person.  Just another reason why you’re my best friend.”

Holly pulled a fun size Mounds bar from her pocket and offered it to him.  “Plus, I offer you candy so you never have to be tempted by strangers.”

They both laughed.

Neither noticed that Aaron was letting off the brightest, most positive aura.  Just like he did every Sunday when the best friends met for their weekly chat…

About Austin

Native New Yorker who's fled to the quiet life in Maine. I write movies, root for the Yankees, and shovel lots of snow.
This entry was posted in Humor and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Changing The Bulb

  1. kristianw84 says:

    I love Holly’s porch light analogy, and she’s right about people hiding behind their positive radiation.

    I love the lessons you weave through their dialogue!

  2. beth says:

    great lesson

  3. markbialczak says:

    Some people do bring out the best in you, yes, Austin.

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