He’s grown bigger over the years. Today’s he’s about 6 feet 9 and still growing. With burly arms and thick neck, he’s an intimidating figure. I think he even has a tattoo, on his left arm, but I’ve never seen it.

He’s always around; lurking in the corner of every room that I enter. In fact, he’s standing over my shoulder as I write this, smiling smugly over the fact that I brought up the tattoo and the fact that I don’t know for sure if he has it. He only becomes clear when I choose to. And of late I choose to have him prominent a lot more than I would like.

Apparently he runs in the family. My grand mum, my mum and my dad, all of them have had him around as far back as I can remember. One night, when I was five and mum and dad went out, I spent the entire time crying for them and I sat there at the door step with the door open, waiting for them, where I promptly fell off to sleep crying. They returned. The front door had been open the whole night. My father picked me up by the feet and shook me so hard; I thought my brains would fall out. That’s the first time I saw him, standing by the ledge and smiling. Bastard.

I have a love hate relationship with Heidi. She is one of my best friends, but is on more than one occasion, one of the most insensitive and self centered human beings I have ever known. On that day too, she did something. Now, I can’t even remember what it is. But he came straight out.

“Well, if she was so sure, then why didn’t she come and ask me, as opposed to talking to thirty different people about it? And where the fuck does she get off doing this to me, yet again?” I railed. When she walked into the room because she heard that I was bringing the house down with my tattooed (or not tattooed) friend yet again, I screamed.

“Get out, get out, get out. I don’t want to look at your face ever again. You’re an absolutely revolting human being, rotten to the core and you don’t deserve friends. Open your disgusting eyes to the world around you and stop looking only at the means that suit your ends.”

It was like an out of body experience. Everyone looked at me, horrified and cowering. I was watching me, or him, take over me completely. I had spots before my eyes. He was the power fueling the volume behind my voice. He was the energy coursing through my veins as my body shook and trembled. He was the poison that spewed out of my mouth.

Heidi looked embarrassed.  He turned me around and slammed the door behind me as I threw myself on my unmade bed to lick my wounds. And just as quickly as he had appeared, he retreated back to the corner of the room, silently smirking, while I was left there to contemplate the consequences of bringing him to the fore. Most of the time, it is misery and loss of self-respect because of the loss of control I display.

And I grude him. Today, the little love that Heidi and I had in our relationship is over. I don’t acknowledge her presence and to my relief she is too self centered to realize it. And of course he is around, always waiting to make his next appearance, leaving me sad and ashamed after I let him.

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