They call me the Silencemaker. I’m the type of person that’ll go for a drive with my mates and only realise halfway that I hadn’t chucked on a tune. The type of person that will tell a captivating story only to give up midway because I’m afraid nobody cares about what I’ve got to say. I quickly adopted the name of Silencemaker albeit of my own doing. I guess you could say I like to take my time with everything I do, I don’t think I’m slow, I’d just rather make sure I do it right the first time. That’s not always the case though.
There’s this power about me that has probably been with me all my life. Let the record show that I call it a power simply to make myself feel better. However only recently I began to notice it more and more, in my early twenties. Living with this power is great for its own reasons, but the benefit of it dies with me, for I only see the bad things. I’ve always had an abundance of friends around me throughout my teenage years, but slowly and surely, people would disappear one by one. I’ve been in many relationships, but there’s always a reason to leave served to me on a silver platter. I’ve vented and poured out all my deepest insecurities, my fears and my hopes to more people than I can count, only to fall on deaf ears. This power that I have, as baffling as it is, has always been what separates me from what’s real and what’s fake. I implore you to laugh, because it is a laughable power. The power of super hearing, but limited only to people talking shit about me.
They call me the Silencemaker. Every house party in the suburbs was always the same old shit.
“Dude, did you see what he was wearing?”
“Who invited this dickhead, like seriously?”
“I guess some people just don’t peak at all, true? Hahaha.”
Every outing in the city nightlife whether it’s a pub crawl or another clubbing event was no different.
“How’s this loser ever gonna get with a girl?”
“Ew, it’s going to be so awkward if he tries to talk to me.”
“As if this weirdo still smokes, like he’s just killing himself.”
Even every coffee or lunch date that I’ve been to, the knives have always been there, strategically placed into my fragile back.
“Ugh he looks so awkward.”
“Why’s she on a date with this ugly mug?”
“Wow he looks like a slob tearing into that burger, so disgusting.”
My life revolved around people talking shit about me. Imagine being able to hear it distinctively, like an annoying gnat at your ear following you wherever you go, the incessant sound of people hating on you. Now you can understand why, if you ever see me walking down a street, I will seem standoffish, more of a prepared shield for all the shit coming my way. So here I am, at some lame rooftop bar called The Roman on a lame Saturday night, trying to order a drink, trying even harder to navigate around a sea of mouth-breathers.
“How’d he get in with that shirt?”
“I think this poor bloke is in the wrong place haha.”
“If this asshole bumps me one more time, I’m gonna lose my shit.”
They call me the Silencemaker. Finally, got my drink after approximately eleven girls and four douchebags that were lined up after me got theirs. Classic. As I sat on a table of four that had been reserved for me and the boys, my phone starts spasming.
“Sorry bro, can’t make it tonight.”
“Hey man, didn’t realise it was tonight lol! Next time!”
“I got another party, but I’ll message if I’m free later.”
Well shit, guess it’s just me and my lukewarm CC and dry. The music starts pumping and I’ve been nursing my drink for the past forty-nine minutes trying to figure out what to do from here. Do I go home? Do I stay and try to have a good time solo? How can I even have a good time when everyone has already let me down? Sounds pessimistic I know, but you don’t have my power. Conversations with anyone, whether it be friends or strangers are now a double edged sword.
“I reckon you’re going to smash that job interview man.”
“You’re easily going to fuck this up, I guarantee it.”
“She got away, but I hope you don’t keep blaming yourself over it.”
“It’s obviously all your fucking fault, we all know it, and you know it.”
“Hey, it’s really nice to meet you.”
“Can this motherfucker get out of my face?”
They call me the Silencemaker. The watered down ice cubes rattled in my glass, and with that, I grabbed my jacket and butted out my cigarette. What a night. What a fucking night! Walking towards the exit, I looked back one last time at this bar and let out a huge sigh. Happy birthday to me. Okay, time to go. A loud thud and next thing I knew, I was on the floor. As my vision came back to me, I looked up and there was this random girl rubbing her reddened forehead. I stood up immediately.
“Hey! I’m so sorry, it was an accident.” I announced meekly.
I couldn’t even hear what she said, with the shit talkers already occupying my ears.
“Oh my god, did you see what he did to that poor girl?”
“What a dick, abusing a girl like that, who does he think he is?”
“She can easily call the cops, he full bruised her forehead, look!”
They call me the Silencemaker. Next thing I knew, she grabbed my hand and we left the bar and ended up in her car. I had absolutely no idea what was going on. Despite not knowing though, it was nice. And quiet. A kind of quiet I haven’t heard in long while. She stared down at her hands for a couple minutes until turning towards me. Now that my vision came back to me from the fall earlier, I finally saw her properly. She was wearing a denim jacket with a white top that said ‘STFU’. She had a rose tattoo on her hand and a family of piercings inhabited her left ear. She had dark auburn hair and rosy cheeks but that wasn’t the best part. She had nice eyes. Like, really nice eyes.
“So anyway, sorry for kidnapping you so suddenly haha!” She laughed.
“You have really nice eyes!”
Fuck, I panicked. Oh God, let the roast begin. I wish I was deaf right now, it’s coming. She stared at me in what I assumed was a look of shock for a couple moments. I took a breather, and succumbed to what was inevitable. Let me hear it. Embrace the shit talk. A few moments pass, and I had experienced that sweet quiet once more. Her expression changed from shocked to cheerful and broke into a laughing fit. Teary eyed, she finally calmed down.
“You’re so weird!” She laughed.
“Thanks, I guess… haha.”
She began to start the car, clicks her seatbelt in and greases me off until I do the same. Click.
“Wanna go someplace more quiet? Let’s get some hot chocolate!”
They call me the Silencemaker. I focused on her for awhile. Waiting and waiting for her real self to show up. What she really had to say was about to come out. The absence of sound, ironically the best tune in my mind. For the first time in my life, there was this sweet quiet.
“… so you wanna?” She asked, impatiently.
“… hope he says yes.”
“O-O-Oh sure, sure we can.”
“Perfect, I’m Joanna! It’s really nice to meet you. And you are?”
They call me the Silencemaker. She calls me Brian.