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E - Everyone

Human Shell

by GrayButterfly

I watched her sitting there vacant and expressionless. An emotionless apathetic corpse staring into the grey void of the lunch table. Glazy eyes and a homeless spirit, I would’ve thought Taylor’s heart didn’t exist. That is, if I didn’t see her eyes power up her system. She would blink and she would look around as if to get used to her surroundings. She would smile up at her friend, and they would continue eating lunch.

My suspicion: she was from a different planet. I can back this up too! Every other day I sit at a table across from her small posse and I listen. Behind the empty gossip and meaningless jokes, I see her just sitting there. There were many options, but one stands out as most urgent. She was analyzing the stupid conversations and secrets and reporting back to home base. ‘But what would aliens want to do with a bunch of teenagers?’ I hear you ask. I’ll tell you exactly. We are the future of America, and they’re targeting us, I swear.

And there’s another thing. On my drive home from swim, I saw her contacting her home planet! I’m not lying! It was a setup for the average eyes, but as you can clearly see I’m above average. She was sitting outside the Williams’ house on a blanket and let out one big vicious sneeze (“allergies” they say,) but the truth is this: her extraterrestrial body was never properly exposed to grass. Anyways, she was tapping away on a tablet, and I knew exactly what her kind was hiding. I caught her in the act!

I pulled over, walked right on up to her and said, “Hey Taylor, what are you doing?”

She hesitated-- sure sign of lies.

“Um, drawing, why would you--” she said with a twisted face, and sighed. “Nice bike, but I think my allergies are acting up. I’ll see you later.”

“I know what you are!” if only I could sway her.

She stood up and waved away as she walked through the Williams’ front door. Maybe my human confidence scared her away.

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Surround yourself with people who are serious about being writers, and who will tell you, ‘Hey—you can do better than this.’ Who will be critical of your work, but also supportive. And who will not be competitive in a negative way.
— Isabel Quintero