This was the dumbest thing I’d ever done, and I mentioned that to my psychologist come Monday morning.
I’d just handed her Chapter 1 of this story. Minus the bit at the end, but shhhhhhush, I’m putting the fourth wall back up.
She took it and read silently for a minute. Every once and awhile she’d pause and ask me a question.
“What happened to scene two?”
“We were in the car. It’s more or less assumed we got to the mall somehow, so I just cut it out. You can write it in if you want, I really don’t care.”
She kept reading. I think she ignores me sometimes.
“Did you not like your roommate?”
“What? No, he was fine. Why do you ask?”
Now she looked up, “I’m picking up a lot of tension, maybe even hostility, between you two in the play.”
“What? No… ” I said, snatching the play back from her and rereading it, “Are you talking about the casting choices? The marionette? The sex-doll? I was just having a little fun, don’t read into it.”
“You realize that it’s—”
“—Literally your job to read into everything I say? Noted.”
“Did he ever do anything that bothered you? Anything that really got on your nerves?”
“Oh, no. I mean, yeah, but like normal roommate stuff,” I shifted around in my chair, remembering those early college days. Good times they were. I tapped on the shrink’s desk with a pen. God, what a rookie, who puts a desk between themselves and the patient? What is this—amateur hour? It’s like she’s worried I’m going to stab her or something, “Sometimes he would play piano really loudly and sing Liunus and Lucy while I studied, so maybe that annoyance bled through a little bit in my writing, but… ” I reflected for a moment, “Yeah, nothing really out of the ordinary. He was a good guy.”
“Liunus and Lucy? The song from Charlie Brown?”
“That song doesn’t have any words, it’s nothing but—”
“—tell him that.”
She read on. I stopped tapping on the desk. Didn’t want to be annoying or anything like that. I’m trying to be more polite these days, I really am.
“I think it’s interesting that you imagined your imaginary theatre piece having a tight budget.”
“Well, it’s imaginary. You could’ve chosen any budget. You could’ve had unlimited funds if you’d wanted.”
“Eh, probably means my parents didn’t hug me enough as a child.”
“Did they not?”
“No, they did.”
Two minutes later, she asked the golden question.
“So what about this mask?”
“So what about this mask, indeed. That certainly is the question, isn’t it?” I replied, ever so slyly.
Oh, now we’re on to the good stuff. That’s the title of the story, if I’m not mistaken… I’m not mistaken am I? It is, in fact, called White Plastic Mask, yes? How many of you thought it was figurative? Maybe a metaphor? Go fuck yourselves; it’s a real shitting mask. Made of plastic. Plastic, mind you, that is indeed white. Like a comedy/tragedy mask, you know, one of those basic theatre ones that’s got a creepy blank expression on? Yep. That that’s the one.
And now I’m looking at you, Reader. That’s right, you!!! The person who is reading this story right now. Didn’t think you’d get roped in? Oh, you’re in it now, baby. You’re in it to win it. And I’ve got one question for you:
What do you think about the mask? You think it’s evil? Maybe it stabbed my friend. PLOT TWIST. It was the mask all along. But, if that were so, why would I be in the looney bin? Ooh… questions, questions…
I think it’s evil,
let’s find out.