The Loner

I try to fit in. I do. I avoid all the bullies and teachers, but somehow they always find me. I am, and will always be...the loner.
This is my entry for the bullying comp.

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6. The Funeral- Chris

The spectators stand, cloaked in black and wearing solemn and grieving expressions.

I don’t belong here.

Four muscular men carefully walk down the aisle, their sturdy shoulders supporting a white, wooden box. The room is placid, with an old man seated at the organ, leaning over the keys and producing a sad tune that seeps through the window, and out into the graveyard.

Danny wouldn’t have wanted me here.

The box is lowered onto a mahogany table, and the tune comes to a halt. Everyone is seated and the ceremony begins.

“Ladies and gentlemen, we are here today to celebrate the life of Danny James Miller.” A vicar stands at the podium, silencing the room with one meaningful look. “Danny was a much adored and very popular boy. He did well in school and had a nice group of close friends. He will be missed greatly.”

The vicar paused, looking out into the sea of black, before continuing. “We will now hear some speeches from some of Danny’s close friends and family. Starting with, Chris Young.”

I swallow deeply. The whole room turns to look at me. My legs wobble as I stand up, almost causing me to fall on a blubbering old lady. Slowly, I walk up to the vicar, clutching a battered piece of paper. All eyes are on me, burning into my back like lasers. Everything I ever did to Danny is regretted, and at this moment, I have never felt so lost. It is my fault that Danny is up there in that perfectly polished coffin, and not here, standing with us. I was too late, that moment that I came crashing in, was the exact same moment that Danny died. Gnawing on my swollen lip, I shake hands with the vicar, feeling the soft, powdery wrinkles beneath my touch. He places a hand on my shoulder, causing me to turn to face the audience.

I am a despicable person; I am a bully.

They stare at me expectantly, tears leaking out of their eyes. I never really realised how loved and cherished Danny was. I didn’t realise the effect my words had. For me, they were just harmless words, just a bit of fun; but, for him, they were the road to suicide. Oh, how I wish he hadn’t taken that road; how I wish that I was the one in that box, covered in flowers, and without that steady beat of the heart. I unfold the paper.

“Danny is, was, a brilliant person.” I read. “He always tried his best and ignored anything, anyone that came in his way.” I speak in past tense, but the pain only increases.

“The last thing that came in his way however, caused Danny to think lowly of himself; resulting in a much grieved suicide.” I look down at the paper, my throat dry.

I can’t do this. Why am I here?

Why would Danny’s parents want me to be here; to feel the pain; to apologise; to make me suffer? Well, it all worked. I didn’t want to come. Mum made me, she can’t even look at me anymore, screamed at me last night, said she doesn’t know me anymore. To be honest, who does? I, sure as hell don’t know myself anymore. Screwing the paper up, I speak from the heart. From what really matters.

I need to say sorry.

“So,” I continue, “I am sorry. I am sorry for everything I did. I am that last thing.” The ball of paper falls from my hand. “I am the reason for Danny’s death. I bullied him to his limits, to his end.” I gesture towards the coffin. By now, the majority of the room are crying into their hands. Despite this, the church is silent, save the occasional bird chirping. “Danny, I love you, I am so sorry.” A single tear slides down my face, slipping into my mouth. It isn’t until I taste that salty flavour, that I realise I am crying. With one last look at the coffin, I run out the door.

I am a bully.

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