The Technicolor Town of Edmond Griffith


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1. CHAPTER ONE

There is a place that knows no sadness. And, there is a boy who knows no satisfaction. And, whether they know it or not, they just so happen to both be split down the middle. This little town is...well...we don't exactly know where it is. Not that anybody would know, no one ever bothers to ask questions. So, how they would find out is beyond me. There is so much uncertainty and yet, no one has ever questioned anything. No one has ever asked themselves, "why are we here?" "is there anything beyond this town?". Heck, not even, "why is there a massive wall smack dab in the middle of our town?"

Well, maybe they don't ask that because the answer is quite complicated in and of itself. And, maybe they don't ask themselves because they are afraid. Yep, in this quaint little town, the truth is feared and avoided at all costs. No one wants to know anything, so they don't learn. Nobody wants to be introduced to reality earlier than they should. And, they live their lives in blissful ignorance.

Or at least, that was the case, until one boy came along. The boy in questions was a dear friend of mine. We have grown old and, as a result, have began to drift apart. His name was Edmond. And yes, that is a ridiculously tacky and proper sounding name. Fitting for an extremely tacky and proper sounding person like old Eddie. He was one of the TC's, he was one of the technicolor boys from the west side. He lived in a bright, colorful fantasy with dark undertones.

He spoke funny. And, believe me, I never let him hear the end of it.

For a while, that was his only identity to me. He was just another funny looking, funny talking and funny acting TC (TC being what we called his kind). We came from two completely different worlds and somehow were one brick wall away. The TC's live life in full color, full happiness, full ignorance...

"Good morning, world!" Edmond exclaims, sitting up and bed, hardly squinting in the blinding light of the pastel sunrise.

Yes, sunrise. He woke up at sunrise. This goes to show how much of an extreme and strange kind they are. But, going back to Eddie...

He springs up from out of bed, a smile immediately making it's way to his face. He enjoyed the way that the happiness tugged at the corners of his lips. He liked the way it made people so much more open to him. Or at least, compared to when he didn't smile. Once, about a year ago, he experimented with a neutral expression. For the first time, he let the corners of his lips drop and found it to be quite less strenuous than a smile. That day, not even his father would do as much as look at him. It seemed the world shunned away from anything but complete and utter happiness. It seemed that the world thrived on complete and utter perfection, in the sense that it didn't thrive or change whatsoever. It stayed the same. And that's how people liked it.

As Edmond walks out onto the streets of the non-changing town he called paradise, he saw the entire town standing outside, like always. And, as he walks down the street, he is sure to greet each one of them.

"Hello!"

"Good morning, Edmond!"

"Good morning!"

"Good morning, Edmond!"

The repetition was only natural to Eddie. It was all he was ever met with in the morning, noon and night. He didn't know any better. No one did. For, once you're met with the same thing every day you don't necessarily know what's best for you. And, to be fair, neither do I.

"Good morning, Ms. Powell."

Brace yourself...

"Good morning, Mr. Griffith."

That's right, his name Edmond Griffith. It doesn't get any more ridiculous than that.

But, anyway...

How this repetition flew over Eddie's head is completely beyond me. Every day he would greet her in the same exact fashion of the day before that, and the day before that. And, she would respond with the same half-groan and half-greeting sort of way. Once his over-friendly mid-morning hellos we over and done with, Edmond takes his seat towards the front of the room and folds his hands in front of himself, like the little saint he is. He looks up at his teacher, donning a radiant smile. He keeps his head facing forward as the other students take their seats, a comfortable silence filling the warm room in it's entirety. Cloaking each and every student in the soothing thought that they were being nothing but respectful.

In this town, children are seen but not heard. Their opinions don't amount to anything around here. In the parts where I lived, if someone didn't listen to what you had to say, that was a more perfect excuse to pin someone against a wall, hands behind their back, press a gun against their spine and make sure they never mess with you again (and perhaps get a few bucks out of them).

Wow. Look at me, rambling on and on about myself. But, as much as I wish it was, this is not my story. This is the story of the kid who changed everything. And, sadly that isn't me.

Speaking of someone who isn't me, the school bell rung, marking the end of another silent school day. Edmond slowly stood up from his seat, adjusted his dress shirt and hastily made his way out the door.

Once outside, Edmond was met with the same vibrant street that he knew all too well. He smiled and waved at the people he passed, watering their plants, walking their dogs and just being happy as ever. His smile never fades, nor does it ever grow less cheery. It remains plastered on his face. It was an outward indication of how he felt. Or at least, what he wanted people to think he felt. No one hesitated in returning the boys smile and waves as he walked past. But then, all of a sudden, Edmond couldn't help but feel as if he were stuck in a box, though moving freely. He had never felt this feeling before. All of a sudden everything just felt so airtight. Everything just felt so strange. Everything felt so cramped. Why were his hands dropped down at his sides? Why was everyone outside at the same time? Does anyone ever go inside when someone else is around? Why was the world so blindingly colorful all of a sudden?

A tidal wave of questions flooded his head. And he didn't like it one bit. Then, he did the unthinkable. He turned his head and noticed something he hadn't before. Then, another question began to circle around in his head, one that he couldn't ignore, "How have I never noticed that?". He had been so busy smiling that the enormous wall running through the town was the least of his concerns. It was completely visible over at what must have been three rows of the colorful one story houses. If Edmond had been at any other point in the town, they would have been completely invisible. They would line up with one another and become one solitary row, due to being the same size. A ban was put in place, regarding the legal size of buildings, a couple years back. No more than one story. (Funny considering they don't have any books besides the dictionary over there). They didn't want to harm any birds who may be soaring through the skies at any given time. Or, at least, that's what Edmond was told. He was beginning to seriously doubt that now. And, Eddie hated doubt. He was always one to trust. He even trusted me, that was probably his biggest mistake.

He just stood and stared. He stopped dead in his tracks and the people lining the streets could do nothing but stare as well. No, not at the wall. But the boy who was beholding it. In this particular town, they pride themselves on looking forward and smiling. So, seeing a seventeen year old child suddenly stopping and turning his head, resting his eyes on who knows what and donning an expression of pure curiosity seems completely and utterly unthinkable. The object in question that he had directed all of his attention to being the wall that seemed hundreds of miles high. Or at least compared to the tiny buildings that it towered over, almost to an overwhelming extent.

How Edmond hadn't seen this prior, he didn't know. He didn't know, and that was the problem. Suddenly, he wanted to know everything. He wanted answers. And, that would not be easy in this town. For, in the quiet suburbs in question, answers were not easy to obtain. There were few with the sheer audacity to search for them. There were few who were brave enough to stray from nonsensical life in search of some sort of reality they could ground themselves in.

Eddie was most likely the strangest case of these head-turning revolutionaries. He stood and stared and the world seemed to stare with him. Certainly not at the massive brick wall sawing the town in half, but at the teenage boy who seemed to stop time. Time seemed to freeze as he stared off into what could only be described as a sight he was certainly not ready for. This was the first time Edmond Griffith turned heads.

Then, he resumed walking. Just like that, the wall was the least of his concerns. His main concern then was the truth. And, he was determined to get it.

Once home, the dinner table was already set and his father was sitting at the head of the table, being the family patriarch and all that. He grinned and motioned towards the seat opposite of himself, in which Edmond always sat. It was a very large table. So large because dinnertime was quote, "not a time for friendly conversation, it is simply for eating and comfortable silence", and at such a distance, talking would be quite the hassle. And it was, but Edmond had something very important to ask so that was not stopping him today.

"Father, what is that big old wall doing in the middle of town?" Edmond asked, midway through his lobster. I suppose you can eat anything you damn well please if your father is the mayor. Speaking of the mayor, he just about choked on his thousand-dollar royal ossetra caviar.

"W-Where did you hear about a wall son?" Mayor moneybags sputters, pounding on his chest, hoping that would help the food he had just recently found threatening to enter his windpipe go down.

"I did not hear anything. I simply saw it, father. And, I was just wondering what the purpose of it was. It seems a bit needless, but I'm sure there's some logic behind it."

As if the thought of him hearing about it wasn't frightening enough.

"Oh. Well it's for..."

Mayor Monopoly racked his brain for a lie, but apparently not quick enough.

"For what, father?"

"You see son... There's a lot of bad people in this world, you know that, right?"

"Of course."

"Well, our little town only has that wall for defense. Do you understand what I am saying?"

"Of course. I mean, what else do we have to protect ourselves? Clareview is a very small town. A wall would only be fitting. But, wait. Who are the bad people?"

"We do not know. It is just a precautionary measure."

"But why is it not around the entire town? Has anyone ever attacked befo-"

"Edmond, go to your room."

Edmond was shocked but he respected his father's wishes and headed upstairs. He had never had never seen his father so angry, or so panicked for that matter. He marched up the stairs, making sure that his head stayed completely and perfectly straight. Nothing good could possibly come from turning it. Nothing good could possibly come of observation. That was the logic of the world he lived in. well, logic in the sense that there was no logic at all. I'm sure that at the time, ignorance was bliss for the TC's. mindless happiness reigned supreme until something small caught Eddie's eye that day. He sauntered through the hallways, able to relax since he had escaped his father's sight. Today he felt off. He didn't feel the need to smile and look straight. He didn't feel the need to stand up tall and walk in large, exaggerated strides. He didn't feel especially happy today.

He felt different.

He felt...confused.

He approached his bedroom door and swung it open, letting it lightly touch the snow white paint that coated the doorframe. Edmond hadn't noticed until then that there were small yellow cracks in the paint. And it seemed to flake on the edges, at the point where the frame met the wall. He directed his eyes to what was in front of him, in an attempt to bring himself to the mental state he had been in prior to seeing that gargantuan brick wall. He breathed in and breathed out, shutting his eyes tight. But, when he opened his eyes, what he saw did not satisfy him. It was a plain, blue wall. The same wall he had walked in to see every day for the last seventeen years. And, somehow, seeing it now felt different. It felt boring. So he turned to the side, to face the window that rested on the wall, right up against his bed. He didn't look out of that window often, just every once in awhile. And, even then, it was only a short glance here and there. Now, he decided to look further. He kneeled on his bed and looked around. He shifted his weight from knee to knee as he adjusted his position, finding new angles that made the world look completely different. And, once his body was pressed all the way against the wall, he saw it. He saw that giant, red annoyance that was the reason he was stuck in his room in the first place.

He was about to look away when he saw something. A small sliver of a color, a color he had never seen but a color nonetheless. It looked like a light shade of black. Not quite dark but not quite bright either. He blinked. Once, twice, but it remained. And then, once his eyes adjusted, he could finally decipher what it was.

It was a hand, then another. Then, all at once, they disappeared.

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