Fate. It seems to be the happy ending to all stories. The ultimate fairy tale. It’s the fairy god mother that comes and fixes all disasters; too good to be true, just like magic. It might be a little blind, a little deaf, and just unpractical, but no matter how fate puts it, life just seems to be resolved in perfect ways. The lowly girl becomes the princess. The maid marries the prince. The wicked witch gets punished for all her wrong doings. Too bad life isn’t a fairy tale. No, instead the real world is harsh, unjustified, cruel and just to piss you off even more it likes to slap you straight hard in the face, and you can’t do anything about it. There’s no prince riding on his white horse ready to sweep you off your feet. No, your prince is just a retard in tin foil. There’s no genie waiting to grant you three wishes; instead there’s lies to draw you in, that ask for everything you’ve got in return for luxury and riches, only to turn around and dump you on your ass on the pavement with nothing.
There are some people in this world who understand this early in their lives. They figure out that we don’t all grow up to be princess or super heroes, but middle class citizens, working an office job. But there are others who have a hard time letting go of the dreams, the wishes. They go through life, being crushed over and over again just because everything doesn’t turn out like the plan they had in their heads, and it kills them.
Charlotte had a hard time letting go of things. One early Monday morning as she rode the train into town, watching building after building flash past the window in a colourful blur, she contemplated how her life would be if she had done it differently. Only a week ago had her boyfriend of three years broken up with her. This set off a chain reaction, making her realize that she had been do distracted by him to see how incredibly boring the rest of her life was. Building after building flashing by, just like the opportunities that flashed past her life, that she had missed because she had been so wrapped up in the little things that really meant nothing. She reached out and touched the cool glass, hoping that if she tried a bit harder she could really touch the buildings. Little sparkling rain drops attacked the other side of the glass, trying and trying like she was; her own little army, loosing the battle for her. Just like the rain, she knew she’d never reach the other side. The buildings all disappeared into darkness as the train rushed into the dark tunnel as it did every morning. Cheap, florescent lights lit up the train’s carriage; scarcely enough to see, but it didn’t really matter. Charlotte didn’t really need to see. She was alone in the train, as usual at six am in the morning; alone to drown in her thoughts that liked to suffocate her with torment. Shakespeare said that present fears are far less than horrible imaginings. Her future was melting away in her hands like butter; high calorie, fat causing butter. Charlotte was going into town to the university to study art and literature. It wasn’t such a bad school, but her end of school finals had hurt her enough, stealing her away from life, just to study people she didn’t understand, people she won’t meet and people who won’t change her life, even the slightest bit. And now she’d have to do that all over again, only ten times worse. It was taking its toll on her, and she wondered if it was even worth finishing her course. Her parents would tell her to stop being so melodramatic. She wondered how they would feel if they were in her position.
The train slowed to a stop at a station, one station before hers, and few people entered on the train. They stayed close to the doors, not bothering to move upstairs to the chairs like she had. She heard the occasional cough from a man down stairs, one she could see. It was getting close to winter; it would be a cold June this year, and many people were already sick. She wasn’t one to get sick very often, but that didn’t stop her from keeping her distance from people who were. Her school seemed to be filled with sick students and teachers. Coughing and sneezing. Disgusting. She couldn't understand how anyone could be a nurse or a doctor, and have to put up with it every working day of their lives.
Her stop was coming up quickly, and she stepped down to get closer to the door. She held tightly to the pole in the middle of the small room in front of the door to steady herself from falling and bumping into the man who was starting to cough his lungs out. He was an elderly man, with a short grey beard. There weren’t many people standing there with her; about four other people. Most of them looked young enough to be a student like her, and when the train finally came to a stop, they all hurried to the door.
“Excuse me.” Said the man with the grey beard. She spun around, and saw him holding up her sliver scarf. How did that fall off? She swore she would have noticed it.
“Thanks.” She hurried off down the station. She was going to be late again. She hated having such early classes. It was just past eight now, and Charlotte knew she wasn’t going to make it in time. Her art teacher already disliked her enough, because she can’t draw realistically. He tells her that she is too abstract with her painting. But it’s the way he says it. He basically tells her that her paintings are so unrealistic a child could have painted it. It was sad to think that the work that she produced after years of studying art, could have been mistaken for a child’s work.