Since I learned about the comparison of adjectives from a book, I started to accept that I own the superlative degree of “ugly”. I live my life in this attic, safe behind the windows. Everyday, I gaze at the people below me. I watch them as I hide here alone, hungry for the histories they show me. For twenty years, I memorize their faces, knowing them as they’ll never know me. All my life, I wonder how it feels to pass a day not above them, but part of them.
June 24 is the feast day of St. John the Baptist, the patron saint of the town where I reside. It was celebrated by everyone, except for me. The town people where laughing while they were dancing. I was tempted when I saw a street dancer. She was wearing a beaded black dress which gave emphasis on her long and bread-like legs. She was dancing while the men are drumming and the others are drooling. Marvelous! I might have mistaken her as a Sexbomb dancer which I see on television. I rushed downstairs, hoping that I will see her better. I moved a bit closer, forgetting that the last person who saw me in close up was still traumatized. The pretty dancer shouted, “Nice mask!” and winked which made me fall for her. I have never seen such a magnificent beauty. I was about to smile when a succulent tomato was thrown in my face, reminding me that I am a monster. I was about to return to my chamber and prison myself again when the pretty lady followed and said, “So sorry. By the way, I am Dianna,” then smiled. How great it is to see a person smile at you and not frightened. In my brain, I played the song of Maroon Five, She Will be Loved. In that moment, I wondered, or maybe I was sure that she belonged to someone else. “Can you hide me up there? I was avoiding that dirty old man who always bugs me,” she asked as if her question was “Am I beautiful?” and the only possible answer is an affirmation.
I lead Dianna to my chamber where she seems to be delighted. She was staring at me, never allowing a blink to interrupt. I wondered what she thinks until she said, “Hey, I need to go home and yet I know not your name.” “Quasimodo,” I said. “Meaning, deformed?” she asked. “Yes, look at me,” I replied, “I am an unholy demon who should be returning to hell,” “No, you’re not, Quasi.” She said while going downstairs and on the last step, Mr. Perfect, hugged and kissed her on her painted lips and said, “Hi, baby! Sorry I was late.”
I went upstairs as I promised that I would never let anyone see me again. I am a monster, never a part of them. Though I have a good heart, I don’t have a good look. I am already Quasimodo… already deformed. Never should I let others deform me more.