A young boy in his mid-teens was sitting inside his bedroom while thinking about the conversation he had earlier today with the members of his school project group.
One by one the words of their discussion started to hover above his head as he kept recalling the unpleasant memory that he had to endure after upsetting all the kids that were counting on him.
"Are you kidding me!!!???"
"I'm... I'm sorry..."
"You're sorry?? Dude!! You said you would have it done for today!! What is your damage??"
"I- I thought we still had one week left, so I wasn't worried... I- I-"
"So were you just gonna wait a whole week before starting?? Is that it?? Were you gonna leave it to finish the day before we had to deliver it??"
"Ugh... This is why I said that putting you on the team was a bad idea... If the stupid teacher hadn't forced us..."
"I... I can still-"
"Just go away... We will deal with the rest. We don't need you to make things even worse..."
"... ... ... O- Okay..."
Once the boy was done reminiscing about his shame and came back to reality, he decided to storm off from the room before his parents could notice and ended up running away from his home with no idea of where to go or what to do.
An old lady walked towards the nearest bench she could find inside of the train station carrying two shopping bags.
The place was filled with many people waiting for the next ride to arrive but luckily for her, they were all standing in groups while talking with each other, leaving plenty of space to sit.
The lady had grey long hair tied up, a dark blue dress that covered her arms and legs, a necklace of pearls around her neck, and a bracelet dangling from her arm. The color of her eyes was not able to be recognized due to the reflective surface of her glasses.
Even though she seemed to be struggling to carry her bags, she appeared to be in a good mood, as if something nice was about to happen soon.
Upon reaching the bench, she came across a young lad dressed in a school uniform with a backpack by his side who was sitting there hugging his knees and burying his face on his legs. It looked like something was troubling him.
"Excuse me, young man..." The lady whispered as she came closer and took a seat by his side, "what seems to be the problem?"
The boy did not react. He simply continued to hide his expression while acting as if the lady wasn't even there.
"My, my... Young ones these days... Sure like to be dramatic..." she continued.
The boy still did not move or said anything.
The lady simply sighed and continued to talk to herself, "I do wonder when this generation started to become so soft and easy to disturb... Back in my day, it would take the loss of a family member to drive someone to their tears... Nowadays... What was it? Getting dumped by the girl you liked? Getting bitten by a little dog? Hearing that your favorite show got canceled?
Kids these days sure do like to cry about the silliest things..."
The boy began to twitch and raised his head a little bit.
"Although, I guess this is really our fault as well... We have been spoiling these new kids way too much. My folks hardly ever did anything to spoil me or my siblings... But I guess you can't expect everyone to raise their children like they should..."
As she continued to talk the lad continued to lift his face, leaving his teary-eyed expression covered by his brown hair to be fully exposed as he started to glare at the lady.
"I guess I shouldn't judge that much... Kids should be allowed to cry about silly things when they want to cry about silly things... So, please, don't mind me, little boy, go ahead and continue to cry about your silly thing like a good kid that cries about silly things should do... I'm sure there is nothing better you could be doing with your time-"
"Hey..." the boy finally uttered a word, "Are you talking to me...?"
The lady could feel his gaze piercing her skin but she simply continued to pay attention to the station waiting for the train to come.
"Hey!" the boy said again, "I asked you a question!!"
This time he stood up from the bench and placed himself right in front of her, making it impossible for her to ignore him.
"Mmm? Oh, my? Hello, young man! Can I help you with something?"
"You..." the boy mumbled while a vein could be seen pulsating above his forehead, "Just now... You were mocking me, right?"
"Who, me?" the lady asked with a badly acted surprised expression, "Heavens, no! I was just asking to a sad-looking young man if he had any problem, but the sad-looking young man decided to stay silent and ignore me, so I decided to talk to myself for a little bit... Why? Did something I said upset you by any chance?"
The boy noticed the big dumb grin the lady had on her face and realized she wasn't even going to try to pretend she wasn't talking about him.
The boy's fist began to shake, "Look, lady, I don't know you, and you don't know me, so don't go acting all high and mighty as if you know what I'm going through! I'll cry if I want to, and I'll ignore people if I want to!"
Upon looking closely, the lady could tell that the lad was around the age of either fifteen or sixteen. Compared to her who was in her late sixties, seeing such a little kid getting so agitated so easily made her want to tease him more.
"Seems fair enough... In that case, I will continue to say whatever I want to. You can just go ahead and ignore me like you were doing before."
"And trust me, when you get to my age, you get to have a looooooot to say about a lot of things!" she commented with a big smile.
"Of course... If you don't want me to just keep spouting nonsense without knowing your situation... You could always stop me by just telling me what IS your situation!"
The boy raised an eyebrow and gave a few steps back, "Why would I talk about my life with some rando on the street?"
"Ah! Good point... I do look so threatening after all and appear to have such a good memory... Clearly, you have a lot to lose by opening up to me..."
The lady was about to start giggling to herself but after taking one look at the boy's face and seeing the color red covering his entire head while also noticing his increasing trembling, it seemed like she had pushed his buttons a bit too much.
'Good grief... Kids these days really can't take a joke...' she thought to herself, 'This generation really is way too sensitive... I better stop before he starts crying again.'
"I'm sorry..." she blurted out, "I said too much didn't I?"
The boy did not say anything and just returned to his seat, assuming the same posture from before.
The lady rolled her eyes and left out a small sigh, "You looked like you were in trouble with something weighing on your head, so I thought talking it out might have helped... But you refused to talk so I tried to kinda force it... I shouldn't have done that..."
The lad did not react.
"I have things that trouble me all the time..." she continued, "But I never have anyone to listen..."
Upon hearing those words the boy took a small glimpse at the lady.
"I guess I was trying to give someone something I always wanted for myself... But I shouldn't assume that what I want is what people need..." she added.
The boy raised his head and properly looked at the old lady. He assumed she was just a weirdo trying to mess with him, but it appeared she was legitimately trying to help him out, and from her words, it seemed like he was the first interaction she had in a long time.
"Something happened at school today..." he mumbled.
The lady widened her eyes at realizing he was finally ready to talk.
"I had a really big project to deliver today... But I ended up messing up the dates... Thinking it was set to next week..." he continued. The lady noticed that he was clenching his fists while muttering those words, "It was a team project, and all the members of my group got angry at me... And now... I'm afraid of going home and telling my parents what happened..."
The lady began to rub her chin, "Why is that...?"
"They..." he took a deep breath before continuing, "They are not very kind towards failure... And... I have a bad habit of failing a lot..."
"Do they hit you or something?"
"No, no... Nothing like that... But... They just get so disappointed and so upset... They always act like my failures are like the end of the world or something... It makes it very hard to talk to them..."
The lady leaned back on her seat, "Must be hard... Being afraid of talking to your parents..."
"I just wish I could die..."
At that moment, the lady silently gasped and began to stare at the boy like her life depended on it, "You- You don't mean that..."
"I do..." he claimed, "If I was gone... They wouldn't have to worry about me..."
"Because of one bad project?"
"Because of many bad projects... Because of a long series of bad projects, no friendships, no idea of what I want to do, or any kind of accomplishment to show them... I'm nothing but dead weight in their lives..."
"Riight... Listen, young man, I know things seem bad right now, but that is no reason to make such a hasty judgment."
"I'm not making any hasty judgment!"
"Oh, sure, sure... You're upset, scared, angry, nervous, stressed, feeling pressured, alone, and on top of all that, you're still very young... Obviously, you're in the perfect state of mind to make such an important decision!"
"It's none of your business... Just leave me alone."
She looked into his eyes to try to find some kind of hesitation, but the boy showed no regret in his words. He truly meant everything he said.
"You know... There are three types of people in this world that I just can't stand..." she commented.
"Eh...?" the boy mumbled while turning around to look at her.
"First, people that lack humbleness and act like they are better than everyone else..." she started while standing from his seat and cracking her knuckles.
The boy raised an eyebrow, "What are you-"
"Second... People that don't consider the feeling of others, and just do and say whatever they want without worrying about the consequences!" she added while marching towards him.
"Hey! Why are you talking like that?" the boy asked while crawling backwards to the edge of the bench. He began to look around and noticed that every single person in the station had stopped moving.
"And finally... People that utter the word 'die' without having any idea of the weight it carries!" she finished while extending her hand over him.
"What the- What's happening? What is-"
"You need to grow up a little..." she whispered to him.
And the next thing he knew, he couldn't talk, he couldn't move, and everything turned pitch black around him.
The only thing he had were his thoughts, repeating over and over again the words 'What's happening?? What's happening??'
He began to tremble, trying to understand what was going on, waiting for something to make sense.
Minutes passed, very long and very stressful minutes of not having a clue of what was what, until a strange light shined upon his face.
Before he realized it, he was sitting in the arms of a strange lady covered in sweat with long messed-up blond hair, looking at him as if he was her treasure.
He tried to move away but all of his limbs had completely shrunk, his body was the size of a basketball, and there wasn't a single piece of cloth to cover his skin.
The strange blond lady opened her mouth and began to speak.
"***********!! ****, *****! ****... ***!!"
But for some reason, he couldn't understand a single word she said.
At that moment, the boy, or rather, the baby, tried his best to process the situation, but the only thing that came to his mind while he stared at his now tiny hands was a set of three words that best expressed how he was feeling right now.
'What the f*ck!!??'
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