By Cloudburst

Willful blindness. Those are the words that come to mind when I think of Cassidy Chase. It doesn’t make sense at all for someone to be willfully blind, to ignore what’s right in front of them or to refuse to see things as they truly are. But, that’s how she was everyday. Whenever it rained, she would trudge defiantly onwards without an umbrella and with a smile on her face like it was the brightest day. She’d laugh and sing and try to delude anyone who’d listen that today was beautiful. Some would revel in her optimism and innocent imagination while others would say, she’s simply bound to catch a cold. And when the kids at school teased and jeered at her for her queerness, she’d just nod and say hello, as a queen would to her humble subjects. There was never a moment when Cassidy Chase lost face, no matter the circumstances. Even in the darkest and dreariest of situations, she could the spin the truth like thread and weave in silken lies to make an image of what she thought things ought to be. One could almost marvel at her state of mind and being: how she couldn’t live one moment of her life in gloom. Nothing bad could ever touch Cassidy because she simply wouldn’t let it. She nearly had everyone fooled but, I saw her for who she really was; Cassidy Chase was a liar through and through and that’s all she ever was.


I’d watch her skip home as light as feather until an invisible burden would plop back onto her shoulders and I’d see her turn to stone. She didn’t look sad or mad but, her lack of liveliness was enough to shock me to the core. It was then that I realized that “home” for Cassidy was an abandoned one. The whole place was desolate and unsightly – nothing like the girl I’d go to school with. Yet, again and again I’d see her put up a facade, that despite what her beggarly clothes implied, she was a privileged girl because she was a happy one. She’d chase after birds and dreams that weren’t there or were unobtainable like she had nothing to lose. And I swore, one of these days reality would catch up to her and she would find herself falling off a cliff too high to climb back up from and no way to deceive herself away from it. So, why is it that when she did finally break down and let her tears fall that I was the one to help her? Well, it wasn’t because I wanted to say, “I told you so”. I only wanted her to be unafraid to open her eyes and know that even if she accepted that things weren’t great right now, that wouldn’t mean she would never see a good thing again.