The World through the eyes of Nobby Nobbs
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Actually I'm a beggar. If you see me on the street give me a quarter, maybe I can buy my beloved Nobby from T. Pratchett... No way...
Authors Note: Ok, this can probably win the award of the least catchy authors not ever, but I'm going to write it anyway... So, what do you think when you listen to the name Nobby? Oh yes. But what's Nobby's real life? The following story is bitter and sad, but I urge you to take a couple of minutes to read it and contemplate on it- it has something to tell you... Please...
Nobby looked at his reflection in the mirror. He put his helmet on, smiled ironically and went off to work.
As he was walking down the streets, he could feel the criticizing leers of people; not following him, but on the contrary moving away from him. Nobody wants to see the freak, he bitterly said to himself.
He entered the Watch house buried in his depressive thoughts. 'Hello sarge' he said just loud enough for someone to hear, as he collapsed helpless in a chair. 'Hey Nobby' he heard Colon answer nonchalantly. He didn't notice... Nobby thought. But then again why should he? Who cares about how the freak feels?
He wasn't angry with Colon. He couldn't be. On the contrary, he was grateful. Colon was his best friend and he knew it. He probably was his only real friend. He knew Fred didn't care he was a freak, although he couldn't see him as something different than that, but he had come to terms with it a long time ago... But he was always there for him, all those years whatever happened. 'Good old Fred...' he whispered without realizing it. 'What would I do without you...'
Commander Vimes entered the building with the air of a man who knows what he wants and how to get it. He greeted them briefly and went up the stairs to his office in a rush. Lucky man... thought Nobby. He grew up poor but decent, and managed to work his way up the ladder of society to become one of the most powerful men in the city, and what was even more important he had a loving wife and a young son. Lucky man... But Nobby was not jealous of him. Vimes totally deserved everything he had achieved. And after all jealousy had to include some negative feelings, and Nobby had none for this man. After all the Commander was nice enough to him. Maybe he didn't have the stomach to look straight at him, but at least he kept him in the Watch despite the fact that he was totally useless, and he allowed his petty thefts. He was nicer than he ought to be. After all, Nobby was the freak.
He stared hard at the ceiling, closed his eyes and formed an original idea in his head. He was a lucky person himself. The cruel Gods that created him would have probably expected him to be a circus attraction, tied by the neck and shown around to people as the monkey that can speak. Yet Nobby had a respectable job and a few people he could call friends. He shouldn't be complaining... But was that enough?
The process of thoughts was cut off by a sudden outbreak of laughter. He looked up. Two young lance constables with conspiratory faces were looking at him from the other side of the room. He noticed the lightest smile on Fred's face. 'Something funny sarge?' he asked indifferently. Colon looked nervously around for some help, turned red and tried to say as casually as he could: 'Err... I think there's one of those new jokes around...'. Damn him, the man was never good with excuses. Nobby decided to push it further... 'Oh really? What's it about then?'. Yeah. As if you don't know. 'Err...' Colon shifted again uneasily. 'I don't... I mean I haven't heard it yet' he managed to say. 'But I'll tell you as soon as I find out...' he added helpfully. 'Do that.' replied Nobby bitterly. He knew he shouldn't take it out on him, it wasn't his fault. At least Colon felt guilty for doing that. After all no one did anything strange, they were just laughing at the freak. Who knows... Nobby thought. If I were in their shoes I'd probably do the same, and the poor bastard in my place would feel so fucked up as I feel right now.
He slowly inspected the room. Half of the people were dead bored to be there, but he could see in their eyes how different they were from him. They were happy, or at least have had a glimpse of happiness in their lives.
Nobby felt alone. The only reason he knew what happiness is, is that it is the exact opposite of misery, and he knew the latter all too well... For him happiness was the state of loving and being loved. But no one could say with a straight face they loved Nobby, not even Fred. And why would anyone love the freak? he thought.
He was almost 40. Impressive age for a monkey, some would say. Ha ha ha. After all these miserable years, the only woman that had ever touched him on purpose was his mother. Even when he went to the seamstresses, years ago, they kicked him out laughing. 'We don't do animals!' one of them said, and everyone burst into laughter. Except for him. A burning tear rolled down his cheek.
Nobby turned around, his gaze lost outside the window. What did he ever do to deserve this? A life bereft of happiness, condemned to crying in the shadows; alone... He knew he could never be happy. His breathing grew heavier. What kind of sick God would create a creature bound to be miserable throughout its life? Shouldn't I at least have a chance to be happy? Shouldn't everyone have that chance?
'Not you freak!!!' his inner voice whispered, covering his raging thoughts with the bitter truth of that statement. He lowered his eyes. 'Not you freak...' he repeated to himself.
'Hey, Nobby! Snap out of it!' said Colon in a loud voice, while waving his hand lazily up and down in front of Nobby's tired face.
'Oh... sorry sarge.' said Nobby coming back to reality.
'You haven't drunk your morning cup of coffee right?' Colon said, pretty sure of the accuracy of his guess.
'Something like that Fred... Something like that...' the corporal answered bitterly.
'Come on, we're going on patrol' Colon said nonchalantly. 'You'll get a coffee on the way.'
Nobby followed him out of the Watch house. Colon was sleepy and not really in the mood to talk, so he left Nobby alone with his thoughts.
It was a fine spring day. The sun was shining proudly in the sky after a long and cold winter, and lots of happy people had come out of their winter shells, walking and smiling under its rejuvenating light.
Nobby was daydreaming; again... He was having more and more of that lately. He dreamt he was standing in the middle of this happy mob, a shiny Agatean sword in his hands. The two young lance constables materialized out of thin air in front of him, still laughing... Their eyes move towards the long sword and their expressions freeze. Nobby runs. He only catches a quick glimpse of their terrified faces before their heads hit the ground. There is no mercy in his soul. Only vengeance. The happy people around him fall one after the other. 'You can run for your lives but you won't make it!!! 'I'm too fast, I'm too good for you!' he screams, anger scaring his ugly face. 'WATCH WHAT THE FREAK CAN DO YOU BLOODY BASTARDS!!!'
He stops. He turns around to face a little boy, standing between his slayed parents. Alone. Staring him with deep dark eyes, reflecting neither anger nor criticism, just the infinite sorrow he could recognize from his own heart.
'No!!!' Nobby cried helplessly in his dream. 'That's not what I wanted!!! I never planned to make other people miserable... Everyone should have a chance...' His voice was trembling. 'I... I just wanted to be happy...' he finally said guiltily.
He turned away from the boy's burning stare. He looked at Colon. 'I'm sorry Fred...' he said with a broken voice, as he turned the sword to himself.
A genuine smile cracked on his face.
Ok, Nobby is just a caricature, a grotesque figure that exists just to be made fun of. But he's made of paper-without any feelings. Real people however have a soul, and I hope you can now imagine how they feel when they're being made fun of... I'm sure we've all done that sometimes. I'm not proud of it.
This world has no freaks, whatever form that word takes I your heads. It only has humans. Embrace them.
Ok! There goes a free moral lesson... Sorry, I just couldn't help myself from writing that... Anyway, wipe the tears that are certainly running down your faces (sure thing...) and pleeeeease review!!! I'd really love to know whether you liked my story or not. Don't make me beg!!! Make me happy!!!