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Chapter 1 : The Bubble of Truth
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The waiting seems eternity
The day will dawn of sanity
Is this a kind of magic?
QUEEN: It's a Kind of Magic (1986)
Bugger. I really hated that word…well technically the two words. Honestly, whoever said The truth will set you free had no idea what he was talking about. It did not set you free. What it did was get you into loads of trouble and a reputation for being cheeky and witty and brutally honest (all three of which are directly related with the trouble bit), forced you to bite your tongue rather hard, and made this annoying thing called a blush appear on your face more times than humanly possible. How did I know all of this? Simple, really… the truth loved me. I didn’t love it, but it loved me:
I was incapable of telling lies.
Oh yes, incapable. Not even the slightest one. Not even ‘the colour of ink is red’ when it was black. It sucked. I couldn't even write a lie. I was in a truth bubble.
When somebody asked me a question, I had two choices (or rather now did… since I had somewhat learned to control my big mouth): keep quiet or answer the truth…providing I knew it, of course.
That’s where it sucked some more. You’d think this truth thing would help me with school. But nope - that would be too convenient, wouldn't it? Usually it would go something like this: teacher asks a question I of course don’t know the answer to, and can't make something up because that would be untruthful. And exams... geez, I couldn't even fluff my way through them, which totally sucked because I was often inclined to... well, not study.
As if not telling anything but the truth and the whole truth wasn’t enough; I could tell when people were lying to me. Not sure how — it was just something about the way the words rolled off their lips and their eyes shimmered… Sounds good, right?
Not. That's why I only had like three friends…two of which were guys. They seemed to lie less. I guess girls are too conniving. Either way, I discovered pretty early on that my truth and their lies didn’t go well together — there was a reason why people always said ‘if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say it’, or ‘think before you talk’. Yeah, the reason being the truth hurts. This is where that other saying comes in, the one I liked better: You can’t handle the truth! If only I could ever utter those words…stupid truth bubble.
Yes, the bubble of truth that surrounded me, Andrea Thorse, had gotten me nowhere these past 17 years. True, my parents and all their friends had thought I was a miracle child, always answering honestly. True, it saved me some friendship troubles. But other than that, it didn’t do anything for me. It screwed me up so badly that even that damned know-it-all sorting hat hadn't known what to do with me seven years ago. Hufflepuff? No…too brutally honest. And too mischievous. Ravenclaw? Haha, yeah right (I’m not dumb, but honestly, I’m no nerd either). Gryffindor? Not brave enough. Oh and that loyalty thing…I could betray or rat on people faster than somebody could say veritaserum. Slytherin? Brutal honesty aside, I wasn’t cruel. Besides, who ever heard of a completely honest Slytherin? The hat took more than 3 minutes to figure me out… which, since I'm being honest, it didn’t. Not really. It was resigned to place me in Ravenclaw though.
So here I was, the misfit Ravenclaw, 7 years later in the same position yet again…yeah, the one where I was forced to tell the truth.
Which brings me back to the school thing - singled out in class once more. McGonagall just had to ask me for my homework which I obviously - being the lazy Ravenclaw I was - didn’t do.
Did I mention nobody but Dumbledore and I knew of my gift?
Right. So I couldn't just keep quiet and shrug…she wanted a verbal answer. I couldn't just say, ‘Dog ate it’. Oh no. I was obliged to give the whole truth. The words just spilled out of me as soon as I opened my mouth after nearly two minutes of silence:
“I forgot about it.”
Well, I was getting a little better — at least I could stop myself before —
“Because playing exploding snap is a lot more fun than transfiguration essays.”
Yeah, remember that cheeky thing I had mentioned way back there? Know what goes hand in hand with cheekiness to a professor at Hogwarts?
“Detention, Miss Thorse,” McGonagall said after her shock and the class’ sniggers had subsided. Honestly, I didn’t know why she was so shocked. It’s not like it was the first time it has ever happened. “See me in my office after dinner.”
See, that was what made me mad and curl up in my corner of the class all to myself. I could have gotten away with my incomplete homework if it wasn’t for my bigmouth. Stupid truth bubble.
I didn’t even know if there was an antidote for this curse of mine. I hoped there was, or else one of three things would be happening sometime within the next year. One, I found my own anticurse. Two, somebody killed me for something I said (Mdm Pomfrey knows me very well at this point), or three, I jumped off a cliff and ended my misery, silencing myself forever.
Or, you know, I could just go insane…eh, insaner.
Pfft. Why was it so endearing anyways? I remember being taught ages ago that truth was a virtue…
Alright, fine. I could see - if I tried hard enough - how it could be a virtue, but this was just plain cruel. This was torture. Really, it wasn't like I would lie all the time. It just would be nice to for once get out of trouble with a lie… or something to that effect. Just one lie. I’d kill for it.
Like right now.
I hadn’t even noticed I was walking to my next class already. I had zoned out again. Staying silent and brooding upon the truth did that to me a lot. But I was walking, and lo and behold, he had to come talk to me.
“Hey Remus,” I replied casually. It’s not that I didn’t like Remus. No, in fact I liked him a lot. But talking with him was hard most of the time, because of his ‘my-mother-is-sick-again’ excuse which of course I knew was a lie.
...And because he was so cute I couldn’t trust myself to not say it. At least we never had that awkward phase after we broke up — yes, I had dated Remus Lupin; two exciting and wonderful (yet super frustrating) months out of the monotony that was sixth year.
“Heading to Charms?”
I nodded. Silence was good.
“Mind if I join you?”
I looked up at him. “No, but where’s everybody else?”
He shrugged. “James is with Lily, again. Apparently the head prefects have some discussing to do.”
I bit my tongue as he smirked at me. Honestly, were those two ever going to hook up?
“Sirius is Merlin knows where sulking about his breakup, again. And Peter is gorging out on food, again,” Remus finished.
“I see,” I muttered, trying to contain my curiousity. It didn’t work. “And you? Why aren’t you with your girlfriend?”
“I don’t know where she is,” he replied easily.
Ah, there it was. That way my precious, sensitive ears tingled, nerves sending lies to my brain and distributing some kind of pain along the way that I wasn’t sure how to describe. It was like paper cuts, except on the inside… it didn’t hurt a lot, but it did sting for those brief three seconds. It seemed though, that the bigger the lie, the bigger the cut.
“I hate that,” I muttered, bringing my hands to my temples.
Remus frowned. “What do you hate?”
I bit my lip, forcing back the answer that was on the tip of my tongue. I smiled and shook my head, waving my hand dismissively. If he forgot about the question and left me alone, I’d be safe.
But he didn’t. Obviously.
Life hated me.
“People lying to me,” I said quickly, speeding up, hoping he wouldn’t hear.
My attempt to zoom past was in vain, as he easily kept up. He looked confused for a moment, but replied, “Yeah, everybody does. But even so, everybody lies right?”
I wanted to explain, but instead just smiled back. Remus was smart, and I doubt he hadn't noticed my preoccupation with the truth these past seven years. I just hoped he would think I was insane instead of cursed.
‘Course, the truth was that I was both. But he didn’t need to know that. Nobody did.
*Oct '13 - Trying to fix the tense shifting. I think it's better now, but as always, if you notice anything off, you know what to do! Cheers.
Author's Note: Hello! If you're reading this...thank you!
This is my first attempt at a first person story, and I don't know how far it will go but I decided to post it up and see if anybody has any comments on the style...if you do please share them. Also, it's my first time writing the whole thing in present tense, so if you happened to notice any tense shifting please give me a shout.
I know the plot seems a bit weird (if you've read my other stories then this probably isn't a surprise to you ;) but give it a chance. It came to me a couple weeks ago in the middle of bio-analytical chemistry lecture...and if you've ever seen the movie Liar Liar (which is absolutely great) then you can guess its based off that in a very small way.
Thanks a million for reading! Please review!
*sigh* now it seems I've procrastinated enough and must go back to finishing my lab report...
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