Prose: Brad – Edward Rojas

Brad
Edward Rojas

It started as a joke, kind of. You’re not the prettiest girl in school but you’re good enough to make it into the sexual fantasies of your friend Brad. Clever, charming, fucked up Brad. School sucks. Parents suck. Life sucks. And you’re about to as well for the first time and there it is dangling right in front of you. Stiff as a rod. You don’t really want to but you’ve crossed the line of no return. It doesn’t really matter either way. Seventeen years of straight As has led to this. Three shots of vodka and you’re not even that drunk. Electronic music from Kayla’s party is booming from upstairs and you’re in the basement with Brad. Sweaty, hairy, horny Brad. You look up at his pimpled face and decide why not. Oh well. Open up, here comes the plane.

Flash.

This is what you get.

It takes a second to realize what just happened.

Brad always said he wanted to change the world. He would say it in this sinister way that would rattle your angst. Your special angst leading you down the right path. Brad was always reading these weird psychology books about family dynamics. He was obsessed with the Oedipus complex. Oh Brad. What have you done. Brad’s illuminated smile is all you can see and you start screaming at him. You tell him to delete it. You tell him not to show anyone. You grab his phone to find that it’s already sent and he just laughs.

Brad wanted us to reexamine our social constructs. Embrace the taboo. Question the underpinnings of society. You never really had a crush on Brad but he was your only friend. He was kind of cute and it was fun to hate the world with someone. A real sweetheart. Brad helped plan a surprise birthday party to your favorite amusement park with your family. Your dad loved him. They liked to chat over facebook and eventually exchanged numbers. He liked your dad so much. Brad believed in changing the world one small step at a time.

Girls used to make fun of Brad for his acne in middle school. He was never popular but had a sharp edge. An edge that could open up your stomach and spill out your guts if you got too close. But you liked him. He talked to you like an intelligent human being. You always knew something might happen between the two of you and figured that wouldn’t be the worst thing that could happen. Brad was a little psychotic.
And you kind of liked it.

Sometimes it made you uncomfortable. He could snap from charming to neurotic in a second. Sometimes you’d cry. Life was a bitch and Brad understood. You’d say you just wanted to destroy everything and run away. Brad was a good listener. He wanted to be a psychologist. One time he said society prevents a father and daughter from having a healthy relationship because of the norms and standards we have adopted. He said the right relationship with her father is crucial to a young girl’s development. Brad wanted to make the world a better place.

Kayla’s party sucked. A bunch of horny teenagers grinding to generic electronic music and you and Brad sneak into the basement with a bottle of vodka. Last night Brad went to your house for dinner and discussed Freud and Jung with your dad while you got more pasta. In the basement you and Brad take some shots and he gets a little too close and says

“Wouldn’t it be funny if we kissed?”

It would.

So funny that one thing leads to another and you figure out what Welcome to the Jungle is about and the next thing you know you’re working on a thick sausage sandwich and your life is about to get ruined.

You ask him why he did it. Brad wanted the world to change. You’re crying and Brad thinks he did the right thing. You stare in horror at the screen. Remember the Oedipus complex? Think about that the other way around. Father and Daughter. Brad wanted to revolutionize psychology. At 10:47 P.M the photo was seen by your dad. Now you know why Brad always said he wanted a daughter.