The Janitor

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The janitor paused just around the corner, hesitating at the sound of voices.

A loud and aggressive voice rang out from the room and through the empty hall. “How dare they?! How dare they insult us with their insinuations of insanity and their threats of normalcy? Oh, but we know their secret, don’t we love? They’re just afraid; afraid and jealous because they know we’re the better ones. We’re the right way and they’re all wrong.”

A new voice, meek and timid, sounded in response, barely above a whisper. The janitor strained to listen from his hidden spot in the hall. “But what, well, what if they’re right? Maybe we should listen to…”

“No!” A cry of outrage and a large crash; the janitor winced at the distinct sound of shattering glass. Then, with a forced edge of calm, “No, no, don’t you see? Don’t you see what they’re doing? It’s sabotage; they’re working against us. You can’t trust a word they say. They try to bring us down to their level since they know they can never rise to ours.”

Meek again, “They told me you would say this, they told me not to listen. Oh, I don’t know. I don’t know. “

The aggressive voice suddenly transformed into a silky, soothing tone, “Shh, it’s alright. It’s all alright. How can you doubt me? I’m right here; I’ll always be here. You just have to listen to what I say; just like we’ve always done.”

A defeated, yet relieved, sigh, then, “You’re right. You’re always right. Please don’t let them take you away.”

The janitor started in surprise as the door to the room slammed shut and footsteps sounded in the hall. He held his breath and pressed himself silently into the wall, as if trying to disappear into it. Deciding to risk a look, he peered cautiously around the corner, but saw only one person walking away.





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