CHOCOLATE CHARLIE II

5/16/2022     

In high-school, Charlie made a name for himself by always offering part of his chocolate bars to anyone he met. In science, he learned that these sugary confections contained caffeine, theobromine, and phenylethylamine, chemicals that stimulate brain responses that produce good mood behavior. Happiness in a wrapper. This unselfish act gave him the nickname of Chocolate Charlie. Always smiling and constantly giving away his dark drug to people he encountered, Charlie enjoyed making people happy for over a decade. Then 1 day, he came across 2 bullies hell bent on causing emotional havoc. As they finger poked and belittled Charlie, he was dumbfounded by their strange behavior. He had seen anger by other humans caused by irritating circumstances but had never seen intentional hatred aimed at 1 person just for being different. His accosters surmised that this smiling individual who showed geniality was gay and needed to be rewired by violence. The smaller of the 2 bullies, driven by a need to prove himself to his mentor, gave a substantial heave that launched Charlie to the ground. As he laid there, he reached in his pocket to retrieve his chocolate bar that would rectify this misunderstanding. “HE’S GOT A GUN!” said the pusher, which activated the big one to swing a 3′ pipe that he held in his hand. The blow landed on Charlie’s cranium just above his temple with enough force to fracture 4 triangular pieces of skull into his brain. Charlie was no more. Two uneducated thugs with improper childhood rearing went off to prison for 26 years each. Charlie’s mother died, not from a genetic defect, but from a broken heart and poor Charlie never made another person smile. His chocolate bar that he wrapped in a small piece of aluminum space blanket, to keep the bar from melting, was enshrined in an obscure evidence room. It never told the story of how a piece of fabric destroyed 4 lives on a non-descript, Friday afternoon in a small town that no one ever heard of.

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