FALLEN SUPERHEROES

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The outskirts of cities are strange places, architecturally empty but if you look deeply into them, there is life inside. The council flats are all the same, like human hives, where lives are a great variety of people, poor people, pensioners, traffickers, immigrants, apartment mice, workers, drug addicts and families.
All there, together, to share the rot and the human degradation to which people have become addicted and in front of which they pass with extreme indifference.
I was born here, the son of misunderstood artists, who preferred to escape from reality, but whether I like it or not, they are my parents and I have to live with their theories of hippies about society, the state and ways of living.
Basically, I grew up like a savage, on the road amid nauseous rubbish and football matches with the neighborhood boys.
I was never happy, all those ugly indignant things, I often took the subway and went for a walk in the upper districts, to breathe a good air, but even this did not diminish my suffering and my discomfort .
Perhaps it was these feelings that pushed me into the arms of a Nazi group, the Goth Red, those I saw in my neighborhood. I met them one day just outside the buildings, where the houses joined the camps and they were engaged in one of their “punishing missions” against a group of kids begging around, the same ones who lit fires to warm themselves in the cold winter nights.
In a moment everything in my mind had taken shape, superheroes, this is what I thought of them, the only ones who could see, the only ones who cared about something, the only ones who did something to improve the situation.
I started seeing them and quickly I became a leader in the group, the older kids knew very well how to exploit my hatred and anger to make every situation more effective.
As a group we lost all control, we felt strong, we often overdid everything, adrenaline, violence, blood and alcohol were our drugs.
And we were addicted to that lifestyle, more than the poisoned people that we were beating, we thought we were better than them but actually we were like them.
Violence was never enough, and the more time passed the more we needed strong emotions, so we started to use amphetamines too, we were prey to delusions of omnipotence, with pocket knives, always in the middle of fights with gypsies, football hooligans and any human variety that responded to our insults.
Then one day we met at the end of the street, Sahrji, my neighbor, a boy whom I cared of, we grew up together playing football and watching cartoons on TV. He was the son of immigrants now fully integrated into society, his mother stayed at home and his father was a bricklayer, he had other brothers, I believe two, but I had never seen them, God knows were had they moved out.
Sahrji, was shy and introverted, and one day while we were listening to music he confessed that he was attracted to boys and that he was ashamed of this, and that his parents would kill him if they knew something like that. For me it was not a problem, I cared about him anyway, he was my friend, he understood me and he listened to me, and we had a whole world together. That day I betrayed him, to feel superior in front of my new friends, I revealed his secret, and they, like a bunch of ravenous wolves, hurled at him insulting him and beating him up. They hurt him, I heard him screaming, he cried, he begged them to stop and I was impassive, stuck, I looked at him, I wanted to react to go to them and send them away, but my body was still not moving, stiff as if made of stone. They battered him to the point he no longer was recognizable, then they escaped and so did I.  Being ashamed of myself, I never would have been able to look at him in the eyes once more and see his contempt and disappointment. I felt like a traitor, I was disgusted. I stayed at home for days, I wanted to go see him but I was too cowardly, too much to apologize. we no longer talked, our friendship no longer existed, we often met in front of the door, but he wouldn’t look at me, it was as if I did not exist, while I, without saying a word, stayed there in the hope of that he would do a gesture of affection, with a huge weight on my conscience that wouldn’t give me peace, I felt bad and couldn’t live. I wasted years hating the place where I was born and raised, feeling different from the people that lived there, but what was I of so different … nothing, in fact I’m worse than all of them just because I thought of being better. I’m horrid like this suburb, I’m some human trash.  Chiara