The smile was crudely plastered onto his face, yet everyone still bought it. Somehow. He was grateful his ploy of happiness was somewhat successful, but deep down inside of himself, he hoped-- he prayed-- that someone would see through his mask, see who he was, and actually like him for it.
No one ever did. No one ever tried. Except for me. But I didn't matter.
And so, he was trapped in the doldrums of mundane life. Every morning, it was the same routine. Every afternoon was the same. Every evening, every sleepless night. One, wake up. Two, go to school. Three, come home. Four, wait for the next day.
One two three four. One, two, three, four. A mind numbing cycle. He dreamt of freedom, but never fought for it. Partially because of his mask: his shield, his protection, his cover. And also that he was so used to his daily, weekly, routine that the thought of anything else was strange.
I pitied him.