Twin rivalry

          I stand here with the thunder rolling in the not too distant distance and thesun beaming down over the grass as I spar with my older half. As always I winthe physical contest. But something is different. I can feel a shift in ourstruggle of superiority as he has changed a rule; he has given in to hisweakness. He has tried to be more like me.

           I blocked his punch with my forearm; it stings but not enough to avert thequickness of my counter. My ridge-hand went into his throat—hard enough to hurtbut not hard enough to damage—and I follow up with a standing leg sweep. Hefalls to the ground hard.

           I smile, he doesn't, "I let you have the first move and you stilllost."

           My twin, my rival, my counterpart, grunts before he speaks, "I saw noreason to hurt you. I took the fall so you wouldn't have to."

           "Don't make excuses. You already look weak."

           "I'm not weak for having a conscience."

           I extend my hand to assist him up, "Yeah you look real strong on yourback."

           My twin slaps my hand and pushes himself up, "A victory here means nothing.I fight for a purpose."

           "Victory always matters. Your reliance on conscience is yourweakness."

           "Only you would think that. I don't destroy indiscriminately under a veilof respect. I seek out honor, and sincere respect. I have no need to flaunt mystrength on the weak."

           This angers me as I know the implication of his words, "Then it is you whois insincere. If you can beat me, then beat me."

           My twin shakes his head, "I don't need to beat you. Knowing I can isenough."

           I pop him on his chest. Not hard, this time, he ignores it--I figured he would.I hit him again this time hard enough that he has to shift legs to remainstanding. He tilts his head in question and defiance.

          "No its not. I won't stop until you beat me," I slug him again,knuckles to the lower side of his ribs--I know that hurts; he winces. As hetries to take the "high road" I force him to come to my level. Iforce him to strike because it is the time to strike. I force him to actbecause inaction is weakness. My blows become harder, unrelenting, and he takesthe punishment.

           Then it finally happens. I swung for the blow that should put him down and heraises both his arms and stops me. I see it coming, but I had gone too far inmy swing and couldn't close the opening in time. His elbow hits my chest thenhe used his body weight and shoulder to push me off balance. His hand closedaround my throat and he pushed me to the ground. The impact was jarring and turnedeverything white.

           I let out a heavy sigh and jumped up before my twin offers to help me.

           He spoke with a cool, emotionless voice, "You think I can't win. I canwin. I refuse to live in this world without right and wrong. Our strength comesfrom our conscience not just out muscles. And to think less is weakness. AndI...."

           "Those who oppose us won't hesitate because of your rules. We can'tprotect ours if we aren't ready. If we aren't ready, it won't matter who is rightor who is wrong. And I...."

           We turned our backs to each other. I lower my head as I can't hold it up, butout of respect I finish my sentence, "I can't live with failure," andI hear the thing that strikes me harder than his knuckles ever could. His voiceechoed with mine in both confession and vocabulary. We both turn around slowlyand face each other. And it was then that—and for the first time in years—he doesn't seem so different.



lindsay   lindsay wrote
on 10/16/2008 5:49:08 PM
Zach, this is very good. I like the dichotomy of the internal and external battle. The transition from opposition to realization that they aren't so different is well done.

G_Money   G_Money wrote
on 10/6/2008 7:39:36 AM
ZACH! I can't tell you 'how bad this is' because it isn't. I like how you dissected your character and put your inner conflict in an external battle. This is really good!

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writing zachoryty2008
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Rating: 9.0/10

A Word from the Writer
This is something I wrote because of a conscience conflict I was dealing with. I felt like I was fighting myself. Um.. i don't know, this probably sucks, but let me know how bad it is and I can do better next time :)