Welcome to another week of fictional weirdness! If you want to catch up with the other Wednesday’s Weird Words, just click on the Stories tab. This challenge gives the chance to think outside of the box; write weirder, stranger, crazier stuff. Though sometimes, my interpretation of ‘weirdness’ seems to present itself as childish grossness. I must warn you, this is one of those times…
Allergic To Compliments
Kendrick had been allergic to compliments since he was a toddler. No one had quite believed it at first, but it was uncanny, every time someone complimented him, he would react immediately.
“Oh what a handsome boy you are, Kendrick.”
Sneeze! Cough! Splutter!
“What beautiful green eyes he has!”
Cough! Tickle! Wheeze!
“Such a clever boy, Kendrick. Aren’t you a clever boy?”
Croak! Sniffle! Sneeze!
His ailment had only got worse with age. Not only did he cough and sneeze, his cheeks went red and his eye lids became swollen. There was no knowing how badly a compliment would effect him until it was said. For some time, he had had a theory that the more that he liked the person, the worse he reacted. However, recent episodes had proved this wrong and now he had no idea what the cause was. Doctors said it was a psychological problem, but he knew that wasn’t true. If it was in his head, he wouldn’t need an inhaler. It was definitely real.
Kendrick’s mother had told him just to be polite. ‘Say thank you and leave quickly, son!’ She had said ‘Just get away from them and it’ll be fine.’ It wasn’t as easy as that though. Kendrick had tried this and it had usually ended with inflaming the problem more. He had found himself buckled over in coughing fits, being nursed by the ‘complimenter’ and feeling inexplicably sick to his stomach.
Finally, in his twenty-third year, Kendrick gave into his allergy. He stated his allergy on all medical forms, he informed work places before job interviews and he carried a card in his wallet that said:
I am allergic to compliments.
A few months after surrendering to his ailment, Kendrick had secured a job. He was a telephone sales-man for a low-rated insurance company. He very rarely made any sales, and therefore was complimented very little. This worked perfectly for him.
He had become interested in one of his colleagues, a small ginger girl, called April. And, in turn, she had begun to like him. They were in that lovely stage where both of them knew with absolute certainty that the other one liked them, and yet they coyly said nothing at all.
One day in June, the pair were sat on the wall outside work, shyly flirting as they picked at their food. April burst into laughter at a joke that Kendrick had made, and he couldn’t help but think how much he liked her. He put down his fondled food and turned to face April.
“April,” he said, shyly “I think you’re the sweetest girl I’ve ever met.”
April smiled and blushed. Kendrick knew he had said the right thing. Just one funny quip to finish things off and she’d be sold. Before he could say a thing, though, he felt a familiar feeling in his nose and throat; a tingling, both ticklish and painful. He tried to hold his breath, he tried to preserve his air of debonair, but it was too late.
Kendrick sneezed louder than ever before. His eyes welled up and his throat constricted. He looked up slowly to see April ‘s face scrunched up with disgust, a thin layer of shiny snot coating her cheeks. This had definitely not gone to plan. Kendrick muttered some croaky apologies inbetween using his inhaler, and April nodded speechlessly as she ran off to wash her face. Now was not the time that Kendrick wanted to learn that he was just as allergic to giving compliments, as he was to receiving them.
What a curse compliments can be.