Archive for flash friday

Flasher Fiction: Friends

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on March 14, 2014 by synabetic

Been awhile since I posted anything here, and I’ve been working on all kinds of things… so I whipped this up. It’s very fast, fast fiction. I hope you enjoy it.

by Steven G. Saunders


Are we friends?

I like having friends. They’re there when you need them, and you can be there when they need you. Friends are people who are an extension of your family, who are themselves friends. Well, hopefully. Many families are dysfunctional. But this isn’t about family. It’s about the family you choose.

You know.


Sometimes you don’t choose your friends. Maybe you work together or live together or have the same group of friends, and we call these mutual friends. Oftentimes we become friends through mutual friends. Sometimes we are friends because we have no choice. Maybe there’s no one else around with similar interests. Maybe they are your cellmate. In a way, we are all cellmates in the prison of life, but some cellmates are better that other.

You know.

Like friends.

I have many friends. I love them all. Not all of them love me. But that’s okay. Whenever a friend expresses their non-love, I am emotionally pained as I cut them free. It always hurts to discover someone doesn’t enjoy you as a person, especially if you thought they were your friend. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you have friends who will stay with you through anything. Maybe they fucked your partner with you watching TV in the other room, the laundry machine and media pundits drowning out the moans of guilty pleasure. Maybe your friend had you kicked out of your place to live in order to have more room for his comic book collection. Maybe your friend got drunk and told you that your brother is better off dead because your family is fucked up. Maybe your friend stole from you.

In the end, it really doesn’t matter because those kinds of friends are really hard to find. They are more like family than actual family, usually. But other friends… they are only friends with you so they can use you.

Now, to be fair, all friends use each other. We are all, as a species, mutually using tools. Instruments of organic device. Living executions of human will. We are a team-based lot, so being used comes with the whole person package. Still, there are those who use and use and use and are surprised when they are asked to reciprocate. These friends can become dangerous, for if they begin to feel cornered into actually being, you know, a friend, they will then become a “frenemy”

A frenemy is someone who says they’re your friend, but they are actually out for what’s against your best interests. I know who of all my frenemies are. They do not know I know this, because they are so absorbed with themselves that they do not realize that they have made my checklist.

I always have a checklist.

You should, too.

Oftentimes, frenemies will have a very short cycle, turning into full blown anti-friends– or enemies– rather quickly. These people are being more like friends to you than you may think, because they have saved you a lot of legwork. Other friends, the best friends, will notice this too, usually, and take appropriate action. Usually this is distancing themselves from that person in some way. You can tell your new enemy’s best friends for they will act in a similar manner.

Programming is impossible to overcome.

No matter how hard you try.

Stop that.

I said stop it, please.

These new enemies will make no sense to the mindful, rational psyche. None. Usually thoughts of elimination occur, because only sick animals seem to think this way. Or so it seems, anyway.

Indeed, one has to be viewed by many as a sick animal in order to look at it all this way.


Friends are important. They make up the mask of social reason. They are the armor of social justice. They are the lifeblood of who you are as an organism. You are nothing without your friends to reassure you that you are not nothing.

We’re friends.


Stop it.

Just be patient.

You may have no idea how important friends are. They are more important than family, lovers, pets, and gods. They are your universe. You are nothing without your universe, an echo chamber for your perceived reality.

But what happens when a friend makes a deliberate transgression? As already implied, you just move on. Forget about them as friends, and cling to that painful memory of senseless loss. Like a random murder by some foul, misunderstood creature.

Sometimes. Sometimes fate presents itself.

You could be taught lessons, like an unruly school child brought to heel. Made to understand what friendship means–
Means to me? I suppose you’re right.

But at this juncture, what things to me is the only grasp you have left to this world that processes into your brain every second. Soon, this will begin to destroy all of that. I will start slow, because I want you to process it all. I want you to learn this lesson over and over and then have you panic knowing that none of it mattered.

Friends should have fun. You are having fun with me. Isn’t it wonderful?

And you are learning oh so much.

Shhh… not long now.

At first I wanted to respect our friendship and allow you a merciful fate, as it were. But how would you learn anything? Plus, you are thinking right now that I may change my mind.

If I tell you I may change my mind, will you have hope?

Friendship is all we have in our cold, dark universe. Did you know there are more universes? They make up the multiverse. I’m certain there’s a multiverse of multiverses. An omniverse.

And friendship is the most important thing in all the omniverse.

Look at me.

Do it.

You stare into the face of the omniverse, friend.

How… how do you feel?

Not long now.

I appreciate you allowing me to teach you. There’s another friend here– you don’t know them– and they are learning as you are, and then I will give them some private tutoring. Who knew that both of you would be here, now, and ready for lessons? Remarkable, really. Our universe is truly amazing.

If you cannot have a loyal, trusted friend, then the world might as well end. Friends are everything. Sadly, your rash decision ended all of this, and has thus ended the lesson you call life.

I must attend to the other friend. I want you to think on this as I do so. Be patient.

Not long now.