To Love Mr.Sakawa

They call someone like me a ‘Sociopath.’ I, despite some qualities, have shortcomings. I lack sympathy for others. I never understand what it means to get emotional, to cry in sadness, or to laugh in happiness. People like me are better off not existing, I know that.                    

Then, I met Mr. Sakawa, our new gym teacher.                     

“I looked into you,” I spoke to him one day. “You used to be a professional basketball player. Then, after you lost your son, your wife filed for divorce. She said that you didn’t cry a single tear at the funeral. It became such a big scandal, so you quit the team. Wow, so these days, being unable to feel is treated like a crime.”                     

He shoved a basketball my way, and I caught it.                     

“Nice pass,” I said, feeling numb in both hands. “That’s a professional for you. We are the same, you know, you and I.”                    

I told him about myself.                      

From that day on, I went to see him whenever I could find time, be it during lunch break or after school. We even met on weekends sometimes. As they said, birds of the same feather flock together.                      

One day, I received a summons to appear in the Principal’s office.                     

“You and Mr. Sakawa,” the Principal asked me. “What were you two doing?”                     

“We talked,” I said. “We practiced shooting ball. I cooked for him sometimes, since he couldn’t fry an egg without burning it. Also, he gave me school advice whenever I asked. We never did anything inappropriate, though. He wouldn’t even let his shadow touch me.”                     

“But why?”                      

“Because,” I answered, “we understand each other.”                     

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