This story is by Stephanie Sharp and was part of our 2020 Summer Writing Contest. You can find all the writing contest stories here.
Oh, how I long to be able to light up a room. Whenever they pick me over my ceiling light, it brightens up my day. I watch and see as everything grows and passes. I’ve tried to talk to the strange beasts, but they always end up running away from me. I stopped trying after I came to the conclusion that they just don’t understand my stuttering flickers of communication; it seems like no one does. It gets lonely after a while, for I don’t have a friend or a mate. I try my best not to socialize with the ceiling light. I’ve come to learn that his utmost favorite thing is to talk about how high and mighty he is, purposely rubbing it in my face. Not only this but when I attempt to talk to him it just ends in an argument. I’ll admit that I’m very hotheaded, so some of the arguments were partially my fault. But, he just gets so infuriating sometimes. We often have spats when he whines about how annoying the clicking sound I make is. I started to grow tired of this after a bit, promising myself not to waste any more unnecessary time on him.
As day after day went on, the distinguished ceiling light was constantly chosen over me. This continued for what seemed like ages, until one day, one of the beasts started to walk towards me. I was finally going to be used again! I would be able to shine my light upon the room and… I felt the click but where was the light? Where did it go? The ever-growing feeling of emptiness started to take over me as the beast tried the switch a few more times to no avail. I couldn’t focus on anything besides the dark, cold feeling that continued to eat away at me. The arrogant ceiling light was getting a kick out of the fact that I had managed to lose my shine indefinitely. This brought my anger to a boil. I wanted more than anything to jump off this nightstand and prove his stupid face wrong.
The day finally came where I was sent over the edge. I stood in the same fixed position as the day I first arrived in this bizarre place, seething and glowering, mustering enough courage to take the daunting leap. It all happened before I could control it. I made a little waddle towards the end of the wooden-legged abomination, then another. These movements, seemingly impossible for someone like me, took tremendous effort, but I continued to persist till the very edge. I took a quick minute to catch my breath, and before I could second guess myself any further, I jumped up towards the maddening light ever-glowing down on me, and thought, only for a moment, that I was up there with him.
Realization struck as the pretentious glare of the light above me, forever making fun of me and laughing at me, became smaller and smaller. I was falling, and I knew this meant the end for me. I braced for impact, hunkering down for the agony that’s sure to come. CRASH! My last fleeting thoughts as I lay in pieces on the floor, were those of a better time. A better time before my light went out, before I lost my voice, and before my body knew nothing but the tormenting emptiness. I couldn’t help but think, what did I do to deserve this misery? My light, my voice, and my glow went out shortly after, leaving me in eternal darkness, the unending ring of the ceiling light’s formidable laugh sending me off.