Twenty Year Lie

March 20, 2012 at 12:34 am Leave a comment

True Story? Five of us shared a house in the last year of university, five blokes trying to find jobs. Bob had a good opportunity with a bank, his absolute dream job. Now Bob professed to taking massive drugs.

The night before his interview as he was giving us his drugs stories, Mike produced a small pink pill, saying he didn’t know what it was, but it was reputedly strong stuff. Bob necked it and for the rest of the evening said he was a little light-headed but nothing odd.

Next day Bob returned with a tale of woe: told there was a drugs test, Bob had run out of the offices. Bye-bye nice job. Mike felt awful.

He’d told the rest of us that it was a child’s sore-throat tablet, but now Bob had messed up the offer of a good job and Mike couldn’t bear to tell Bob the truth. We eventually found jobs, girls, then marriage, kids. Except Bob: he drifted in and out of temporary jobs, traveling to Eastern Europe, Asia and then Australia, where he moved in with a girl and took a job which was nothing special, but allowed him to live.

All this time Mike was convinced he’d caused this by his lie. Ten years on when we all met up, Mike couldn’t hold it back any longer: he was so sorry, he felt awful. “That’s all right mate. Still, I wonder what might have been, eh…”

Mike left soon after. As soon as he was gone Bob burst out laughing. He’d realized the pill was nothing. In reality he’d had a change of heart. He’d had a great time traveling the world, and he couldn’t be happier. That was 10 years ago.

Bob still hasn’t told Mike.

The twenty-year lie, still going.

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Entry filed under: Had to Be There.

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