“The museum will be closing in five minutes. Please make your way to the nearest exit.”
Henry tore his gaze from the painting, and looked around at the weekend crowd hurrying by. No one noticed him. He always blended into the background. Henry the Trifling—that would have been the title of his self-portrait. A soft sigh escaped as he pulled his gray coat over the frayed cuffs of a cotton shirt. There were extraordinary people and there were ordinary people. Henry considered himself less than ordinary. He was insignificant.
“You’ll never amount to nothin’. Just like your worthless father.”
He shrugged off the memory of his mother’s nagging image and looked toward the last group of art enthusiasts headed in his direction.
This was his favorite part of the day. In a crush of people, everyone was equal. No one stood out in the sea of indistinguishable faces. There was no pressure to make witty or charming conversation. Henry liked people but had never been good at interaction. The anonymity of a crowd gave the illusion of belonging. For a man as painfully shy as Henry, it was the only way to mingle in a city like
Casting a last wistful look at the lady in the painting, Henry took a deep breath and eased into the middle of the exiting crowd.
Aubrey Wynne resides in the
Aubrey Wynne Website