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The Road to Redemption (Part Une)

Shining Raichu

Expect me like you expect Jesus.
As most of you will know, six months ago I was fired as moderator of General Chat, which we now call The Treehouse because that's a much more suitable name for a place where we discuss cannibalism, the meds we're taking and the details of losing our virginity. You know, just like the kids do. If you weren't aware of my liberation from duty, I'm honestly not sure how, because I spent a lot of time in the weeks that followed making sure everybody who would listen was as acutely aware of it as they could possibly be. I gave myself more coverage than the media gave Schwarzenegger when he did his nanny and fathered her child. Alas, six months have passed, and I've faded into a shadow of what I once was. My last 25 posts date back to April 22.

In the intervening months since the PC higher staff decided that my free time would be better spent watching Netflix and fucking every passable guy I see on Grindr the way they fucked me, I've done exactly that. I've caught up on a wide range of TV shows that I never managed to find the time to watch when I was a mod, and AJ and Marisa from the free sexual health clinic have taken to calling me "Andy from the block" and asking me if I've "come for my usual, because I didn't come in my usual". But that's not all I've done. I've had a lot of time for some intense soul-searching, which has led me to realise that the actions leading to my eventual ousting were wrong, and that dead babies are no laughing matter. I've grown as a person and transformed myself into a moral, upstanding citizen worthy of the name moderator.

On that note, I've decided that I've served my time in exile and it's finally time for me to come home.

I understand that the higher staff might be a little gun shy about giving me another chance based on my word alone since my eventual firing was not their first attempt and they quite emphatically did not want me in their presence or general vicinity, but the good news is that I don't expect them to. After all, how many people who say "I've changed!" or "I'm a new man!" are actually telling the truth? A leopard can't change his spots, as the saying goes. But I'm no leopard. I'm a human being. Humans have always been able to change their spots. My grandmother had a mole on her back frozen just last week. Cancer, they think. Nasty business.

Instead of asking to be taken at my word, I've prepared a series of short stories from over the last six months that demonstrate my growth (emotional evolution that is, nothing mole or tumour related) and plan to release them in a series of new blog posts in the coming weeks in the hope that they'll capture some attention from the Powers That Be.

So without further ado, here is the first, which I call

Shining Raichu's Religious Experience
a short story by Shining Raichu.

Unlike most boys, I was not subject to the sexual advances of a member of clergy until I was in my mid twenties. I credit this to the fact that I was a fat child and teenager, and didn't feel comfortable in my own skin until I was already of legal age. Preachers hate that in a kid. Nevertheless, as if by delayed rite of passage, it finally happened, in my place of employment no less.


On the benches right outside my liquor store, the Salvation Army sets up their little collection buckets each Friday morning and stay there until late in the afternoon. The man that does the 3pm-6pm shift has always been friendly to me, and we often have fun chats about my customers or his donators and just general nonsense. Then one Friday I got home from work and found that he'd added me on Facebook (the clergy have found the Internet, that's a scary thought the more I think about it. Has anyone let the cops know?). After a long, deep and meaningful conversation in which he confided in me that he was gay, he asked me if I'd like to hook up some time… or as he so eloquently put it, "what's a load of cum between friends? ;)"

Here's where my new moral compass kicks in. I don't want to over sell this, but I feel you should prepare to be impressed.

I said no.

I turned down an offer of sex, and not just because I'm 24 and he's a 40-year-old solid five and I'm not about that. It was also because he is a church minister and (oh yeah, I forgot to mention this part) a married father of four. While I was delighted to finally get my first religious come-on, I did not say yes just for the novelty of it and actually stopped to think about the ramifications it could have on the people in his life. People I don't know and have no reason to care about myself.

But it gets better. Each Friday to this very day, the woman who does the midday-3pm shift is none other than my could-be-boyfriend's wife. She is a homely woman and she's as dumb as a box of hair so I can understand both why he might want to get a bit of side action and why she has no idea her husband is a flaming homosexual, but that's neither here nor there. At any point in these past few months, I could have walked two steps outside my shop, sidled up to her nice and cozy on the wooden bench, whispered a couple of words in her ear and destroyed her entire family. The old me might have found that hilarious. The new me still kind of does, but only in the abstract. I haven't said a word. I've left my power over him and his family unwielded and intend to continue doing so. I haven't even lorded it over him. Never mentioned it like it's something that's even crossed my mind. I will take his secret to the grave, because I understand now that while it's OK to be an asshole in my head, it's not OK to ruin people's lives for fun. Morals.

If that isn't growth, I don't know what is.

Stay tuned for the next exciting episode of The Road to Redemption: Shining Raichu's Quest to Regain His Influence and Standing on a Pokémon Forum Even Though He's Almost Twenty-Five And Isn't That Just A Little Bit Sad.
  • Age 31
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"Unlike most boys, I was not subject to the sexual advances of a member of clergy until I was in my mid twenties." HAHAHA.