This is the entire nineteenth chapter of my NaNo Novel, Leprechaun Holiday. It is one of my favorite scenes in my novel, because its a really heartfelt piece, for both me and Padraig Offaly.
At a certain point a few days before NaNoWriMo story started, I got this idea in my head called 'The Superman Complex'.
Superman has a lot of amazing powers, but whenever he uses them, he vanishes. No one ever gets to thank the hero, and they never truly understand him.
One of the biggest plot points in my novel is that my Leprechaun grants wishes, and every time he does, he runs away. He has a Superman Complex. So this is the scene that I wrote embodying that whole idea. It is set at the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France. It is early December.
The Nineteenth Chapter
The Leprechaun and the ‘Superman Complex’
Padraig needed some fresh air. He left the apartment late during the evening, around 9:30 p.m., and walked to the Eiffel Tower. It was not something he had planned on doing, but everything had gone so completely and unexpectedly wrong, he figured it might be worth trying something completely unexpected. On his way there, he bought a tall bottle of beer.
The tower looked just like it did in all those romantic pictures of Paris at night. There was hardly a soul around for once, and Padraig went up to the left front support of the tower and sat down on the steps tiredly. A small line of people was going in at the ticket counter, but Padraig didn’t feel like going up just yet. So he just sat in the glow of the Eiffel Tower, drinking his beer, and thinking, for a long time.
He thought about what his life had been like five years ago, and before that fateful day. The day Edwin died.
As he followed his gloomy, nostalgic train of thought, for some reason he started to think about Superman. He remembered being seven years old and thinking Superman was the greatest thing in the world. He would watch the old cartoons with his dad on Saturday mornings. But what he was really thinking about was this; I’m just like Superman. I have an incredible gift, but I’m the only one. And whenever I use it to help anyone, I have to leave. I just run away. I never let anyone thank me. I never let anyone really know me. Because I’m the only one. No one can help me. No one can show me who I am. I’m the only one with super strength and heat vision. No one will ever understand how it feels.
But every time Superman saved Lois Lane, even though he flew away and she never got to thank him, he always saw her again. Once upon a time, that had been Padraig, too. He’d grant a wish, need to run away, but he could return. All the times he’d granted Edwin one more little wish, just to help his best friend one more time. All the mornings he stuck a coin in Mrs. Walsh’s mailbox for her to find, just so she could pay the rent one more time. All the Sundays he dropped a little gold coin in the offering plate, knowing Mr. Doherty, the parish treasurer, would put it to good use.
All that had stopped after Edwin died. The Superman Complex had changed dramatically. He still ran away; but these days, he never came back.
Now, his ‘super powers’ were more like his personal kryptonite than anything else.
“Superman was really lucky,” Padraig murmured softly to himself. “I think that’s the big difference between him and me,”
But, there was one thing about Superman no one could ever deny. No matter what, he did the right thing. He kept his promises, he paid for his mistakes, and he always managed to save the day.
Padraig finished his beer, and got up to throw the bottle in a waste bin. Then he went into the ticket office, and bought a ticket to the top of the tower. He took the elevator up and just stood up there for a long time, staring out at all the glittering, golden lights of Paris. If he leaned forward and held out his arms, it was like he was flying.
At 10:45, someone came up to him and explained that the tower was closing in fifteen minutes, and he needed to head down. Padraig did, and then just sat down on the steps again. He thought about everything and everyone. He thought about poor missing Deirdre. He thought about Leal and Sandrine. He thought about Stian and his amazing magical powers. He thought about his parents; his mother who understood him too well and his father who didn’t understand him at all. He thought about Barbara Peplum, especially her huge head of curly hair and the way it bounced when she moved. He thought about Edwin. My goodness, he hadn’t thought about Edwin so long and hard in many, many years.
And he thought about Superman.
By morning, Padraig had made up his mind. It was time to be Superman. It was time to do the right thing, even if it hurt, and especially because it would mean making a sacrifice.