Chapter 1-3

Growing up in the local neighbourhood has always been tough for little Sal. Especially when one’s neighbourhood was in close proximity of CIT. The reason was nothing like frequent gang fights, high crime rates, or even the long commute to the nearest preschool.

The reason was because Sal’s parents happened to be white collared workers with a traditional belief that the better odds one have in life is when one has the highest possible level of education qualifying them for some of the best jobs in the world.

While there was nothing wrong with such a belief, this meant they had high expectations of Sal. Very high expectations.

Due to the unexplainable boost in “Super Competent” worldwide five years ago, a majority of the world has been trying to find out how they can raise their kids to get the same results. These “Super Competent” are a group of teenagers, ranging between seventeen to twenty two years old as of now, who have excelled in key aspects of a teenagers’ life.

For example, some of them have excellent academic talents, shown by having developed some of the world most cutting technology and broken into new grounds of science on a whole while others are either incredible athletes, having won Olympics gold medals with ease, or world famous idols, each with unbelievable amount of charisma rumoured to have charmed birds off a tree.

With all these extraordinary occurrences all happening at such short intervals, analysts across the world came to a conclusion that this was the era of talents, classifying them as “Super Competent”; due to their ability to excel in certain key areas of life, bringing them both fame, wealth and glory.

Despite all this, it’s also known that among these “Super Competent”, most of them tend to be different from most humans, making them unbelievably awkward in other certain aspects of life.

In the view of Sal’s parents, having a child who becomes a “Super Competent” would be the best way to ensure their child’s survival, while boosting their reputations and status in life at the same time.

Being people who have slogged a majority of their lives for a company, their beliefs have over time leaned towards working hard for success. After much research on the “Super Competent”, they had a small group of individuals whom they could pick from to follow in terms of child raising.

Unfortunately, this group did not have too many with enough publicly known history for them to take reference from. All of them except Freda, whose biography was published despite her young age by Orange in one of its previous publicity attempts. After much efforts to acquire a copy of it as it had been supposedly recalled by its publisher with only few copies remaining in circulation, Sal’s parents had their research material in hand.

As a six year old, Sal has managed to achieve grades in the range of “Super Competent” in school already, much to Sal’s parents’ satisfaction. In order to “ensure” continued success, Sal’s parents became more determined than ever to raise their child into a “Super Competent”.

Hence, while our kids would spend after school hours playing, Sal would be in a tuition centre learning Grade 8 material. This meant that the other students in the same class were around seven to eight years older.

Initially, they would laugh at Sal, thinking Sal’s parent had gone bonkers. That did not last long as Sal soon proved to be at an even higher level than them despite being in the same class at such a young age.

Their displeasure soon turned into bullying, but even that did not last for long. One might expect a kid that young to run straight to the teacher crying for help, leading to typical inaction of modern day teaching society until parents are called in.

It was much to the disadvantage of the older children, that Sal wasn’t the average kid. What had turn from simple bullying was turned around by Sal, who used psychological warfare, to turn the bullies into mere subordinates under a month.

With their great displeasure turned into overwhelming fear of Sal, the class became an environment for Sal to study in while learning more about manipulation and the dark side of humans. Despite having done this, Sal managed to keep the tutors unaware of this new system and did not involve them at all; keeping in mind not to overstep one’s boundaries, at least not this young.

Although Sal was practically a “Super Competent” at an age of six, the thing Sal wanted more than this success was a real friend. Hence, Sal found this intelligence to be more of an annoyance and hindrance rather than a talent.

Sal also found a deep hatred for Freda, the “Super Competent” Sal’s parents chose to use as a reference to raise Sal up. To Sal, it was hard to accept that someone could be a “Super Competent” despite being so anti social. While the reason for this was mostly emotional, it was also quite true that it was rare for a “Super Competent” to receive any attention at all and that Freda was one of the few to make international headlines.

At this point, Sal could be considered to be very similar to Freda in the social aspect and in fact, a very hateful child. This would be the case if not for Sal’s grandparents. While Sal’s parents have been very strict in the aspect of parenting, they had their belief in “remembering their origins”.

So every once in a while, Sal would visit them as part of that belief for a short stay each year. That allowed Sal to have a very brief break from the routine lifestyle to play in the countryside while playing with the cat and dog that lived there.

Away from the city, it was very rare for the younger generations to live so far out. Hence, there was no one of similar age as Sal who lived there. However, a travelling trailer had once parked nearby during one of the visits and there happened to be a girl of same age as Sal. While their time as playmates was incredibly short, Sal found that time to have been most valuable and as mentioned, has been seeking it ever since.

Unfortunately, Sal’s experience with other kids had not been as perfect as imagined. As a result, many of Sal’s later encounters often ended with the former and latter parting ways mostly in silence if not forced pleasantries by accompanying adults.

This leads to Sal coming to believe that in the aspect of making a true friend, there was no difference between Freda and Sal. This similarity, considered to be Freda’s greatest weakness, was the last thing Sal needed to become a “Super Competent” who is different from Freda.

Sal’s parents had not consider this, as Sal had kept this from them, and was in fact pleased by the fact that Sal was outwardly interacting fine with others despite their methods. So pleased that they had arranged an early tour of CIT in hopes of meeting the real Freda.

The End

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