Unseen Revenge

They say that revenge is a dish best served cold. To me, the temperature of the dish matters not, for the ingredients themselves are far more important. The main ingredients in my delicious revenge are undetectability and pettiness. Revenge should be a dish served masquerading as forgiveness and maturity, but filled with malice that can’t be tasted.

To be clear, I am not speaking of vengeance for terrible wrongs that have been endured or suffered through. That is a dark topic I dare not broach. I am talking purely of petty revenge in the wake of a slight offense, which is usually more comical than tragic.

This is a tale of such pettiness:

Growing up with a much older brother who outmatched me in both wit and strength, I could not wage wars of a physical or direct nature. My offenses had to be subtle, indirect… deniable.

After one particularly heated exchange during my eighth year where my brother had spit in my face, I bottled my fury and waited. I waited for inspiration. I waited for an idea that would dissipate my anger without provoking his in return.

The idea came.

After a bit of fuming, it came time for me to wash up for dinner. There by the sink sat a blue and white toothbrush. His toothbrush. Without thinking I quickly grabbed it and scrubbed the inside of the toilet bowl with great vigor—so quickly did it occur that I scarcely knew what I was doing. I then replaced the toothbrush in the holder. My heart thumped, blood pounded rhythmically inside my skull so hard that I became light-headed. Despite the closed door, I had an irrational fear that I’d been seen. 

Several minutes passed before I was breathing normally and was once again calm. And then I smiled. I felt relieved. Not just relieved of my fear because I wasn’t caught, but I was also relieved of my anger because I got back at my brother for spitting in my face. He never knew it had even happened (and still doesn’t to this day), but I knew.

This was a revelation to me: that revenge isn’t about hurting the other person, it’s about feeling better after they have hurt you. I knew I had gotten him back, and that’s all that mattered.

Perhaps, dear reader, if you are a better person than I, then maybe you have found a way to feel better after being wronged that doesn’t involve revenge. As for me and my house, quiet revenge has worked thus far.

3 thoughts on “Unseen Revenge”

  1. Quiet revenge. Just saying those words brings a slow smile to my face and I’m reminded of the time I sought revenge when my beloved Lewis Carroll book collection was ‘accidentally’ thrown out by my older sister. I have no real proof that she did it but in my heart I know she did. One day when my sister was out with her friends I carefully unwrapped little chocolate candies in her nightstand stash and replaced them with equally carefully wrapped little Ex Lax chocolate squares. It was a painstaking task but so satisfying. Not only did she not know at the time – she never thought it was more than the result of too many greasy White Castle hamburgers that ravaged her body (not to mention the bathroom!). What made this little act of revenge so perfectly satisfying is the fact that she did away with the evidence herself! Oh, how I loved that day!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I agree and had the same thought earlier. I don’t think my sister ever forgave me for having the audacity to be born on her birthday. I broke up the party and have been upstaging her ever since. Oh, we’re friends now but every once in a while I see that look in her eyes; I’m sure you know the look.

        Liked by 1 person

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