The Story of Ferdinand

Ferdinand was never sure of himself. And no one around him could ever understand this. Although he was a beautiful man it seemed to be a curse, and not the blessing everyone assumed. People, of course, respond to the physical, without knowing what is inside, and this is a very pleasing thing, when people like what they see. But Ferdinand was not content with that, and wanted the world to love him for his mind, his intelligence, his ideas, his humor, his great capacity to love. He wanted to be validated for the truly splendid person that he was, and had worked so hard to become. This was important to Ferdinand, because he knew that the exterior means nothing, and what is beautiful to one, is not necessarily so to another. And he realized he was a different color than most people around him, and even beauty did not always overcome that difference.

But if people couldn't see in him the wonder of who he was, and respond to that, did it mean, that maybe he wasn't as splendid as he thought? The mind works in strange ways. This inferior feeling was reflected in a compensating reaction and led Ferdinand to disdain most people who seemed unable to see past the pretty exterior, and without even realizing, he started using that beauty, not just to his advantage, but as the only way he could relate to people. And instead of letting his beauty flourish as an artful enhancement to his self, he used it as a weapon, to conquer. Soon he wasn't using his wit and honesty and compassionate nature to lure people to him, but was enticing people to exalt in the pleasures and satisfaction they would receive by experiencing his physical and sexual talents. Until one day, while travelling on a train from his past to his future, he found himself sitting across from someone who stared for a long while at him. She seemed quite taken with his preening and smiling and debonair looks and ways. He sat beside her, and she seemed not to mind, and they talked for hours, and as they got to know each other they flirted and touched, and danced the dance of lovers-to-be. But more than the touching, her questions were fascinating, and he learned even more about himself than he had ever done - just by talking with her. And she would stare at his face with such intensity, he knew it must attract her. Finally, he felt that it was the appropriate moment to invite her home with him, and as she started to get up, about to reach her stop she said, she had never met such a fascinating, sexy man. And he said, well, yes, I've been told I'm quite handsome, and she said, well, that's so nice to hear you say. I however, know you are a beautiful person by your sweet and giving personality. And as she moved toward the door Ferdinand saw her white tipped cane. And so now there was no need to conquer, as there was no question to her appreciation of what mattered.