Instead

I googled “what to do instead of facebook.” I think facebook is what has been fueling all of my irritability, because there are so many people in the world who are just… nasty. People are assholes nowadays, which ties in with my post yesterday. I think the more I get wrapped up in seeing what is out there on the internet that people post on their facebook, the more I realize that more people get worse every day. People get offended by what others think, but there must be quite a few people out there who do things to get recognition, or to see how far they can push social limits.

It’s actually really discouraging, to be honest. I have seen that 90% of the people with whom I’ve come in contact just don’t have compassion anymore. It’s all about them and what they want, whether someone tells them not to do it or not. There is a complete disregard for the law, and equally a disregard for the compassion of others. I know I have said that people should stay out of other people’s business, but compassion is different. You don’t have to be in someone’s business to be courteous and realize that the things you do could affect them. Actions that don’t seem to affect anyone but yourself can affect other people. Those people who do drugs affect their families’ emotional state and sometimes even their financial state. The people who have to be out in front of everyone in a line or out driving affect others because people don’t like confrontation, and those who drive recklessly put others at risk of property damage or even worse, the possibility of a fatal crash.

That person who accidentally bumped into you at the store, whom you glared at or made a nasty comment to, could be fighting a mental battle that they feel they can only fight through self-harm.

When I did my google search, there were some other searches suggested at the bottom. Three out of about ten of them asked, “what to do instead of cutting.” I can’t say that I have ever been suicidal, although the thought has crossed my mind about what would happen if I was actually gone. I can say, however, that I know how it feels to have mental pain that I couldn’t figure out how to relieve. I was a preteenager, or maybe thirteen, so it has been quite a few years since then and I have changed my outlook on how to relieve pain. But I know that there are still people of that age out there who haven’t moved past it yet and are suffering, because of someone else’s choices or actions.

I think sometimes the struggle for me is to understand why people have to act the way they do. Has the media so affected us that we see someone that has power and we need to feel as if we have power over someone else? The need for power is probably ingrained in us and has been for many years, because if we submit to other people, we might lose out on resources that we need to survive. But many things that we encounter today have nothing to do with getting resources. Using my driving example, is cutting someone off really going to help you get where you need to go any faster? Is being discourteous helping you at all? All that does is frustrate someone else and make you angry. There have been at least three instances in my city within the last month where someone got a bad case of road rage and shot someone else. At least one person died, because two cars were on the road traveling somewhere and one person didn’t like how the other person was “in their way” or what have you.

It’s really discouraging. I can safely say that I have lost 90% of my faith in humanity. So, instead of subjecting myself to the plights of people I wouldn’t ever meet in real life by staying on social media, and I would like to try to focus on what I am doing to make sure my life is happy. I have been interested in learning the German and Russian languages lately, and there are several woodworking projects that I would love to get started and completed. I am working toward becoming a law enforcement officer, so I need to train for that, physically and mentally, to learn how to assist people on the calls I will get while staying emotionally detached so their problems do not become my mental problems.

Focusing on the betterment of my life, instead of getting wrapped up in the deterioration of others’. I’d like to make myself focus on the roses in life, rather than the thorns.

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“Z-Day” Part 2

DISCLAIMER: I know some of this won’t make much sense or will seem scatterbrained. I’m aiming to clean it up before I do anything else with it, but I can’t seem to write anything coherent anymore, so I’m leaving it as is for now. Please forgive the work in progress.

 

      “Mia Sprague, please. It’s urgent,” the male voice said with a quavering voice.

               “May I ask what this is about, sir? Dr. Sprague is very busy,” the middle-aged nurse said, keeping her voice steady despite her rising heart rate. She had gotten three calls like this so far today, and the nurse before her had gotten two.

               “I have visual information about someone who seems to be displaying some kind of sickness, his skin is getting really thin and he doesn’t see it yet but there’s a patch on the back of his neck that’s starting to peel off the muscle,” the voice answered frantically.

               “I’ll have her come to the phone right away, sir. Are you calling on a cell phone?”

               “Yes.”

               “Okay, sir, please bring this man to our hospital right away; Dr. Sprague will want to see his symptoms. Please do not let him come in close contact with anyone. Do you understand? Do not allow him to get close to anyone, and do not let him breathe on you or touch you.”

               “Yes ma’am, we’re on our way right now. I called you right after we started driving. Will Dr. Sprague see us soon?”

               “She’ll make time for you, sir. We need to deal with this. I shouldn’t tell you this, but your friend is one of several coming in with those symptoms. It seems to be becoming a problem. Don’t tell anyone though, alright? We don’t want to cause a panic.”

               “You got it, ma’am. I appreciate your help, and we’ll be there soon.”

               “Be careful, sir. Here’s Dr. Sprague.”

              

 

               Eleven patients with the same symptoms in two days. And I still haven’t been able to create a vaccine. And there’s no telling how many people those eleven people infected. We’re about to have an epidemic on our hands, and maybe even a pandemic, Dr. Sprague thought as she sat at her desk with her office door locked. There wasn’t much she could do while she waited for the lab techs to duplicate the three new batches of the vaccine she was going to try.

               There was a knock on her door. “Come in,” she said.

               The nurse walked up to her desk and hung her head. “Dr. Sprague, three of our patients have passed away.”

               The doctor immediately sprang up out of her chair and said, “Get the live patients out of that room!”

               The nurse’s eyes went round with fear and both women ran to the quarantine sector, yelling to the nurses right outside the room to take the live patients to the other quarantine room directly across the hall. As the nurses did what they were told, the doctor watched the dead patients, looking for any kind of movement. She wasn’t even sure there would be any movement, but with how little they knew about this virus, anything was possible.

               The nurses came back to stand with the doctor when the other patients were safely in the other room, wide-eyed.

               “Did any of you touch any of them or vice versa?” Dr. Sprague asked.

               The nurses shook their heads, but one of them spoke. “When I was taking vitals earlier, one of them sneezed– I couldn’t tell which one–  and I’m afraid I’m going to get the virus.”

               “Did you have your hazard suit on?”

               The nurse nodded, but his eyes were still filled with worry.

               “If you had your hazard suit on the right way, you don’t have anything to worry about.”

               “But I’ve been feeling really itchy and I noticed a patch of skin on my belly that’s really dry and it’s starting to peel.”

               The other nurses took several steps away, covering their mouths and noses with the lapels of their scrubs. The doctor closed her eyes and dipped her head, as if she was praying. “And you haven’t said anything before now.”

               The nurse shook his head.

               “And you’ve been around all of us with symptoms like them,” the doctor said, gesturing toward the patients in the quarantine room.

               The nurse closed his eyes and hung his head. That was enough for the doctor.

               “Well, everyone, we’ve now all been exposed. And with how we have to move around here, the rest of the people in the hospital have also been exposed. I’m putting the entire hospital on lockdown. All of you, stay away from other people now. Don’t go to the break rooms or anything, in case others haven’t been exposed.”

               Dr. Sprague placed the lapel of her jacket over her nose and mouth and picked up the phone on the corner to call the head of the department. Soon after she hung up, the head of the department spoke over the PA, “Attention all medical staff, patients and everyone within the hospital, due to unforseen circumstances, the hospital must be placed on lockdown until further notice. No one is allowed to leave the building and no one is allowed to enter. We’re sorry for any inconvenience. The police have been called to act as enforcement of the lockdown and will be strategically posted outside the building, so do not be alarmed. Thank you.”

               Dr. Sprague was impressed with her supervisor’s calm demeanor, but she knew better than to believe that the calm was anything but a mask to protect everyone from panic. They were going to have a huge problem on their hands, and with the recent history of how quickly this virus was spreading and affecting people, it wasn’t going to take long.

 

 

               There were five of them left in the house. The monsters outside had gotten hold of the other four. Z-day had arrived a few months ago — zombies were everywhere outside. They walked into and out of the unlocked houses in the area, knowing that they smelled the live meat in the one house that was locked, but they couldn’t reach it. The five left had seen what those monsters did when they found someone that wasn’t dead like them. It was horrifying, but they hadn’t been able to take their eyes away from the gruesome sight. The dead people grabbed the live one and tore him to pieces, shoving the raw muscle into their mouths like animals.

               The five left – Jerry Myers, Claudia Goodman and her twin sister Cynthia, Michael Monroe, and Logan Fisher – had enough ammunition to take care of the ones in the area. Michael and Logan had been United States Marine snipers, so they took extermination duty and the trips to get more ammunition and gasoline for the cars. Jerry and Cynthia took care of finding food, shooting down birds with a bow and arrows they found in one of the neighborhood houses and ravaging stores for what was left. They had to go farther and farther to find food now, but the sounds of Michael’s and Logan’s gunshots drew zombies from miles around to exterminate close to their house, so trips weren’t too dangerous anymore. Claudia spent most of her time sitting in the corner of the master bedroom’s small walk-in closet crying.

               Jerry had been a personal trainer for several years, but before that he had been in a gang until a rival gang member threatened his mother. He was jumped out, and led a productive life. Cynthia was an office professional who worked for a company who sold alcohol. Claudia went from minimum wage job to minimum wage job because she got bored or because the job wasn’t good enough for her. With the exception of the twin sisters, none of the nine had known each other before the zombie outbreak. They had all been wandering looking for food and had found each other little by little. As they traveled, they found the house they claimed unlocked and stocked with several weeks’ worth of food and water. It was a roomy four bedroom house, and they made it work even with nine people. On a mission to find food, four of the nine had been attacked, just three blocks away from the house. Logan had seen them coming from his post on the roof and advised the others to help while he took well-aimed shots, but the four in the house hadn’t heard Logan’s warning, and didn’t make it to help the four who were on their way back.

               Logan finished exterminating the monsters in the area and went into the house to tell the others what happened. They were shocked and felt guilty about not helping, but there wasn’t much they could do after it happened. They walked the few blocks to gather the food and back to the house to have a few moments of silence. They settled into a routine and assigned the duties of extermination and hunting, and Claudia had been assigned the task of keeping the house tidy, but she frequently disregarded her task.

               The three men were getting tired of Claudia’s uselessness. She had become a waste of food and space. Jerry proposed using her as bait to draw in more zombies to kill, but Cynthia would have none of that. Logan proposed Cynthia shut her mouth and realize that in times like this, either one contributes or becomes bait, but Cynthia ignored him. Michael kept his mouth shut, but as soon as Cynthia wasn’t paying attention, he told the other men that he agreed with Jerry’s proposal.

               One night after Cynthia had fallen asleep, the men were keeping watch and Claudia wandered outside into the backyard to relieve herself.

               She walked up behind Logan and whispered, “Cover me, okay? I’m just going around the corner. Make sure they don’t get near me, okay? But don’t look at me peeing!”

               “How am I supposed to watch that they don’t get near you if I’m not looking in your direction?” Logan said dryly and stared at her.

               She just stood there and blinked at him.

               “Go on, then. We’ll cover you.” He finally whispered, nodding at the other guys.

               Claudia let out a relieved sigh and disappeared into the darkness.

               “I’m about tired of her bullshit. This ends tonight,” Jerry pronounced, stalking into the darkness after Claudia.

               Logan and Michael stared blankly into the inky void and heard Claudia gasp. Immediately after that, they heard a loud snap, like someone had broken a tree branch. They got up and went to see what happened. Jerry had redressed Claudia and thrown her over his shoulders in a fireman’s carry.

               He scaled the exterior gate, coming to the high fence that separated the backyard from the street. Carefully, he lifted her limp body off his shoulders and set her up on the wall. He set her feet between his own on the top of the wall, leaning her body first against his own and then attempting to stand her up straight. He leaned her back and let go of her.

               Her body fell and there was another snap as it landed on its back. The scene looked just like Claudia had jumped, or rather simply let herself fall backward from the top of the wall.

               Jerry noticed the two other men coming up behind him. “She didn’t say anything. Just came out here like she was gonna take a leak and we didn’t’ hear anything but that crack. Right fellas?” he asked, raising his eyebrows and nodding his head to convince the men that the story would work.

               Michael just shook his head in disbelief as he walked back to his chair in the middle of the backyard. Logan nodded, letting out what seemed to Jerry to be a sigh of relief. Jerry let himself drop from the wall, landing on his feet. He walked over to the house, coming to the window of the bedroom Cynthia slept in.

               “Cynthia!” he yelled. “Cynthia, wake up, come outside!”

               In a few seconds, Cynthia flew out the back door, hair sticking up everywhere, clothes wrinkled and off-center from sleep. “What? What happened?”

               Jerry paused, looking at the guys. He took a breath to gather his thoughts and told her the story.

               Cynthia’s mouth fell open and her legs gave out, and she crumpled to her knees on the damp grass. Michael went to her, placing her between his legs so he could cuddle her and keep her warm and comfort her all at the same time. For a few moments, the four sat in silence.

“Z-Day” Part 1

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Photo Credit: ~zomgwaffles on deviantART

 

The harder she scratched away at her forearm, the quicker the flesh pulled away from the muscle underneath. From outside the sealed quarantine unit, Doctor Mia Sprague watched in dismay as she saw her patient’s body fall apart. Her fourth attempt at a vaccine had failed. The virus was still too powerful, or perhaps she just hadn’t analyzed the entire virus and its characteristics well enough. This woman was going to die and her body would reanimate, just like the movies they made. God only knew what she would act like, however. Would she be fast? Slow? Eat all available flesh or just the brain? Would she be superhuman strong or retain her current body’s strength? How fast would her reanimated body decay? How contagious was this virus? Had she already infected others? She was the second patient that had come in with this condition, so obviously the virus was present in the general population, but she had had a close relationship with the last patient. And the last patient had effectively set herself on fire in her own house when Dr. Sprague had told her what would happen when the virus took over her entire body, so they didn’t know what would occur if the patient was allowed to reanimate.  Dr. Sprague had to tell the media. She needed to have them tell everyone who had unexplained flesh wounds or thinning of the skin to come to her hospital to address a non-life threatening condition. She knew that the virus was, in fact, life-threatening, but she couldn’t cause a panic. She couldn’t afford to cause panic yet.

 

               Heidi Baker kept picking at her wound. First the nail of her index finger to start a foothold of sorts, then slipping the pad of her index finger between that foothold and the muscle underneath. The skin gave way, tearing and pulling away from her body, turning white as the tissue died. It hurt, but she felt compelled to keep picking at it, as if she were someone else pulling the flesh from her arm. She knew she needed to stop before she pulled all the skin from her arm, but she couldn’t seem to make herself stop pulling at the loose flesh. There wasn’t a stopping point like other wounds she had had in the past. The more she pulled, the more came loose. She was really sick. The medicine hadn’t worked. She was going to die, probably from exposure to the elements without the protective barrier of skin, even though she was in a quarantine room in the hospital that was kept super extra clean. She even had her own heating/air conditioning system so she couldn’t catch any other illnesses from other patients in the hospital and so she couldn’t infect any other patients with her virus.

They didn’t even have a name for the virus she carried yet. Her doctor hadn’t even told her any other symptoms that would happen to her. She was finding out about symptoms as they happened to her. For example, one of her molar teeth had started to feel loose the past couple of hours, and she couldn’t help pushing her tongue against it to see how much looser it was feeling by the hour. She hadn’t had a chance to tell her doctor about that yet though. The stupid bitch was just standing outside the room, watching her with a concerned look on her face instead of out in her lab or wherever doing research on how to fix this problem. She obviously wasn’t coming in anytime soon, either, because she was still wearing her nice clothes and pristine white lab coat, not those horrid orange hazard suits the staff had to wear when coming into the quarantine room.

She stopped picking at the flesh on her arm, got up from her bed, and pulled the curtain to cover the window and went back to her bed. She didn’t feel like being a zoo animal any longer. All she wanted to do was follow Sarah and go home to set herself on fire. On second thought, no, she didn’t want to set herself on fire. She had been devastated to find out how Sarah had killed herself. Heidi had always had a feeling that Sarah had a tendency toward suicidal thoughts, but she never thought that those thoughts would be violent. Perhaps Sarah had pictures of Hollywood-style zombies in her head and she didn’t want there to be a chance of becoming one of the undead, so she burned herself and her  house.

Heidi took a minute to think about why Sarah committed suicide the way she had. Had she been right? Was this virus going to be the cause of a zombie outbreak like in the movies and comic books? She couldn’t be right. In the movies, people looked completely normal until they died and came back to life. They didn’t start rotting before they even passed away. She found some comfort in that thought.

 

 

 

 

“The Suicide Note”

I’m sorry. I’m sorry, Jasmine.

In the rear view mirror, there was only blackness. In fact, all there was around me was blackness. That’s how I wanted it. If it had been light, that would have meant that the garage door was open. No, for this, the garage door had to be closed. I had even sealed up the hole through the wall where the dryer vent opened to the outside so there was no ventilation at all.

I loved the car I was sitting in. It was basically the only thing that was truly loyal to me. But even that was because I took care of the machine’s needs. Every leak, every scratch, tires, fluids– they were all meticulously attended to. I wanted the purr of the engine to sound like a plea for me not to do what I had planned. But all it sounded like was the throaty growl of the machine’s need to run. My cell phone was on the console next to me and I kept looking at it, almost hoping someone would call and tell me something that sounded like they appreciated me. But nothing came. I ran my hand over the Challenger’s leather seats and the dashboard, as if I was saying goodbye. I didn’t know how long it would take for the carbon monoxide and other gases to fill the garage to a lethal level, but I hoped it didn’t take very long.

Actually, I lied earlier. There was one other thing that was truly loyal to me besides the car. And that thing’s name was Jasmine. She was so beautiful, and she always did her best to make me feel better when someone would treat me like garbage. I always had a suspicion that she wanted something out of me, but over time it faded, and I knew that she really cared for me. I almost felt guilty for wanting to go through with…. I couldn’t even think of what I was doing. It was just… The Plan. I couldn’t bring myself to think of what I was about to do. I was just going to let it happen now. But a part of me felt guilty for doing this to Jasmine. I didn’t know how much she loved me, but if she loved me at all, this would hurt her. A lot. She seemed like she honestly did love me though. But even all the love she gave me wasn’t enough to soften the full force of the pain I felt from how the world treated me.
Then the phone rang. It was Jasmine. I picked up the phone and hit the “send” button. As always, she didn’t let me talk much, but it was so good to just hear her voice. When she finally stopped talking, I realized that she was waiting for a response.
“What?”
“Pay attention, crazy boy,” she said, and I could hear the smile in her voice. “I asked if you wanna go to get a McFlurry with me, I’m craving one so bad!”
I turned off the car’s engine. And sat there for a second in silence. I was… actually relieved that she called.
“Helloooooo?”
“I’d love to. Pick you up in twenty?”
“All riiiiight!”
“See you soon, beautiful.”
I hit the button on the remote to open the garage door. Got out of the car and went into the house to shower really quick. I couldn’t smell anything on me, and as far as I know, the gases that come out of a car’s exhaust are odorless, but I couldn’t have Jasmine thinking that I was trying to do anything. So I went to pick her up and when we got to McDonald’s, I bought her the McFlurry. I owed it to her for almost leaving her today. I know she didn’t know what I was doing, but I owed it to her. While we sat there, she leaned against me and I could smell her vanilla body wash, like she had just gotten out of the shower, too.
She talked about a bunch of things that were going on with her other friends, and she knew I was only half paying attention, but that was how it always was. She and I both knew that she just liked to vent about what was going on and that I was only supposed to listen and cuddle her when she stopped talking.
“The sun’s starting to go down,” she said, pulling her feet up onto the seat as she cuddled in closer to me. She leaned her head back so she could whisper in my ear, “Let’s go out to The Spot and make out while the sun sets.”
I smiled and nodded, gently pushing against her so she’d get up. She took my hand, like she was leading me back to my own car. We drove out to a somewhat remote spot and I made sure there weren’t any cars close enough to us to see anything. She loved to sit in my lap in the car, with her knees bent over the center console and her feet on the passenger seat. If it had been anyone else, I would have been furious about shoes on my seat. But Jasmine, she could get away with murder.
That night was amazing, even though all we did was make out. She and I had lost our virginity to each other already, but we didn’t do anything much that night. When I dropped her off at home, she wanted me to come in and put her to sleep and just leave through the garage, and I did. I cuddled her and ran my fingers through her hair and kissed her shoulder until I felt her body relax and her breathing even out. And I left when I knew she was asleep deep enough that I wouldn’t wake her.
I drove home in complete silence, remembering the feeling of her body on my lap, her hands on my face and then arms around my neck and how soft her lips were. I couldn’t help but smile.
My phone rang again the next day, which was the day before yesterday. I was scared that something had happened with Jasmine like she got sick or someone broke in to her house or whatever. But the number was one I didn’t recognize. I picked up, curious as to who had the wrong number this time. But it was actually someone I knew. I knew her very well. Her name was Carina. She was one of the popular ones at school. And she always gave me a hard time, but she had left me alone after we graduated.
But she called that night, thinking that I could laugh about all the things they did to me. All it did was remind me that people are cruel. And I made up my mind.
I’m going to call Jasmine and have her come over tomorrow, even though I wish I could do it tonight. But she’s busy tonight. I know it’s going to kill her, but I want her to be there when I do it. I don’t want to die alone. JASMINE IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR MY SUICIDE. I’m doing this because I can’t handle being here anymore. I love you, Jasmine, but I can’t stand to live anymore.

John
16 June 2011, 6:49 pm
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It’s obviously hard to hear when someone commits suicide. You just think about how bad things must have seemed for them to see no other way out. Only the most morbidly curious ask how the deceased person committed suicide, but I find myself one of those people. I won’t go out of my way to find out, of course, but I do like to know when it was someone I was close to. somehow I always find myself wondering how the next of kin finds the guts to clean up the mess. I mean, if the deceased used a gun or slashed their wrists, there’s a huge mess to clean up. Same possibility with pills I guess, if there was vomiting before the death. I can’t imagine walking into a room expecting someone to be going about their usual activities but finding them with half their head missing, brains on the wall, and a gun in one hand. Or a body’s worth of blood all over the bathroom or their bedroom. Are there cleaning companies that specialize in cleaning messes that dead people have left behind, to take the emotional burden off the kin? I can imagine that there should be… I’m sure thousands of suicides and murders happen every day across the country.

But anyway, I’m getting off track. I got on this subject because I found out the hard way about the suicide of someone I loved very much. His name was John. Actually… he did it right in front of me. I had been close to him for several years, so I knew that he worried a lot. he spent money and then worried about something happening that would require the money he had just spent, like a health issue or something. A lot of people made fun of him because he was born with cleft palate and he had the surgery to fix it, but people still made fun of him. When he and I started getting close, he called me his angel. He always told me that I was the one who kept him sane because I loved him and treated him like he deserved to be treated. Actually… we fell in love. We were dating. Everyone thought I was too pretty for him but I knew that he was the one for me. I would have done…. anything…. to make him feel as special as he really was. He and I lost our virginity to each other.

But one day when he and I were hanging out at his house, he told me this girl had gotten intact with him. I thought he was going to tell me that he was going to leave me for her, but he just kept talking. She had been the one to lead the pack when it came to making fun of him, but she started leaving him alone when we graduated high school. But I guess she decided she wanted to reminisce. she called him and wanted to talk and laugh about all the mean things she and the others did to him in high school. I don’t know how she got his number, but she did, and must have thought he would be able to look back on it and laugh, just like she was able to do.

I was so angry with her. i couldn’t’ believe she had the balls to do something like that. I talked to him, to try to make him realize that some people are just stupid and what they say isn’t worth a listen, much less a second thought. He was so anxious, and when I tried to hug him, I saw that he was hiding something behind his back, but I couldn’t’ really see what it was.

He got really quiet for a few minutes, and I didn’t want to push him. but I could tell that he was replaying whatever she said in his head, feeling the pain all over again. I just knew that’s what he was doing/

I wanted so badly to help him, but this was his choice– to just replay those words over and over again.

Suddenly, he spoke to me. It kind of startled me, actually. He said, “The note’s under my pillow.” At that moment, I didn’t’ realize that he meant The Note. Like, in capitals. I didn’t’ realize what he wanted to do. I got up from where I was sitting to look for the mote he mentioned, and when I turned around, he had the gun’s muzzle up against the center of his head, under his chin. I tried to knock the gun out of his hand, but he was ready for me. He pulled the trigger as soon as I moved, blowing a hole upwards through the top of his head. He had come into this world with a part of his face missing, and he left his world the same way.

All I could do for a minute was stare at what was left. … There was a star-burst pattern of blood, and he had blown his brain to bits. I looked down at myself to see if I had any blood on me, but I didn’t. The force of the bullet took the mess back against the wall behind him,.

I kept staring at what was left, but I got my wits about me and called 911. I couldn’t breathe right, so I had to try a few times before the operator could understand what I was telling her.

The cops and an ambulance showed up pretty soon after I called 911, going by the time I made the call and the time it was when they showed up. I know because I was looking through his phone’s call record when they got there, There was only one unsaved number in the record, and it had to be hers. The one who pushed him to the edge. I memorized her number and his his phone closed and the note ready when they knocked on the front door. I opened it for them and led them to the room where his body was.

I wasn’t surprised when they told me to put my hands up, turn around, and spread my legs so they could pat me down and put me in handcuffs. I told them about the note and his phone, which I had put on his bed. The police put both in evidence bags.

They took me to the regional police station and put me in an interrogation room. They asked me exactly what happened and I told them. The officer who was leading the interrogation seemed to believe what I told the,. He asked if I had read the suicide note. When I said no, he took the iPad that was on his lap and pulled up the picture he had apparently taken of the note.

He brought his chair closer to mine, putting the iPad in front of me. I read the note and I was… to say the least, heartbroken. The first thing he wrote was that he was sorry. Typical of a suicide note, as I understand it. But then he said he did it while I was there because he didn’t’ want to die alone. He also wrote how he loved me, but that he just couldn’t go on and went on to tell why he couldn’t handle life anymore.

He had dated the note and put the time on it, and the officer asked me what I was doing on that day. I was at my little cousin’s choir recital. The officer left, presumably to call around and verify my alibi. When he returned, it was to remove the handcuffs from me and explain that there were pictures of me at the recital that someone emailed to him. they knew that I could not have coerced John into writing the note that assured police that I had not killed him and simply made it look like a suicide. I was free to go, and the officer even offered to give me the number of a local psychiatrist who specialized in grief counseling.

I refused and asked when I could return to John’s house to clean the remains of blood from his room. He told me that the crime investigation team would have the body removed by the next morning and that I could go back in the evening. He asked if I had a key to the house.

I told him I’d had a key to John’s house since high school, and thanked him for his help. I drove home in silence, half conscious because of grief and shock. I made it home safely, and I immediately went to bed. But I couldn’t’ sleep. all my brain wanted to do was replay the image of John’s suicide over and over. I called my boss in the morning and she allowed me to take a sick day. I stayed in ed all day, just… staring at my ceiling.

I decided to call the girl who had called him to reminisce. When she answered, she sounded a little tipsy. I knew what would sober her up. Three words. “John killed himself.” There was so much more that I wanted to say, but I decided it would be better to just keep it at those three words. She didn’t say anything, but I knew the line was still open because I could hear things happening in the background. She asked me to repeat myself, and I did. I told her what he told me, and that it was in his note that thinking about all the things that happened to him were a big part of why he did it, because he felt like things like that were just going to keep happening. She asked me if I thought it really was her fault. I told her the truth– she had a very big part in it, because he had seemed okay up until that call. He was kind of a loner, but he was starting to think that the people who made fun of him were going to leave him alone. It wasn’t all her fault, but she really screwed with his head. She didn’t really have anything to say after that. I’m just glad I got to tell her what happened before she found out on the news or through the grapevine. I hung up and went back to my ceiling-staring.

I didn’t know I loved him as much as I did until he left that gaping hole in my heart. I think that’s how I got the cuts to clean up. I wanted him to be able to move on. Maybe it was my one last act of love for him– to tie up the remaining loose ends in the hope that he could rest in peace.