I saw you that rainy day in September. When you were looking out the window, the dark red of the room dripping onto your skin, glowing in the pale blue light. Time seemed to run differently in the room, slow and sluggish, like it hurt to move too fast. Your eyes were glassy and lifeless, staring blankly at the water stained glass. Your whole body seemed too stiff, too pale, unnatural. Hands laid quietly on the window, fog slowly spread from bony fingers. Feet fixed flat on the ground. The room seemed to gravitate towards your statue-like body, everything blurring out of focus as gravity pulled me towards you. But that wasn’t real. That feeling of inevitable grief, of being powerless and alone. It was simply imagination, right? I tore my feet off the ground, pushing them away from the room, my shoulders feeling heavier than before. After all I still managed to walk away with a guilt slowly dripping into an already heavy heart.
I don’t remember having classes with you. Our friends never really interacted, or if they did, perhaps fate had simply made us stay away. I do remember however, seeing you at lunch once sitting with your friends at the table. They all had been boisterously laughing at jokes but your face only held a tight smile. You had seemed so distant from the glowing people beside you, instead a cold blue hue casted on your face. A small tug on my heart had made my face scrunch, my whole body treading through dense air. I felt something wrong in me, a feeling of dread at seeing you, at seeing the difference between you and your friends at that small table. But what was there for me to do?
The day the announcement came in, a short simple email oozing with pain and guilt from everyone, it was a shock. I read it multiple times. I must have misread something. But I knew this was coming, didn’t I see all the signs? My hands seemed to drip with blood, staining my every move. They slowly shook as I hurried to close my email. My computer slammed shut. Classmates turned to look at me as I continued to stare at my hands. They felt numb. Everything had felt so numb. Concerned gazes followed me as I dragged my dazed body with empty thoughts. The bright sky outside seemed fake and smiles passed around felt wrong. The color in the world drained away, instead left with desolate grey. Eventually everything felt like too much, that numbness spreading all over and my hands trembling and my lungs couldn’t seem to give me enough air and my heart growing heavier with every step and I just couldn’t handle it anymore. I couldn’t bear the thought of you.
I had thought about you before. During long car rides to nowhere, music droning on, I would look out the window and your face would cross my mind. I would wonder if you were looking out at the same drizzly sky as me, whether you were feeling better or whether you had talked to someone today. I would stare at my feet and wonder if I had done something on that rainy september day, things would have ended differently. Still sometimes it felt as though I didn’t deserve to feel this way; I had barely known you. I still do. My shoulders are too tense and sleep is hard, but I guess it will get better some day. Now when I look out the window and see raindrops trickle down, and I remember that fated day when you stood there. When I almost took a step towards you and you snapped out of that trance. You looked so surprised to see me, wide eyes glassy with tears staring at my frozen figure. I had walked away and left you alone in that dark cold room. Today I stare out a window and your face comes to mind, but it won’t haunt me anymore.
Margot F, Grade 11, Regular Contributor