Thursday, March 13, 2014

THE WATCH


I am watching a friend die.

The specific brand of poison she's using to kill herself is unknown but irrelevant. It all comes in little bottles she hides in her purse or coat pockets. She calls them "shooters."

I smell it on her skin and hear it in the way she laughs — a little too loud and slightly out of sync. She doesn't deny it when I ask if she's been drinking. She is apologetic, then angry, then agonized. She throws her purse, slams a door, cries. We've had this conversation before.

"I don't know what you want me to do," she says at one point.

"Don't drink."

"It's not that simple," she protests, and I know the brutal truth to her words.

"It is that simple," I lie. "Don't drink. Stop killing yourself."

She lets the mask fall from her face. She pounds the table and screams. "I know, I know, you're Mr. Fucking Cool Guy. You can keep it all inside. You can handle it. Well, fuck off. I can't."

She tells me not to feel sorry for her. I tell her the truth: I don't.

Silence. There are things that need to be said. I call her name: once, twice. She starts to snore.

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