Something was wrong.
I could feel the tension in the air as I stepped off the bus and onto the dark sidewalk. Everything in my body was telling me to fucking run. I remembered his text just a moment ago urging me forward. My legs moved without my consent as I raced towards my apartment.
These words were seared into my mind as I raced up the stairs and quickly unlocked the door. I stumbled into the apartment and saw Tom with a razor in his hand.
“Tom! Stop!” I yelled.
He did it anyway.
I finished reading my journal entry for the day to my therapist.
It had taken a lot to write this but I had done it anyway, just to please her. The look on her face was one of shock as I finished reading. I swallowed loudly. My heart was beating a mile a minute as I saw her write a few notes.
“That...must have taken a lot to write, Charlie. Good job.”
Her expression was one of sympathy. Sympathy I didn’t want nor did I deserve.
“I really don’t want to be here today. Can I please just leave?” I asked.
Her expression turned to one of shock. Good. That’s what I deserve.
“I really think it would be good to talk about this entry you wrote today.”
Why does she care? I’m just one of her many patients. It’s not as if I matter. And I’m pretty sure she’s faking her empathy towards me.
“What’s to talk about? It’s all there. Every. Goddamn. Detail.” Her eyes went to her notes again. She scribbled something down and focused on me again.
“Well, we could talk about how you felt when you wrote this. Maybe even try and identify why you now think I hate you.”
How the fuck did she know how I felt about her? I’d never even told her my feelings towards her. She must be genuinely intuitive to guess that about me.
“Well, I just think you act this way with all of your patients. It would make sense for you to care only about some of them. And I personally don’t think I’m worth caring about. I couldn’t even save my goddamn boyfriend.”
Her expression was now one of utter dumbfoundedness. I was so sure I knew what she was thinking. Poor little Charlie. Too bad he’s a fucking useless piece of garbage.
“Charlie, I know you loved Tom but you need to move on. Dwelling on the past will only lead to more hurt in the future.”
That pesky little bitch. How fucking dare she tell to move on from Tom. We were engaged and now she wants me to fucking forget about him? Not gonna happen.
“Listen here. Tom and I were soulmates. We were about to be married. I tried my goddamn hardest to make sure he was happy. I don’t know what I did wrong. Did he hate me? Was he just lying to me about our love? These questions will never be answered because he’s dead now. Fucking slit his wrists right in front of me. I...I d..don’t understand…”
I broke down crying there in her office. The guilt, the unanswered questions...my hatred for myself stemmed for these things. I knew how to stop it. I just had to talk.
“Charlie, I understand you need time to mull this over. If you want to come back next time and talk about it then, that’s fine.”
I raised my head stared her straight in the eyes.
“N...no. It’s been 3 years since it happened. I need to get over it. I’ll tell you everything that led up to his suicide and why I blame myself for it.”
I woke up about a week before he did it to the sound of him screaming in his sleep. It took a few seconds for me to fully awaken and when I did, I shook him awake. I will never forget the look in his eyes. It was one of pure, animalistic,terror.
“What’s wrong!” I immediately asked him.
“I..I had a nightmare.”
“Wanna talk about it?”
“I saw...myself...dead...my wrists were cut open…”
This sent a chill down my spine. In the past, Tom was prone to suicidal tendencies and he used to self-harm. For obvious reasons, I was on high alert now.
“Are...are you feeling okay? You know, mentally?”
He stared straight into my eyes and said the words that will never leave my mind.
“I..I think I..saw...the future…”
This was alarming at the time, but I rationalized it as his sleeping mind still being active. I smiled to reassure him.
“Of course you didn’t see the future, silly! It was just a dream!”
“Bu..ut..I saw you in the nightmare....Y..you yelled, “Tom! Stop!””
“Of course I’d say that in that situation, honey~”
That’s what I said, but inside I was panicking. I made a mental note to call his therapist in the morning. Everything about this situation was fucked. The idea that Tom was still suicidal sent chills down my spine. He had told me he hadn’t had any thoughts like that in months. Had he lied to me? Was he just trying to make me feel better? I decided that the next time he mentioned suicide I would admit him to a hospital. That seemed to be the only rational thought floating around in my mind at that moment. Did I tell him my plan? Of course I didn’t! The last time he had been in inpatient care had been awful for him. I knew how he would react if he knew I was planning on sending him back.
“Charlie? You’re awfully quiet. Whatcha thinking about?” He asked.
This shook me out of my thoughts.
“Huh? Oh, nothing, honey. Just thinking of ways to calm you down. I know! How about some tea? Will that help?”
‘Yeah..That sounds great~ Thanks Charlie!”
The day of his suicide was a chaotic one.
I had a job interview that day that would probably take the entire afternoon to complete. I woke up around 7 am and took a shower. After that, I grabbed my wallet and rushed out the door to the car I shared with Tom.
The drive to the interview was calm and peaceful for once. Tom hadn’t said anything about suicide in the entire week since he’d had the nightmare. I had also forgotten about my plan to admit him to the hospital. It seemed life was back on track. How very wrong I was.
About halfway to the office, I got a text from Tom.
He came back.
This confused me. Who came back?
What are you talking about, honey?
His reply was almost instantaneous.
Him. The Nightmare.
Shit. Shit shit shit. He’d had another nightmare? My plan came rushing to the forefront of my mind. I decided to call right then and there. Screw traffic laws. That was until Tom texted me again.
Don’t. Don’t call the hospital. He told me your plan. How could you betray my trust like that?
What! How the hell did he know about my plan? Even I had forgotten it! And who was this guy he was talking to? I decided to ask him.
Who are you talking to? How does he know about my plan?
Tom took about 3 minutes to reply. And his text will forever be seared into my mind.
Him! I’m talking to The Nightmare. He just told me you hate me. How could you do this to me, Charlie? I thought you loved me! I thought we were going to be married! I can only see one way out now. Goodbye Charlie.
Goodbye Charlie. Those two words will forever be in my memory as his last words. I parked the car next to the office building and got on the first bus home I could find. Fuck the job. Fuck the interview. Tom came first. Always.
You know the rest...My mad dash into the apartment only to see him slit his wrists right in front of me....That’s why I feel guilty...I couldn’t save him...I didn’t get there fast enough. This man he was talking to..I will never forgive him. Not even on my deathbed will I forgive him. He ruined my goddamn life.