I can not catch my breath. It is hard to focus on anything going on around me, everything I see is a picture taken a little too fast so it came out blurry. I feel someone holding on to my hand, and as I look up at their eyes I can not remember who they are. I can not seem to remember much of anything as the blood rushes to my head, I drop to my knees and close my eyes. There are more sets of hands now trying to help me to my feet, and more voices mumbling things I can only catch pieces of “Poor guy”…”Needs a stiff drink”…”It’s too much, take him home”.  I guess this happens to everyone right before they die, I just wish it were actually my turn to go.

They took me to a doctor yesterday to try to help me deal with this “issue” as it has been referred to recently. She asked me a lot of questions that I had no answer to, the one that I thought about the longest was “You need to acknowledge that you lost your best friend, how does that feel?”. I stared down at my hands for what I can only assume was hours, but in reality was probably about a minute. “I…I don’t feel anything. I thought about it a lot and the truth is that there is nothing to feel. They shot him and nothing is going to come of it. Nothing will bring him back, nothing will change. I suppose you could say I feel empty. But that isn’t it…I just have nothing left to give. I don’t want to die but I also do not want to live”. After that they loaded me up on medication to deal with the depression, to be honest it probably kept me from killing myself but it didn’t make me happy. I still feel empty inside.

The clouds are young kids tossing pebbles down at us so hard they leave small red welts, I have never felt rain like this. The kind of rain that pushes you to the ground and tells you not to bother getting up, it will only bring you down again. I wish this were some cosmic sign to teach me a lesson about life, but it is just a coincidence that fell on an already dark day. Why do we choose to bury people in places like this, it is so sombre and sad. Did they not realize we would already be depressed without making us stand amidst a sea of markers of the ones other families have lost? When I die I hope everyone celebrates, I hope they feel hope, I want them to say “we will keep living for him, not despite him”

They stole him from the world for what amounted to about fifty bucks, he was only doing what was right. It was a Friday night right in the heart of the downtown core, he was walking towards an ATM that a young guy was using. (I got to meet him later, turns out he was only fifteen) Which is when the two guys approached from behind gesturing towards the boy, as my friend got a bit closer he noticed that one was hesitantly pulling a hand gun from his pocket. Henry only did what he knew was needed, he dialed nine-one-one on his cell phone as he ran. They played the call for us later and I’m still not entirely sure why, but his family wanted to hear it and I happened to be there. “My name is Henry, I am on the corner of Derth and Smithe at the ATM. Someone is about to get shot.” After that the phone drops to the ground and all you can hear is some yells followed by the loudest noise I have ever heard. A gun shot. Screams followed as the operator tried to remain calm and reassure the caller, “Can you still hear me? Has someone been shot? The police and ambulance are on the way, remain calm and do not hang up…hello…hello?…fuck”

The worst part of this feeling is that Henry would be pissed off at how I am acting, because I have given up. He would never have let me act this way if he were around, he would insist that he wasn’t worth crying over. That he had a good life, or so everyone around me keeps saying to reassure me (or themselves). You know what though, fuck that. He is worth crying about, he was my best friend and they fucking stole him from me. They probably won’t even end up serving much time in prison, they’ll be “rehabilitated” in six to 10 months I bet, you know why? Because their lawyer was better than ours and they were only charged with attempted robbery and involuntary manslaughter. There is the big lesson kids, money may not make you happy but it will sure as hell keep your ass out of prison even when you are guilty.

Enough about that, I don’t need to relive that anymore than I already do in my head every time I finally manage to relax. There is no good description for how I feel these days, other than empty. It is not a lack of hope really because I am sure that wonderful things can and will happen in the future. The real problem is that I don’t care enough to wait around for them, not anymore.

As they lower the casket into the Earth everything goes black.


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