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Dear Lily, No Excuses.
Four months, twenty days, nineteen hours, forty minutes to go. But hey, who’s counting? It’s really loud here, and I sometimes miss just us sitting in the fields outside, not talking. And sometimes, when I really need some real company and “heated conversations,” I feel like I can just crumple to the ground in a broken heap. Everyone here is too sterile, too clean, too truthful and mundane. Lemme tell you, utopian society isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
I have to know: did that insensitive scumbag Lark ask you out? How’s Hannah doing with her baby? Is Jane still cutting? Does Wes ever say anything about me? What colleges are you thinking about going to? Are Brad and Nadia still together? Does Nadia ever talk to you about me? Do any of them even remember me? Do you?
I don’t know, I guess I just really miss you. I don’t know what to do with myself here, but I suppose I deserve it. You know they’re screening all my calls, and that’s why I haven’t called you. They won’t let me talk to you, not even by email. The only ones I’m allowed to talk to are my parents and you know how lovely they are. You’ve spent five minutes at my house, right? Yeah. Imagine living with that. They mean well, I guess. It’s just that I need to get out of here, fast, before I go frickin’ crazy.
How are things going at school? You holding up? Don’t worry your little blond head about me; I’ll catch up for school. We’ll graduate together, just like I promised. And Frasier Harolds always keeps his promises (but you already know all about that). Tell all the kids at school that, too. But don’t tell them about us, because that’s just between you and me, right?
Here’s a bunch of stuff I’ve drawn while here; I know you like to see it. Just so you know: you’re the only one I ever show it too. Yeah, a lot of it is you, and you don’t like it when I draw you, but I can’t help missing you so badly it hurts. I had to draw you, just to see you the way I remember you, with the blue streaks in your hair and the nose stud you swear didn’t hurt, and the chip in your tooth, and the lime green nail polish, and the “eccentric” style that barely passes the dress code. I had to see the bikini you wear to the beach even though everyone tells you you’re too chubby to rock it (by the way, I think the fact that you wore it anyway is exactly why you rocked it).
There’s this guy called Trace, who says he’s here because he pulled a gun on a kid at school. He told me, in private, that he did it because the kid told a girl she should commit suicide and she did. The girl was Trace’s sister.
And this chick, Georgia? She tried to kill herself, while her dad was in the same room, too wasted to notice she was taking a knife to her wrists.
They all looked at me expectantly, waiting for me to give an excuse for pushing you down the stairs of the school. And I guess I wanted to send this to you to tell you that I don’t have one. I have no acceptable reason for landing you in the hospital for a month, not one for you or for anyone else. And that I don’t have a reason for you to love me back, after what I did. Hell, I almost don’t want you to love me back, if that’s what I do to you. Even though it sounds unbelievable, I couldn’t stand you being that hurt.
Riley’s about to leave for good, and he promised me he’d stick this in a mailbox when he found one. He owes me for something I’d rather not say. Anyway, I have to stop writing now. Just wanted you to know that when I get out (in four months, twenty days, nineteen hours, and forty minutes), I’ll wait for you in the old skating rink, near the DJ’s booth.
This is me kissing you goodnight.
Tell your sister to eat a chocolate bar for me.