Letters from nowhere | Teen Ink

Letters from nowhere

March 2, 2023
By Liily4ka BRONZE, Monroe, Wisconsin
Liily4ka BRONZE, Monroe, Wisconsin
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

He died. 


I woke up at 7 am as I always do. I have never picked up my phone right away, but on this day, it seemed to me that something was wrong. I never turn off the sound on my phone, but I was tired and decided to turn it off that day, just in case, because I wanted to sleep well. Outside there was snow and thunder rumbled. The government sent a warning to stay at home due to a snow storm. I took my phone and turned it on.  I was surprised to see 15 missed calls from Fill and 2 from his mom. I knew something had happened and my hands began to tremble. I do not remember ever having such a fast heartbeat, it seemed that it would stop now. Something happened. I decided  to call Fill, but he didn’t answer. I called his mother, she didn’t pick up the phone for a long time. “It’s okay”, I said to myself out loud. “It’s okay.” Finally, she answered me. And what she said broke my heart. It stopped beating. Forever.


06.23.2019 6 months later.

The alarm clock is ringing. It is already morning? Why are nights either too long or too short?! The sun is shining in my eyes and I have no idea what time it is. I  would guess it’s already noon. I don’t have any plans for today, just like I didn’t have yesterday. And absolutely all 6 months. Mom screams from the kitchen:

      “Hey, girl, I hope you are awake. I put your breakfast here, I cooked your favorite pancakes with maple syrup and I bought a really tasty vanilla latte. You should try it.

    “ I will not eat, but thank you, “ I answered, then buried my head in the pillows. I have lost 15 pounds, I haven 't felt hungry in a long time. Mom interrupts my thoughts when she enters my room. 

    “I didn’t ask you if you want to eat or not. So, eat please, and then put the dishes in the dishwasher. By the way, Zoe called. You haven’t seen each other for a long time, maybe you should see your best friend.” 

      I don’t get it; is my mom kidding me?! What is a best friend? Zoe, who 4 months ago said that I whine and complain about everything and it annoys her? I have had no friends for a long time, and especially not a best one. Mother keeps staring at me waiting for an answer.

    “Eat, I will eat. But I’m not going to meet anyone. I won’t go outside at all.” 

 She sighed, but ended this conversation. Most likely, she understands that it is meaningless and she’ll not achieve results. 

   “I’m leaving for work. I’ll be back late tonight,” she said and closed the door. 

After 10 minutes of silence, I could  hardly get up. I went to the shower and then went to the kitchen. I poured the coffee that mom said to drink, but for me coffee is like coffee. Nothing special. Holding my mug in my hands, I catch myself thinking and drop the mug, which shatters into smithereens. Today is exactly 6 months since the car accident. Fill died six months ago. And in three months we would have moved to Paris together. How could I forget? Now I feel even worse and the guilt increases. Why is it always like this? Why am I the way I am? I hate myself, I hate myself and all that is going on now.

I sit on the floor and cover my face with my hands. My eyes  are burning with tears, and my face is all red. I give myself space to vent my emotions, because I haven’t felt anything for a long time, and I’ve spent so long pretending I don’t.

 I don’t know how long I was sitting in the kitchen, but I finally decided that I needed to go. Go to my love and tell him what happened. I’m wearing his favorite black dress, he always told me that I looked amazing in it. My blond hair is already longer, and curly, as usual.  Looking in the mirror, I understand that he would not recognize me, because I don't even know who is in the mirror. I no longer perceive myself, I am like a shadow -  seem to be, but at the same time not. I catch myself thinking how dramatically my life has changed in such a short time. Back then I had everything, and now, absolutely nothing. 

After an hour of traffic jams, I arrived at the place where I did not dare to go for three months. His new home, I whispered to myself. His quiet house, which is ironic, because he was always positive and active . Central cemetery. I quickly find his grave, as there is an apple tree near his grave. And oh my… This apple tree is in bloom, and around the petals have decomposed. That’s so beautiful. I sat down near his grave.

“Hey, my love. Do you want to know how it is going? I didn’t make it, to be honest. I can’t. I can’t live without you, I need you. I wish we were in that car together. I wish I had answered your call, everything would have been different. It’s all my fault, I’m so sorry.” 

 Tears run down my cheeks and deep down I believe that he hears me. 

      “For a long time after this accident I couldn’t sleep at all, I kept waiting for you to call. I thought that if I pretended that something didn’t happen, then I could fix everything. But hours, days, months passed, and oh dear, you still seem to be alive. Your smile, your support, your brown eyes. That’s my fault.” 

I have completely lost my mind and I’m crying as loud as I can. No, I’m screaming. From the pain that I can’t change anything, that he’s not here and I’m all alone. I quickly stop my gaze on something familiar. No, on someone. There is a guy in the distance, but I can see him, and he looks like Fill.

“Fill?” I screamed as loud as I could. I couldn’t mistake him, it was him. Brown curly hair, tall and beautiful body. He often went to the gym and was always proud of his abs and biceps. I always seemed small next to him.  I stood abruptly and started running towards the guy. Towards Fill. It’s him, for sure. I start to run, but at that time the phone rings, mom is calling. While I’m trying to turn off my phone, the guy has disappeared. 

Returning home, I found a letter in front of the door.   Moreover, it just lies directly on the carpet  on the ground Not in the mailbox. In the front of the door is a letter in a red envelope and my name is written with a pen. I’m surprised it didn’t fly away. Weird. Opening it, I immediately recognize the handwriting. I see the words and understand that this is a letter from Fill, but how is it possible? 

“Hello, honey. I think you have a lot of questions, but I can hardly answer them. I will say only what I must.  It’s not your fault, it’s nobody’s fault. You can’t just sit like that all your life, we didn’t dream about it. I know you, you can handle it all. You have many friends, plans, goals. I wasn’t your whole life, otherwise it was addiction, not love. You can do everything, I believe in you. Try to do a sport, do something new, because there are so many good things in life. I beg you, fly to Paris. There are new opportunities, a new language, country, people. Just do it, but without me.

Your Fill”

 I’m shocked, how could  he write a letter, and who can put it there? He couldn’t predict his death, it was an accident. Or could? Tons of thoughts are in my head, and questions that I will never get an answer to. Why did he want me to fly to Paris alone? How I missed his support..His understanding. But I won’t fly without him. I can’t make it, I can’t do that. Since his death, I stopped doing absolutely everything. I got lost. I don’t want to go anywhere, especially not to move. Only now I notice how much easier my soul has become. It was as If I met him, as if he hugged me and said that everything would work out. I don’t want to make things harder than they are; I’m just going to accept the fact that I have this letter and I received it. Even if I can’t do what he asked. I clutch the letter in my hands and sit on the floor in my thoughts for a long time. Eventually, they are interrupted by my mom, who has returned from work. And that means it’s past midnight. 

     “Hi, honey! Why are you sitting on the floor so late in that dress? Where were you?” 

To be honest, I’m not sure if I should tell her where I’ve really been. 

       “I just decided to try on this dress. How are you? How was your work?” It seems to be a common question that people ask each other every day. My mother is surprised, probably, because I haven’t been interested in how she is doing for a very long time. Only now I realize that I have no idea how my mom feels. I stopped asking and she stopped telling me. Guilt rolls over me and I understand that this is the first time in 6 months that I feel something other than emptiness and pain. 

      “Work as usual, nothing new. I see you haven’t eaten again, you’re going to die of hunger. Tomorrow is my birthday, I thought about going to the cafe,but…” 

       “Yes, let’s go, I haven’t been there for a long time.” I’m tired of hurting people and myself. Fill would want me to move forward. He sent this letter for a reason, this is his strength and support, this is my lifeline. He is my angel who always appears when needed. Mom comes up to hug me. I see tears in her eyes and I understand that it hurts no less.

     “Thank you.” She whispered and went to her room. I can’t sleep at night, but not because of the pain. I feel something, something different. I feel his power with me. And I know that I am weak, and I am at the bottom of my own, but now…now at least I have hope. And hope - is more than nothing, right?

         Waking up in the morning yesterday feels like a dream. I feel just as bad, and the feeling of hunger eats at me from the inside. I remember that I promised my mother to go to a cafe today and I already regret it. Looking in the mirror, the desire to go outside has disappeared altogether. I look just awful. Without makeup, with red eyes from fatigue and tears. I’m going to tell mom that our plans are canceled when she knocks on my door.

    “Take your time preparing.  Some letter came with your name, I put it on the kitchen table.” Letter? Omg! Letter!! I ran out of the room, almost tripping. But I am sure, that’s him. When I enter the kitchen, I really see a letter, but it is in a white envelope, and the front says “H&M gift card”. A Mistake. This is not from Fill, and maybe, it was only one letter that he wrote. My gaze  inadvertently falls under the table and there lies a red envelope, exactly the same as yesterday. Maybe I just left it there? But I see it's an unopened letter. Gently, I take it in my hands, as if it could disappear. I go to my room to open it. I sit on the bed and slowly unfold the letter. On the paper, I can see his handwriting, and from this my heart starts to beat faster. He seems to be here again with me. I can almost feel him holding my hand…

  “Hi, lovely girl. How are you? I don’t think that letter influenced your decision, I didn’t expect it to. But I’m sure you’ve started thinking about it. It’s better than nothing. I am so proud that you made one step forward with your mom, I really hoped for that. Do you remember when you told me that you couldn’t roller skate and I said I’d teach you. And when I said that I was holding you and you were sure in my support, you did that, and you did that by yourself. I didn’t hold you, because I was sure you could do this without me. I know, it just can’t be easy, it shouldn’t be easy. Right? Remember, there is always something wrong, but it doesn’t mean that all is bad. Not good, not bad - just different. You said to me, that “Great things happen to those who don't stop believing, trying, learning, and being grateful.” Life is fast and you need to enjoy every moment, even if something happens. I have an adventure for you. In the old town St.46 North you will have your first French class tomorrow at 2:00, what do you think about it? It’s your choice, but this is the second step toward your dream.  We can’t change the situation, but we can change how we see it. Go forward, and never stop. You would never return this time. You will never be 17 anymore. Live well, just live.

Your Fill”

I start to think about it, probably he is right? I can do it alone? Not for him, not for my mom, just for myself. Is it hard? - Absolutely. Is it easy now? - No. I have to try for myself, get through this, get out of this darkness and show what I can do. And for the first time in a long six months, I understand that I want to live, not just survive. I lost everything, so it’s time to return it back. From a clean slate, because the past me, that’s exactly what I would have done. 

   “I am ready,mom, let’s go!”  When we go outside, I feel the warm sun and the cool breeze. I have no energy, but now, I have faith. And I won’t hide from everything anymore. 

Next day

In the morning I wake up and cook breakfast. My mom is shocked and even claims she thinks this is a dream. I said that finally, I didn’t feel like I was in a horror dream. It’s hard to understand, but something has changed in my head. I put on normal clothes and say goodbye to my mom. I didn’t say that I am going to the French class, because she would have a lot of questions and I am not ready to answer them. I am still not sure that I will be ready to move to Paris. I left for class early, so I decided to go to the cafe on the opposite side of the street. I ordered my favorite coffee and wished the barista a good day. It used to be an everyday routine, but now I am proud of even this  small achievement. Now I’m sitting at the table near the window and I know that soon I need to leave. I’m enjoying music and trying to write down on paper a list of the things I want to do. While they are not grandiose plans,I know he would be happy with them. He knew me so well. He couldn’t predict that I would go to learn French, but he believed. Knew I wouldn’t give up. Honestly, it warms my heart. So far, my plans are to eat three times a day, go to French classes and meet with friends. Not difficult, right? But I need time for restarting and hopefully, I have this time. It’s time, I thought, and left the cafe. Perhaps this is a new chapter in my life. Walking into the classroom, I suddenly notice Lexi, with whom I spoke a year ago, and she meets my eyes. She looks more mature and has cut her hair. Now she has short hair and beautiful shadows on her eyes. She is smiling. 

    “Heey! I haven’t seen you for a really long time! How are you? How is Fill? Are you still together?”  she asked.

 Oh, she doesn’t know about him. A bad feeling in my heart hurts inside. I just stare at her and put my eyes down. 

     “Hi! I am glad to see you. Fill died in a car accident 6 months ago, but  I know that many people don't even know about it because there wasn't a funeral. His mom said only family members would be there. I then asked and begged her, but she didn’t allow it.” I see her sad look of regret and decide to switch the conversation. “Why are you here? In the summer want to learn French?”

       “I’m going on a trip to France, so I decided, why not. Listen, would you like to go to the cinema after class? I have two tickets, and my friend got sick.” 

After a little thought, I understand that this is what I need so much. Ordinary conversation about something simple. 

      “Yes, that would be great.”

After three months.

I am almost ready. I just need to put on my lipstick, and I can go. “Mom, I’ll be back today around 5pm. Lexi and I go first to the French class, and then to the store. We need to choose suitcases for both of us.” I told my mom about the move only two weeks ago, when I finally realized that I really would do it. For two months my life has changed and slowly I am returning to the rhythm of life. It’s far from ideal, but now I feel alive. And I love that feeling. I didn’t get any more letters from Fill, although I waited stubbornly for a whole month. Perhaps his idea was only to make me think, but he wanted me to go through this myself. I tried to find out how he wrote the letters and who sent them, but quickly stopped. I didn't communicate with his mom after she forbade even asking something about him and coming to the funeral, and I had no more leads. How did he know about his death? I still don’t know. Probably, he felt something that he never told me about. I don’t want to think about it because it hurts me. I just resigned myself and took it as a clue to life. I’m sure meeting Lexi on that day was also not accidental. All accidents are not accidental. We need them for something in life. And I’m happy that this was the beginning of my white streak. 

     “Bye, mom! Good luck at work! See you later.” I screamed as I closed the door. Going outside I see  Lexi, who, as always, smiles at me. 

    “Bon après-midi! Es-tu prêt?” she says and I laugh, because it’s really funny. We’re not perfect in the French, but we try our best. 

    “And good morning to you too! Good to see you! Girl, I can’t believe I’m moving in a week. Time goes so fast!” I said it with a note of sadness. Now, when everything is stable, and it seems to me that I am happy, it will not be easy to change everything in Paris. But I think the hardest part is over. Now I have new dreams, goals, and character. I can deal with everything. 

    “I’m already sad, don’t remind me. These three months have been amazing! We managed to travel and start learning French! We even went to the gym a couple of times! I’ll really miss you.”

   “But you will fly to Paris in October, so we will hang out together. So, girl, it’s fine.” I didn’t want to tell, but I’m scared to leave her. And without her it would be empty in such a big city. But she’s right, the summer was amazing. 

     “Let’s go on an adventure!”


Paris is a very beautiful city! I had no idea how big it is compared to my little Tallinn, even though Tallinn is the capital of Estonia. Paris is bright. Everywhere people are ready to help, but only in French, they are bad with English. I am happy that I have learned at least the basics of the language and I can ask and answer something. My future university is located in the middle of Paris on the Champs Elysees, this is the most expensive area. But Paris is also very handsome and people wear fashionable clothes. I already have a favorite cafe here, where I spend quite a lot of time drinking coffee and doing homework. My friend Lori, is the barista from this cafe, who helps me with French and just supports me. She is one of the few people I told my full story to and didn’t regret it. Life has improved and everything goes on as usual. It would seem that nothing could go wrong? Everything would have been great if I had not met  the person whom I least expected to see not only in Paris, but in general on earth. 

    “See you in the evening, right?” I asked Lori. 

    “Yes, in the park at 7. I’ll be there after work.” I smile at her and leave the cafe. It’s still warm outside, but the leaves are already turning yellow. It’s raining, but it doesn’t bother me. My headphones are playing my favorite song and I am going to the book shop to buy a new psychology book. When I try to put my phone in my bag, someone accidentally runs into me and my phone drops. I turn my head to see who the asshole is. For a moment, I think he looks like a Fill, but I just keep going. 

The author's comments:

My first story ever:)

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