A Letter Too Late

Holy Child Community School, Sallynoggin

In the three months, he had been gone, I had received a total of ten letters. The most recent one arrived two hours ago. I keep them one the table in the hall. I try to avoid that area of the house because of how lonely it feels to me. Their pictures are all over the walls. I miss them, but I’m too stubborn to apologise. I stood up from my position on the couch and walked towards the door that led to the hall. I made sure the light in the hall was on before I opened the door. Of course, it was already on. I never switch them off at night. Slowly, I turned the handle of the door. My hand was clammy, and I struggled to get it open. Eventually, I pushed the door open and stepped into the small hallway. Memories immediately flooded back to me as my eyes scanned the room. My eyes, of course, fell on the main photograph. The last time I truly smiled. Before all of this happened. It was the day of the incident. We looked like a happy family (which we were). My name was signed on the bottom: Justin Brown. I was holding my two-year-old daughter, Rosy, on my shoulders. Finn’s arm was around me. Throughout my career as a photographer, this is the best picture I’ve ever taken. I had used a timer to take it. I remember complaining at the time that the twenty seconds seemed to take years to finish. I would give anything to relive those twenty seconds. Finn and Rosy were driving back from the park. Rosy had unbuckled her seatbelt without Finn realising. A driver sped around the corner and crashed into them. Rosy was killed straight away and Finn was paralyzed. After the incident, I didn’t speak. Finn tried to talk. He constantly said sorry and blamed himself for the whole thing. I blamed him too. That’s what led to our ongoing divorce. He moved out and still sends me letters. I walked over to the table and picked the first one he ever sent up. I opened it and read it. I read through all of them. It didn’t take long for me to cry. The last one made me stop. My heart raced and my blood went cold.

11th of April,2019

27 Rosefort Avenue,

Dublin,

Ireland

Dear Justin,

I know you haven’t responded to any of my letters. I doubt you’ve even read them. Maybe you’ll read this after and if you do, please forgive me. That’s all I want. I can’t go on like this. I can’t live in a world without her and without you speaking to me. You two were the only things that kept me going. I understand what I did was stupid and that I brought this on myself. I understand that you can never forgive me. I understand that you’re just as sad as I am. I understand that if you’re reading this, you might blame yourself for what I’m about to do, but it’s not your fault. It’s my decision. You are the best thing that has ever happened to me. By far. You’re the love of my life and I just want you to know how important you are to me. You’re an amazing person Justin Brown, you’re the best person I know. I made my decision ages ago, but I’m finally going through with it. In my suicide note, you’ll understand that I can’t handle life without you two and that I will never blame or be mad at you for anything. In my final letter to home, I want you to know that: I love you. I have always loved you. I always will love you.

Love,

Finn.

I couldn’t believe it. There was no way he could. There was no way he would. He knew I forgave him. He knew I loved him. He couldn’t be dead. Sirens blared outside. I begged for there not to be a knock on the door.

There was.