So, there he was, perched on his couch and smoking his joint easy as can be. Like nothing had changed between us. Like nothing had even happened. But that's just the way he was, you know? So at ease, no matter the situation. As long as he was smoking, anyways. I've never seen him lose his cool when he was smoking, even if it was just the Lucky Strikes he usually had. I clear my throat. It takes him a minute to turn, but he does, and fixes me with those doe eyes. "You know," I start, my voice faltering slightly. "They say you're abusing substances now." There's a soft noise, something between a snort and a laugh. "Honey," He said, stretching out onto his back, one long leg dangling over the edge, "Substances and me have a funny kind of relationship. To say I'm abusing them.. well, that implies something bad. Me and substance? We're like Van Morrison and his brown eyed girl. We're Sonny and Cher. Do wah diddy diddy dum, you know? The thing is, substance and I have a sort of, you know, S and M relationship. Substance wants to be used, abused. But it's not abuse. Not the way you're talkin'."

We make small talk for a while, subject dropped, and it's not until later, when I'm doing the piles of dishes in his sink and he's perched on the counter when you bring it up again. "Honey," he says, and I know that tone of voice. That soft, sad tone that he'd use in his favourite songs and when interviews got too personal. "Someway or another, I abused everything in my life." At this point, I'm shaking my head, covered in suds to the elbows. "That's not true." I said. "That's not true." I repeated. "There's me. You never abused me." And it's your turn to give a tiny shake of your head, curls brushing across your cheeks. "Yes, I did. Ten years from now, if you're around, you'll hate me for it. You'll look back on me and you'll see it and you'll hate me. And if I'm still around, I'll understand."

Like I said, that was the last time I saw him. Ten years ago, almost to the day. I don't know what happened. I don't know why he never returned my calls. I don't know why he wrote the letter to me. I just..I just don't know, okay? God. I don't know. He left, get it? Ten years ago. That day. He just left and he never came back and, fuck, would it kill you to give me a fucking box of tissues? He left and I don't know why he killed himself and I don't know why he wrote the letter to me and I hate him, I fucking hate him, and I don't know, god, I don't know. I just don't know anything. Can I just.. can I just go back to work ?