Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Thu, 31 October at 12:35 a.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


Dear John,

This is not a Dear John letter. In fact, it’s not a letter, it’s an email. I find it difficult to write with pen and paper nowadays. I also don’t live in the 16th century, so there’s that as well.

Forgive me. I am awkward when it comes to you and I try to save my embarrassment by saying things that sound either funny or desperate, mostly desperate, but maybe also, hopefully, funny? Self-deprecation jokes are really not sexy. But do I try to sound sexy? What would be the point? What is in fact, the point? Why am I writing this?

The truth is, John, I don’t know. I don’t know anything other than your name in my mouth, John, feels like butter with honey and I am hungry, John, all the time for you.

I miss you. Everyday. Every hour. I miss you so much that I can write clichés like this and they still hurt me instead of making me cringe. It’s awful. No, it’s not awful exactly. Awful is that I can’t find matching socks. This is terrible. It is terrible. Do I make sense? Probably not. It is terrible that it doesn’t matter. Ungodly, beastly, rotten, unwelcome, vile. Thesaurus feels me.

How did we end up like this? I mean, from all the possibilities, all the bright paths, how did we pick this particular one to be our fate? Damn it. If you were here and this was an actual discussion, we would understand that this is going to be a topic we like right about now; we would go for wine in the kitchen, and while you were opening it, I would blabber about what is fate and you would agree by nodding, waiting for your turn, and your turn would come while I lit up the first cigarette and drink the first sip, you would disagree slightly with me, then I would say one of these smart things that always come as a surprise to me, you would think about it for a moment while gulping the wine and then you would start off your next sentence by saying “You see, the problem is…”. Damn it. Damn you. I want this. I don’t want to drink alone. I am doing it quite often actually. You wouldn’t be surprised. Damn you, nothing made you surprised. Damn you, damn you, damn you, John.

I don’t want to say goodbye. I don’t want to say best wishes or love, or regards, or miss you xxx, or anything stupid like that.

Come home.

Liz

***

John Malory john_c_malory@yahoo.com                           Thu, 31 October at 3:08 a.m.

To:

lizmalory89@yahoo.com


My darling Liz,

I am glad you finally decided to write to me. I was waiting.

I miss you too. I can’t come home, you know that. I am sorry.

You see, like you, I don’t think I have the right words to express what I am feeling for all this. But you do, my darling. You always did, you know that. Even when your words get messy and you start your silly jokes and those hour-long monologues, somehow, you always make sense. Or at least you made sense to me. We made sense to me. I am sorry it has to be like this.

If I could pick one of our favorite activities together, that would be the same one you described (and then I would pick a million more). But you know, you were wrong, for once, at something. I was surprised, all the time, with you. I was surprised every day, waking up next to you, smelling you, making love to you, hearing you talk or watching you get dressed, it didn’t matter. Every time it was you, I was surprised how I could be so incredibly lucky.

We have to say goodbye Liz, for your own good, come on, you know that, my sweet darling. I hate that I am hurting you. But it’s going to get better, you know that. See? I still think you know everything. How can you not know that?

I love you, darling. Always, so much.

John

***

Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Thu, 31 October at 2:40 p.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


WHAT THE FUCK. ARE YOU ALIVE.

What is happening? If this is a sick joke you’re playing with me you fucktard Larry I swear I will hang you like your brother you sick fuck

PICK UP YOUR FUCKING PHONE LARRY or whoever else got John’s password. How dare you doing this to me. How fucking dare you.

***

John Malory john_c_malory@yahoo.com                           Thu, 31 October at 3:41 p.m.

To:

lizmalory89@yahoo.com


Relax darling, it’s not Larry. The poor bastard is probably shitting himself right now with all your calls.

I love how you started your last email with “WHAT THE FUCK. ARE YOU ALIVE.” and then thought it was a prank. Believe me, nobody would do this to you, not even Larry. I would haunt the shit out of them if they did and I think they know it subconsciously. Also, come on, people are not that bad. I know I used to say they were but if you saw what I am seeing lately, you would also think the same.

To answer your question (which wasn’t exactly a question since there were no question marks), no, I am very much still dead I am afraid.

Please don’t tell any of this to Larry, or anyone else for that matter. What I am doing is kind of frowned upon. Long story.

I am doing this so you can get back to normal, so you can have closure.

I love you, darling.

P.S.: “I swear I will hang you like your brother you sick fuck”. Touché. I laughed out loud.

Your John.

***

Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Thu, 31 October at 4:07 p.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


You mean to tell me I am getting letters from beyond the grave?

The only reason I want to believe this is how angry it would make you to find out that there is, in fact, life after death. Also, you know, the fact that I can talk to you, is another reason I want to believe this. Is your new email johnfrombeyond@paradise.com?

Fuck this. What am I even saying? At least I am laughing. Well, and crying. Is this going mad?

Okay, you know what? Another cliché. Tell me something ONLY YOU would know.

***

John Malory john_c_malory@yahoo.com                           Thu, 31 October at 4:09 p.m.

To:

lizmalory89@yahoo.com


You shat yourself in the shower once.

***

Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Thu, 31 October at 4:10 p.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


You cunt. I knew you would pick that if it was actually you, I fucking knew it.

HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE

***

John Malory john_c_malory@yahoo.com                           Thu, 31 October at 4:37 p.m.

To:

lizmalory89@yahoo.com


You know darling, I love how we got from the “your name in my mouth, John, feels like butter with honey and I am hungry, John, all the time for you” to the “I fucking knew it you cunt” in just a couple of emails. Which, by the way, is what we’re writing (you mentioned in your previous email that you are getting letters from beyond the grave). You know, we keep up with the times, it’s not like the afterlife has medieval castles.

But let’s stop with the witty comments. Liz, sweet Liz, you have to move on. Do it for me, if not for you.

Love,

John

***

Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Thu, 31 October at 5:10 p.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


Oh really? I should do it for you, should I? Really? Just give me a second to get my head around this darling, just a tiny sec WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT. You do know you’ve left me without an explanation, don’t you? You do know how people keep asking me “Oh, he was depressed, wasn’t he? You never noticed, didn’t you?” Like it’s my fucking fault. Which, technically John, YOU made me think it is.

Why the fuck didn’t you say something? We were supposed to be sharing everything. How could you do this to me? I thought we were okay. I mean, I know we weren’t happy all the time, especially after you lost that fucking job, but, really now, a suicide? Don’t you think that’s overreacting? Or if you were really that depressed, why not go see a doctor? You know I wouldn’t think less of you.

You better start answering questions.

P.S.: You know what I did to your former boss, don’t you?

***

John Malory john_c_malory@yahoo.com                           Thu, 31 October at 5:50 p.m.

To:

lizmalory89@yahoo.com


I know. That poor bastard. You know he kind of knows it was you? Or at least he suspects so. He wasn’t that bad Liz, really, I just wasn’t needed anymore. And to be honest, that was the problem in general. I wasn’t needed anymore. You had your job, your parents, your friends, your stupid yoga things, your awful singing hobby… What did I have? Parents that I didn’t like or talk to, a brother that didn’t miss a chance to say how much better he was than me, a couple of married-with-kids friends who never shut up about their darling offspring, and no job, no hobbies, other than scrolling through social media and make myself miserable about the state of the world.

It wasn’t your fault. How could it be? I told you time and time again that you were not responsible for other’s people feelings. How can you, with all your empathy, not see that? It wasn’t my job, it wasn’t our marriage, it wasn’t anything. It wasn’t anything.

I can’t do this for long my darling Liz. I have to go. You have to let go.

***

Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Thu, 31 October at 6:00 p.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


You are still a selfish ass, it’s amazing. No hope for the afterlife and awareness then, thanks for making that clear. Also, thanks for letting me know how it was all about you. Feeling great right now, MIGHT JOIN YOU LATER

***

John Malory john_c_malory@yahoo.com                           Thu, 31 October at 6:20 p.m.

To:

lizmalory89@yahoo.com


Don’t even joke about this. Look, don’t get me wrong, you have all the reasons to be angry, but you see, the problem is that I also have all the reasons to be dead. You don’t need special permission to get desperate. This is what I was. I didn’t feel like it was ever going to get better. I didn’t want to have to struggle anymore with pretending everything was okay around you. As for why I didn’t share it with you? I was embarrassed. I am not like you, sharing horror childhood stories with people you’ve just met or pouring feelings on the telephone or having to examine every little frown in case it means something. I don’t share feelings. I thought you knew this about me. I thought you liked this about me. We made a perfect match, balancing each other. In any case, this is my goodbye, Liz. I thought you wanted this. I thought it would make it better for you. Jesus Liz, I thought of so many things, didn’t I? Maybe replying to you was a mistake.

I love you. Forgive me. I have disappointed you again.


Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Thu, 31 October at 6:25 p.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


Don’t you dare disappear now.

***

Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Thu, 31 October at 6:45 p.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


I AM NOT DONE. Okay? Not done at all. I need you to explain better. John, I NEED you. What don’t you understand? You took everything from me, and now you want to take away this? My last hope to have you, even like this? Please, don’t do this. Please DON’T DO THIS. PLEASE.

I can’t believe that I am begging you, even though it’s your fault. That is so classic you. You were wrong but somehow, I was always the one apologizing. Fuckface. I miss you so much John.

Okay, this is a bit too far, but since, well, you know, we’re talking and you are, well, dead, I might just go and ask it: Is there any chance you can actually… come back? Can you, I don’t know, talk to someone there? I swear nobody will know, you can tell them (her, him?) that, we can go hide somewhere where no one will ever see us, ever, well, they will see me when I go for shopping, but no one will ever know. I don’t care how or where, I’ll plan it all out before your, well, fuck, arrival (resurrection?), and actually, I don’t even have to go shopping, we can grow veggies somewhere super far away and desolate. I only want to be with you, fuck everything else.

God, I miss you so much, you can’t imagine. You seriously can’t imagine. If you could imagine you would never do this. I hope. Anyway, it doesn’t matter.

Can you come? Please? Or try? Just ask them, just a normal question. Maybe there is a way.


John Malory john_c_malory@yahoo.com                           Thu, 31 October at 7:20 p.m.

To:

lizmalory89@yahoo.com


My baby. My sweet darling. My Liz. I can’t. This has to be the end, my love. Rest assured that I loved you as best as I could and that it is not your fault that I couldn’t love you better. Or that I couldn’t love myself. This is my final goodbye my sweet love, my darling, this is it. I am sorry for the pain. I am sorry you’re going through this. But remember, you are not alone, you have all these wonderful friends and family to support you. Darling, if it makes you feel better, which I am sure it will with time, I am okay now. There is no more pain. No more expectations. I just… am. Living in the now, as you tried to teach me to do so many times. I couldn’t do this while I was alive, but you, oh you, I’ve seen you do that time and time again. You need to find the strength to do it again. Cry, scream, be pissed off (and be pissed in general), mourn me, but don’t give up. I have seen you and I know you can do this. You can get where I am now while being alive. You don’t know what a blessing that is.

Liz, Liz, Liz, Liz, Liz, Liz, your name is my sweetest memory. Thank you for keeping me happy as much as I could let you. Thank you for not giving up, ever.

I loved you in life, I love you in death. Always, always, Liz. This is my dear John letter (email technically, but okay). This is goodbye.

I love you, again and again.

John


Liz Malory lizmalory89@yahoo.com                                        Fri, 1 November at 12:35 a.m.

To:

john_c_malory@yahoo.com


Dear John,

I have thought about this. I decided that this exchange of emails will pass in my memory as a dream. After I hit send, I will delete everything and drink myself to oblivion. I can’t have it any other way you see, otherwise, I can perfectly imagine me old and gray, waiting for yet another email, because “Maybe he will reply to this one?”. I can’t do this to myself. So… thanks for all the good intentions, but no thanks.

I HAVE to go through with this, the best way I can. You are not responsible for my grief, as you were not responsible for my happiness. You never seem to get this, dead or alive. I guess saying “how can you do this to me” in the previous emails didn’t help my case a lot. But you have to understand, that this is what I am supposed to say. Only you are not supposed to answer. This is what mourning should be: Anger, regret, desperation. You cannot make it better. You cannot heal this wound, even if, technically, you caused it. This is mine, alone, to get over or not.

You said I can live in the now better than anyone, well, living in the now doesn’t make bad emotions go away. It means accepting them. So, quit trying to be my savior and just be dead, whatever that means. Also, I am super curious as to what it means, but I am also super thankful you didn’t tell me. It’s another thing I have to find out for myself.

So… this is my goodbye then. Somehow, talking to my dead husband through emails feels more real than his actual funeral. Somehow it hurts more. My fingers are prickling me to write “not that I am blaming you” but I shouldn’t care what you think. You are dead. I can say whatever I want while I am grieving.

Just be quiet, okay? There might come a day when I will seem at the edge of losing my mind or my life and if you can see that, I need you to stay quiet. If I have a new man at some point and I excuse myself to go to the bathroom before we have sex and I look at myself in the mirror and ask “what the hell am I doing, I am not ready”, I don’t want to raise my face after splashing it with cold water and see a message from you in the mirror saying “I like him Liz, go girl”. Nothing of that. Just stay quiet okay?

I will send this to you now because I am already regretting it and want to say “or you know, pop by whenever”.

I loved you while you were alive. Don’t make me hold on to you while you’re dead.

Until we meet again,

Liz.

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15 likes 12 comments

18:34 Mar 30, 2020

Please keep them coming! You're so talented!!!!

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18:33 Mar 30, 2020

Wow! Just WoW!!!!!

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18:27 Mar 30, 2020

Love your stories Dafni ❤️

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18:34 Mar 30, 2020

Me too!!!!!

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14:22 Mar 30, 2020

Very touching Dafni! Well done!

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18:35 Mar 30, 2020

Couldn't agree more!

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16:56 Apr 02, 2020

Fierce and humorous; a great effort, Dafni. ;)

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17:55 Mar 31, 2020

I love this! Both heartbreaking and funny! Keep it up!

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09:26 Mar 31, 2020

:)) wow Dafni Amazing job

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This has a great many good moments to it and the right balance in tone between poignant and irreverent. I do like the overall concept, ("Flirting on the Edge" could be a title) and the execution is rather convincing; I mean it does read as if the writer has actually had these conversations. It's a YES from me (ha-ha)

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20:50 Mar 30, 2020

Great dialogue, well done! :)

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wow!! I read this out loud in character voicews to a room full of ppl. Absolutely incredible. Everyone loved it!!! <3

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