Chapter 17

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A few days after Bri died, she had her funeral. It was somber occasion filled with many people I didn't know, I was asked to speak, but I refused. I sat there looking at the closed casket. Dimly aware of my surroundings. I was out of focus until I had a shove to the shoulder by my mother.

I looked up to see a woman, Bri's mother I presume, holding out an envelope with my name on it, in Bri's handwriting. I saw there was one for Arthur too, but he didn't attend. Bri's last words, given to Arthur and I.

I think everyone expected me to open it there and then. Read out the words to inquiring minds, but that wasn't what I wanted. Honestly I didn't want to open it at all, she left us. She left me...

When it came time for me to go back to school Arthur didn't attend. Poor guy is so heartbroken, he won't even speak to me. He's shut himself out, his mother tells me he doesn't cry, he just stares at the ceiling for hours. I can almost picture his heart cracking into a million pieces.

I'm sad, I'm angry and I'm all alone. Everyone fusses over me like I was the one to die, the one to suffer the injuries.

I'm not the one who died, I just want to be alone, faced with my own anger and grief. My mother seems to know I like to keep my space, but total strangers are trying to comfort me and it's not okay.

This went on for weeks, my rage, my sadness, I just wanted to be done. I wanted my best-friend back.

Now all I do is turn up my music and ignore the life around me.

Almost a month is when I finally broke, it was the last time Arthur refused to see me, and the last time I asked. When he wants to see me he can always seek me out. I'm always going to be here for him.

I always used to question who would always be there for me. I used to assume it was Arthur, but now I know, it's Max. And now I know who to open Bri's note with.

I open up the previous Email and find the number. And I finally call the number, after so long I wasn't expecting an answer. But as he always does, he surprises me.

"Hello? Who's this?"

"I.. I Uh.. Hi Max this is Mari."

"Mari! I mean um, hi uh, are you alright."

"Yeah, I'm.. I'm alright.. It's just, losing Bri, it , it was so hard. I couldn't even open the letter she left behind. I.. I can't do it alone, will you open it with me? Please."

"Yes, of course. I um, meet me at the town bridge in an hour."

"Alright"

"Okay"

I hang up, and change into Jeans from my pajamas. I throw on a coat and open my desk drawer to find Bri's note.

I make it to bridge right on time, letter in hand and hugging my sides. Waiting for Max.

I see a figure walking towards me with white flowers in hand and a confident stride. As he neared I recognized him, but not from school. No. From the mall.

It was him, he was my soulmate all along. For the fist time in weeks I finally have a sense of happiness but not yet, I still have the letter.

He gets closer and a look of recognition crosses his face. He remembers me too.

"Are you ready?" He asks.

I sigh and and I reply, "yes."

After weeks, I'm here in this moment. I'm opening the letter.

Dear Mari,

If you're reading this, we both know I'm gone. I'm sorry for leaving you and Arthur in this cruel world. Leaving Arthur without a soulmate... just take care of him for me will you? Mari, I know you'll find your soulmate too, we are all here for something, I just needed to move on. Mari, I knew my soulmate before he died, his parents, they didn't approve of me. They were expecting a lot more than little old me. They were mean and they pressured me into leaving him. He told me, that if I walked out that door, he'd kill himself. I walked, I was so sure he'd find someone, I loved him so much, but there was no way. He hung himself that night, his parents blamed me, I had to move. That's where I met you. I fell in love again, I couldn't do it again, the guilt for the last one, I couldn't bear another. I won't feel guilt anymore, that's all I ever wanted. I loved you both, please always remember me for that.

-Bri

I couldn't help but cry. I finally had my closure, Bri's closure and it didn't feel any better than it did before. Max was there to hold me as I cried into his shoulder.

I guess that's what soulmates are for, a shoulder to cry on, depend on.

When I finally left the embrace he grabbed the letter and slipped it in the bouquet.

"I thought maybe, we could throw these in the river for her."

I nodded. Hand in hand we tossed the bouquet over the edge of the bridge.

"I hope you're finally at rest Bri." I whispered as the flowers sank, and my hopes lifted.

End

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