Behind Closed Doors

Christina Frigo

 

I lay two days cold by the time they found my body. My arms stuck in dried blood behind the locked door of my apartment and the unlocked door of my bathroom. Swollen and barely recognizable, my face was what the coroner called peaceful. He’d seen this look throughout his career, an almost paradoxical expression of joy on the face of a suicide—some dumb kid finally getting what they wanted. This wasn’t what I wanted.

 

With six inch slashes in both of my wrists, and no clear sign of a struggle, the coroner had drawn his conclusion. My mom told him about my medication, how it only seemed to make me more depressed. She stood there watching my lifeless body, as silently as someone could. She cried, like she knew it was coming, like she expected this of me.

 

I want her to know that it wasn’t me. I want the coroner to investigate before giving up at the obvious signs of suicide. That bruise on the back of my head is not from falling against the bathtub. I was hit. He should look past the forged note on the counter to the letters I tried swirling in my blood on the floor. It wasn’t me. I wish they knew about the spare key to my apartment. I hadn’t locked it from the inside at all. I wish they could have seen the look on Michael’s face in the mirror. He came up behind me. He brokenly whispered, “I love you” over and over.

 

He cut me slowly, sure to hit every important vein. The lines were sloppy, but the coroner said that was common. Kids make mistakes when they’re desperate. I tried fighting back in the beginning, but the blow to my head made it difficult, and the blood loss made it impossible. The only thing I could do was blindly trace my finger through the growing puddles, pitifully attempting to spell his name.

 

He held my hands to stop my writing. His tears fell against my face as he kissed my lips and choked out, “I love you.” I had lost so much blood that I actually smiled one last time and said it back. That’s when he dropped the blade and left. I remember the bathroom door swinging closed, but I never actually heard it click shut.

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