Anymore, there are no metal knives in the apartment, or forks. No razors or glass vases or bleach or plastic bags, we have no painkillers or alcohol or rope. I even threw out all the electrical cords longer than a foot.

With her first attempt, she made a deep-set incision in her forearm from the base of her wrist to the soft side of her elbow on both arms; the stitches dissolved but the scars will last forever. The second, the doctors gave her these pills to combat the depression; monoamine oxidase inhibitors, she tried to take the whole bottle at once and barely survived. I convinced the police to let her stay here, I told them that under my attentive watch she would be fine. If they had found out about her third attempt, they would’ve taken her away, I’m just so fucking lucky I talked her out of it, up on the roof a couple months ago, I convinced her to give life one more go, only now she wanders around the apartment like a ghost, every time she walks past a mirror or a window you can see her staring at herself with this unconditional resentment. She saunters through every room looking for anything that I’ve forgotten to hide or throw away, anything that can cut, poison, suffocate or electrocute. Her name is Remy, we’ve been engaged for 18 months now, and in a way, it almost seems like she’s dead already.


I wake up from the dream, the same dream I have every night. The mental to physical barriers or my REM sleep break and I jolt forward. Remy’s sitting at the foot of the bed cross legged watching me. I rub my eyes, “Your body lives off sleep, y’know.”

She smiles and brushes her hair off her shoulder, “But I don’t want to live,” my poor choice of words. “Go back to sleep,” she says, “I like to watch.”

I close my eyes knowing full well what will happen when I fall asleep, the same dream, the same outcome, the same feeling that nothing ever really changes.

In the morning, I eat my breakfast and I say “Bye” to Remy. I say, “I love you” and she sits at the table staring out the window. In the hallway I see Mr. Sandhu standing outside his door, he’s an Indian man in his late sixties who lives with his wife in the only other apartment on the second level of our building, since he’s retired and stays in most of the time I asked him a while back to keep an eye on Remy and call me in case anything suspicious happened, he’s a good man. I wave and smile.

He asks, “How is everything?”

I tell him, “It’s been a rough couple of months, but I think things are starting to look up.”

He nods, “This is good.”

I smile again, and as I turn to leave, he asks, “Have you ever thought about leaving this place behind? Going somewhere with less memories?”

I never really thought about it, but still I say, “I know this place, I trust it, I don’t know if change is what would really be best right now,” he looks as if he’s about to cry, when he sees I’ve noticed he turns away.

He looks back up with misty eyes and opens his mouth, his thick black mustache curving around every syllable, “I am truly sorry for your situation, my friend, you are a brave man.”

Again, I smile, “Thanks, Mr. Sandhu, but you have nothing to be sorry for.”

As I head down the first few steps in a faint whisper, barely audible, I can hear, “You can call me Harjeet.”

I get to work and eight hours later I get home and Remy’s sitting at the table, there’s no way to tell if she’s moved at all the entire day. I put my coat on the rack, “Have you eaten anything today?”

She turns her neck and gives me this look as if I never even left the apartment this morning, “Eating makes me sick.”

Fuck Remy, God fucking dammit, “I bought this lasagna, you might like it.”

She turns back to the window, “Maybe,” she used to eat lasagna as if it were a fucking delicacy. We sit at the table in silence, she barely touches her food. I go to the bedroom and lay down; she comes in a couple minutes later and sits at the foot of the bed. I pull the covers up to my neck and turn over to make sure my alarm is set, as I’m laying there with my back to her I hear a whisper in my ear, “We’re struggling to find something that does not exist. When will we learn that we’re chasing figments of our imagination? We fool ourselves into believing things can go right, so that we could ignore the fact that tragedies were meant to happen. We have the ability, the power, to choose a future, one with a proper ending.”

I’m almost asleep but I give my best effort to mumble back, “You need some sleep Rem, seriously,” as I doze off I think about how tomorrow it’ll just be the same dream, the same apartment, the same Remy.


This morning when I wake up, Remy’s laying in bed, I can’t tell if she’s actually sleeping, but I eat my breakfast and before I head out I stop at the bedroom door and look at her, “See you in a bit Rem” she doesn’t move, “I love you.”

At work, I sit at my desk and file papers, answer emails. All morning up to lunch I’m happy about her getting some sleep, but when I get back to my cubicle, I get the sudden and overwhelming fear that she wasn’t just laying still because she was asleep but that maybe, maybe she was really at rest. I grab my cell phone out of my pocket and speed dial the home phone, I’ve called enough times to know that the answering machine takes over after seven rings. I unbutton my collar, sweat is dripping down my forehead, I count the fourth ring, don’t do this to me Remy, five, six, seven, as I’m about to bolt out of my seat the line clicks, I wait a second, “Rem?” silence.

On the other end I hear her, “I’m fine.”

When I get home later that night, she’s standing by the counter with one of her “Self-Help for Self-Harm” suicide recovery pamphlets, across the front this one reads “So You Want to Commit Suicide.”

Without looking up, she says “Y’know it’d be a lot easier if they just legalized this shit” I gawk at her forwardness and she continues, “Or at least like euthanasia.”

I hang up my coat and close my eyes, “Euthanization is for people in pain.”

“I am in pain,” she counters.

I open my eyes, “No, you’re not.”

She slams the pamphlet down on the counter, “My pain is constant, and inadmissible.”

I put my bag down on the table, “I got some chicken wings from the store, Rem, you hungry?”

She holds her face less than a centimeter away from mine, “Don’t try to fucking dodge this, you read all those support books, didn’t they say that ignoring is one of the worst ways to deal with a suicide attempt?”

Maybe she wasn’t just sitting around all day, maybe she did her homework, “Rem, it’s just that things have got to change eventually, we can’t keep this up.”

Her tone drops and she turns away from me, her voice breaks twice before she can muster any real sound, and then she speaks clear as day, “Nothing ever changes, things twist and warp, but they always stay the same. Even life, with all it’s tragedies and misfortunes, will always just be life. So maybe, what we need to do, is find out what comes next.”

She turns back to me and at this I just lose it, I start screaming at her, I don’t even know what I’m saying, just whatever pops into my mind. All the panicking and name-calling, criticizing, preaching, lecturing and abandoning, the punishing, dramatizing, simplifying, anger and guilt come out at once. It’s all out on the table, everything I’ve got, almost a year’s worth of frustration let out at once.

Then there’s a knock on the door, I collect myself and open it, on the other side are Mr. Sandhu and his wife. He looks startled as he speaks, “Sorry, we just heard a lot of yelling, is everything alright?”

The people from upstairs have come out and are standing on the edge of the railing looking down at me.

“Yeah sorry, just a little outburst, it was completely harmless,” I tell them, “Everything is fine,” I say.

Mr. Sandhu stands in the doorway gazing into my home curiously then looks back at me, “Alright, well, if you need anything, you can talk to me.”

I hold the door a little bit closer to the frame, “Thank you, Mr. Sandhu, have a good night” he nods, and I close the door.

Remy smiles at me from her seat at the table, “You happy now you let that out?”

I start walking to the bedroom, “You need some sleep, Rem.”


My REM sleep shatters, and I wake up in a cold sweat, I look at the alarm clock and I’m two hours late for work. I shoot up and start putting on my shirt when I notice that Remy’s not in the bed, she’s not in the kitchen or the spare room or either of the washrooms, she’s not supposed to leave the fucking apartment. I panic, with my shirt only half-buttoned and no shoes I sprint up the stairs, Mr. Sandhu hears me and starts yelling to come back. I throw the roof door open and see her standing there on the ledge, her blonde hair is gliding through the cool morning breeze, her arms at her sides she looks up at the sky then back at me. I start to walk towards her, “Rem please, please don’t do this” she stares into the sun. I tell her, “We’ve come so far.”

Mr. Sandhu comes up the stairs followed by a crowd built of most every occupant in the building. I take a step closer, Mr. Sandhu says something, but I don’t know what, I turn to him, “You were supposed to be fucking watching her! Harjeet! I fucking trusted you! You—” my words turn to spit, my anger into tears.

Mr. Sandhu yells back, “I know, I’m sorry, I’m so sorry, my friend!”

I keep walking towards Remy, she hasn’t moved. I’m in between the crowd and her but I’m closing in on the ledge where she’s standing, some lady from behind me cries, “Don’t jump!”

Someone else, “You don’t need to hurt yourself!”

I’m close enough I don’t have to yell for her to hear me, “These people care, Rem, they don’t even know us and they care.”

She turns her head, “I don’t care what they think.”

People keep screaming, I hear phones dialing, it all blurs into one collage of noises impossible to decipher. I can almost reach her, “Then please, Rem, don’t do it for them, do it for me, I love you so fucking much, this will break me” she turns around further now facing me, I’m begging, “This will ruin me, Rem.”

She looks down at me with eyes covered in cracks covered in tears and she says, “I want to be with you,” then she holds out her hand. I raise mine and as I wrap my fingers around her she disappears, she slips right through my fingers, I launch myself forward so fast I almost fall off the ledge after her, but as I look down at the street I don’t see any blood or guts, I don’t see Remy, I see bundles of fresh flowers piled out front of the apartment hiding the withered flowers beneath them. I see crosses decorated with hearts and candles burnt down to a stump, I see pictures of Remy back when she was happy, I try to see as much as I can from four stories up.

Then I hear Mr. Sandhu, “My friend, this is not the answer, you do not have to follow in her footsteps.”

Now I remember and I hurt so much because of it, back then, those couple months ago, her third attempt, I hadn’t been able to talk her out of it, no, she jumped, slipped right through my fingers and landed on the pavement below us. I look at Mr. Sandhu and he holds out his hand, “This is not what you need.”

Her final moments, her last words, it all comes back to me, I had talked her into sitting down on the ledge, she faced me and grabbed my neck, her hands still warm with life, she held my head against her lips and whispered, “I want to be with you, but first we need to change” and she bent her knees and kicked off my chest, plummeting down to the sidewalk.

I wipe the snot from my nose and Mr. Sandhu takes a step closer, still with his arm extended towards me he says, “Please” I smile at him and then I jump up onto the ledge, almost losing my balance. I stare down at the street then up into the bright morning sky and I remember that in my dream, it’s not that I’m scared of falling, that’s never what wakes me up, it’s that I’m scared I might throw myself off.