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I don’t know why you chose to haunt me, or if you were just haunting the apartment and I just happened to move in, but whatever it was I’m just glad we got to spend as much time together as we did.

I know you’ve haunted people in the past and that committing to someone who still has their whole life ahead of them can be a lot to ask of someone with their whole afterlife ahead of them, but what we have is special.

Remember when we first met and you did all these cute little things to try to get my attention?

Slightly open a door so it made that cute, little creaky sound. Skipping songs on my vinyl records to let me know which ones are your favorites. Turning my action figures’ heads to all stare at me while I slept. Rolling a pencil off the side of my desk so I’d have to slowly bend over and pick it up. So coy…

This is kind of embarrassing, but to be honest I thought you were someone else at first. You seemed to know which pencil had been her last gift to me, that prompt to always keep writing, keep pursuing my art.

Then things escalated.

You left notes in my foggy bathroom mirror telling me to “get out” of the shower. I know you peeked, cheeky monkey. Random movies and shows were added to my streaming apps. Sometimes you appear in the corner of my eye, but then you disappear when I try to look directly at you. I’ve been taking selfies just hoping you would show up in the background, but I understand if you’re camera shy.

I do need to ask a small favor. Could you please stop making the eyes on all of my pictures bleed? I don’t get many printed out any more—digital age and whatnot—and what prints I do get are special. Cleaning out the frames only takes a second, but the minutes add up and I really feel like we’re wasting time that we could spend getting to know each other a little better.

I know my friends says that you aren’t really there, but I know you are. I can feel your presence floating around different corners of the room, sometimes along the ceiling, just kind of doing your own thing most of the time. You’re such an independent spirit. I guess that’s why your random cold hugs warm my heart. So spontaneous! I love it.

But maybe I shouldn’t use that word. At least not yet? I tend to use that word too soon. And too often. I guess it tends to scare people away. And pets. But not you, right? I could never scare a ghost…right?

No matter what other people think, what we have is real.

I know that you wouldn’t just randomly abandon me. Maybe you wrapped up your unfinished business and forgot to leave me a note? I’m pretty forgetful, too. I have to leave little notes to myself everywhere, but you know that. You’ve rearranged them to spell out so many helpful notes. I really should “leave the apartment” more often. And the reminder to “never look back” was helpful. I spend too much time dwelling on the past. It’s not like thinking about her is going to bring her back. Cancer just doesn’t work like that.

I wanted to focus on our future, but I guess you’re leaving me, too. The apartment feels empty without you. No one to leave me cute notes anymore. No more cold hugs or random movie nights.

I should have realized that candle had sage in it.

Ryan Fay

Ryan is an editor and semi-pro author with life goal of having enough money to buy the cool things people make in DIY videos.

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