“Goodbye, this is best for you.”

The last words he had written to me before he left. Now I knew why he had said those words.

“Hey! You’re here early,” I said as I ran up to Ren, my boyfriend. We had been dating for nearly a year now and it was almost our anniversary. We hadn’t seen each other for a while because he had been busy with relatives.

“Yeah, I wanted to see you,” he said smiling his usual smile but somehow, it had a painful tinge to it. Strangely, I noticed he had a hat on and he had always told me he hated wearing hats. I figured he was just having a bad hair day and shrugged it off and didn’t say anything about it. We hugged each other and kissed like any other couple would and started on our date.

That day, we had planned to go to shopping a little and watch a movie together. As we walked to the theaters, Ren suddenly had a violent coughing attack.

“Are you okay?!” I asked helping him up, “wait here, I’ll go get you some water.”‘ I ran to get water from a nearby vending machine and rushed back to give it to him. He quickly drank it and looked back up at me.

“Thanks, you know what, instead of watching the movie, let’s go shopping,” he suggested.

“Sure, whatever you want, but are you sure you’re okay?” I asked worriedly.

“Mhmm,” he whispered.

“Are you totally sure you don’t need a doctor?” I asked again.

“YES I’m fine,” he answered sternly.

Since we had decided to not watch a movie, we had a lot of time for shopping. While we were in stores, I noticed that every once in a while, Ren would disappear somewhere. During one of these times, I confronted him and asked him.

“What’s wrong?! You keep leaving and I’m getting worried. We haven’t seen each other in so long and I’m getting worried,” I asked.

“I told you, it’s nothing,” he said sternly, “and you don’t have to get all suspicious, I’m not cheating on you or anything.”

“What?!” I said, aghast, “I never said I was suspicious! I’m just worried you’re not like your usual self today.”

“Whatever let’s go home, separately. I don’t want to see your face anymore!” he yelled, obviously pissed, as he walked quickly into his car.

“What?! WAIT, I don’t–” I began but it was too late, he had already zoomed off in the direction of his home. “Wow, he left me here with no ride huh?

After that incident, Ren and I slowly stopped talking. I guess we just got a little tired of each other. For the first couple days, I expected him to text or call me saying anything but after a while, I stopped hoping. Days passed, then weeks, then it was our anniversary. He didn’t visit, call or even text. I just assumed that Ren and I had drifted apart and broken up.

Then, two months after our anniversary had passed, I got a letter in the mail along with some flowers. They were beautiful roses. But they weren’t just ordinary roses. They were white, with a slight tinge of pink on the corners of the petals. Strangely enough the note was addressed to me from Ren, who I hadn’t heard from in months.

I put the flowers in a glass vase and sat down to open the letter.

It contained an invitation and a letter. I read the invitation first and realized it was to his funeral service.

Suddenly I broke down in tears. I thought I had detached myself from him and didn’t love him anymore. As I read the invitation it said the time and place and what most would find on an invitation but regardless I kept crying and the invitation’s ink was blurred with my tears.

Then, there was the letter. It felt like it had been a suicide seeing that he had left a letter for me. The letter was addressed to me and said:

“Dear my lovely Yuki,

By the time you’ve had read this, you would’ve already been invited to my funeral. Now, I know that the last days you saw me were not the memory one would want of someone they had loved so please, try to forget that and think about all the fun we had together. All the times we were smiling.

I know that you would want to know why we had drifted apart but that will be evident in this letter. You are probably also curious about the cause of my death. I died because of cancer. Not suicide like this letter might’ve suggested. Cancer is the answer to a lot of the questions you might’ve had. Questions such as, why didn’t we see each other that much, why was I wearing a hat that day, why was I coughing, and others.

The doctors had told me I only had months to live so, after much thought, I decided it was the best to leave you. I knew you would’ve totally disapproved of this but I’m sorry. It was the best for you. You couldn’t have imagined the pain I went through when I was thinking about my actions on that day. I am truly, truly sorry. Even after we drifted apart I wanted to see you but I couldn’t, I had to stay in the hospital to receive treatment to try to cure me. Regrettably, I couldn’t give you these flowers on that day. These pink and white roses, they symbolize my love for you. I love you and I always will. Well this is it, all the time we’ve spent together, I hope it will only be a beautiful memory in your mind as I want you to move on. Be happy my love. None of this is your fault. I love you. And lastly, goodbye, this is the best for you.

Love,

Ren.”

This couldn’t be, I thought, he couldn’t have just left me. Then it all hit me. Those times he had left early, the times he couldn’t make it to dates. They all made sense to me.

Two weeks later, I went to his funeral. Familiar faces were there such as his parent whom I had grown to adore and cherish and his siblings who I looked to as my own. When we went to place the flowers up onto his coffin, I placed his beautiful white and pink roses he had given to me on his coffin.

“I’ll never forget you,” I whispered, “and thank you, for these beautiful memories.”

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