I stare at the small sheet of paper, my body losing all feeling. I have known this for a few days now, but reality has just sunk in. Little sheet of paper. But this mere piece of paper was the most important thing to me. Not in a good way, but it told me of my future. My future of pain and my future of an incurable problem. I begin to sob. Sob slow, ripping, tearless sobs.
Nothing like this can happen to me… it just can't. I hang my head, my limp red hair falling in my face. That doesn't matter to me anymore. Nothing does.
"Ericsson, April… HIV Antibody test… Positive." I draw in a sharp breath. "I- I have…" I trail off. I know I won't be able to finish that sentence: It would have almost killed me to do it.
"No, no, no no no this can't happen," I say, just barely above a whisper. "I have a life to live, dreams to fulfill. And Roger-" I stop. Roger. Roger will have it, too. Roger, the one I want to have children, a family with, will suffer from this wretched virus as I will. Me. I will suffer, I will die. Roger will suffer, Roger will die.
My thoughts come upon something. I quickly know what I want to do. I run to the kitchen, breathing in the scent of car exhaust and bitter cold flowing in from the open window. I know it will be the last time I see this kitchen.
I grab a pen and a piece of paper. I close my eyes and intake the scent of the air once more. Once my train of thought begins again, I scribble in my neat, spidery handwriting:
We have AIDS.
I will always love you.
Suddenly, I can't see the paper anymore so I know I am about to cry. I feel the tears slide softly and soundlessly down my cheek one last time. I grab a kitchen knife along with the note, and go to the bathroom.
I get there and sit on the edge of the tub. I am not hesitant one bit about what I am about to do. I whip the knife through the air swiftly until it is placed firmly, but softly, on my wrist. I close my eyes in attempt to cover up some of the pain I would go through in the next hour. I knew Roger would never do something like this. I knew that I would never do something like this. But as of three days ago, that April—the healthy, care free April—was gone. She will never be back, and I know this.
I press the knife against my flesh and I feel the blood gushing out of my veins. Contaminated blood. Blood that would have one day been the cause of my demise. Now it isn't. Now it is me that is the cause of my demise.
Instead of pain, I feel relief. The world will be better off with out another junkie messing it up, another drug addict contaminating the blood cells of millions of innocent people. It is better off, and I know this.
A lot of blood is gone, and I know it is too late for anything. My vision is blurred, and I can no longer feel my limbs. My vision slowly begins to fade….
My pulse stops.
"April!" I call, running a hand through my spiky, blonde locks. I listen, but I hear nothing. "April?" I say, a little louder. No one answers still. My heart beats faster, but immediately slows. She is probably just taking a nap.
I walk towards the bedroom through the kitchen, when a piece of paper catches my eye. I pick it up and I recognize April's handwriting instantly.
"We've got-" I whisper, but stop. My head feels dizzy, and I attempt a weak smile. "Very funny, April," I say, but my voice breaks. I notice another paper on the table, one that was under the note.
It is an HIV Antibody test. It is positive. My head begins to completely spin and whirl and my knees go weak. Then I notice something else:
One of the kitchen knives is gone.
My heart stops. "April!" I scream frantically. "April, where are you?" No answer. I run to the closed bathroom door and beat on it. "April, April are you in there? April answer me!" My voice is full of panic now.
I turn the knob and notice that the door is unlocked, and pushed it open as fast as I could. I immediately regretted it. There April was, right beside the tub. There the kitchen knife was, on the floor beside her.
She has a strange expression on her face. Troubled, yet peaceful, at ease. Relaxed. It frightens me. But most of all, what frightens me is the bright red pool that surrounds her.
"April?" I whisper. I know she can't hear me, but my brain is in denial. "April, no, no April, No! NO!" My voice fades into sobs.
Then I remember the note. We have AIDS.
And that is why she killed herself. It all fit perfectly. I know I have AIDS, I know I will die, and I know that April has left me to die alone, but right now, this is the most important thing:
April Ericsson is dead.