You ever felt the world melting? I did. You ever felt like the sky was bent and cracked and the earth was breaking every step of the way and the air was harmful to breathe in? I did.
The walls seemed to cave in on me and the claustrophobia I never had, pushed deep into my bones and I wondered, for a split second, if it was just some reaction to my new medicines. I have never felt claustrophobic before, never in a space as tight as a closet under water, and I had solid difficulty breathing at this moment.
“He had Cystic fibrosis. He tried to reach you, from what he told me.” The man said sympathetically and I couldn’t hold back my tears.
So foolish, so stupid, so cowardly...I had never felt so small in my whole life, not even at the hands of his parents. And all that is just my fault.
“He wrote his will about 3 months before he passed away in General City, he was put in best care until his last breath. He had a signed DNR and did not wish for any ventilation till his end, only medication. He was mostly sedated in his last 6 months.”
I let out a sob and the lawyer - curse me, I couldn’t remember his name for the life of me - passed me a box of tissues on the side table and a glass of water.
“I was told to find you at all costs, he was a good friend of my father, so I never stopped. I tried to reach you at your station but you Chief won’t release any information, only that you are on your mission, and then you were in coma when ...” He gestured to my gaunt form on the bed with machines still hooked up.
“He told me the will is to do with as you please, gave me this-" he handed me an envelope, “-and said that if you want to ...divert the money elsewhere - you will have to sign a declaration. Something about his mother.”
I couldn’t stop staring the envelope and I wondered why I didn’t look at my phone, hear his voicemails, check my e-mails and messages, I wondered why I was weak, I wondered how I would live any more.
I had loved him more than I had ever loved myself and I didn’t know what to do any more. He was my life line, my small world that started and ended with him and I had no clue where to go because my world was collapsing.
“Mr. Okoro.” I looked up and the man passed me a sealed box the size of a golf ball.
“I was to hand this over at the end. If you have concerns I’ll leave my card for you. We will need to see to rest of formalities but they can wait for a couple nore days."
He paused, almost ominously. "Please, don't take too long. Have a loik at the envelope...I hope you have a good rest and recovery, sir.”
He stood up and with a small snile, left his card inside the will and walked away.
A srunned moment later, I put aside the will, and the envelope and opened the box first. A sob I couldn’t hold back left me at seeing the ring inside, and I could only laugh at the end of it.
My body felt like it was tearing apart. I wanted to pluck out the IV needle and jab it in my throat. Instead, I pulled out the wires and IV, and grabbed the ring and bolted from the room.
I needed air. Desperately.
My chest hurt and my eyes refused to keep on looking at the simple platinum band in the box. It was my size and with his name and mine engraved on the inside, and just sitting there with a simple message on the box of the ring.
“I was always yours, ratty. Only yours. I love you more than enough.”