Letter to a former friend

Dear ‘Noremak’,

I haven’t been in touch & haven’t seen you in ages. The last time I talked to you in person was when we were in high school. One day you just vanished, but you tried hard to maintain our friendship. When we were boys I didn’t see you as being needy. You were spunky and independent, and didn’t give a rats about what others thought. You defied authority and convention, but it cost you. Our high school wasn’t ready for you, so I promptly lost a friend.

I remember the times you’d bother me later on. I was always busy, but you kept persisting. Didn’t matter if I was encoding papers, or playing online basketball; you were vigorous. At times I wasn’t being subtle: I didn’t want to chitchat. Whether in sydney or back home, I just wanted you to take a hint. That didn’t stop the spam messages (pa spam nga ulit). I just wanted to shake your hand again, you taunted. I guess the distance barrier further undermined our chance to reconnect.

You were more than just a casual student; you were a gifted artist, a dependable friend, a computer whiz, anime enthusiast…you were ahead of your time. Shame they couldn’t get past your stubbornness. 

What I remember most out of all our interactions was when we played counter strike once. I was really good at getting shot, but I thought this must be my day. I knew the place, had a friend, so why not? We played some half life, before you asked me as to why I liked to get shot. I let it pass, doing some reverse psychology, staying silent. Then on the next play I saw you just standing around, so I shot and killed your man. Why did you get shot, I asked. You returned the silence. This just shows how much of a pal you were. You took, but you received more. 

I remember another instance in primary school. We were throwing rocks at the fence when you told me that you always hit something. I hit that concrete post, see? Show that again. That’s when your rock hit a walking IR. He came over and challenged you; we both had to hold our laughter.

When I think of who I’ve met since, few of them were as genuine as you. While you could be talkative and could blab a little, in the end, that’s who you were: a real person. You said what you wanted, but listened when the time came. Remember the hat? I gifted you this on freestyle, the online game. You were taunting me because of the scoreboard. Remember the lag? Oh I guess I didn’t tell you; your computer was lagging so much.

In the past few years, I’ve written a short story about that online game (fingers crossed). I’m glad to see that you’re making strides in your career, having finished in an A1 college. While there is no interaction between us at this point, I am thankful for our times as classmates and friends, brief though they were.



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