Lost Letters | Jenni French


Lost Letters

Jenni French

The First Rule of Nabokov Award


7th July 2015

Jasper,

I was listening to the rain the other day and it reminded me of when we got lost in the forest around the back of the park, do you remember? You swore that it was a shortcut home and I ripped my jeans when we clambered over that barbed wire fence. Let’s go back there this weekend, I’m probably faster than you at climbing trees now and I cannot wait to rub it in your smug little face,

Bash

19th July 2015

Jasper,

I was thinking about morality the other day. I know, that’s an odd topic, but hear me out. I was asked if anything could ever be objectively ‘right’ and I realised that I wouldn’t know the right thing if it were labelled in neon. Does that matter? I hope not, if it does then I’m a little screwed,

Bash

2nd October 2015

Jasper,

Sorry it’s been a while. I never meant for it to be this way, but I’ve had other stuff on my mind. I punched somebody the other day, in the face. I’m not sure if you will have heard that news already. I only did it because they called me Seb. I’ve never liked that name but you’ve always had a certain fondness for it. I don’t mind it when you say it. In fact I’ll confess that I rather like it then, but never from anybody else. Don’t be so concerned, I apologised afterwards. Don’t worry, your conscience can be clean,

Bash

23rd October 2015

Jasper,

Happy birthday! It’s unbelievable to think that we’ve been friends for over 10 years now. You’re my longest friend and my closest friend and I just wanted to let you know that I’m so thankful you’re in my life. I know that I’m going to see you today but I wanted to write this letter regardless, because I think it’s important that you know how much I love you. Have a wonderful day,

Seb

1st November 2015

Jasper,

I have found you the most perfect Christmas present that you could ever imagine for yourself. I know that we don’t normally do Christmas presents but honestly when you see this you’re going to understand why I absolutely couldn’t resist getting it for you. I’m ridiculously excited about this and I cannot stop smiling, your face is going to be a picture that I’ll cherish forever,

Seb

17th November 2015

Jasper,

It snowed in my town today, I don’t know if it reached you but we should go tobogganing when we next see each other, as long as you don’t intentionally push me off this time! I was walking around the river recently and I found a piece of graffiti under the bridge that I fell in love with. It simply said “there is no authority but yourself”. It’s been stuck in my mind since and I think you should really consider it. Nothing can stop you from doing what you want, so take a risk. I’ll catch you if you get it wrong. I promise,

Seb

24th December 2015

Jasper,

It’s Christmas tomorrow, remember the Christmas where I snuck some cider out of my parents’ garage and came and found you and we had a drink outside? It was cold as hell but your company made me forget that and we had a wonderful time. I don’t think I’ll ever forget those few hours. We had a snowball fight and I wrote ‘I love you’ in the snow, just to remind you that I care. I know that I say it a lot, but you need to know that it isn’t out of habit or anything like that. When I say it it’s because I mean it. You’re the best friend that I’ve ever had and I’m so glad you decided to stick with me for all of these years,

Seb

12th January 2016

Jasper,

I was reminiscing the other day and I was reminded about how we met for the first time. We got into class and saw that we were both wearing stripes and chose to sit together because of that. It’s ridiculous to think that such a simple and childish decision has made such a huge impact on my life. I guess that the small things can sometimes be the big things. I hope that I can see you this weekend, I’m feeling far less than my best but I’m going to try,

Seb

14th April 2016

Jasper,

I’m sorry that it’s been so long but I can’t do this anymore. It’s been two years. Two years and I’ve been writing to you in a vain attempt to persuade myself that you’re still here. I’ve been lying to myself all of this time because it hurts too much to admit the truth. I still have it, did you know? I kept your note all this time. It’s tucked in the journal that I always used to carry. That journal was full of things which made me happy, and a hell of a lot of it is you. I read it every now and then, to remind me of what I lost that day. Maybe that’s really morbid, but you really were the best thing in my life. I cried when they told me you’d taken those pills. I ran to your house and cried. I couldn’t stop shaking when they took you away, hiding you underneath a sheet. They didn’t care. I cared, I always cared. I stayed out until two in the morning walking around all the places that we used to love. The forest is carpeted with bluebells now. You always loved them. I used to, but now your memory haunts them. I miss you. I wish I could write more but I’m so drained. I’ve been kidding myself for two years wishing that you were still alive. I’m so sorry that I wasn’t as good as you thought I was.

I love you.

Seb.