At the beginning, Revie didn’t care much about the student that tried to kill himself.
It was around 1 am when he started receiving tons of messages, while he was in his bedroom studying. He closed the books, moving them on the side of the desk and started scrolling through the university group chats, with an impassive expression. He couldn’t understand how people could feel empathy for a stranger. He wasn’t upset, or sad, or worried; to be honest, he was just curious to know how the guy attempted to kill himself and he hoped someone was going to mention it. But everyone was too busy talking about why did that happen?, and who knows him?, and should we contact his family?, followed by some shocked reactions and people feeling sorry and a few “thanks God he’s fine”.
He tried to kill himself, he’s not fine, Veronica.
The fact he survived his attempt was maybe the only real tragedy, in Revie’s opinion.
He smiled, almost laughing. When he woke up in the hospital and realised he was still alive he felt so pathetic that he started crying. I can’t even kill myself, he thought. He wanted to say that out loud, but it felt wrong doing it next to his aunt, who was also crying. So he just said he was sorry.
Sarah B. "I’m Bastian’s neighbor, he’s fine now. He has been hospitalized and he’ll be better soon. Please, respect his privacy."
That text suddenly caught his attention. For a moment, the whole chat froze, as if everyone was staring at that text arrived at 1:25 am. People started texting again a few seconds later, but Sarah B. said nothing more.
Revie slowly realized. Bastian. Bastian… The barman.
Has someone mentioned his name earlier? He didn’t notice it? How was it possible that he realized so late that it was about Bastian? Suddenly, he started caring about the fact that a guy tried to kill himself. Because he saw that guy a few hours earlier, at the pub and he challenged himself to have sex with him.
His mind felt silent, like it was elaborating all his thoughts. Revie put his phone on the table, turning off the notifications. He wasn’t feeling indifferent anymore. He couldn’t describe how he was feeling – maybe unsettled?
He was right about Bastian’s eyes that night. Sadness, distress. The pain in his eyes was more real than he thought. He felt like he assisted to his suicide attempt and did nothing to help. He wasn’t actually feeling guilty, but couldn’t stop thinking about it.
He wanted to ask Bastian out that night. Why did he changed his mind? Would have it made a difference, if he went to the counter and talked to him?
What would you do if you wanted to kill yourself and someone flirted with you?, he asked himself. He wasn’t sure about the answer. It depends on the person, he thought. What a cliché answer.
It was just stupid to think about that. If Bastian wanted to kill himself, he was going to do that anyway. A simple “hey, how you doing?” wasn’t going to change anything.
“Oh, Bastian” he whispered, staring at the phone on the desk. “We’re more similar than I thought.”
He ignored all the texts and opened the pictures in his phone gallery, and scrolled through them until he found that pic of Bastian he secretly took at the pub a few days before. He loved his long, blond hair.
“Fuck”, he smiled. He unbuttoned his pants and let them drop on the floor. “I know I shouldn’t do this. At least you’re not dead, or this would be even worse, I guess.”
And he started touching himself, thinking about Bastian covered in his own blood.