Story 4Button 4



I died yesterday. How am I talking to you, you ask? It's got nothing to do with any god, heaven or hell, or some kind of nirvana. Apparently, as long as one person remembers you your soul remains. And I mean if anyone does.

Take for instance this guy, Andy Fuller. Back in high school we had Maths, English and History together. Twenty years ago. He appears to have had a thing for me all these years. Occasionally he would think of me, someone would pass him in the street and spark that memory of me. Nice, right? Wrong.

Because this guy fancied me in high school, now, until the day he dies or at least his memory starts to fade I'll be stuck being able to see everything he does. And I mean everything. Even if all my family, friends, in fact, everyone else in the whole world who knew me dies, I'll still have to be here watching him just because he fancied me once. I can follow him around if I wish. Watch him eat pastrami sandwiches, do his laundry, brush the floor, play with his ugly kids, have awkward sex with his wife. It's so boring.

What kind of god invented this shitty afterlife? What happened to those beautiful gardens, wine served to you by flamingos and all that? I'd even prefer the flames of hell to this. This whole following people around, switching from one person to another like I'm changing the channel on the telly. Floating over their shoulders watching them shop for plants, pick food out of their teeth in the mirror. It's a terrible idea. You can't look away. You just float there watching. You change channel. You don't even get a channel guide to see who there is to pick.

Oh look, someone else you don't know. Her name's Amanda Beckett. She saw me once, years ago, liked my hair, was jealous of it, wished hers was the same. She remembers me and my hair. She saw me ten years ago. So now I can watch her go home to her empty apartment, cuddle up with her cat and watch Made in Chelsea.

Here's another. Jenny Burton. Once saw my white blouse with the big black buttons. She was captivated by them. Buttons. Now I'm stuck watching her because of buttons.
I swear, if I could, I'd go back and kill everyone. One by one. Stab them in the face. Even my family. Or at least with them damage their brains so they forget me. If I'd have known it was going to be like this I would have made myself less memorable. I'd have worn the plainest, baggiest clothes, no make up. I'd have shaved my head but not my legs. I wouldn't have even had a bath. I'd have stayed inside like a recluse.

They say there's a price for fame. They weren't kidding.



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