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Ramon’s new friend

“The Sun” (1909), by Edvard Munch

Por Flávio Marcus da Silva

It has just arrived. It’s in a little cardboard box, with a warning note on it: Fragile. “But it’s not fragile”, thinks Ramon, unwrapping the thing. “It’s just… I have to check it with Rufus. He will know if it’s pure or not”, Ramon says to himself.

Ramon is happy. He was waiting the parcel from Tijuana with eagerness and now he’s looking at it, feeling a little bit strange, though. “I hope I’ll not use it… but it’s like having a new friend… a strong and nice supporter”, Ramon thinks. “I won’t use it… but I could use it if I want… if I need… And knowing this… is… comforting”.

Ramon is looking at the little box. It’s on the table, closed. He opens it, his heart beating fast.

One week later, Rufus calls. “It’s ok, Ramon, you have the thing. It’s pure. Good quality, I’d say. Pentobarbital. A very strong sedative-hypnotic drug, you know”, Rufus says. “I know”, Ramon replies, “that’s what I want”. Rufus continues: “And of course you know you’ve just committed a crime buying this drug… and that if you take it you will die, peacefully and fast”. Ramon smiles and says: “Yes, I know. That’s what I want… I mean… Not now… of course”. Cold silence. “Take it easy, man”, Ramon says, “I’m sure I will not use it”. Five seconds later: “Are you sure?”, Rufus asks. Ramon doesn’t answer. Silence says: no.

Two days later. Ramon is alone at home. A strong wind is blowing outside, bending the trees, whistling strange sounds around his house. A storm is coming. Ramon loves it. He’s feeling so good… He puts Nina Simone singing Sinnerman. “Oh Lord!”, Ramon says, almost crying. Please hide me Lord. Don’t you see me prayin’? Don’t you see me down here prayin’? This song is so powerful and beautiful. Ramon is feeling strong, but not a sinner.

Now he’s looking at the drug’s bottle on his bed… his new friend. It’s just there, black and white, waiting. He has to buy a new bottle every five years… until… “I’ll not use it”, says Ramon to himself. “But it’s so comforting…”

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