On May 5th, several copies of a single letter were sent out from a post office in Waterbridge, New Jersey. Jim Patterson, the postman on duty, remembers a man about twenty years of age walking in with a stack of letters. He had been on the phone with his wife trying to settle some argument they had been having about her mother when the man had dropped the pile down in front of him. The thud of the paper on the counter had effectively ended the phone conversation causing him to look up. A dark haired man with deep set eyes and gaunt features stared back quietly at him.
He had quickly asked the man what it was he needed, somewhat puzzled since the mail box for letters was right outside. Sliding the stack towards Jim with a triumphant smile on his weathered face, the man said that he had run out of stamps as it wasn’t often he mailed this many letters.
“Special occasion?” Jim had asked not really caring. Any other day he would have been curious, after all, it wasn’t every day that a strange man came in with a stack of letters which were neither business related nor wedding invitations. They were plain white envelopes with hand written addresses, the kind people usually used to send greeting cards. The man smiled, black eyes twinkling.
“You could say that,” was all he replied with a soft chuckle in his voice, “Something special.” Jim had smiled briefly and said nothing else, his mind preoccupied with his own concerns. After he had processed all twenty-four letters, the man left just as quietly as he had come.
The letters stayed in the back undisturbed till the next day when they were to be picked up. No one touched them, no one thought about them. But if someone had, their contents would have deeply disturbed the unintended reader. For in each one was a letter of invitation that ran as follows:
When you receive this contact I will have already died. I’m sorry, I cannot wait to bid a proper goodbye to each of you - not when it is so near. Please understand my sentiments. I’ve finally managed to find a way for someone such as I, such as us, to die. There was once a time when I thought I’d never get to tell you this, but the day has finally come my friends. I’m finally dying, and I want you to know it is possible. It is possible for the immortal to find rest and exit this weary world to greet his creator.
It is my wish to share with you what I’ve learned, if you are willing. Though, for my sake, please come as soon as you receive this, regardless of whether you wish to know or not. You are the closest I have to a family now, and while we may or may not share many memories together, it is my last wish that you lay me to rest.
Love, at long last, and for the last time,
There were several variates of the letter, postscripts added on to the ones Dimitri knew better, such as Karina, the Jin brothers, Varona, and Fredrick. Though to none did he reveal what they wished to know the most.
Perhaps it was because Dimitri feared that no one would appear if he told. Maybe he really did want them all there. Maybe it was his last attempt to create a family he never had. No one would know and eventually it wouldn't matter. Because Dimitri disappeared two days later, on a Tuesday, just as Avery Jin woke to go to work.
Dearly Beloved is an original story that I kind of had on the back burner for several months, maybe a year, till I dug it up this summer when I was looking for inspiration. It's gone through several changes, from being about demons to being about normal people who don't die, till I finally worked out much of the dynamics in the story and what it's supposed to be. I'd classify it in the genre of fantasy realism, because there are elements of fantasy to it such as the characters' immortality. Anyways, if you read it please just tell me what you think, like whether it's going to fast or just any sort of feedback. Questions are good too :)