It’s just past the one year anniversary of finding out that Zhao Jian Rong (who I always called the Dog Man) died of cancer. It’s very hard for me to write about it. I sort of feel this sorrow that’s “wrapped up in my heart” and can’t come out.
There are still a lot of mysterious aspects to it — I think the last time we talked on the phone, I was really talking to his older brother. I thought that at the time, but it seemed really awkward to accuse someone you’re talking to of not being who he says he is. I’ve wondered why he would do that. I wondered if he lied to me because he didn’t want to tell me something that would make me sad, but I don’t think he was that kind of person. Maybe I’m not giving him enough credit, but he wasn’t a very nice guy. A second possibility is that he didn’t want me to know my friend was sick for monetary reasons. When their father died, he left everything he had, including the apartment, to ZJR. He gave everything to him even though he was the youngest, and didn’t will anything to the other five kids. I wonder if the oldest brother thought if I knew he was sick and went to visit him, there was a danger that ZJR/Dog Man would want to get married (which Chinese people often do when they know they will die soon), and then I would end up inheriting the property. But, if he died while single, the property and money would be split amongst his siblings, and they would get to keep the apartment, which ZJR had wanted to sell.
Anyway, it’s weird and sad. I’d be really sorry if he had thought I didn’t care that he was sick, or didn’t know I had tried to get a hold of him. I also feel like I’m in some sort of undefined situation. We weren’t married, and we had broken up before he died, and yet I feel like what happened is significant enough that there should be some sort of brief, concise way of explaining it in a way that indicates what a big blow it was in my life.
I also worry about Alice the Dog, and her fate. She was the sort of dog people eat. Who knows where she is now. If I had known something was wrong, I would have adopted her.