Before his accident, he’d called to ask if I’d go drinking with him. I told him, No, not tonight. I’d started writing again.
Wow, he said. That’s cool!
I guess, I said.
We both listened a little longer on the phone.
I would tell myself—in the months to come—that besides the lateness of the call, I’d had no reason to suspect anything might be wrong. I would tell myself that he’d always been fine, alone. I would tell myself all kinds of things before I could, finally, imagine us talking.
Alright then, he said, getting ready to go. Write something good and tell everyone you’re my friend.
Steve Chang is from the San Gabriel Valley, California. He holds an MFA from Cornell University and is a former bassist for Korean band GENIUS. His work has appeared recently in North American Review, The Southampton Review, Jellyfish Review, and Okay Donkey. He tweets at @stevexisxok and his website is, literally, stevehasawebsite.