Check to see if I’m Dead


A few years ago AT and I had made a cheeky habit of buying little boxes of chocolates with hard centres. These chocolate-coated toffee and caramel delights would go down a treat after a hard day. There was a particular brand we had come to love, and it had become almost a rule in the house to always have a box of these on hand. I had gone out with a friend and arrived home late one night, with the whole house asleep. I crept quietly into the kitchen to put my keys and bag on the table when I noticed something odd. It was a day-glow green clump of what looked like, half-eaten hard candy. It had obviously been chewed up and spit out. I also saw the box of chocolates sitting on the table next to the mysterious green glob.

I had guessed immediately what had happened already. I switched off the light with a smile on my face and padded down the hall to the bedroom. My bed side light was on, and AT was sleeping soundly. I noticed a note on my pillow, it read: CHECK TO SEE IF I’M BREATHING.

I couldn’t stop a huge smile from escaping. If I hadn’t known AT as well as I did,  I would have woken him up and checked to see if he was alright. Why wouldn’t he be breathing? But, I do know this man fairly well and so I let him sleep. I jumped into bed, happy to wait till morning for his explanation of the note.

The story unfolded next morning over coffee and toast. Apparently he’d been chowing down on our favourite brand of hard centres only to find that one didn’t quite taste right. Sure enough, on closer inspection it contained a bright green, hard candy – not quite the hard centre he had been expecting. Obviously he spat it out and kept it as evidence. But he can’t have been too troubled by it because he kept on eating them. I found that hilarious. Poor old AT’s anxiety got the better of him later that night as he lay his weary head on the pillow. Imagine the thoughts that were swirling through his mind….’What exactly was that green stuff’…’I’d never seen anything that colour in the store before’…’it did taste a little weird’…’what if it was poisonous’…’why did I keep eating them’…’what if I die in my sleep’…???

It was exactly as I’d suspected. I just knew from the moment I got home that night, by the way the evidence was exhibited on the kitchen table next to the suspect box of chocolates. It had not surprised me one bit to find the note on my pillow. What did surprise me though was that he had managed not to call me while I was out. Poor old thing, he could’ve spent his last hours fretting alone…in the dark…in a candy induced coma.

Of course there was nothing wrong with the strange green substance AT partially digested and that we had discovered were in many other chocolates in that box. The company said they have candies like that in their line and it must have somehow got mixed up with the hard centres. I was kindly given a voucher to cover the cost of the box. Not exactly a smooth PR operation…goodness knows, no money in the world could compensate for the pain and suffering experienced by AT that night. But at least I could go and buy us another box. After all it was our favourite kind of sweeties.

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