The poison in my hand, that looked like a phone, wouldn’t help me get out of a war-zone, a bombardment that started raging inside me. The messenger was a machine, the email was a gun, the letters were the bullets.
Another machine that looked like a laptop connected me with a voice that sounded like the police. More surreal messages made their way through the airwaves, cables and electronics.
Cause of death?
And the autopsy?
When did he die?
Approximately 6 days before he was found.
Why were we as his family not found?
Why am I learning this 5 weeks after he died?
Why is there no clear cause of death?
Why no autopsy??! ……
All questions fired out on autopilot while still not having registered the message.
My brother dead.
The machine informed me that from a police perspective, as soon as they can rule out fowl play and suicide, they are not concerned about the cause of death anymore and hand it back to the coroner.
The policeman further informed me that they had to push his estimated 6 day old corpse away from his door to enter the apartment and they were able to capture two of the three cats that survived while my brother lay dead. The third cat slipped out the door and as a neighbour told me it lives outside now and won’t let anyone capture it…
Thank you for all the details. Very efficient.
Could I get a copy of the police and doctor’s reports, please?
You need a lawyer to apply for it, only a lawyer can have a copy. It’s the law in Germany.
A conversation with a customer in my former work who was a police detective, having worked on many death cases, confirmed that if nothing suspicious is found the case is closed fast, too much paper work. Of course if the deceased was one of their relatives, friends or colleagues, they would go to town trying to find the cause and family.
My brother was just MY brother.
Where is he now?
He has been cremated.
I realized later that his cremation was already mentioned in the email that I just read minutes before, but the LOAD of this short and brutal email was so surreal and heavy, I didn’t take it in at the time. I just starred at my phone half in mid-air and half on the floor, stuck in Twilight Zone. The turmoil that was soon to start, added by my superiors at work and the anger I would be capable of, would unleash in writings like a never ending mass shooting, but with words and letters in emails… The traumatic angst and rage that was approaching fast, losing me almost everything and everyone I held dear… I could have never imagined then.
I learned later that they destroyed all his belongings that had no financial value, since we couldn’t pay his debt from his business and had to reject the inheritance and with it all belongings that were of sentimental value to us. By law we had 6 weeks from learning of his death to decide what to do. We only received a shoe box size of papers, ID cards, driver’s license, photos, letters … and later his ashes…
in the post.
I went inside another machine the next day to bring death to my mum who brought us life.
And then I carried my big brother into the earth.
And I buried my heart with him.
My life has been a big mess since.
Everyone keeps telling me since day one to be strong.
But I am not a machine anymore.