What if I have killed someone?
Last May, in the random world of internet gaming, I met David. From casual conversations, to putting up with my "I am afraid that when the time is up, I'd lose my way and sink instead of going ahead." -- to his "That's doubt talking. Remember that God gives, God takes away, and God replaces with more."
That time, while sinking and desperate for buoys, I chose to believe David and his God.
Then last week, I googled "Teardrop tattoo," and went on a rush of fear. David has that tattoo.
I freaked out for a moment. Or a week. When the moment passed, I had a choice between staying friends with him or switch phones, get on witness protection program and RUN. What good is there in keeping a probable murderer as a friend when I can't even be friendly with my parents, right?
In writing this article, I sought justification to maintain my friendship with David. At first, the argument was pretty simple: the nature of our relationship is too light to be taken seriously, and I tended to romanticize friendships with people off my common society.
But something snagged heavily. Murder, or even the possibility of it, is a serious trespass in all social codings. I tried imagining any of my friends being in my situation and can't help but recite the texts and logical arguments condemning the relationship.
They say that our friends say a lot about ourselves. In a popular tradition, the prophet advised selective socialization: socialize with perfume sellers, and ye shall smell like them. Socialize with gang members, and ye risk becoming like them. So what does being friends with David say about me?
If I lived in the same town as he, would I have allowed it to last so long? Wouldn't I freak out for the safety of my beloved if I knew that they are socializing with certain kinds of people?
While keeping in mind that the distance between Arizona and Jatibarang is a gajillion miles, I also know that people of the Abyss don't have a lot of choices in friends. And that Jed and the Timekeeper are not selective in offering their services, as far as they are able. That our meetings are predestined and that life does not always provide straight answers.
Couldn't there be something good to learn from David? Couldn't it be possible that I am the subject of his charity, rather than being the one who is challenging a lot of sensibilities?
Dubito, ergo cogito, ergo sum
When it comes to tests of character, David hasn't failed my expectations once. There was not a single promise he made that he did not keep. In matter of faith, David was there to steer me away from doubt. And as far as I am concerned, he has not caused me or my loved ones any harm.
In rejecting generic fatwas by religious police and MUI while still believing in an deity, I risk complicating my channels of communication with God, or Something at That Level of Awesomeness. Even, say, through someone with the markings of Hell on Earth on his face.
And maybe that's how all friendships are meant to be.