I'm not sure you'll ever get this, but I'm hoping I'll work up enough courage to post this letter to you, in hopes that I shall find you well. Perhaps you'll even read this, if you work up enough courage, so I suppose this is a two-way exchange, huh?

I want you to remember me, because by now, you should now who I am. I want to see that you remember me, despite the fact that I don't expect you to. Despite my assumption, I wish you'll prove my hopes right.

Do you remember how we first met? No, I suppose not. By now you would have forgotten, another half formed thought in the back of your mind.

But I remember. I remember the way you flashed that white smile, a tooth missing, that smile you would perfect over the years, the smile girls will sigh over. But back then, when you hadn't enhanced it, it was a child's smile. Goofy, carefree, genuine—which is what I suppose I miss the most. You offered me a bite of your peanut butter and jelly sandwich and when I—small, legs crossed carefully at the ankles like mommy had taught me—turned up my nose at your grubby hands and flicked back my blond curls that my mommy had secured with a velvet headband, you threw your sandwich in my face and ran.

I got dirty that day. Dirty for the first time in my life, with my tangled hair that I would soon learn to love, soiled white dress and mud splattered shoes. I caught you, in the sandpit, and somehow, by the end of the day, we'd become best friends, so close that we were unbreakable. Invincible. I bet you thought so too.

Do you remember how many sleepovers we used to have? No. Me neither—there were too many to count.

We used to eat microwaved popcorn with extra butter, remember? In front of the plasma TV on the nights when your parents weren't home, which was often. We watched old Disney cartoons—you liked Hercules and the Hunchback of Notre Dame, I liked Snow White and Sleeping Beauty. I would wrestle you for the remote, the DVD collection, and usually you would win. But somewhere, barely past the beginning credits of either Hercules or the Hunchback, you would see me pouting and sulking, and you would silently get up and change the DVD. You would watch it with me, laughing and crying at all the right intervals—that was the one ritual that stayed constant until those last few months—we'll develop past the Hunchback and Aurora and Snow White and Hercules, into the odd chick flick, the old Hollywood classics and action films every night. Do you remember that? No, I suppose not.

Do you remember how middle school—that preppy Little Dalton both our families had attended for generations—came and passed in the blink of an eye? Remember how we had our first cigarettes in the girls' toilets during third period, the ones that weedy eighth grader had sold us? Remember how we used to sit at our table and point and laugh at all the preppy boys and catty girls who tore each other to bits with adult scandals like 'new money' and 'sloppy sides' and 'goldigging mother'? Remember how in seventh grade you told me in hushed tones how you lost your virginity to that beautifully exotic Tiffany Ho? I was jealous then. Not because I wanted you, but because I thought you would abandon me for her, and that, if possible, was even worse. With the maliciousness of an adult and the pettiness of a child, I'd retorted that Tiffany Ho had a fitting last name. You didn't talk to me for weeks and I cried every night, just thinking of what had happened.

She was a big eighth grader, and when you told her you loved her standing on the top of a cafetaria table, she and her friends laughed at you.

You came over that night. You came over and we had alcohol for the first time. We mixed coke with rum, vodka and blackcurrant juice, downed a bottle of vintage wine and a whole bottle of Cristal. You cried that night. You sobbed at my shoulder for hours, and I comforted you. I smoothed back your hair and murmured soft assurances to you. That was the last time I saw you cry. Do you remember that? No. I don't suppose you would want to.

The night before high school, at Big Dalton, we talked in whispers in my room, talking about how we wanted to be. You wanted to rule the school, dictate the social circles—Tiffany had changed you in more ways than one, and I resented her for it. I wanted to graduate with straight A's and stunning recommendation letters, and go to Columbia. Do you remember that? Well, I don't suppose you need to. You're living the dream.

You were targeted immediately when you started school—you with your designer labels, perfectly dishevelled hair, bright green eyes and the 'bedroom smile'. The girls flocked to you im swarms, you with your every movement reeking of old money.

There was a string of girls, each and everyone so stupid, so willing, but the latter was the one that mattered, not the former.

But you stayed constant to me. All through the first three years, through Tiffany, who came scampering back, and the girls with the predictable names—Jessica, Ashley, Cleo, Kelly, Brittany, Chelsea, Caroline…the list goes on. All those girls who thought they could replace me. You became the sort of guy who I hated. The use-them-and-loose-them guy. But I loved you. Do you remember that? No, I know she wouldn't have let you.

Do you remember how she caught you? Cecille, I mean. Cecille, of the big brown eyes and the soft dark hair, Cecille with the white silk Balenciaga blouses and the ladylike pencil skirts and velvet bows. Cecille, who spoke English with the lilting French accent, who loved Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant and Humphrey Bogart and Grace Kelly. Her favorite movies were Breakfast at Tiffany's and Casablanca. She loved Chanel and Bill Blass, Paris and Milan, vintage wines and champagne. She loved the haunting romance of Heathcliff and Catherine, the bittersweet nostalgia of Newland Archer and Madame Olenska, and the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet. You told me so many times I could almost recite it. Do you remember? I suppose you do. She would have made sure you did.

She was the first girl you ever chased. It shocked and delighted the school in equal measures, as she lead you in a merry dance. It was truly spectacular, I have to admit. She played her part well.

You were so taken, remember? You gushed to me over the phone, over and over again, how Cecille was different. Cecille was nothing like Tiffany. I didn't bother to correct you. No, that's not true—I didn't because I thought that it would hurt you more if you didn't try again. I could tell, from the first time I'd ever saw her, that you were…a challenge. Another conquest to be won. I saw that cold glint in her chocolate eyes as she smiled. Those elegantly arched brows furrow before she made her proper remarks, the ones that hinted at impropriety, that made you breathless. I saw all of this, but I chose not to acknowledge it. For that, I'm sorry.

Do you remember how she first dating you? You were ecstatic. You loved her, you said. Her ladylike demeanor made you breathless when the other girls' lap dances had not. You loved her French accent, carefully cultivated so it was not glaringly obvious but enough to make her exotic and foreign. You loved her, you said.

She hated me from the start, remember? No, I suppose not. You wouldn't have noticed. She was insecure, I saw. She didn't want to share you with your female best friend. She was afraid you would fall for my dirty jeans and ripped t-shirts, my messy curls and bright eyes, the way you'd fallen for her pencil skirts and silk blouses, coiled hair and white smiles.

The competition made her nervous, and it showed just two months into your relationship. She made you choose, didn't she? 'Me or her,' she said. 'Me or her.'

I have to give you credit—you stayed strong at first. But se wore you down, didn't she? Yes, I suppose you would remember that.

Do you also remember how I begged? I begged you. I asked—no, pleaded—for you to reconsider cutting me out of your life. But you listened to her, didn't you? I suppose the thought of losing her was just too much, and the thought of losing me was something you could live with.

It would all have ended here, a friendship of twelve years, if that night hadn't happened. The night after the big basketball game, remember? I do.

Cecille went crazy when she found out. She cried and screamed and shreiked and swore to me that I'll never be able to get that four lettered s-word off my forehead, messing with her boyfriend. And what did you do, my dear? You stood to one side and let her. I could never forgive you for that, love.

And that's how it ended. Do you remember? No. I suppose you would have learned not to.

Do you remember those plans we made for the glorious year after college, whe you've graduated from Yale and I've left Columbia? Spring in Paris—candlelit dinners with good wine and simple dishes on the Seine. They say spring in Paris makes a man feel like he is immortal, dearest. Strolling around the cobblestoned streets, past cafes, tossing coins to the street singers…it would have been all possible, my darling.

Summer in that little cottage of yours in the countryside of England, riding horses all summer, maybe even out to the city a few times, exploring the old castles and the rare English sun, and we were just going to coil up inside for days with nothing but good coffee and brilliant conversation, get into one of those debates that took hours to finish, or one of those chess games that took days. We would have toasted each other at night with my favorite Sauvignon or your favorite Pinot Noir, and the next day we would ride out and have a picnic full of simple food and read each other passages from our favorite books…it would have been all possible, my love.

For fall we would have gone back to New York for the red leaves of the city, blending against the urban landscape, the vibrant colors of Central Park. You know how I love Central Park in the fall. We would have gone ice skating in Rockefeller, window shopping on Fifth Avenue, a few operas and plays here and there, gone out downtown for the nights. The next morning we would have strolled back to Central Park, with our cappuccinos from Chez Angelique, to watch and appreciate the falling red leaves of the trees and the rippling waters of Turtle Pond…it would all have been possible, my dear.

For winter we were going to St Petersburg and travel outwards, remember? No skiing in the Aspens or the Swiss Alps for us, remember? Just a lot of travelling. Start in St Petersburg and take our trip through Romania, Austria, Germany, France, avoiding the tourist season. I know how you love the snow, how you loved the purity of it before it's ruined, the innocence before it's soiled. Ironic, isn't it? For you to appreciate innocence when you've took so many.

Yes. You loved the snow, you loved the dazzling whiteness, the bleak beauty of the bare trees and how the cold air would hold onto your breath, even if it was just for a little while. How I wished you'd held onto me, my love.

Now, perhaps it'll never happen. Perhaps we will never see Paris, England, Russia together again. Perhaps we'll never even see New York together again. Soon, I'm sure, you'll be engaged to Cecille, as all of high society will expect you to. A long old fashioned, one-year engagement. A giant diamond ring from Tiffany's. A globe trotting bachelor party full of drugs and alcohol and women. A magnificent wedding at the Plaza. A honeymoon to wherever she wants to go.

And I'll see the world alone, starting here from Paris.

Yes, that's right. I'm in Paris, writing this letter to you from a little café overlooking the Seine. And I hope, if you get this, you'll consider the offer I am about to make you.

I love you. Not as a lover, no. I love you as a friend, simply because you are you. And if you get this…spare us this last.

With all my love,

You friend.