Unless you're caught in a wave of nostalgia, you probably don't want to run into your ex. It's awkward, they might be with someone new, and you could have created an elaborate plot to steal their money and convince them that you'd died. Amirite, gentlemen?
Well, at least a 21-year-old man, given the pseudonym "Alistair" by Australia's ABC News, knows the latter plight well. He ghosted both his friends and girlfriend, Rachel, spreading the message that he'd been murdered. But then Rachel ran into him at a restaurant.
It all started years ago, in Australia. Rachel and Alistair worked at the same pub. Small-smiles between the two gave way to a romance, but early into the relationship "Alistair" allegedly broke his hand in a fight. He needed $1,000, and Rachel had no reason to suspect he was the kind of honey that dodges debt by faking his own death. So she gave him the money. He only paid back $300 and they split soon after.
"It was not like anyone cheated or anything, there was nothing catastrophic," Rachel told ABC News.
Then Alistair disappeared. Though it was Rachel who cut it off, it didn't seem like his reason for disappearing was to go on a journey of eating, praying, and loving -- she found out he also borrowed $2,200 from his friends, and things became sketchy.
"The initial story was he'd gone to rehab in Queensland," Rachel said. "The moment we went 'OK, he owes everyone money,' the anxiety and urgency of the situation ramped up. The story was falling apart really, really quickly."
And then Rachel received word that Alistair was dead. Alistair's mom told his friends her son had been murdered because he owed money to a biker gang (a believable fib, to give them some credit).
But, after two years, Rachel and her friend went to a local restaurant and saw both Alistair's brother and the deceased ex-boyfriend himself. She went into shock, and then the manager told them to leave. When they called the restaurant, someone told them that nobody with her ex-boyfriend's name was an employee there.
Soon after Alistair's mom texted her complaining that the whole situation caused Alistair to lose his job. No report on whether or not the elephant in the room was addressed in the text exchanges.
A few years after that, Rachel saw her ghosting lover again, at a different restaurant. It appeared that Alistair gave no fucks.
"We made eye contact, and you could see he recognized me," she said. "I was like, 'Long time no see!' And he went, 'Oh yeah, it has been a long time.'"
She started interrogating him. With incredible tact, he suddenly pretended he had no idea who she was.
That is where the story ends. As far as we know, justice was not served. But at least we know now how important it is to scrutinize our loved ones, question their every move, and never, ever give them money when they desperately need it.