She was the most intense, bizarre person I'd ever met. One year ahead of me in high school, different and smart as hell.

I never did work out how we came to be friends, but we were, and I came to depend on her. We became each others' sounding boards, editors, critics. Comparing, sharing essays, reports, free verse. I'd critique, she'd comment. I delighted in her difference, the way it conferred an eccentric status to me. She delighted in...actually, I'm not sure quite why I fascinated her.
It was a sort of mutual hero worship.

Then I pissed her off, or she pissed me off, or somehow we weren't talking anymore. She graduated and went overseas to study, I stayed behind and finished high school. I'd miss her in an odd, fleeting sort of way, a blip on my memory, an old essay resurfacing.

The card she sent me by way of renewing the friendship:
A little girl stands with her nose pressed up against the glass of a full wall aquarium.
Inside, there is one sentence in a blank white expanse:

Let us not look back in anger nor forward in fear, but around in awareness.

James Thurber.

Cryptic, but I'll take it.

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