As she walked away from Kassandra, Sasha pondered the same question from a different perspective.
Are we still sisters, even after all these years apart? Or could we be, again?
Sasha felt sure that Kassandra would welcome any overture of renewed friendship with open arms. That’s how she’d been as a teenager, heart on her sleeve, no concern about being hurt or betrayed. Sasha wondered how such a creature could exist in this world. How could any human being not be hardened by life’s disappointments?
And yet, Kassandra still had that open face, that smile, that softness. For a moment, just a moment, Sasha wished to return to that soft core of herself.
She longed to turn back, run to Kassandra’s welcoming hug, and tell her old friend the truth.
Knowing that she’d be accepted anyway, even after telling Kassandra about her inner coldness, her scheming, and her desperately lonely pursuit of the man she convinced herself she loved, seemed worse, in a way, than finally provoking Kassandra into rejection.
Sasha recalled her time with David, when things were good between them. She remembered what it was like to be the focus of his attention, the trigger for his smile, the reason he would leave work on time. She felt the warmth of his hand in the small of her back, the smell of his neck when she put her head on his shoulder in bed. A warm mix, like leather and soap and safety. She pushed away the memories of David’s slow distancing, the evenings he did not call, the long sleepless nights of waiting for him to return.
That slow, torturous departure, the way it didn’t seem to matter that much to him, as if he didn’t need to explain or apologize or even acknowledge their time together, the beauty of it, was over. David had to recognize that. He had to be made to understand, and then, to return.
Kassandra, with her warm open heart, would understand Sasha’s pain, and pity her for it.
Sasha kept walking into the heat of the evening, eyes forward, and hardened herself just a bit more.