They are, after all, the two people on Pine Street who knew Sasha best. Kassandra’s childhood friend, David’s lover, wife, the mother of his daughter.
Once they begin talking about her, they wonder why it took them so long. Were they worried their own hurt was still too tender? It is so, so tender, but it feels good to share it. Was each concerned the other would find it too much? It is so, so much, but the sadness lessens as they share it.
They find anger, loss, regret, but also joy, laughter, happy memories. The Sasha known by Kassandra was the same, and different, than the one David knew. But their shared stories meld the two together, slowly but surely, until she becomes one whole woman. A person of complexity, one who turns out to have been big enough for them both to love.
And inside that love for Sasha, Kassandra and David begin to find one another.
Their first kiss is hesitant, almost timid. It does not take long for them to shed their shyness and turn their embraces bold, full of heat and longing.
On a very warm summer night, one in which the temperature barely dips below seventy degrees, David and Kassandra make love for the first time. In their touches, they find loss and regret, and also joy and laughter.
They find deep pleasure, a kind of connection neither realized they needed until it arrived, full-blown, and convinced them they cannot live without it.
Early the next morning, waking beside David’s still-sleeping form, Kassandra is lost in a moment of panic. What has she done, what is this, a relationship? What would Sasha think? Has she betrayed her friend?
Penny was sleeping in her room down the hall in David’s house, and Kassandra hears the little girl stir. David wakes immediately, fully aware and ready to care for his daughter, heading toward her room before Kassandra can say a word.
After some soft murmuring between father and daughter, David pads back into the bedroom, crawls back into the bed next to Kassandra, who has propped herself up against the headboard. He pulls her to him, arm around her shoulders, sighs deeply.
The panic disappears as quickly as it arose, and Kassandra settles into her new lover’s embrace.