For E, who would turn 35 on Sunday, March 24th. I miss you.
I reached across the table and put my hand on Sarah’s arm.
“It’s so good to see you again. It seems like forever.” Sarah frowned and nodded her head in agreement.
“And yet, like it was only yesterday?”
I nodded. Sarah always put things so well. It truly did feel like we hadn’t spent time apart. I felt like I could tell her anything. I wondered if I could. “Remember all those times during thesis, when we walked all that way to that pub we liked just to get away from the studying and writing?” Sarah smiled sadly, reminiscing. “We did whatever we could just to get out of our heads. And of course, talk about boys.” I winked at her.
“You loved those honey-garlic chicken wings,” Sarah laughed. “We went there on Mondays just so you could eat them.”
“I know! They were so yummy! But they made me feel so carnivorous, like a wild animal tearing flesh of its prey.” Eating wings, whatever their flavour, always made me feel that way. “Today’s the 13th right?” Sarah nodded, concerned.
“Friday the 13th, remember?” Her brow furrowed.
“Right, I think I asked you already today.” More nodding.
“So, how are you?” Sarah asked. We’d come to the point where I was supposed to tell her something important. This was the kind of thing you told someone face to face, not by phone or email. Except, I wasn’t quite sure what that something was.
“I’m okay,” I said, stalling for time. “You know, the usual.” For some reason, my mind went blank, and I just couldn’t remember what was so urgent. Sarah nodded, her face worried. “Hey! Brighten up! Things aren’t that bad.” I started to sing badly to the music in the background, and Sarah laughed. She knew how much I loved my sappy singable tunes.
We spent the rest of the afternoon reminiscing about our thesis days, talking about her new boyfriend and my husband. I went home after feeling extremely joyful. Time with Sarah always put me in such a good mood.
It wasn’t until I got home and looked in the mirror that I remembered what I was going to tell her. My bald head from the chemotherapy, and forgetfulness was evidence the brain tumour had spread. My husband reminds me often of things I seemed to forget, the tumor robbing me of my short-term memory, and I guess I forgot to tell her my news. Wait, I think I’m seeing her tomorrow. I’ll tell her then.
A few years ago l joined a startup writing group called ThinkingTen. The concept is simple: there’s a daily prompt and you have 10 minutes to write whatever comes to mind. l deleted my blog posts from the site when I received an email saying the founder was shutting down the site. I hadn’t written anything in a while anyway. It’s still going, but I’ve decided to repost my original works here for Fiction friday.
Prompt: Your character seeks out an old friend; why? At some point, your character needs to confess; what?