Laurie wanted to be free of her strict parents. She’d been saying it since we met. I can repeat every single word, and do a proper imitation of her tone, so it was no shock to me when I saw her leaving town with that suitcase.
To me, it was good bye and don’t come back, although I played it calm and a bit bereaved.
Shaun had turned away, the tears glistening on his cheeks.
After Laurie had gone a distance, I touched Shaun’s arm, gestured for him to come with me. He followed for a few yards, caught his breath, wiped his face, again. I led him to an empty bench at the edge of the park.
“Let us just sit a minute and get over it…” I say as if I needed comforting. As if I was the one crying. As if he was there to console me.
After all, she was my Best Friend. Shaun would assume I was as torn up as he was, and stared into my face which I twisted to look hurt, and about to cry.
Before he said anything I told him,
“Laurie told me she would leave the next time her parents tried to set her parameters, so I knew it was coming.”
“You could have told me…”
He said, choking back the tears. Looking at me as if he had some right to know what Laurie thought, as if she cared about him.