This story was written in response to Kellie Elmore’s Free Write Friday prompt. She asked for stories about the couple in the picture you will see below. At first glance, one might expect a story about a young couple, reunited after a separation of some sort. But, of course, I took it way off into something else. It’s what I do. I hope you enjoy it.
They say we were joined at the hip and shoulder, and as you might guess, we went everywhere and did everything together. We would even cry or laugh at the same time, and as we got older, we would often say the exact same thing in unison.
Our biological mother was single and poor, so she gave us up for adoption; not that unusual in the late 1940s. Our parents told us this when we turned ten. They’re fantastic, and my twin sister and I were extremely lucky they adopted us.
Sissy is obviously not my identical twin, seeing as how she’s a girl and I’m a guy. But, in every other way we are identical. I let my hair grow when I was fourteen, and when it was the same length as hers, you couldn’t tell us apart. Mom hated that. It wasn’t really a big deal; she knew I was the right one.
They discussed separating us, but we’d been best friends since we could talk, and saw no reason for the fuss. The older we got the more they tried to convince me and Sissy it was the right thing to do. We were not to be convinced.
I remember when Sissy and I had our first disagreement.
“I’m serious, Bubba!”
I stared at her in disbelief. “But… we love UT! We’ve always said that’s where we’d go.”
“Well, I changed my mind,” she shouted. “I’m going to A&M!”
I thought I knew her every thought, and I was stunned. I quickly relented. “Sissy, if you want to go to A&M, that’s where we’ll go.”
A tear slide down her cheek. “I don’t want you to go with me, Bubba,” she said, as she began to sob.
If you ever want to know what a broken heart feels like, call me.
High school ended, the operation was a success, and in August, Sissy left for A&M. She was deliriously happy, and I was devastated. I started classes at UT, but did poorly. Sissy called often, but I refused to talk to her. I Thought I would never understand her decision. I knew I could never forgive her.
Then… she came home for the holidays, and I found myself waiting on the platform.
All the other passengers had exited the train, and I could see Sissy, still in her seat by the window, staring at me. I tried not to smile, hoping to show her see how much she’d hurt me. But inside, my heart was exploding, and when she leapt from the seat and dashed down the aisle, I yelled, “Sissy!” and ran toward the train. As she jumped into my arms it was as though we’d never been apart, and we held on like we’d never let go.
On the way home we chattered in the back seat about the things we’d done while she was away. Sitting shoulder to shoulder and hip to hip, we talked about our separate lives then as we neared the old farmhouse where we’d grown up, the conversation waned.
I pulled the right sleeve of my t-shirt up, revealing the four inch scar. Sissy stared at it for a long minute then pulled her sleeve up to reveal an identical scar on her left shoulder. We could almost feel the long scars on our hips touching through our jeans as we looked up into one another’s eyes.
Copyright © 2011 C. Mashburn