The last time I saw her we were walking on the tracks. It was a lazy Sunday afternoon. Her long flowing hair was tucked behind her ears; stray wisps fell around her shoulders, pulled free by the gentle breeze that carried us out of town.
We promised to write and I swore I’d visit. We made a pact that we wouldn’t forget. I handed her the box that held my heart and she gave me hers to keep.
A decade passed and I still hadn’t seen her. We’d text at first and emailed. Every few days I’d phone her and we’d talk for a minute or two or ten. I don’t know when we stopped but the stopping was easy. One day I didn’t and she didn’t back and we never did again.
Perusing the isles at the bookstore, my eyes glossing over title after title, my eyes were distracted by the sight of a girl making her way toward me. Her hair was shorter now. Her face a shadow of what it had been. Ten years changes a person and it had changed the girl I’d known. But I knew her the second I saw her regardless of face and hair and style. It was like our hearts had reached out to each other, spanning countless miles.
‘This is yours,’ she said when she came to me, handing me the box where she’d kept my heart. I took hers from my pocket, so shocked that she hadn’t forgotten me. That, for all these years, she’d held it, protected it, like it was hers to carry.