There is this room in which she hides. The walls are covered in massive murals and smaller ones sprawled about the floor piling on one another. The woman moves about the space to some depressing love song. Windows large and inviting with the warmth of the sun on her naked skin. A loosely draped robe covering her body in a silk-like cocoon, her safe space.
Kristian worked countless hours and nights. Waiting to save enough money to convert a large brick warehouse into an open concept oasis. She had constructed the room to resemble an atrium on this side of the building, with large windows installed. The natural light filled the large open space with an ethereal glow. The dust swirling about from the clutter of art, papers, novels, and odd collections piling up about the space. Here she stood, semi-naked and in front of the large window looking out over an overgrown forest. The countryside only an hour away from the city seemed like an entirely different planet. Her brown honey eyes gazed past the edges of her creation at the top halves of the trees. The quiet was interrupted by the soft turning of a novel’s pages somewhere behind her. However, her concentration had not wavered. Although she was exceptionally warm when she felt eyes brushing her along her back, once every so often.
Instead, she threw herself into the deep end of “the zone”, she painted another stroke on the canvas before her. Lost in her own little world while hidden away from the worries that consumed her mind.
“Where did you meet?” A soft comforting tone developed within her and around her, a manifestation of her inner voice.
“What is that supposed to mean?” A coy smile as the finishing stroke brings the image to life.
She stopped and looked back to her friend in the corner. Sitting quietly with a novel in their hands. Gingerly reading the pages unaware of the pensive expression on their features. The voices in her head were not some mental issue, but instead how she dealt with the closeness to the person she swore friendship to.
“What are you staring at?” Jordan’s grin intoxicated the air she breathed, but Kristian offered a smirk.
“I spaced looking at your ugly mug,” the laughter… oh the laughter. Kristian could make the woman who sat in front of her laugh every second of the day. She just simply would not be tired of it. Jordan stood stretching and running her hands through the thick mass of curls that bounced from her scalp. Kristian turned to avert her eyes and continued to paint trying to lose herself in the process. Which proved difficult due to Jordan’s frame now approaching her bubble as their arms wrapped around her shoulders.
“Wow, look at that, Kris… you can paint?” Laughing and throwing her head back pushed her body into Kristian’s back. Breathe weirdo… reminding herself of the circumstances.
“Yeah, yeah, yeah,” she snarked and slipped from her friend’s embrace. It wasn’t like the feelings were anything new or unheard of. Jordan knew how Kris felt, and well Kris, sort of knew where they stood.
Do you see that look? The one Jordan was giving behind Kris’s back the tenderness and dilation of the pupils. They were once in love you know, everyone loves their best friend at one point or another… correct? Best friends allowed each other into sacred pieces of themselves. Kris gazed around the messy studio then back to her friend who was gingerly poking the wet paint at the edges of the canvas. Kris would’ve screamed or thrown something at anyone else. However, this was Jordan… so instead, she watched sprawling out in the chair Jordan kept warm.
Alyson walked in and looked at them both. Shaking her head with a smile and eyes that could burn. Jordan smirked and continued to “admire” the artwork as Alyson slinked into her best friend’s lap. The conversation was hard to ignore but she did her best to pretend she wasn’t listening.
“What did I tell you? If she is going to be here you paint in something else,” the words were whispered so loudly the room nearly echoed.
“Ah, I must’ve forgotten Jordan was coming when she arrived in the middle of my painting today,” Kristen smiled brightly… Jordan looked back for a split second and she felt the minor fracture happening before her. She knew to keep the peace she’d stay quiet, but soon the comments were going to push her over an edge.
“Hey,” her own voice shocked her. Kristen’s head snapped in her direction. A flash of surprise evident in her eyes and the jolt of her breast with a sharp intake of breath. Alyson’s face stoic and questioning, probably trying to figure out why Jordan felt it was her place to speak. “I uh, no listen it was my fault, I apologize,” that smirk, “if I knew she was, uh, painting… I would’ve called first.” The tension rose in the room now the two women were focused on Alyson’s sharp caramel features. Her black locks pulled into a small ponytail, she was exotic in her own right. Kristen patted her leg and tried to defuse the emotions brewing.
“Come you can help me change,” she whispered and Alyson stood eagerly. Jordan glanced in their direction as they left the room. There she stood surrounded by the years of practice and patience. Kristen’s studio began to feel like home simply because she practically lived here. Jordan couldn’t describe how it felt if anyone were to ask. She just felt right when she stood here. However, it felt slightly emptier… like a masterpiece missing the artist’s signature.
“Sorry about that,” Kristen stood in the doorway watching the person before her turn and hit her with that thousand-watt grin. She knew there were emotions behind it, ones that weren’t meant for her to hear. So she smiled back after regaining control of her brain.
“Can I read you something?” Kristen nodded and sat in the chair once more. She knew the poem well. It was one of Jordan’s favorites, so morbidly beautiful. Her eyes focused, brows furrowed as she read each line. Her voice filling the space comfortably sprawled out on the floor pillows.
Kristen stood once the poem was finished and cleared her throat. She stepped over to the mini-fridge grabbing a soda. Looking at her friend, now she felt saddened by their circumstances. However, they were the best of friends, so that had helped. Now she felt like she was carrying a lead iron torch. She dragged the heavy metal around with Jordan’s name etched into it.
“Kris? You good?” the voice brought her back to take a long sip from the beverage.
“Always,” she forced a smile making her way back to the canvas.
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