This is a reconstruction.
I was young, but you were younger. Only by a few months, but those things mattered back then. We were at the stage when girls were with girls and boys will be boys. I didn’t know you, neither you me; life went on.
We were introduced. I was taller. You liked a bunch of things that I’ve never even heard of, but I was surprised to find that I liked them, too. Next thing I knew, I was learning how to hang out with a boy. Lunches were shared, doodles and notes passed in class. We vowed to be best friends forever. Inseparable.
Days passed. Months, years. Our circle of friends grew, but yours were greater than mine. We were at a transition–were you now a few finger widths taller than me? I haven’t noticed before. Should I have taken notice? My only concern back then was about your safety, and whether you have slept nicely in the evenings. Should I be concerned about my concern?
New thoughts, new things. New realizations. I realized I loved you. I thought that’s why things changed before that, but things changed after that, too. We were inseparable once. We weren’t anymore.
Days passed. Months, years. Two years, three years, five years of silence. You never did talk to me after that day, only to laugh scornfully at what was a heartfelt letter. It was a stupid letter. I shouldn’t have apologized. I should’ve told you the truth instead. That I wasn’t afraid of losing my best friend. That I was afraid of losing you. Because I had fallen in love with you. Maybe you wouldn’t have laughed then. Maybe you would’ve looked shocked. Surprised. Flabbergasted. Perhaps you would’ve grabbed my hand and taken me outside, where we could talk alone and not in front of everyone else. You’d ask me if I were serious. I’d say, I don’t know. Maybe. Yes. You’d gently let me down and say that I wasn’t your type, that I wasn’t the typical pretty girl who’ve always caught your eye. Or perhaps you’d take pity and say you love me only as a best friend. But you’d know I’d have slapped you then. So you stuck with the scornful laugh, and the years of silence. Six years of silence. Six years of treating me like I never existed.
I was a fool to fall in love with my best friend, and a fool to write that stupid letter.
That stupid letter, and this stupid letter to my future self.
I read the yellowing pages of the translucent intermediate pad paper, flowering with faded black ink, written by the hand of a girl of fourteen. I read and remember and regret, slicing scars and opening old wounds to bleed again. Or perhaps I read and remember and reminisce fondly, with the bittersweet feeling of one who have become past old ghosts. I would have torn the paper to pieces, or burned it into ashes. But it’s been thirteen years. Maybe I would’ve kept it hidden still, buried and locked back into the chamber from where I found it. Did I? I cannot remember. This is a reconstruction, too.