I don’t actually remember how we met. The youngest bits and pieces I have with you are you teaching me how to jump rope, or my chubby hands grabbing at your hair as I tried to braid it. As a little girl, your mom always had your hair chopped short. Still, I insisted I could do it; and you sat with me for hours as I tried.
Sure- it turned out wonky, but it’s not like you were patient either. I was always more timid. I remember that my mom had never allowed me to cartwheel or handstand, but you were always the one dragging me along and helping me through those things.
I had my first sleepover at your house. I panicked when it got late, for I was scared of the dark, and you convinced your mom to let us keep the light on. Once, I forgot my toothbrush. You were so stubborn you managed to have your mom walk us, in our pajamas, during the middle of the night, to retrieve it. I pulled my first all-nighter with you too. We spent eight whole hours arguing over how to pronounce a word in one of your comic books. Then, we noticed the sun come up behind the blinds and pretended to sleep as we heard your dad coming to wake us up. Now that I look back on it, he probably knew we were awake the whole time; just wanted us to think we were S-Tier performers.
I still have the pink fairy you gave me. I keep her in a box by my nightstand. I have your notebook as well, the one you forgot at my house on a sleepover. I wanted to give it back to you, but I moved and never got a chance to.
I never doubted our friendship for a second. I would've given the world for you.
People always said we looked alike. The same copper curls, freckles, and smiles. When I was little, I didn't see it. Now that I look at a picture of us, (we're in a Disney Princess themed party; I dressed as Belle and you dressed as Ariel. I hadn't wanted to take a picture that day, so I had one of the goofiest frowns on my face.) I see the similarity. Sometimes, while I stare at it, I wish I could've had smiled more politely, or maybe allowed my mom to comb through my hair. Other times, I wouldn't have changed a thing; you were laughing at my face and hiding behind your hands.
Nobody expected us to remain friends through the move. Yet, we somehow managed to prove them all wrong.
I was supposed to finally see you yesterday. I even packed your notebook in my duffel bag. The night before our miraculous encounter, I had a dream about you.
We were in our old building as if neither of us had ever left. The pool wasn't the tiny little thing we grew up to recognize it for, but an immense depth of sea-blue, chlorine-filled, and possibly shark-infested waters.
Someone put soap in the pool. Everything was crowded, but in the best possible way. It all felt like the first day of summer vacation.
Eventually, you brought out your roller skates; and there was a pair for me as well! One was cyan and the other was pink, like our matching fairies. Even though we were properly geared up, neither of us were any good, so instead of actually rolling on the ground, we ended up awkwardly stomping our feet as we stumbled.
I got tired and suggested we go into the pool; gear and all. We played in the cloud-shaped bubbles until dusk fell. Then, we looked up constellations and tried to find them in the sky. You pointed at a clump of three stars, and I reminded you of my aunt's superstition- that doing so will make you have a wart- as I tapped your nose. Your laugh was infectious. I hadn't seen you for so long and it was easily one of the best days of my life.
As we reluctantly parted ways, you said we'd be doing this again soon enough. I didn't quite believe you, but, in my dream, I found you had kept our roller skates in a box in the elevator. (The elevator, by the way, was magical- easily the size of a walk-in closet. It had warm lighting and a table where people set their jackets and other items!)
I smiled as I closed the box, which was when I finally woke up. It was noon. I got to see you.
When I called you, your mom picked up. Her voice sounded teary, but it was fine. I was fine.
My tears are staining this page as I sit and write, hoping you will get this message. After this, I will burn this note to ashes and blow it into the wind with a dandelion. That way, it might reach you.
I should be frustrated you didn't keep your promise. You promised we'd grow old together. You promised you wouldn't leave me.
Yet, I still remember your giggle. How we agreed dandelions were fairies in disguise. How they could send anyone a message as long as it was made with love.
Your mom allowed me to take Sheep-sheep. I don't know what I'll do with him yet, but I promise he's being treated with a lot of kindness and I've yet to let him see me cry.
I want you to know that I'm not frustrated you left. Truly. I hope you'll enjoy your time there, wherever you are, and I'll enjoy my time here. I'm okay since, on the night you died, I dreamt we walked on roller skates.
P.S. Hopefully, you weren't lying in my dream. Hopefully, we'll roller skate together soon enough.
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