I held out my hand, realizing that I was shaking like a leaf. She set the potted roses in my palm and offered me a tentative smile.
"I wanted to bring you something. You know, like something that would last. Yellow, for friendship and growth."
Of all the things I expected when she called and asked to come by, this was the last. I set the plant down before I dropped it and lowered myself into a chair opposite her. She dug a cigarette out of her bag and lit it.
"Like, as women, we're supposed to hate each other now. But I don't want to do what we're supposed to. I don't hate you. I wish you the best, truly."
I took off my sunglasses and peered at her small face, pink lipstick lips curled just a bit at the edges. Her fingers, curved around the filter of her cigarette, were trembling. I couldn't imagine what it must have taken for her to come here.
"I don't know what to say. Thank you."
We spent a moment trading the hurt back and forth, before we just cast it aside altogether. She hugged me goodbye and strode back up the street, her head high. I watched her go, and then went to buy potting soil for my roses.
I want you to know how grateful I am to have had the pleasure of knowing a woman as graceful and dignified as you. In the short time I've known you, you have taught me a great deal about integrity and empathy. You are truly exquisite, and I wish for you nothing but the best always and I hope we meet again.
PS- I'm sorry about the rosebush.