Categories > Original > Drama


by Charis 1 review

"You were supposed to be the kind one, sister. Return, and if I must be vilified for something, at least let it be what I do of my own will." For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Category: Drama - Rating: G - Genres: Drama - Published: 2005-11-17 - Updated: 2005-11-17 - 623 words - Complete

by Charis

They meet at a small deli owned by a family with an incomprehensible surname -- Hungarian, maybe, or Polish. It is early Sunday, with few to mark the strangeness of two such women sitting together: one in a rumpled linen pants-suit, ungracefully aging, the other young and sleek in designer jeans and silk choli top. There are words exchanged over brunch, polite and empty; neither is precisely eager for the inevitable confrontation.

As they linger over drinks, silence settles over the table, until the younger puts her glass down a little harder than strictly necessary. She looks across the table, folding her arms in some vague defiance, but there is resignation in her eyes. When she speaks, the words are not a question.

"You're not coming back yet."

Softly, "No."

"This will only keep getting worse."

"I know." The elder's face grows pained, lines deepening as she frowns, sighs. "But they need me."

"So does he! So --"

But she bites the word off.

A gnarled and work-worn hand reaches across, gently pats the slender one with its neat, polished nails. There is nothing condescending in the gesture.

"Is it so very hard for you, /achoti/?"

An uncharacteristically-averted gaze her only response, she gives a gentle squeeze before withdrawing to toy with her teaspoon. "I am sorry; truly. But if I come back, their suffering will not change. I promised them I would stay until that was over, and I will not break that oath."

"So," bitterly, "until the Messiah comes, you condemn them all -- yours, his, and the rest -- to an ever-worsening hell on earth. You were supposed to be the kind one, sister. Return, and if I must be vilified for something, at least let it be what I do of my own will."

Silence. Then, "You could leave him."

When their eyes meet, it is a mirror: blue to blue, sky and waters, and it does not matter which of them is young now, and which old. They longer they look at each other, the harder it becomes to tell them apart.


She turns away first.

"I couldn't."

- finis -

Notes: This is not quite fanfiction, though it draws heavily from another story for inspiration, in addition to being completely, totally, and utterly on crack. It has a bit of a story to it -- literally as well as figuratively. My freshman English class mandated a research paper; I wrote one when I took it in the fall of 2002 on the evolution of the Lilith myth, and it was grand fun. One of the things I came across while doing research was a short story by Primo Levi, entitled simply "Lilít", found in his Short Stories in Italian. In it, one of the characters claims that all the suffering and evil in the world have a very simple source: God's bride, the Shekhina, went with the Jewish people into exile, and God took Lilith as a mistress. Not only is this the cause of such things, but it is also -- a lovely little paradox -- a consequence of it.
Did I mention that, especially in Kabbalist teachings, Lilith is the Shekhina's dark reflection?
I've always been something of a Lilith fan; maybe it's that which started me writing little vignettes based on literally interpreting that story. This is partly inspired by the Jewish feminist view of Lilith, and partly by the idea of "aspect deities" as faces of a whole, both Lilith and the Shekhina being aspects of the divine feminine in Judaism. I just kind of tweaked the mirrors a little ...
For some reason, this Shekhina will always have a Queens accent to me.
'Achoti' is Hebrew and means 'my sister', and looks like one is sneezing when transliterated.
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