“Miss Jo, you were always something,” Rachel said.
She surveyed the room knowing she had explicit instructions, which she planned to honor. Miss Jo had been gone for weeks but, as always, she knew Serafine. It amazed Rachel, yet she had no time to dwell on it. Her first task was to tidy up the living room while Serafine showered.
Rachel did not know where to begin. Standing in the center of a very spacious living room she could see most of the condo. She looked up at the dusty ceiling fan, knowingly she eyed the lamps. They too were dusty.
She had never seen Serafine’s place in such a disarray. She needed a clear space to place her purse and a cup of coffee. Then she glanced into the kitchen.
“Stop it. You are here for Serafine and Miss Jo so get your act together.”
Talking herself into motion. She tossed her purse on the chase and headed towards the entertainment center. Music would get her going. She powered on the system and pulled out her cellphone. She tapped her music app and scanned her albums. Then she saw it.
“Let’s get it Mary Mary.”
“Am I invited to the party?” Serafine said startling Rachel.
“Hey you! You most certainly are, wait let me turn it down,” Rachel said as she pulled her phone from her back pocket.
Serafine nodded and plopped down to the couch, pulling her legs beneath her. Rachel had been busy. The living room was near spotless except for the trash bags near the front door.
“I’ll take those out when I leave,” Rachel said from the kitchen.
Serafine could smell food and she smiled. Her friend was a magician.
“I need to hire you,” Serafine called out to Rachel.
“You can’t afford me,” Rachel tossed back crossing the kitchen with a plate walking to the stove.
Serafine chuckled. Standing to get her quilt from the ottoman. She grabbed it and returned to her favorite spot on the couch and waited for Rachel.
Serafine was tired. Which seemed odd since she’d slept on and off for….
“What’s today’s date?”
Rachel lowered to the couch placing a warm ceramic mug in Serafine’s hands with “Fearless” scribed on front and a plate on the coffee table.
Shock danced through Serafine’s body. She tensed. It couldn’t be.
“It’s been almost a month.”
It was a statement Rachel answered with a slight nod of her head, as she sipped from her cup.
Rachel sat back enjoying the moment and Serafine rested her head on her shoulder. Each in her own thoughts as the sound of Erica Campbell began to sing about her declaration to keep going through the battles of life because God is with her.
The song ended and Rachel passed a tissue to Serafine, keeping one for herself. Dabbing her eyes Rachel handed the plate of food to Serafine.
Serafine let out a long-tired breath, “You are so bossy”.
“And you didn’t know?” She said with a sass that didn’t reach her soft brown eyes.
For once, Serafine could see the stress in her friend’s face. So, she grabbed the plate. She would not fight it. She was tired of fighting.
Serafine lifted the plate giving it a very audible sniff. “Mmmmm…”
Rachel chuckled, “Girl, do you ever change? You still smelling your food before you eat.”
“I am who I am.”
Serafine thought about her response as she forked some eggs into her mouth. Being who she was had caused hardships and pain in the lives of the people she loved the most. And she did not what to be who she was anymore. It had cost her too much.
They sat with only the music between them.
Mary Mary singing.
After what seemed like hours passed, Serafine placed the empty plate on the coffee table. She did not realize she was so hungry. The eggs, sausage, grits and coffee was exactly what she needed.
“So, what do you have for me?”
Rachel took the empty plate to the kitchen and returned with fresh coffee and her purse.
Serafine took the cups and placed them on the table as Rachel reached into her purse.
“I have this,” Rachel responded.
It was an envelope. Serafine recognized the handwriting on the front.
“A letter from Miss Jo.”
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