by Louise Hughes
We agreed we would meet up for the ten year reunion and so, without even a phone call, each of us made our way back.
I waited for Martha at the airport in the rain. There were trains waiting beside the platform, bright adverts in their windows encouraging me to climb on board and head south towards the sun and beaches of the coast, but we did not take a train. Rain dripped from her hair to her grin. We wove through the stationary cars on Main Street, hauling our small cases along the pavement, dodging puddles. We weren't quite ready for conversation.
At the university, when we saw the once-familiar signs more worn than we remembered, we giggled our way down the hallways.
Len greeted us with a smile, Elspeth always the quiet one hanging back at his side. For the first hour we talked in spirals, round and over each other, competing with the lives we'd made. Like a game of cards, each of us raising the bet. Len had photographs of his children, Martha of her house in the countryside where she and her husband had adjoining desks and took tea in the rain. Elspeth looked away for a moment, fingers twisted in her lap.
She'd carried on with the work.