“You’re not going?”
“Come on. I think you’re being a bit overly dramatic- or perhaps just insane.”
Nan and Babs were arguing their six month long conversation-Again!
“It’s been 35 years since we graduated from high school. You’re successful, beautiful and…did I say successful?” Babs smiled with white teeth gleaming at her sister.
“Babs, I am a manager at Dalmart and I weigh 198.5 pounds. That’s not what you call successful.” Nan said.
“Oh gosh Nan, you’re such a joy-kill. And what the hell is the deal with the 0.5 pounds. It’s been nine years, could you drop it please?”
“And you are very old Babs; Its kill-joy-NOT joy-kill. Like what the hell? Why do you want us to go to that stinking reunion anyway?” Nan sucked her teeth and picked another piece of toast from the platter.
‘Oh God is she bringing this up again?’
The girls were doing what they always did for twenty years straight. They were having breakfast together on a Saturday morning- Bacon, eggs, beans, toast and juice of the day.
“Let me guess…” Nan said slabbing heavy butter on her toast. “…you’re hoping Wrenzo Carr is divorced this time and available. That’s it isn’t it?” Nan sunk her teeth into butter and a bit of toast.
“That’s where the hell that 0.5 pounds comes from. It’s all that butter you down every Saturday morning.” Babs sucked her teeth and grabbed some more bacon.
“Give it a rest. I’m working out these days and you know I only drink diet sodas. I’m building muscle.” Nan said with mouth full of toast.
“Muscle? Yeah so thick it’s clogging your brain. Let’s go to the darn reunion okay?”
Both chewed hard on their breakfast matter while staring each other in the eye.
“There are things that I don’t want to say Babs.”
“And there are things that I don’t wish to hear Nan. Now suck it up and let’s talk outfits.”
There was no way getting around it. Babs was adamant about going and Nan simply was not. This was the ongoing argument that the word ‘reunion’ triggered.
They finished their hefty breakfast washed away the dishes. Not a word was said aloud but their minds were both racing a thousand miles a minute.
Nan-‘Babs doesn’t know what I did in school all those years back. She was too busy making out with Wrenzo to ever notice what I was up to.’
Babs-‘Why does she have to be so silly? Does she actually think I don’t know about it? Ha?’
Nan-‘It wasn’t just the thing I did to Binky Doyle or the thing I said about Trudy Maycock…no, it was the other thing.’
Babs-‘She is my favorite sister and all-wait, she’s my only sister but gee-what a nut job. Who cares about stuff from way back?’
Somehow the girls had slowly drifted into the guest room of the three bedroom town house they shared. It was the one with the mini bed and the enormous walk-in closet.
“I’m thinking a halter top and a pair of blue jeans with my green heels.” Babs said pulling a pair of jeans from a hanger.
“Are you kidding me? You’ll have to do sixty thousand sit-ups to get that gut of years in shape. I thought you said it’s this Friday?” Nan laughed.
Babs looked from the jeans to her sister.
“I’m not the one with gut phobia. I happen to think my little top-muffin is as cute as they get.” Babs said jiggling her waist and hips at her sister.
“I wish you were kidding but I know you too well. Well that’s just another reason not to go. I won’t be associated with you and your MUFFIN-TOP, cause that’s what it is -MUFFIN-TOP not top-muffin Babs.” Nan was glaring at her sister now. Babs took no notice.
“Ok queen of the language correcting people. What do you have in mind? What should we wear?”
Nan opened her mouth to speak, then she closed it just as suddenly. She looked into the closet and then began thumbing through the many outfits they had collected over the years. She hurriedly passed over the ones she knew would be too small and moved onto a more fitting section. Finally she pulled out two outfits on two separate hangers.
“How about these?”
Babs looked from Nan’s left hand to her right hand; then she looked at Nan as though she had suddenly grown a third eye.
“Are you insane? Why the hell would we wear those nun outfits? Weren’t they Halloween costumes some years back?”
“That’s really funny Babs. You very well know we got these outfits to go to the opera house a year ago.”
“Opera house, Halloween, what’s the difference? They’ll think we joined the convent. I don’t get you Nan. Do you think this will make the class feel like we’re saints or something? Like you never made out with Trell Litney or Mike Odell in the back of the school gym?”
Nan turned red in the face and shoved the hangers with the clothes at her sister.
It was all she could do to contain the feelings she felt bubbling up.
“I…I did that because…well, who wasn’t making out back in those days. So what? Heck, so what?” Nan tried to rest her hands on her Kimble. Then she tried folding them across her chest. Babs had touched a nerve.
“We all may have been making out Nan honey but at the time you knew both those boys had a girlfriend…and oh yeah, seems you were doing that making out with both those boys in the same season.”
Nan went completely red in the face. The hair on her arms stood up and her nose began to flare out.
“How…how dare you? How could you…” Nan stammered.
“You’re not denying it are you? And why are you getting so worked up about it. It was twenty five years ago Nan. Who cares? I don’t?”
‘She really doesn’t know does she?’ Nan thought.
“I care! I care a lot! I did some things back in the day that I’m not so proud of.”
“We all did. Gosh, do you know what Wrenzo and I did? Do you have any idea what we did and how we did it in the gym, in the locker room, in the teacher supply room” Babs doubled over with laughter as she thought back.
Nan was not moved.
‘you wouldn’t laugh if you knew.” Nan thought.
“The thing is I only wanted to do that stuff with Wrenzo. You were pretty athletic back then. You seemed to play the boys from all the sports teams didn’t you?” Babs doubled over again. It wasn’t just the memory that was tickling her but the look on her sisters face too.
“How can you stand there and laugh about this Babs. I…I did some awful things back then.” Nan said. Her anger and shock were cooling down but her anxiety was piquing. There was something that Babs didn’t know; something she couldn’t ever know.
“First of all, I’m barely standing right now. Secondly the look on your face is priceless. What? Did you think I didn’t know about your escapades? Come on I’m your sister.”
Nan hung her head down.
‘There’s something you don’t know Babs and going to this reunion could be the death of you if you did.’
“Hey, don’t take yourself so serious would you. What happened, it was in the past. Let’s go there with a big smile and just have a good time. What do you say?”
Nan picked up the two outfits that were now sprawled all over the floor . She placed them back on the hanger and made space for them in the closet.
Babs finally broke the silence.
“You’re my sister Nan. I never held it against you.”
Nan stiffened as she placed the hanger in the closet.
“You haven’t tried to hide something for over twenty years, I have.”
Nan turned slowly to face her sister.
‘Could she know?’
“We didn’t not work out because he decided to marry someone else. We didn’t work out because I knew.”
‘You knew what?’ Nan’s eye’s asked.
“I knew he came onto you-and made out with you…”
Nan tried to interject.
“…and he made out with Bessy Bower, Jill Nates, Mary Cooper, and there was some rumor of Jason Bowe also. Last one never confirmed but, well there you have it. He was a slut.”
Nan stood with her mouth open. She really didn’t know what to say now.
“So…since you never brought it up I thought you didn’t want to hurt my feelings so I just let it lay. It’s not like I married the stinker.”
Nan was still speechless.
“Aren’t you going to say something?” Babs asked.
Nan’s face went through a few contortions as she processed everything her sister said.
“Wait so all these years you knew, while I was feeling guilty? You knew and never said anything?”
Babs tapped her chin and thought for a moment.
“Yup! I knew you made out with my boyfriend in high scholl. Oh you slut!”
Babs looked at Nan and Nan looked at Babs. They both erupted in laughter.
They laughed for a long time before Nan finally said…
“Heck, we got a reunion to go to! Halter tops, boot leg jeans and heels. Am I right?”
“Right on sister!” Babs said joining her sister in the search for their reunion attire.