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Old friends can be a blessing. One such old friend, who I have known for over 22 years, Hikaru, a professor of American Film and Theater from Japan, recently visited and we had a grand time.

“So that is why you’ve been ignoring me.” An accusing voice sounded behind me.

I could see her reflection in the computer monitor. She looked a little haggard as if she had been camping in the woods for a week, without a tent.

“What happened to you?” I turned to look at her as she dropped into her leather chair. She was almost stretched out with her head against the back of the chair, about halfway down from the top. Her blonde hair was pulled back with a scrunchie, except for a few strands that hung in her face. She pushed out her lower lip and blew upward trying to get the hair off her face, with little success.

“Where do you think? You left me out in the woods while your friend was here.” She scooted up so she was more sitting than lying. She did not look happy. “You know I don’t do well out there.”

“Sorry.” I truly was. “I had no idea you would be out there. I am guessing by yourself?”

“Yes, by myself!”

“Why did you go there?” I had never thought much about where Willow went when I was busy for a few days and not writing.

“Where did you think I would go?” She was not settling down at all. “You just take off having all sorts of fun and who knows what, and… and what do you think I am doing?”

“I don’t know. What do you do?”

“Nothing. Absolutely nothing.” She had worked herself up so much I could see the beginning of a tear; something totally foreign in my experience with her.

“Nothing?” I was shocked.

“Nothing. When you take off for days on end, your… your Muse is left with nothing to do.” She sniffled. “Who am I supposed to tell when an idea strikes me or when I suddenly realize how to fix a scene that has been bugging the both of us? It is like being in solitude. I feel like I am lost in a forest and not the ‘oh it’s so beautiful out here spending time with nature’, it is more like ‘OMG, I will wander out here forever and never meet another living [or fictitious] person’. It is scarey and it makes me feel unappreciated.”

I could see she was really holding back the tears, but she was straining.

“I am sorry. I really am.” I leaned forward so she could see she had my full attention, though I really wanted to get back to my blog post. “I promise I won’t let that happen again.”
“Are you sure?” She wiped her nose with her arm. Not the most lady-like thing she has ever done.

“Yes, I promise.” I sat back with a smile trying to lighten the mood a little. “If I ever need to be away from my writing for a few days I will make sure to think of you at some point in the day. Even if it is when I first go to bed or when I get up in the morning.”

A smile crept onto her face. “You’re not just telling me this?”

“Well… yes, I thought I was telling you.”

She grabbed a little pillow, stuffed in the side of the chair, and threw it at me. I guess my grin was a little much. But she had a wide smile herself.

“I can’t always be writing every day, but at least I can think of something that you can participate in at least once a day. Even if just for a few moments.” I didn’t want her to fill unappreciated, but being a guy I don’t always get the whole feeling thingy.

She nodded her head.

“The life of a Muse is a tough one. You just don’t understand.” She sniffed a couple of times and the arm came out again.

I handed her a Kleenex. “How about later we go into the woods and find the beauty together.”

“Thanks. That would be great.” Her smile widened as she took the Kleenex and stood to leave.

“Where are you going?” I thought she wanted to work.

“Oh, I’m busy right now. We can work later.” She started toward the door. But before she left she looked over her shoulder to say, in her normal cheeky tone, “The first line really sucks, you should change it to ‘Old friends can be a blessing.’ That would make a better beginning.”

I smiled again as I thought, ‘Yes old friends… and new ones’.


Any old [or new] friends in your life that make it brighter?

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