Sister Virtues

I have two friends. Their names are Grace and Hope. They are sisters.

Grace is a sweet soul. She swirls and dances, always offers the last bite, always gives the benefit of the doubt. She’s far too trusting. And so, she always ends up in places she shouldn’t be, making acquaintances with people she shouldn’t associate with. People I shoot oblong glances to. People I sometimes avoid. People I often judge.

Grace is wonderful to have as a friend. Inspirational, even, in the way she extends herself towards others. But she is also annoying. I don’t understand her. She is capricious, illogical, and unfair. Her generosity unnerves me. People take advantage of her and don’t turn back. “You should only give to people who deserve it,” I urge her, “people who’ve shown that they’ve earned it.” She turns to me, straight-faced. “But no one has earned it. There’d be no one left to give things to.” “Me,” I grumble. “How about me.”

Hope, her sister, is equally as irksome. She is the friend who radiates joy, but can’t seem to understand the concept of sorrow. She misses social cues and overstays her welcome often. More than once, we’ve stood at the threshold of my home, fidgeting. “It’s been a long week,” I tell her. She smiles, unaware that I’m trying to let her down gently. Trying to get some time alone. But every time, she waits until I say it. I can’t even look her in the eyes. “Please,” I beg. “Go away.” She casts me a knowing glance before stepping back. She has exited the room. Finally. I exhale. And yet, her presence lingers. I can still smell her perfume. I can hear her voice outside the door. I peel back my curtain only to see she that has pulled up a lawn chair and sits in my yard. She never really leaves me, not completely.

A thing I hate and love her for.


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