CHAPTER FOUR HUNDRED AND FIFTY-FOUR
“I wanted to talk to you …” Sissy said.
Sandy stopped eating to look up. Her mind raced with possibilities. Sissy was pregnant. No, she knew Sissy had the implant because Sandy had put it there herself. Sissy and Ivan were getting married. Sissy and Ivan were breaking up. She wanted to come home. Sissy was sick or needed money or …
“Did you panic?” Sissy asked. She rolled up her sleeve to show the implant. “I’m not pregnant.”
Sandy gave a relieved laugh. Sissy grinned.
“You know that Wanda is having her surgery on Tuesday,” Sissy said.
“I wanted to come home to be there for Wanda but …” Sissy said. She took a bite of pancake and ate it before adding, “I was just there.”
“What does Ivan say?” Sandy asked.
“Is our life,” Sissy said in a mock Russian accent. “We live as we live. Here or there. Why does it matter?”
“Why does it?” Sandy asked. “You’re not working now and school is mobile.”
“I know,” Sissy said. She leaned forward. “You don’t think it’s kind of …”
Sissy raised her shoulder for a fast shrug. Sandy shook her head that she didn’t understand.
“Rich, I guess,” Sissy said. “Spoiled. Stupid. Make up your mind! Ostentatious.”
“Yes, mother,” Sandy said in response to Sissy quoting their mother.
“I think that this is your life,” Sandy said. “I understand that most of your life, you’ve been in one place, on one path. You don’t need to do that right now. Why not enjoy it while you can?”
Sissy shrugged and looked away.
“It seems like things are going well,” Sandy said. “Ivan’s likely to be back to work soon. You’ll be back in ballet school. In just a little bit of time, you won’t be able to come home, even if you wanted to.”
Sissy turned back to look at Sandy, who shrugged. Sissy nodded.
“What is it really?” Sandy asked.
“I don’t know,” Sissy said. “I wish I did, but I don’t.”
Sandy nodded. They fell silent eating for a while. The waitress came to fill Sandy’s coffee. When she left, Sandy looked at Sissy for a long while.
“What?” Sissy asked.
“Why do you think there were so many ballet people there last night?” Sandy asked to avoid asking Sissy the same question again.
“Ramona,” Sissy said with a nod. “You know, my friend who was an apprentice with me?”
“I remember her from the hospital,” Sandy said. “Nice girl. Was she there last night?”
“She works in the office for a stipend,” Sissy said. “She sent everyone on the ballet’s list a copy of the first video.”
“Will she get in trouble?” Sandy asked.
“No,” Sissy said. “Nadia called school last night and left a message that she’d instructed Ramona to do it.”
“I guess she’s a big wig,” Sissy said.
Sissy nodded. They fell silent while they finished eating.
“So … what is it really?” Sandy asked.
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
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