It had been what felt like hours I was sitting on the corner of the walled stairs and I still had no idea what I was going to do. Just a few hours ago, my life had been completely normal. Until Pari, my best friend, my sister, my sole confidant had asked me to do something I would never have imagined considering.

It would be treason, it would be a total betrayal. But I could not let her down. I owed her that much. And I knew, if I had asked her for the same, she wouldn't have hesitated, wouldn't have even blinked before agreeing.

My time in contemplating her request made me feel guilty. Was I being selfish? To try and protect myself from the consequences that her decision would inevitably bring if I was caught? But with a decisive sigh, I stood up, shaking off the dust on the back of my skirts and headed to Pari's small home.

By the time I arrived, she had already packed her bag, filled with the little amount of memorable items she had collected over the years. I found my eyes watering as I saw the framed picture of Pari and I on the top, two little girls caught forever in time, howling with laughter, holding our stomachs in one hand and each other's arm with the other.

I smiled, looking up at her with a determined nod. "Are you ready?" I whispered, although no one else was around to listen. "I was born ready", she responded with a sly grin and grabbed me in an embrace. One last embrace, before she would depart on her journey. On a life completely unknown. While I would stay here and keep her secret. And she knew that I would die before I gave her secret away to anyone. I had made my decision. And I would keep my promise.


Story and illustration by @rasmorawaj ©

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