The first time I was introduced to the friends, I failed to notice the couple’s subtle communication. The wife’s face arched into to a question. The husband nodded knowingly. They grinned together. I didn't desire to see their faces.
The first time I met the mother and sister, I shook the mother’s hand. She gazed into my eyes and knowingly stated, “So, you’re the friend!” Her mildly amused but studying look was like the siren on a fire engine, announcing the direction of her thoughts and memories of past discussions. The sister simply smiled sweetly—-I dared not discover what her face held.
The second time I shook the mothers hand, I was introduced again. “You know my friend,” she was assured. A slight flicker of recognition bubbled up into her eyes and was quickly stamped out by her nearly violent jerk of the head and withdrawal of her hand. What could that be? Rebuffed. Insulted. What could have possibly changed? The memory. A difference of opinion. An earnest request. Weighty matters too painful to discuss. Denial. What does it mean when one touches their face incessantly? Of course, a mother would only defend her child. If only they knew what I know now. The tables were turned. They all discussed the matter amongst themselves, what I only vowed to discuss, face to face, personally.
The final stare. I was introduced again. Hollow eyes. Hollow cheeks. “You know my friend.” Not anymore. There’s no need. No need for speculation. No need for friendship.
The sister, now that is another matter. Her stare from across the crowded room. A curious gaze. Slightly remembering...wondering. A moment too long to go unnoticed.
A face reveals everything.
A face lies.
What is your face saying?