Roxana survives despite her intentions.

When Roxana woke up, it wasn't heaven and it wasn't hell, it was still the place in between. It was white and bright, but it smelled of antiseptic, and someone was holding her hand.

"Roxy?" Lyssa said. "You feeling better now?"

"Lyssa. What happened?"

"That's what I was hoping you would tell me."

Roxana looked up at the glaring white ceiling. "You can't kill weeds. They always grow back." From the way Lyssa asked, it sounded as if she suspected something. That surprised Roxana. Lyssa was notoriously blind to what was going on right next to her while she stared off at the big picture.

"You put out the power in the whole building," Lyssa attempted to joke.

Roxana smiled weakly. "I bet they'll sue."

"I'm sorry," Lyssa said, traces of tears in her voice and her eyes. Oh no, Roxana thought, don't start crying on me.

"What is there to be sorry for? Accidents happen."

Lyssa nodded. "Is there something I can do for you?"

Roxana sighed. "You can let me go back to sleep." She closed her eyes and Lyssa got up to go.

"Lyssa." Lyssa turned back to the bed. "I won't do it again, okay?"


As she closed the door behind her, Lyssa wondered what kind of a friend she was if she didn't even notice Roxana was getting so close to the edge. Roxana had been slipping steadily ever since Daphne's rape, but there had been so much going on, it had never occurred to Lyssa that it could be that serious. Not with Roxana. Roxana always joked her way out of everything.

Daphne must mean more to her than she let on, and Daphne's rejection hurt more than she pretended. And then the daughter she couldn't even help got hurt--double bind.

There was something Lyssa could do--she could tell Daphne. Her father never would, even if he knew, and Roxana would try to prevent that. But Daphne had a right to know. And if she still maintained her distance afterwards, then there was nothing more to be done.

Lyssa felt better already. As soon as she got back to the office she would write a letter. And then she could go to Elaine's rape prevention seminar with conscience clear and heart light and be able to enjoy herself.


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