Pictures last longer
``A picture will last longer,'' I said. He was staring at me so openly and so shamelessly that it irritated me. Old perverts. He didn't blink, didn't turn his gaze away.
``She would have said the same thing. Her voice was a bit sharper, however. Different. But the you look just like her. It's remarkable.'' I thought for a moment that it was a lousy pick up line, but he was almost entranced.
``You could be her sister. Her twin, almost. The hair, she used it a bit longer. She once cut it short, like yours, but it didn't suit her. Everybody preferred it longer. You should let yours grow, too. It would look just like hers. It's almost like seeing a ghost, like waking up and suddenly being back in time. I'm so sorry. I may be a little drunk. It's just that you look so much like her...'' He stared at me another second, then stood up and left.
I watched him go, twice looking back at me, once almost stopping.
I felt sad for him. He was beaten up by life, gray hair and a face of someone who's been there and didn't like it, the tired walk of somebody who didn't have anywhere to go.
Who was her, the girl that looked just like me? His daughter? He was old enough to be my father, that's why I thought he was such a pervert. Maybe I looked like his daughter, and she was dead. Car accident, or perhaps some terrible illness. It must be terrible to lose a child.
Maybe she was not his dead child, maybe she was just the love of his life, now lost. Perhaps he had been foolish, cheated on her, and she left him. He would never get her back again. Maybe she moved away, with her parents, when she was still young, younger than I am now. Or he had moved, looking for a better job, a chance to break through that never came, and now he regretted his choice. How many sweethearts are lost this way...
She could even be his sister, one that he loved; perhaps younger than him, and he felt protective of her, perhaps older than him, teaching him small things of life. Lover, daughter, sister, or possibly just a friend, a best friend that for some time had been part of his everyday life, and now was missed.
I had the odd feeling that I had lost something as well; that the girl that looked just like me had some cosmic relation to me.
Before I slept, that night, it occurred to me that he had lost me, too... But then again I was only an image, something as important as a bad photography. Or perhaps even worse, because, unlike a picture, I could disrupt his good memories, even if I was actually her.