It was the stuff Novellas are made of and I was smack dab in middle. The experience left me feeling empty, guilty, and I didn’t feel I could trust myself because I betrayed the trust of someone who considered me a friend. Had I utilized my usual modus operandi of a long observation, a “feeling out” period, I never would have allowed her within my inner circle of friends but before I knew it, we were fast “friends”.
We spent a lot of time bonding over martinis at the hottest nightspots in the ATL and over shots at family cookouts, which were just about every other weekend during that time. We met at work when she and her live-in boyfriend relocated from another state.
Lisa and Michael seemed to be the perfect couple as he doted on her and from all outward appearances was still in love after seven years. He was tall, dark, and very handsome. And as cliché-ish as that sounds, it’s true. I developed a close friendship with both Michael and Lisa. After a minor out-patient surgery, he called to check on me as well as she did.
The first sign of trouble was Lisa’s attraction to another co-worker, whom I will call, Myron. She was taken in by his charm, I guess, and the fact that he made six figures…something to which she also aspired. Despite the fact that Myron was married with four children it didn’t seem to matter to Lisa because he regaled her with stories of a loveless marriage to a woman with mental issues. She believed him. We all did.