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Iris

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"I just..." Kendra touches her arm, her left hip, the delicate bones in her wrist. Eyes averted, she turns her head away from him and to the window. "I just need some more time."

"I..."

"To understand. To think about this all." She gestures to the window now, a clear indication the discussion is over.  "To figure out who I am and not who you want me to be."

He should answer this, should tell her that all he wants is her to be herself. It's not a lie but it's not the truth and he ducks out the window while her back is turned. The wind is cool and the moon bright as he takes the long route home.

It's maddening. The changes and the similarities. There is an overlap where Kendra and Shiera intersect, where they both love tulips and hold their left arm when they're confused and hurt. A smile and he cannot remember if he is looking at the past or the present. The image is clear in his mind, repeated a thousand times over, and it is almost like looking at a mirror.

But the mirror is fragmented and for each piece similar, there is a piece different. She laughs with her mouth wide open, tears streaming down her face sometimes. For all her fighting, Shiera rarely grew angry and Kendra seems full of it.

They are the same. They are different.

And Carter knows that he will never be able to look at Kendra without seeing his wife.

When was the last time you had to court your girl?

Lifetimes ago. But if he learned one thing over the years, it's that life changes. Nothing remains the same.

Her name is Kendra now. And for all their similarities, he had to start learning the differences.

He thinks he'll buy her an iris tomorrow and see where it goes from there.