As the woman turned, Shane's hand tightened on mine, his expression lost somewhere between alarm and disbelief. His jaw falling slack, his lips parted to allow a gasp of air to escape. Under the increased pressure of his fingers, my hand started to ache and I jerked it away.
He didn't seem to notice.
I didn't understand his response to the woman. Although she looked slightly familiar, she didn't appear to be anyone significant. Her side profile didn't mean much to me, just an average woman with ordinary dark brown hair. Absorbed in her own conversation, she inadvertently tilted her face in my direction. It was only then that I grasped the reason for Shane's reaction.
The beginning of my life could be found assembled in pictures along the outside hallway wall of Dad's room. Some in full color while others black and white with only the lingering brilliant green of my mother's eyes to disrupt the gray-scale shades. This woman's eyes were the same rich shade matching the forest in summer, tiny flecks of golden yellow catching the light and drawing out the darker hue. While I had only the memory of those photographs to compare the resemblance of my mother to this woman, Shane's heart remembered much more.
Unmistakable pain crossed through his face and his eyes glistened with fresh moisture. Placing his hand on my shoulder, he gently urged me in a different direction, away from where she stood.