It’s hard for me to invent a fictional character, female in gender, and evil in personality, without her carrying part of Sara Poole. It’s been five years now since I saw her and I won’t see her again, ever, I think. Somewhere out there in the Universe at large, if Sara Poole still lives, all the inspiration I ever need to invent evil in fiction lives and breathes as long as Sara lives and breathes.
Sara was engaged to a guy named Greg the first time I met her, and he saved me from ever truly falling in love with her. Sara systematically destroyed the man, and all the while telling him she was doing just that. It really didn’t matter what she said, because she knew what she was took precedent over anything she said. Sara was beautiful, and she wrapped herself in it like an aura made of rainbows and gold. Sara could, and did, terrible things to men, and invariably they went back for more. Each one convinced he would be The One who tamed her, who landed her, who won her heart, and actually, when it got right down to it, it was a woman who came closest to doing just that, even though I always suspected Sara wasn’t truly bisexual.
In the time I knew her, Sara stole my car for a day without me knowing about it until she brought it back, nearly empty of gas, stole money from my wallet while I was sleeping at least twice, slipped inside my apartment and stole beer from me, had sex on my sofa when I wasn’t home at least twice, and once slipped a hallucinogen in my Pepsi before I went to work one day. I was reading water meters for a living at the time and had to call someone to come get me and bring me in from reading meters, and then drive home, and all the while, reality was slipping away at a pace much faster than I could handle. Sara was waiting for me back home, and it was terribly funny to her, but I never quite got over that one. Sara was dangerous in ways that mattered sometimes.
I saw Sara attacked another human being on three different occasions and twice without warning or cause. There one time she had a real reason to defend herself was when I guy she had done wrong tried to hit her one night and missed. I think Sara saw him coming, or maybe she was just lucky, but the punch would have dropped her. Sara responded by hitting him in the face with a wine glass and she nearly blinded him in one eye. Sara fought as hard as she did anything and everything else she did with her body. She danced as if there was something she was trying to say, or prove, or do, on the dance floor that could not be done. Candice, the one woman, the one human being I think Sara truly loved, would dance with her and people would just stop and watch. Candice was truly bisexual with a tend towards women, and I wondered what Sara was going to wind up doing with her. They lived together as a couple for a very long time, for Sara, before Sara ruined it by openly sleeping with a guy when Candice was out of town. Candice moved shortly after that happened, and Sara would never talk to me about what happened, but she never dated another woman.
I think losing Candice hurt her. I think the idea she could be hurt was unbearable to Sara. There were some people who swore Sara loved me, but if she did I never felt it. I never felt her truly drop the mask. Even in the later years, when she was beginning to look like a woman who had lived the life she had lived, Sara never relented, never let up, never slowed down, and she never gave me a reason to trust her. I think Sara kept coming back to me because I was someone she never truly ruined. She never stayed with anyone for very long, but she did show up on my doorstep more often than anywhere else for a while.
I have yet to meet anyone who knew her as a child, or has met her family. She talked about her brother who was in the Army, but one night she was telling a story about her brother getting so drunk that he forgot which barracks he lived in and I realized that had happened to me. Sara took other people’s lives and weaved them into her own, and for a while there my stories of being in the Army gave Sara a brother. But anything she said was lost, totally lost, in who Sara was. She spoke with her hands that fluttered like the doves of a magician, and she spoke with her eyes that glowed so fiercely it seemed there was something on fire inside of her, and she spoke with her smile that disarmed men and daunted women. People stopped talking when she entered a room, and she had a walk I have never seen before or since. It was a nice, easy glide, with her hips moving like twin snakes through tall grass.
If Sara were to kill herself, I imagine she would find a really nice dress, one that was low cut and sparkly, and she would rob a bank, and then get into some small boat and sail off into the sea and end it there, without anyone around, and without anyone knowing what happened, or why, but with one last great act of drama left in her wake, literally. There wouldn’t be a body, or any evidence, but maybe she would leave something, some small token of her life, with someone, secretly, and that would be the last person who would ever stop and hold something she touched, and know it came from Sara.