Mina and Mohammad stood on opposite sides of the political barricades when protests against Iran's rulers erupted into mass street violence; she, a student demanding democratic reform, he a member of the hard-line Basij militia that helped crush the greatest challenge ever to the Islamic Republic.
Now the two, both 27, are brought together for the first time in a small sitting room in central Tehran. Two years have passed. Iran faces painful trade sanctions over its nuclear program, prices soar, the opposition is silenced and parliamentary polls loom for Mina as an empty promise of democracy.
They greet each other warily, these representatives of two estranged sides of Iran, the victor, perhaps, and the vanquished. Both smile courteously, refusing offers of tea to ease the awkwardness.