Sunday, June 25, 2006
It won't hurt.

She promised it wouldn't. In fact, she stressed the syllables until they almost came apart, sweating over every single one of them.

"It. Will. Not. Hurt."

She fucking lied.

Does she think he's so stupid, to believe this? Does she think that he can't see what's going on, does she think he doesn't see her fists as she balls them up so she won't cry. Like fuck it won't hurt.

And what can he do? He can sit there, useless, motionless, quiet, unsure. If he moves, will that disturb the fragile accord she's reached with sleep? What if she wakes up?

Shit. What if she doesn't wake up.

Looking across, he can see into another room, thru yet another septic green doorway. There's a rough blue coat tossed on the chair, hurriedly. A leg and part of an ass leans over the end of the bed. He stares back at his wife quickly. Surely it's written somewhere that you can't stare at another woman's can while your wife is lying there, dying.

"Slowly dying." he mutters. Very, very slowly.

He pulls his arm up to stare at the watch she gave him for their first Christmas. It's a piece of shit, truth be told, but she was so proud of it. Watches meant something to her, reminded her of a slower tagewhen people were impressed by those who could afford to keep time. Like time was something you put in your pocket and forgot about for days on end.

The straps were fraying, and the knob threatening to fall off. None of this battery crap for her, oh no. Only a wind up for her man.

She's an anacronism, and she knows it. Half heartedly, he thinks that's what is really killing her, that cancer is just code word for luddite. The partof him that he doesn't keep in his pocket has seen what the doctors have said.

So many big words for "No use. No hope left."

It's almost 9pm. He can go home soon, go home to an empty house, an empty life. A life he's almost relieved to start over with. If she'll let him.

Her eyes fly open and her hands flail for the morphine button. She gasps.

"Marnie....Marnie let me. Marnie please, what's wrong? What can I do?"

She holds onto it like air. She can't press it enough, and he knows it's not enough. The nurses stop just short of that delicious dose that would help, the shot that would kill her. He hopes she doesn't know they've done this. It would be a bigger insult than the diaper pad they leave under her "just in case"

Just in case they don't have the time, and don't think she can make it to the bathroom. They leave her to sit in her own filth, knowing she's still alive enough to feel that burning humiliation all to clearly.

He holds out for her hand, she touches it, lightly, she's like paper. He's heard so many people say that, but he never really believed it until now. She really is like paper, like an origami crane, unfolding, waiting. Her eyes meet his.

"Ok, so it hurts. I lied."

"You want some water?"

"I want some crack actually." She starts to laugh, but hasn't the energy. Her eyes bore into his.

"Let me ask the nurses. I'm sure they have something on hand that would do the trick."

He doesn't actually move, as they both know there's nothing left. They sit in silence. He can hear the ticking from her silly watch, marking the seconds. How many more seconds did they have like this?

"I'm going to haunt you, just so we're clear." she mutters.

"What? Why in hell would you do that?"

"So I can watch you having sex, that's why. Cause now you'll be nervous about that forever." She grinned slightly.

"I'll make sure I don't shave my ass, just for you then."

They're quiet some more, holding on to eachother without a touch, beyond hands. He's afraid to hold her anymore than he is. She might leave right then.

"I wanted kids Nik, so we're clear. I did, just..."

"I know. Really, you would have been fine, we would have figured it all out. Hell, we put that entertainment center together that time, so why wouldn't we.."

Cutting him off, she says "It was a girl Nik. A little, purple girl. They let me hold her, what was her for a few minutes."

He starts to rise, then sits again. "You never told me. Why did you never tell me?"

"She was mine more than she was ever yours. I wanted to keep it that way I guess. It was my body that killed her after all, so it only seemed fair."

Nik slumps back in the chair, and stares at the blue coat across the hall.
posted by thordora @ 4:41 PM  
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Awhile back, a friend and I decided that Radishes, while pretty cool, are never the first pick on the plate, and you certainly can never eat a lot of them. Certain people also fit this criteria. The writings as a byproduct of my manic periods are my radishes.


Name: thordora
Home: Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada
About Me: Riding a Roller Coaster ridiculously trying to ream repeated rounded consonants out.
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