Anne Caryl

Twenty-six

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Abraham lay on his side, his swollen face half-masked by a bandage. When he turned his head, lights flashed in time to the throbbing, the thundering in his ears. Abraham tried to touch his bandaged face, but his hand was tethered to plastic tubing rising, from where it was pinned to his sheet, to a plastic IV bag on a metal stand.

            “He’s sleeping.” Macie’s voice startled him.

            “No, he’s not,” he replied in a hoarse whisper. “He’s awake, and he wonders how you knew he was here.”

            “Maxine called.” Macie’s footsteps clicked on the tile floor until she reached the bedside and bent so he could see her.

            “Ach, that woman. She’s such a buttinski. All this worry for an old man’s fall.”

            “Maxine doesn’t think you fell. She thinks someone else was in the clinic.”

            “ She reads too many books. I fell.”

            “And was someone else with you in the clinic?”

            Abraham closed his eyes and breathed as deeply as his injured ribs allowed.

            “Why won’t you answer me?” Macie touched the sleeve of his hospital gown. He blinked hard, but didn’t respond.

            “I don’t think Doc, here, is feeling like talking.” Abraham jumped at the male voice. So, Macie brought her husband.

            “Tell me, is there a convention going on I don’t know about? Or am I dying that you call in everybody to tell me goodbye?” He tried to angle his head to see Phil, but it edged off the pillow, and he moaned as it hit the mattress, and pain stabbed again. He heard Macie’s gasp.

            “Dr. Sorkin, please. Can we do anything for you? Bring you anything?”

            “Bring me a beautiful nurse. A Marilyn Monroe. No, better yet, take yourselves out to dinner and leave me in peace with the one here who looks like Groucho Marx.”

            Phil chuckled. “I didn’t know you paid attention to Hollywood. To Marilyn Monroe.”

            “You didn’t know I have a birthmark on my left….Go on. Get out of here. The pain medication is talking too much.”

            Phil put his hand over Abraham’s. “Like she said, Doc. Anything you need, just have Groucho Marx call us.”

            “You bet your life.” Abraham gritted his teeth as he turned his head to look at them. “Now, for the last time, goodbye.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Anne Caryl
504 East Furry St.
Holyoke, Co. 80734