The Next Step

I wondered what to do next as my mother slowly crept back into the waiting room, her legs concealed under her long trousers seemed about ready to collapse. Smiling, trying to make me feel better, she inclined her head towards the car and I got up without a word and followed her.

The cold air stung my head and the overpowering stench of exhaust fumes and bad hospital food made me feel sick. Soon I would have to spend a lot of my time there. Driving back home was probably the worst journey of my life, up until then at least. My body had taken itself into a state of shock so everything was invisible to my eyes and I had no feeling for my eyes stared straight ahead. White against her skin, my mothers knuckle bones were rigid against the steering wheel and I sighed deeply, without meaning to. That started everything off.

"Why you?" She suddenly burst out, tears streaming down her face as she tried to focus on the road. I was very tempted to grab the wheel off her but my mind just did not seem to be connected to my body anymore. 

What could I tell her? I was the only religious believer in my family, she would not understand and immediatly dismiss the idea.

"Look, mum, I'm the one who's got the bleeding thing and I'm not crying about it." I pointed out.

"So brave, my special, precious child."

It was all I could do not to gag. Never had I been close with my mother, I hated to hear her calling me names as though she loved me, because I knew I couldn't return the gesture which would make her upset. No matter how little I cared for someone, I could not knowingly inflict pain on them.   

Back home, mum rang dad, then her parents, crying all the while. Me? I went up to my room and closed the door. Now I could think clearly, now I could digest all that had been said. 

Thirty or so pairs of eyes were staring mutely at me as I lay sprawled across my bed from my many posters of the bands I liked. Suddenly I had the urge to play Blink-182 really loudly. Even though it hurt my head, I put it on and maxed out the volume. With the music blaring, I could block out all other unimportant sounds and mum would know to leave me alone. 

I thought.

I was fifteen, but not too young to die, far from it; and I knew that. Neither was I about to start blaming life and setting about crying and feeling sorry for myself. Instead, I thought of the facts. 

But I knew the inevitable would happen sooner or later. The next step would be having to tell my friends. 

The End

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