I wake up early the morning after I see Donny.
It was only half seven but I knew I had to see him.
I rush to get showered and slip into my clothes as I grab my bag containing my makeup and purse. I run to the small car that's parked in the garage and drive out.
I could walk but I decide that the car is faster. I’m not usually one for helping the environment when it comes to getting to Donny quickly.
I ignore the “STOP” signs and red lights on the short drive. I didn’t care whether I got a ticket or sent to court. Just as long as I can see Donny is ok.
I jolt forwards as I suddenly stop, remembering.
If Donny’s awake, I must tell him. I must, I tell myself as the radio whispers quietly in the background.
I switch it off hearing Katy Perry’s Firework. Ugh. I hate that song.
I think for a moment and hit the on/off button on the radio again. Maybe horrible music will distract me from the conversation I'm about to have with the man I loved.
I turn slowly into the hospital parking lot, tears in my eyes, fogging my vision.
Katy Perry had failed me; I had turned it off a few seconds before. My mind had been free to let anything roam around in it now Donny took the opportunity to replay in my head what he would say.
He couldn’t like it. No matter how I told him, I knew he wouldn’t take it well. I should’ve told him straight away. I could see that now.
I slam the car door hard, hoping it would somehow take away my troubles... it didn’t.
I wipe the tears from my cheeks as I enter the large building.
“Donny Stanbridge.” I say to the woman at the desk, I know I don’t need to but maybe it would give me time to think of how to say it.
“You know the room.” I look up to see the nurse who had changed Donny’s bandages the day before. She smiles at me warmly and I try to smile back.
I walk towards the room. The corridor seems to be a mile long as I walk.
I glance into every room I pass, flinching as people lightly brush me as they walk pass.
I stand outside the door of his room and sigh. It seems as though all I am doing these days is either sighing or crying.
“Eilidh?” I hear his voice. I forgot there is a window in the door I'm standing in front of.
I look up and open the door, putting on a small smile.
* * *
“Eilidh.” Donny watches me lovingly as I sit down on the bed with him. I haven’t looked at him yet today.
“Hey, Donny.” I start to say, but I get a large lump in my throat.
“Eilidh, what happened before the accident? I don’t remember. Did we fight? I’m so sorry, Eilidh.” He rambles and I smile at him sweetly, letting a tear roll down my cheek.
“Yes. We did fight. And it wasn’t your fault. It was never your fault. Erm... I would like to tell you why I left. I promised, remember?” I hold his hand gently and finally look at him.
His head is still wrapped tightly in thick bandage, showing still no signs of his once-gorgeous hair and he’s sitting almost upright on a mound of pillows.
“Yeah...” He juggles what I said in his mind, trying to remember.
“Ok. So, here goes.” I pause to look at his hand in mine.
“You can tell me anything. You know that, Eilidh.” He reassures me.
“You won’t like it.” Another tear rolls down my cheek.
“Just tell me.” He squeezes my hand tightly.
“I left because... I... Ugh... I... I had cancer.” I choke out before I burst into tears.
“What?” Donny holds my chin with his un-bandaged left hand and points my face towards his, frowning.
I put my hands to my face as fresh tears break out and turn slightly away from Donny.
“Eilidh. Its alright. You had cancer?” He reaches to put his hand on my shoulder but he can’t reach.
“Yes, heart cancer. I thought I would die. I didn’t want you to... I didn’t want for you to...” I struggle to find words in between sobs.
“Ok. Look, yes, it’s a little distressing that you didn’t tell me. I could’ve helped you.” I shuffle closer to him as he speaks and he runs a hand softly through my hair.
“I never meant to say I didn’t love you. I tried to make myself not love you. It was so hard. I never stopped loving you.” I say, still sniffing.
Donny nods, understanding. I rush to hug him. It’s slightly awkward as I try to get my hands gently enough around his bandaged stomach.
“Didn’t you have chemotherapy?” He asks me after a few minutes of holding each other.
“Yes. You’re wondering about the...” I gesture to my hair. Donny nods once, staring at my blonde curls. “It grew back. We didn’t see each other in so long...” I say quietly.
“Will it ever come back? The cancer?” He swallows as he says the word.
“Maybe. Look, let’s not talk about it now. You need more rest. I can see you’re tired.” I smile gently. “And its past visiting hours.”
I look outside, remembering that visiting hours take a break during the afternoon.
“Ok. Please come back later.” Donny pleads.
“And Eilidh, I’m not angry. It was never your fault.” Donny calls to me as I open the door to leave.
New tears stream down my pale cheeks.