I squat down next to her chair and grab her hand, pulling it away from her chest and squeezing it between my two hands. “It’s going to be okay, Claire. You’re going to be okay. You are a fucking fighter and you’re going to beat this.”

Her chin quivers and she swipes at a tear that is falling down her cheek and I continue.

“Fuck cancer. Fuck not having your tits anymore because you’re going to get bigger and better tits in a few weeks and those fuckers won’t try to kill you. You’re going to be fine because you have to be fine. I refuse to let you NOT be fine because I need you here with me. You are going to beat this thing because you are strong and amazing and you aren’t going to let some stupid shit like cancer stop you from growing old with me so we can corrupt our grandchildren. Shit, we have a wedding to finish planning and I have a hotter dress than you to wear to it. You have to be fine because we need to walk down the aisle together so everyone can judge us and realize that I look amazing in my mother of the bride dress.”

Claire laughs through her tears and shakes her head at me. “Fuck your face. I’m going to have new tits for this wedding. Obviously I’ll be the hotter one.”

We stare at each other in silence for a few minutes before she speaks again. “I’m still pissed at you, but I’m glad you’re here.”

“I’m pissed at me, too. I give you permission to call me an asshole for the rest of our lives,” I tell her.

“I was already planning on calling you an asshole forever, this just makes it more fun,” Claire says with a shrug. “What else do you have in that bag?”

She leans over the side of her chair and stairs down at my duffle bag.

“There may or may not be some pot Rice Krispies Treats in there.”

Claire stares at me wide-eyed, quickly glancing around the room before lowering her voice. “What the fuck are you waiting for? Give me one of those damn things.”

Reaching into my bag, I pull out the Tupperware container and hand it to her. She tears open the lid, grabs one of the huge marshmallow squares and shoves the entire thing it into her mouth.

“Um, I don’t think you’re supposed to eat the whole thing at once. Didn’t you learn your lesson a few years ago with Drew’s pot cookies?”

Claire narrows her eyes at me, her cheeks stuffed full of Rice Krispies Treat as she chews slowly. When she finally swallows the thing, she lets out a sigh and smiles at me. “If these things prevent the constant diarrhea and projectile vomiting I’m plagued with after treatment, I will eat the entire fucking container of them. Tunnel vision and licking walls be damned.”

“Diarrhea, seriously?” I ask as she grabs another treat and starts chowing down on it.

“Dude, you have no idea. I swear to God I shit out my intestines last time,” she informs me. “So, what’s been going on since we last talked? I think Carter is losing his shit, but he swears he’s okay.”

I reach into the container on Claire’s lap and take a treat. Friends who get high together, stay together, or some shit like that.

“Your husband absolutely lost his shit all over your kitchen a few weeks back. You’ll be happy to know that your non-perishables are no longer in alphabetical order,” I tell her. “He’s okay though. I think he just needed to get it out of his system. You know, screaming, yelling, cursing God. The boys stopped by and took his mind off of things.”

Claire stops chewing. “Is that why my cat now has the word “Fuck Canker” shaved into her side?”

I nod sadly. “Unfortunately, yes. Drew claims she wouldn’t sit still for him long enough to get it right, but I’m pretty sure he thinks that’s how you spell cancer. Also, he shaved his legs and my husband shaved his balls. I know you said no one was allowed to shave their heads, so they decided to take a different approach.”

Claire shakes her head in irritation. “I’m still holding firm on the spaghetti dinner and candlelight vigil. If any one of you tries that shit, I will stab you in the neck.”

“Noted,” I tell her with a nod of my head. “Move over.”

I stand up as she slides to the other side of her chair, crawling into the recliner next to her.

“Your ass is too big for this chair,” she informs me.

“Fuck off, I have a great ass and it’s the perfect size,” I reply as I get comfortable. “You keep inhaling those Rice Krispies Treats and we’re going to have to grease the door to get your giant ass out of here.”

Reaching up, I take the baseball cap off of my head, holding onto the scarf I tied underneath to keep it in place.

“So, there’s one more thing I have for you and it’s really going to piss you off.”

Claire looks up from the bowl of treats and stares at my head. Her smile falls and she starts shaking her head frantically back and forth.

“No, you didn’t. Fuck your face, NO, YOU DIDN’T!” she yells.

The patients who were previously sleeping wake up immediately and look in our direction. Reaching up, I squeeze my eyes closed and pull the scarf off of my head, waiting for her to call me an asshole again. When entirely too much time passes without her saying a word, I slowly open my eyes to find Claire outright sobbing. She lifts her hand and runs her palm over my now-bald head.

“I know you hated the tattoo and you’re really hating this right now, but it’s something I had to do. I realize I can’t fix you, but at least I can support you. If you are going to walk around without any hair, then so am I.”

readonlinefreebook.com Copyright 2016 - 2024