She was pretty so I wondered if she could ever go with me, a blond haired blue eyed boy with two ruptured testicles, nearly pureed from a bike jump gone horribly wrong. We were both too old to be here, two teenagers in with the sick and small at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital for Children.

I was one table away from her but close enough to hear her fork hit the plate as she stabbed at her Mac and Cheese.

“What are you in for?” I asked.

“Life and a late lunch,” she said. “But there’s not much to that.”

“That’s simple. I like that.”

She swallowed hard, her mouth a hard straight line. “Actually, they need to remove my uterus. If my heart doesn’t go into arrest, then after the surgery, I’ll have doses of radiation.”

“My sister had a baby and her husband said that the uterus looks like one of those McDonald’s cardboard cup holders, you know the gray ones. You’re not missing anything”

“That won’t ever be me,” she said, stirring her coffee, stirring and stirring.

“You should get to know me better. There’s a rush.”

“You have a lot of balls to come down here and say that.”

“I’m trying to keep it light,” I say.

“Why not. I have a lot of stuff.” she said.

We talked until the last horizontal light of the sun shone through the windows. I was sore from wheeling my chair next to hers at the table, thirty minutes ago; hadn’t had a painkiller in a while. “You should visit me later and watch stupid TV in my room,” I tell her.

“At home we don’t own a television. We don’t own things, but yeah, I could stop by,” she said.

“You could meet my family,” I acknowledged.

“Mine too,’ she said. The cafeteria windows were pitch black by now and everything felt chilly.

“Don’t be nervous,” I said when I reached out and held her face in my hands.

“Why not,” she said just before the first kiss.

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