Old Man Monologue

Decent Essays
We loaded our stuff into the vehicle and got in, Larry slamming the driver door, starting the engine, and I thought I heard him say, “Just goes to show you that the good die young.”
“God, Larry, that’s a pretty lousy thing to say. We don’t know anything about that old man and…” I dabbed at my neck but no matter how much I wiped the spot, I could still feel his spittle.
Larry put his foot on the brake and said, “What on earth did you think I said?”
“You said that the good die young, which is a pretty shitty thing to say about that pathetic old man.”
“It would be a shitty thing to say if I had said it, but that’s not what I said.” He put the vehicle in gear and eased onto the street. “I said ‘Just goes to show you that it’s good to die young.’
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I told him about my life as a paramedic, my “professional women” friends, Tami’s gray hair (she would kill me), and finally, stumbling a bit, I told him about the old man and the silent “monster” that wouldn’t leave me, that haunted and tormented me.
“Does death bother you?” he asked. “You must see it often enough in your line of work.”
“It always bothers me, but I know it…it has to be sometimes…and sometimes we do save them and they go back to their lives and we made that happen…” I trailed off, giving up on expressing my complex thoughts and reactions to death, and I climbed up the spa steps. Somehow he was in front of me, soundless motion, as quiet as I wanted to feel.
Donovan put his hands on my shoulders, his cool touch filling me with finality, and said, “I think you will sleep well tonight. Why don’t you come to the club day after tomorrow—I mean evening after tomorrow evening?” We both smiled.
He leaned down and gave me a quick kiss on the cheek and then, a little peck on my neck. “I may have a surprise for
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Instead, I got a bite to eat, did some errands, and came back to Bodies Day & Night in the evening. Will he remember? I asked myself. I hoped he would, and then I hoped he wouldn’t. He was intimidating without being physical, this Donovan of the mysterious eyes and breath-taking body, the night trainer, the star of Bodies Day & Night. And he would have a surprise for me!
What could it be? I wondered. I turned over various possibilities in my mind: free training sessions with him (oh boy), introductions to some firefighters who could help me get into the department, what? I knew the club like I knew like my own front door. Maybe he’s going to try to palm off a stray kitten or puppy on me, I thought. If Donovan did that, he had an instinct for spotting an easy touch, which I was. One puppy whimper or piteous meow, and I would end up setting another place at my table, or rather, on my floor.
The sun set outside, and I felt invigorated, my slight headache eased by comforting shadows. The front door opened to let in a cool breeze followed by Donovan and a companion, both walking straight toward me. Donovan wore his good looks with his usual easy grace, but his companion’s face and form froze
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