I woke with a headache. It took a minute before I realized that I didn’t know where I was. My eyes were taking their time to focus and I used that time to try to investigate the condition of the rest of my aching body with my hands. I found a bandaged head, arm, and torso. When my eyes fully focused I recognized that I was in a hospital.

I tried to recall where I was before waking up in the hospital. I remembered Mary Margaret and I drinking wine at my house. I had an image of standing under a bridge and watching cars drive by. Was I hit by a car?

“I see you are awake now. How are you feeling? You missed your visitors this morning. They said to tell you not to worry about your dogs.” The nurse left no pause to answer. “Oh, and you received some lovely flowers” and pointed to three bouquets on the window ledge.

Did she have to speak so loudly? “My name is Dawn. If you are in any pain or need anything, just hit this button on your controller” she said as she handed me a remote control and left the room. Right now, all I wanted was to go to sleep and wake up at home with this hospital being just a bad dream. One of my wishes came true – I fell back asleep.

I must have slept a while because when I woke up, the room was brighter and my head pain had grown stronger. As I tried to sit up I learned that the pain in my body matched the continuing pain in my head.  Was I in a car accident? I remember preparing to leave with Mary Margaret. I pressed the big red button labeled NURSE.

A scratchy voice answered my call “can I help you?”

“Yes, could I get some help getting to the bathroom?” The urge to go was almost overshadowed by pain. I wanted was answers, and a painkiller.

A middle-aged nurse arrived right away, lowered the rail on the bed, and then used her body to help get me up and on the side of the bed. “What happened, why am I here?” I asked.

“Honey I just got here and haven’t had a chance to read your chart but I believe you took a fall and hit your head.” The nurse helped me to the bathroom. She introduced herself as Nancy.

On the way back to the bed we stopped to look at the flower arrangements.  The first was a tall arrangement of blue delphiniums in a modern designed white opaque fluted urn. These had to be from someone who knew that blue is my favorite color. The card confirmed my suspicion; the flowers were from Ginger.

The next bouquet was in a tightly weaved basket with a handle. It was a colorful assortment of yellow lilies, orange roses, hot pink chrysanthemums, and purple statis. According to the card, Mary Margaret was trying to both apologize and cheer me up with a neon arrangement. The third arrangement was a short, clear rose bowl filled with peach roses and green hypericum leaves and berries. Someone had spent a lot of money on that bouquet. The sender was Guy Hanson. Guy? Even Guy knows I am here?

“I believe I could use an aspirin or something. My head and side are hurting.”

“Honey I believe you are going to need more than an aspirin. I will be back shortly” she said before leaving the room.

A fall? Hit my head? That would explain a lot but, then again, it also created more questions. Hit my head where? I was formulating more questions for the nurse’s return when Ginger walked into the room.

“You look like death warmed over.” Ginger sure had a way with words but I was happy to see her despite the greeting.

“I’ve felt better” I acknowledged “but I’m guessing that I’m going to live.”

“I heard you fell backward in your chair and it was so dark that a waiter tripped and fell on you.”

“You know more than I do. Last I remember I was having a glass of wine with Mary Margaret and then *poof* I wake up in the hospital.”

“Humm” Ginger said tentatively “could the wine have something to do with the fall?” I was starting to get annoyed with my best friend but my mood changed when Guy entered the room.

Ginger watched Guy’s tall, lean frame as he walked to my bedside. I realized that Crab Festival week was so busy I hadn’t had a chanced to tell Ginger about my date with Guy. She must be wondering why he was visiting me in the hospital.

“How are you feeling?” he asked as he leaned over and gave me a short, but warm kiss on the lips. Ginger’s eyes moved from Guy to me with curiosity. She gave me big eyes which was code for “what the hell”?

“I’ve been better. How are you?”

“Fine” he replied. That was a lie.

“What’s wrong?” my lie detector beat my brain to my lips. I was going to have to work on that.

Ginger moved closer to examine the flowers on the window ledge. She stuck her finger in the containers to check the water level much like I’d seen countless mothers stick a digit in the back of a baby diaper to check their water level. Her cover didn’t fool me even with a head injury. She wanted to hear what Guy had to say.

Guy turned to my friend, as if to avoid my question, and they exchanged greetings.  Ginger filled Guy in on the cause and details of my injuries while I struggled to keep my eyes open. I lost that struggle. When I woke up, I was alone.




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