Nan’s mother pulled back the hospital blinds, letting the evening light illuminate the room.
Nan tried to move out of the chair. “Oh, mom, my abdomen and side are killing me.”
“I know, but you should be getting over some of the soreness by now. I will let the doctor know when I leave tonight. Maybe it’s all the therapy.”
“I thought I would be going home tomorrow.”
“Well, is that what I said? After the explosion, they took a lot of glass and brick out of your body. But, when I had my hysterectomy I was on my feet within a couple of weeks.”
“You remember, you and Fran were in high school.”
“No mom, you were talking about me.”
“Yes dear, didn’t the doctors tell you?”
Nan fell back into her chair. “No mom, they only talked about muscle tissue damage, vital organs, and other things.” Her heart was beating faster. “I think I may be sick.”
“I’ll call the nurse.”
Nan’s mother went into the hallway. Minutes later a team of nurses laid Nan back into the bed.
“Mom, I didn’t know. Does Manny know? You have to tell him.”
“You can tell him yourself, when you are ready.”
“What can I tell him?”
“Nanny, hush up now. Manny is a fine young man who is very much in love with you. I don’t think this will make any difference.”
“Mother.” Nan began to cry.
When she woke up again she could see light beneath the door, and a small sidelight was on in her room. “Night time. We were supposed to have a Bible study, Mom musta told Manny, and he didn’t come. I don’t blame him.”
Nan stared at the ceiling. “Well Lord, I am knee deep in it now.”
There seemed to be commotion in the hallway.
There was a knock at the door and an orderly cautiously cracked it open. Then the caller pushed the door wide.
Manny burst in with an open Bible in hand. “Okay kid, lets see what Zechariah has to say about the injured flock.”
Nan’s felt her eyes fill with tears. “Manny. Oh Manny.”
He rushed to her side. “Nanny what’s wrong? Send your nurses away and we will have a hanky panky party.”
“No Manny, don’t make fun right now. Okay?” She wiped a tear away from her eyes.
“Come on Nanny, your mom knew you were being dismissed. Didn’t she tell you? Your mother’s friend Marge is bringing the land yacht up here, and you can sit back and drink Pepsi all the way to Slidell.”
“Manny, we have to talk, alone.”
“I agree, but not right now. We have to get you ready to go.”
“Go? I am being dismissed tomorrow morning.”
“Wrong. Ding, say the magic word and win a ride in a land yacht.”
“Whatever are you talking about?” Nan felt her mood beginning to change.
“Anyway, it is time you put on some clothes. I don’t want a wife who is going to sit around in her P.J.s all day.”
“Manny, would you be serious for one minute?”
“Can’t, too much to do.”
Nan’s mother opened the door.
“Go away Mrs. M, I’m not ready.”
“Don’t talk to my mother like that.”
“Why not? The woman is madly in love with me.” Manny pulled Nan’s legs over the edge of the bed and put a pillow to her back. Then he got down on both his knees and produced a half carat diamond ring. “I used your high school ring to size it; if it doesn’t work we will take it back.”
Nan’s mouth dropped open.
“Nancy McHough, after great thought and consideration, and after much due process between mutual families, I wish to announce my intentions to marry you. Do you agree to these terms?”
Nan didn’t say anything.
“Well, throw me out of the room or something, in thirty seconds a team of doctors is coming in here and giving you walking orders, then a chubby nurse is going to wheel you to the yacht.”
“Manny.” Nan began sobbing as she held the ring in her fingers. “I can’t have children. They removed my ovaries.”
“Shesssh, I knew all that before your mother. So, is it yes or no? I have to know right now: the press is waiting, a crowd of people out in the lobby are waiting. Nancy McHough, will you become my wedded wife?”
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