When I found out he had two weeks to live, I didn’t go see him. Not that I don’t know what to say; I’ve had training in dealing with bereavement and grief and death.
I should have gone. But one time I thought about it, I felt like I didn’t know him well enough to matter. Another time, I let the unorthodox family situation stop me; wasn’t sure who’d be there and how they’d be feeling or acting. Another time, I felt overwhelmed because though we weren’t close, I’d thought we would be; he was a good guy, smart, good conversationalist, sense of humor.
Talked myself into it. Excused myself out of it. Talked myself into it. Waited too long.
In the end I just waited too long to do the right thing.
They say heroes dash into burning buildings or flaming cars to rescue people without thinking. They act before they have a chance to get scared. My first impulse when I heard was, I have to go see him.
But I gave myself time to think, and I kept thinking until it was too late.
She’d made it clear that I was working on her stories now, taking food from her imaginary future children’s mouths. She’d also volunteered that she was seeing someone so I needn’t bother asking her out. If that was supposed to pique my interest, it hadn’t. We’d gotten off on all the wrong feet.
Before I could open my mouth she spun around in her swivel chair.
“I never meant to get you fired, Jesse. I just told Greg that stuff so he’d move you back to accounting. Not fired.” Her hands waved like she was washing them. How delightfully symbolic.
“Dunno what you’re talking about. Greg never mentioned whatever it was. It’s about money, and I’ve seen it coming since I made the switch. Accounting, remember? We know where the money is. And, uh, isn’t.”
She washed a little more. “Okay.” Her chair forced her around to face her computer. “Greg didn’t say anything?”
What a hatchet job she’d tried to pull, if she was this worried. Let her worry.
This is an excerpt from That She is Made of Truth To read the whole story, get your copy at Amazon.