Before leaving, Val’s mother went to her room, kissed her twice on the cheeks, and once on the forehead. Call me if you need something, she said, brushing her daughter’s tight curls with her fingertips, anything. Val groaned. I’m not dying, she argued, but only received more kisses in return. I only broke a couple of bones.
Telling her licensed practical nurse of a mother nothing bad would happen was a herculean feat, and every time Val opened her mouth, she had to hear again all the things that could kill her in the next few hours, from fevers to a cardiac arrest caused by a rare side effect in her medication.
No SMSing unless it’s important! Her mom declared before closing the door, leaving Val alone in their tiny apartment.