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In The Midnight Lands

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42. It was too large.



LATE IN the last hour of the final day a flurry of panic and movement and broken voices.


She’s getting agitated!

Should we administer the drugs?

NO-O! Don’t do it! CALL the Hospice!

We love you Ginny.

GIVE HER the drugs!

We love you - 


We love you - 

Call the - 

She’s calming down -

We love you. We love you.

We love you . . .

We crowded around her. Other than Dad who crouched to one side looking as if some deep foundation within him broke. I grabbed the footstool and sat in front. I was overcome, undone. For the first time in a day Ginny’s eyes were open.

One shuddering, aching breath.

I was staring into her eyes, letting her see me as she faced the edge of all things. Long pause, no breath. Still the words - we love you - flowing - we love you - surrounding - we love you -




Her eyes on me and I was numb, stupefied, terrified, feeling as if I'd awoken on an operating table eviscerated and unable to tell it. I wanted to scream. There was a flare in Ginny's pupils, a flow; she was receding, conceding. I had to get up and take my father's hand, lead him to where I'd sat. She needs to see you before she leaves.

But eyes had faded.

Were dying.


No more breath. Only a strange sort of lull, one second only of a gasp made loud before a keening wail that engulfed, as my sisters, my mother, who'd been so brave, so strong, finally let go. It flooded the room like water. Water. We were all under water.

Is she gone?

Amber checking the pulse and nodding; tears streamed down her face. The keening grew loud, large, too large for the room. The emotion was too large for the room, too large for me and I had to leave, to leave, to rush outside and fall to my knees on the deck. It was too large.

Great wracking sobs welled from somewhere deep inside. Deep, deep inside. They rattled me as they rose. They threatened to shake me apart. I could not keep them in - it was too large - I sobbed into the night. I had not cried for years, but something was broken.

I was broken.

I sobbed into the night.

Hannah comes. I didn't hear her footsteps but her arms were around me. She who was mostly reserved but was bawling now and telling me we had to do better, be kinder, keep the family traditions. And her arms were strange. And I knew but could not tell her. The traditions were gone.

* * * *

This blog is a story. Each post picks up from the last.
If you are new, start at the bottom with post 1 and then work your way up. 


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