Sorry to bore the readers that have no interest in these posts, but I do like to share what I have been working on every once in awhile so people can know that I don’t just spend my time trying to effectively Netflix without accidentally spotting Blackfish (always on my recommendation list despite the fact that Netflix should know that I am scared of orcas. I mean, all the time I have spent with Netflix and they don’t know this simple fact about me?) and taking issue with Downton Abbey.
“Young men had congregated all around Leon. A few shriveled up towards the front of the line, while others had proud, pumped out chests under their over-laundered dressing gowns and hair perfectly parted. Without a doubt, he was decades older than all the male patients assembled. One lad, his bloated stomach visible beneath the flare of the gown, gaped at Leon as if stared at Napoleon’s body on display suddenly reanimate. Why was he here, their eyes demanded. He had already lived longer than his father had; what motivated him to stay longer besides the base human fear of death? This generation of gentleman offered up control of their bodies and minds to strange doctors for the prospect of marriage, fatherhood, college campuses, politics, another war. The grief of jealousy hovered on the forefront of Leon’s mind. Did it make him wish he had institutionalize himself earlier in life, healing his lungs temporarily, enough to carve out a life of vigor? The mind bubbled with regrets when allowed space and time to entertain itself. Without a doubt, an unpleasant side effect of the rest cure, Leon thought.
“I lose ten more pounds and the doctor says my body is just going to start shutting down,” an emaciated ginger-haired boy whispered behind him, an airy voice sliding into nonexistence. Soon there would be nothing left of him, Leon shuddered, the realization running a quake through his spine. Already the skin of his skull drooped from the bone, no fat to round the boy. Shifting his weight from side to side, a pain in his left lung ticking like clockwork, Leon wished the nurses would hurry the weighing. Emitting a whelping moan, the boy standing behind him fell closer, nearly colliding with his back. Leon had a story on his tongue that could comfort the frightened boy–“I was much younger than you when I first coughed blood and I outlived children who were born long after me.” Before he looked over his shoulder, Nurse Tally waved the group forward. Leon tried to overhear whether or not the boy had kept his weight up, but Nurse Betty caught him hanging back along the wall.
“Leon, I’ll grab a chair and take you back to your room,” she insisted, smiling to reveal her crooked teeth. The nurses maintained strict control over the patients in the hierarchy; it would be futile to protest as Leon had no voice in his life here. Within a minute, she wheeled him away with her brisk walk.