Jocelyn sprinted as fast as her legs would carry her. Lungs burning, she turned her head just in time to see the basketball fly over her head and bounce a few feet in front of her. She snatched the ball and took two easy steps toward the basket and made the lay-up. <BUZZ> They did it. They won the State Championship. <BUZZ> ‘Why is the buzzer still going off?’ Slowly, the fans and her ecstatic teammates faded into nothing. The gym turned abruptly into her bedroom, the trophy she held, into her pillow. Jocelyn opened her eyes and allowed them to adjust to the darkness of her room. She rolled over to look at her alarm clock. ‘Forget this. I am going back to sleep.’ She thought to herself. She eased back into her pillow and closed her eyes.
Within minutes, she was sleeping. As she drifted off into a dream, Dave Batista appeared in front of her. Wow he looked amazing. His short brown hair gelled, and his big brown eyes gleaming in the light. He wore a white tank top that accentuated his tan, muscular chest and arms. His jeans were faded and fit very relaxed on his hips. Dave was her biggest crush. She liked everything about him. He opened his mouth and all that came out was <BUZZ>. Jocelyn drifted back to consciousness and glared murderously at the horrible device.
Her twin sister Alyse came into her room and jumped on Jocelyn’s queen sized canopy bed.
“Hey sleepyhead, it’s time to get up. Mom wants us downstairs because if we want to get to the gym this morning we need to go in like 15 minutes.” Alyse flashed her pearly whites, apparently she had been up for a while and had already had a shower because her long blonde hair was dripping on Jocelyn’s face.
“Will you get off of me? I would like to take my shower in the bathroom, not on my bed.”
“Oh sorry, I had a towel on but it fell off when I tripped going up the stairs. So I just put it in the hamper.”
Jocelyn’s face lit up as the thought of Alyse in her big, fluffy, pink bathrobe tripping up the stairs. They both started to giggle. Jocelyn stretched her 6 foot frame and swung her legs over the side of her bed.
“I suppose I will finish letting you get up so that you can get into the shower, besides I have to get dressed,” said Alyse, padding out of the room in her bare feet.
“Alright I should be out of the shower in like 5 minutes. I will be downstairs in 10. Could you have a bowl of cereal ready for me?”
Jocelyn climbed off her bed and walked over to her closet. She selected her black gym shorts and a tournament t-shirt with the sleeves cut off. She also extracted her favorite hoodie and sweatpants to wear over them. She then walked into the bathroom and peeled off her clothing. She turned on the water and stepped into the shower. After thoroughly washing herself, she shut off the water and grabbed a towel to dry herself off. When she got her clothes on, she walked downstairs. She entered the kitchen and she saw a bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch and a tall glass of orange juice sitting at her spot at the table. She smiled, sat down and started eating. Her mother entered the room and she had a scared look on her face.
“What’s the matter mom?” Jocelyn got a concerned look on her face.
“It’s your grandmother. She was taken to the hospital because she had a severe asthma attack and collapsed. She passed out from lack of oxygen, and she has not regained consciousness yet.” she said choking back inevitable tears.
“Oh my goodness! What hospital is she at?”
“They took her to Northwestern Memorial.”
“Well, are we going to see her?”
“Of course, but I don’t think Alyse or I should drive, will you do it?”
“Yeah, just let me tell Taurin and Dave that I can’t come to the gym today.”
“We will be out in the car waiting.”
Jocelyn had lost her appetite. She put her dishes in the sink and went upstairs to grab her cell phone. She opened a new text message and addressed it to Taurin.
‘hey i cant come 2 the gym 2day my g-ma is in the hospital…. i will call u l8r with the details.’
Taurin Williams had been Jocelyn's best friend since kindergarten. They were inseparable. Even Alyse and Mrs. Meyers considered her a part of the family. She sent the message and put on her Uggs and jogged into the garage. As she eased into the driver’s seat and looked into the backseat where her mother was crying silently and Alyse was sitting there with a blank look on her face. Her phone started to vibrate so she picked it up and it was Dave.
“I heard about your grandmother. I’m sorry.”
“Thanks. I needed to hear that.”
“Well I just wanted to call and see if you needed anything. Maybe a friend?”
“I don’t know. You don’t have to come to the hospital. But then again, I can’t stop you from coming can I?”
He laughed, “No you can’t. Do you want me to bring Taurin?”
“Sure. But only if she wants to come.”
“You know she will," he chuckled, "What hospital?”
As Jocelyn gave him the information he needed, she thought that she really did need him there to help her get through this. Taurin would help but it wouldn’t be the same without Dave there.
She closed her phone and started the car. She backed out of the garage and headed in the direction of the hospital. While she was driving, the radio was off and all she could listen to were her mother’s not so quiet sobs and her own mind attacking her from every angle trying to get her to cry. Jocelyn pulled the blue SUV into the hospital parking lot and found the closest spot to the entrance. She got out and went around to help her mother from collapsing. Alyse just slid out and walked straight to the hospital doors, not waiting for Jocelyn who was struggling under her mother’s weight.
“Mom, calm down. Grandma will be fine.”
“How. Do. You. Know?” she managed between sobs that racked her entire body.
“I just do.”
Jocelyn struggled to stay strong for her mother's sake. Once alone, she knew that nothing would stop the tears from overwhelming her. They stood there, Jocelyn trying to get her mother calm enough to walk.
Only when Mrs. Meyers calmed enough to be able to support some of her own weight did they slowly make their way to the hospital, where once inside, Jocelyn found her mother a chair to sit in. She left her mother and found a nurse’s station. She approached it and noticed a small blonde woman who had to be at least 50 years old and asked, “Excuse me, but do you know where Galenda Clark is?”
“Oh, I'm so sorry dear, she passed away a few minutes ago.”