Mason came back for awhile and I harped on him continually to
rest. I knew I was getting on his nerves but finally he caved and
spent two days in bed where I waited on him.
"Mason how are you?" I asked as I brought his lunch to him on the
He smiled, "I feel pretty good and I am insanely bored,"
"Good, that's the way most kids our age usually feel," I shot
He got out of bed and showered. When he got out he was wearing
khaki shorts and a black tee shirt. His dark hair was curly and
wet and I hugged him.
"Mason, I am so glad you are doing better," I said to him.
He smiled at me.
But as I soon found out, he wasn't doing better.
The day after he left his mom called me, "Bella? I hate telling
you this but they called and…"
I stopped her, "Who called?"
"Oh, yes of course," she said, dazed, "Mason's manager.
Apparently he had a breakdown, due to stress. He's doing awfully
and has cancelled all tours from May to August. Actually, he
didn't, his manager did. Mason will be angry about that. But I am
calling because I am already here at the hospital but I thought
you might want to come, it's only a couple hours away…he's really
sick," her voice broke at the end and I realized her nervous
chatter was wearing thin and tears threatened her voice.
"I'm on my way," I said, hanging up.
The hospital was nothing special. Everything was sterile white
and it smelt like disinfectants. Mason's room was on the fourth
floor, the second door to the right.
I tapped my foot impatiently as the elevator moved slowly up. My
face was blotchy red and I kept thinking Mason's condition was my
fault. If anyone could have prevented it, it would have been me.
Still, I composed myself and prepared to get off the elevator.
My plan was to stay collected, for everyone's sake.
My plan disappeared the minute I saw Lauren.
"Bella," she whispered, running down the hallway.
I ran to meet her and hugged her close, "Oh Lauren, how is he?"
"He's…he's bad. I don't know, no one will tell me anything," she
I let go of her and promised to find out more information. I
walked into his room where his mother sat in a chair.
"Where's Joe?" I asked, looking around the room I didn't see
She looked up and sighed, "He took Emi home, she fainted when
they put the IV in Mason,"
I nodded and stared at him.
He was pale and thin. His hair was matted with dry sweat and
machines were hooked up to him. His mom quietly left the room.
"Mason?" I said hesitantly.
I saw his eyes flutter, "Bella, you came," he smiled slightly.
"I did, but what the hell did you do?" I asked. My voice was
mixed with worry, anger, and hurt.
"I… ruined everything. I couldn't handle, I had a heart attack
from the sounds of it. I always knew our family had bad heart
history but I didn't realize I was at such a risk. They cancelled
my summer," he sighed.
"Mason, you will be fine," I assured, though for him or myself I
He nodded weakly, "But, my music, it's over."
I stared at him, I couldn't deny this. I knew it too, had known
if from when he went downhill months ago, it wouldn't last.
I kissed his forehead but when I looked into his eyes something
had changed. His face had gotten stern, his eyes glazed over with
anger. I was scared for him, he had failed himself.
"I love you Mason," I said and I left because I was afraid if I
stayed I wouldn't get an answer.