I’ve heard time and time again of people wishing they could live forever. Well, I’m living proof of a fool who once wished the same thing. And let me tell you, I wouldn’t wish immortality on my worst enemy. Sure it’s fun for the first hundred, maybe two hundred years. But after that…it becomes unbearable.
Everyone wonders what will happen after they die. I can tell you from experience that what lies in the great beyond puts living on this earth to shame. Heaven is real, very real. And so is Hell.
I should know; I’ve been to both.
Seeing the splendor that Heaven has to offer makes my heart ache with sadness. If people knew what lay in store for them after they died, I guarantee no one would wish to live forever. That’s a fact.
And yet I will never be able to experience Heaven again. Or death either, for that matter. This is what is in store for me now: an unending life, an undying body, and a soul fixated in time.
The sound of my house phone ringing startles me out of my thoughts.
“Hello?” I answer.
“Hello Miss Hill. This is Dr. Allen from Kindred Community Hospital. I was told to call you once Evan left the hospital as you are his –“
I hear Dr. Allen flip through papers as she tries to find who I am and what relation I have to Evan.
“I’m his psychiatrist,” I interrupt. “And because he is mentally unstable, I needed to know the second he left your care. Thank you for calling.”
There’s a slight pause and I hesitate only briefly before asking, “How is he?”
I try to sound professional but I come off sounding childish. You’d think after being alive for so long I’d be able to exude maturity no matter the situation. Apparently it’ll take another couple hundred decades to get the hang of that.
“He’s doing fine, Miss Hill just a bit shaken up and bruised. His vitals all look good and he is on the mend. I see in his chart that he lives alone. Will you be stopping over to tend to his care or should we assign someone from our staff to do that?”
I bite my lip. “No, no I’ll take him,” I finally say.
I make the long trek to Evan’s house, not really knowing what to expect. Not this dilapidated old hut, that’s for sure. This is outrageous. How can he live in such a place? There doesn’t seem to be enough room to even put a bed inside.
I tentatively knock on his door and find myself holding my breath. After a few fleeting moments, Evan opens the door, his mouth agape. He is bruised and banged up, that’s for sure. But for the tumble he took, he’s not bad at all. That aside, he is still the beautiful man that whisked me away on his motorcycle only days ago.
And that’s when I realize why he’s staring at me. I look the same as I did before the accident. I have not even a single scratch to show for it.
“S-stella,” Evan stutters. Relief washes over his face and despite everything, a silly grin is up on his beautiful face again. “You’re alright!”
“Hello Evan, and yes I am thank you. How are you feeling?”
He leans against the door frame and gestures for me to come inside. I decide to enter his small dwelling and the second I’m inside I wish I hadn’t. It’s even smaller than I had imagined it would be.
“I’m good, thanks,” Evan responds and closes the door.
Normally when I’m nervous I like to pace. Or move around. But in here that seems to be an impossible feat. If I move around too much, I’ll knock his whole hut over. He watches me as I glance around his humble home.
He brings his hand up and scratches at the stubble on his chin.
“I know it’s not much. But I don’t need a lot.”
He pauses and then blushes. “It must seem pathetic compared to your place.”
I blink and bring my eyes to his. “It’s lovely, Evan.”
My voice is soft and timid. I don’t know why I’m here. Oh that’s right. Because I decided to illegally take over his care from the hospital, my subconscious reminds me in her snidest of voices. Stupid, stupid choice.
He must wonder why I’m here too. If he knows I signed off on his care, he’ll think I’m nuts.
“I just wanted to see if you were doing alright,” I sputter defensively, though he hasn’t asked.
Evan nods and takes a seat on his bed.
“It’s alright Stella. I know you signed off on my chart and took over my care from Dr. Allen,” Evan says with that stupid Cheshire cat grin on his face.
But then he frowns. “And I also know you paid for my medical bill while I was there.”
He searches my face for an answer, his mouth pressed into a mulish line as he tries to read my expression. I’m an expert with keeping a poker face though. I had to master it for my own funeral. Talk about depressing.
His gaze is too much, too smoldering. I look away from him and notice all the little knick-knacks he has lying around.
“Well, as the doctor that signed off on your chart, I wasn’t allowed to take over your care until you had your bill paid for in full. Normally they aren’t so strict but since you have no health insurance, I just took care of it.”
Evan pulls out his check book from his back pocket and digs around at his night table for a pen.
“Well thanks doc.’ How much do I owe ya?”
My brows furrow together at the preposterous thought. There is no way he could afford it. “You owe me nothing, Evan. Just please have a speedy recovery.”
I start to leave but then turn to him once more. “Oh, and as yourpsychiatrist it is now my legal duty to tell you if you need any counseling, someone to talk to, etc, I am here to help. So if you ever want to schedule an appointment, let me know.”
I say it with my professional voice so he knows I’m not trying to be flirtatious. Evan taps a slow rhythm on his thigh using his checkbook. He looks at me, his gazescrutinizing my every move. I feel those butterflies begin to yawn and spread their wings. When he winks at me, it seems to be their cue to fly amuck throughout my stomach. That’s never a good sign.
“Well I appreciate the kind gesture, Stella. By the way is that short for something? Or is it just Stella?”
“It’s just Stella.”
“It’s beautiful. Fitting though for a beautiful woman like yourself.”
He has to know that his words are undoing me. I feel like I’m hanging on to my calmnessby a mere thread.
“Anyway, I would like to schedule a therapy session with you. How does Friday night sound? Say, eight o’clock?”
Now I am the one to stare with my mouth agape. Did he just ask me out on a date? No, no I can’t do it.
“Sounds good,” I hear myself say in response. Oh Stella, what are you doing?!
“Great. I’ll call you with details,” Evan says in his happiest of voices.
“Oh. Do you want my cell number?” I ask, now fumbling to get out my own pen and paper.
He reaches out to stop my hand, and I feel an electric charge coming from his fingertips.
“No need, Stella. I already have it.”
He grins wickedly at me and winks again. I am stupefied at the exchange between us and back peddle away from him. Nobody has access to my cell phone. No one. To my house phone, sure. But my cell? There’s no way. He’s pulling my leg. He has to be.
And then he recites my cell phone number, making me reel even more. I am stunned and ok, I’ll admit it, kind of freaked out.
“But how do you-“ I start to question, but Evan interrupts me.
“Don’t worry about it, Stella,” he whispers as he closes his door and gives me a knowing grin. “We all have our own little secrets.”
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