Her last promise

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

My short story entry for Ikky2000's short story competition

Short story competition- Her last promise


I squinted as I looked up at the glaring lights, they were angry and harsh. I got up and paced towards the small window in the stuffy room. Didn't the doctors know that their patients would need air?

I rattled around with the old dusty lock but it merely squeezed. I heard loud footsteps and winced as they hit the icy cold floor.

"Could you please be quiet?" I roared whirling around on my feet to see a nurse or whatever name she went by. She looked back at me with sympathy but nothing else. Her eyes were lifeless, dead. Her skin looked like it had no blood in it, ghost.

"I'm sorry Charlie" she whispered, they all talked to me like that as if I was on the verge of a breakdown. I looked over at the bed that she lay on; tubes were the only thing that could support her. Maybe I was.

"Why do you keep apologising to me? You can't bring her back" I choked back a sob as I stared at her fragile broken body. Fucking cancer. They said it was treatable but they lied, they lied and now she was there in that dirty bed slowing slipping into death. Bastards.

I fell to the seat beside her bed, a blanket lay discarded on the side of the chair. The blanket I used when I refused to go home and "rest" I had been in this hospital since her collapse and that was 5 days ago. 

I ran my hands through my hair as I looked over at her peaceful figure. Her long brown hair framed her beautiful small face. Behind me I heard the nurse approach me hesitantly.

"Charlie-" the nurse spoke quietly; the noise of the life support machine was audible.

"Why don't you speak to her?

I shook my head as I could feel tears forming behind my eyes, what did she mean talk to her? I hadn't spoken to my wife in the past few days. I hadn't had a proper conversation with my wife for the past few months. She would lie in the bed staring at the TV with glassy red eyes, anytime I tried to talk to her or approach her she would wince and then cry. 

The nurse dared to move closer.

"Your voice might pull her out of the darkness" she placed one hand on my back and I could literally feel the coldness seeping through. I shuddered violently pushing her hand away, I felt the woman pull away sighing as she quickly crossed the squeaky clean floor and shut the door behind her.

I looked over at the limp, lifeless hand that fell over the bed; the wedding ring that bound us together for life remained squeezed on her finger. The only thing that could get me through this torture.

Without any thought I reached out to grab it and resisted the urge to fling the hand down as the same coldness from the nurses hand seeped into my hand through her hand.

"My dear Amy" I began, tears already beginning to stream down my dirty unwashed face.

"I didn't think this would be your time, they said another 6 months" I squeezed my eyes shut as every word pierced my heart.

"In 6 months we could've got that list covered, everything that you wanted to do before you..." I shook my head.

"Jack has been asking for you, everyday he asks when is mummy coming h-" I struggled to get the words out as my sobs racked my body to the point where I felt like I was going to throw up.

"Amy! Please please please wake up" I cried not caring that I tugging her hand 

"Please!" I screamed.

I immediately heard the door open as the same nurse rushed to my side and released my hand from hers; I curled myself up in a ball and stared rocking.

"Charlie please stop" the nurses voice begged but I couldn't. Every day I had to act strong for our son Jack but now it was my turn to fall apart.

"Remember our wedding day!" I gasped running my hands through my dark brown hair wanting to pull out every strand. 

"Remember you were so nervous you threw up outside and your mum made a big show about it! Remember Amy?" The nurse rushed out once again to probably get somebody to calm me down but there was no going back. I was a broken man.

I hastily went to wipe off my tears with my sleeve when I saw her hand twitch.

I held my breath as her hand continued twitching then the heart monitor started beating faster. I wanted to yell for the nurse but my mouth wouldn't move.

Slowly one of her eyes twitched and I felt the salty tears run down my face once again.

"Amy?" I called quietly, my voice soft.

Suddenly both her eyes were open and I felt myself jump in shock. She squinted as her eyes were adjusting to the light. Then she started coughing. Huge coughs that shook her whole body. The whole time I remained curled up on the chair scared that if I made any sudden movements she would close her eyes. 

"Char-ch" she stuttered twisting her neck to face me, she winced but a small crept onto her lips. I lit up like a Christmas tree jumping up and grabbing her hand.

Her vibrant blue eyes stared back at me as if she remembered everything, that I was her husband, that we had a son together, that her name was Amy and she had cancer. 

Her smile vanished when I went to touch her hand "who-wh" 

Confusion swept over her face as she scanned my face her eyes alarmed.

"Amy it's me Charlie!" 

Her eyes started bugging and she looked like she was struggling to get away from me, the heart monitor started flashing red and beeping furiously.

“Amy! It’s me!” I yelled moving closer to the bed, I heard a soft whimper escape her lips.

The door flew open and nurses and doctors rushed in pushing me back while I pushed against their arms.

“Why won’t she speak to me?” I cried

There was no answer as I was pushed out and soon saw her bed surrounded by them, ghosts slowly pulling her to death.


After hours of frantic pacing and endless amounts of coffee a doctor came out. He had a sympathetic smile plastered round his smarmy face. He was young and good looking he wasn’t ready to join the rest of these walking ghosts, somebody should warn him to get out of here before it’s too late.

“Sir your wife is awake and is calling for you” My eyes lit up and I stood up excitedly however the doctor pulled on my arm “Sir, please take time”

I frowned at him “she is my wife”

The doctor nodded and walked away.

 She was sitting up when I walked in; she was looking around the room as if she had never seen anything so brilliant. I wanted her to snap her out of this, five months ago she would’ve demanded me to discharge her immediately however she was so hopped up on drugs she couldn’t tell reality from make believe.

“Amy” I said warily feeling all the life drain out of me. There was a tense silence as she scanned me, her eyes squinted in concentration.

“Charlie” she said slowly playing my name around her lips.

All I could do was nod as she watched me take a seat next to her “you’re my husband”

I nodded; I would rather her asleep then to pretend to know who I am.

“We have a son... Jack” I nodded once again feeling tears prick my eyes as she looked happy that remembered something as small as that. She didn’t remember anything.

I sat and stared at her, her eyes were lifeless. Her smile fake.

“Why are you crying Charlie?” Her voice was monotone like a robot, I couldn’t take it. 5 months ago the soul of my wife went up to heaven and left this dead shell of person. I didn’t believe it before but I believed it now. She died months ago, this shell bought pain and suffering to my family and it had to stop now.

Without another word I stood up refusing to meet her blank eyes, it took all my willpower to not turn back as I walked to the door.

I pressed my head against the door, my back towards her.

“Do you remember what you said before you collapsed?” I asked my voice cold and angry. I was fed up of waiting for her to get well, fed up of lying to my son everyday telling him that Mummy was going to come home, fed up of seeing the disappointment on the little boys face when I walked in alone.

“No” she called

“You promised that you would stay alive for the last 6 months for me, for our son Jack. You said it was your last promise before you die”

I heard her sniff.

“But you broke that promise!” I yelled tears running down my face, my fist pounding against the cold door

“You fucking broke that promise and I’ve had enough” without looking back I ran out. I ran out the hospital and walked home.

After tucking Jack into bed with another broken promise of mummy will come back soon I walked into our bedroom. The smell of her still lingered in the room and sank down to the floor and cried. I cried into the night and into the morning until I fell asleep on that cold floor just like my wife died on that cold bed that same morning.


Submitted: October 28, 2013

© Copyright 2021 InfinityAndBeyond. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:



OMG! OMG! OMG! This is soooo sad. :'( It kinda made me cry, God bless Charlie. I feel So sorry for him and oh my! Amy died at the end, and OMG this was just so sad. You potrayed the emotion Charlie was feeling perfectly and poor Jack; its so sad and cute how he asks for his Mummy and then sees his daddy come home alone. Awwh! :( I really loved reading, such an amazing and heartbreaking story. Very well done. Thank you for entering this. :) xox

Mon, October 28th, 2013 12:45pm


Thank you so much! I didn't really expect you to think it was good because eh call it my insecure side!

Mon, October 28th, 2013 11:45am


This is awesome! Very nice work, brilliant portrayal of emotion. I loved it.

Mon, October 28th, 2013 1:09pm


Aw, thank you so much x

Mon, October 28th, 2013 6:46am


So good! I had tears in my eyes the entire time. The way you wrote it was great and made the characters seem so real. Keep up the good work Girl :)

Tue, October 29th, 2013 1:51am


Aw thanks for reading my love x

Sat, November 16th, 2013 1:28pm


It is very touching and you really describe all the scenes very good. I kept reading with chills running down my spine from the beggining to the end. It is a masterpiece! I hope you will be one of the top 3 in the contests results cause you deserve it. Thank you so much for inviting me to read this.

Tue, October 29th, 2013 10:00pm


You are brilliant!!! you are seriously so nice. I came second actually so thanks for reading my love x

Sat, November 16th, 2013 1:31pm


OH :( This was such a Heart-warming story :) I loved it. I love how Charlie is so loving towards his wife and I felt quite sad when she couldn't remember him. This was an Amazing story :)A thumbs up from me. GREAT JOB!!!

Wed, October 30th, 2013 8:25pm


Aw thank you so much x

Sat, November 16th, 2013 1:21pm

Kenisha Liyanage

That's sad. I like Charlie. He loves his wife sooo much. It is hard to find such lovable people nowadays...

Mon, November 4th, 2013 2:23pm


Thanks for reading my love x

Tue, November 5th, 2013 1:24pm

B Douglas Slack

An extremely touching story of a man who obviously loves his wife very much. The scene-setting prose is wonderful and makes visualization easy. Well done!

Tue, August 26th, 2014 9:22pm


Thanks you so much my love!

Fri, August 29th, 2014 6:33am

Alex The shadow girl

Very emotional and I really like Charlie. It actually made me cry and not many stories can do that.

Fri, August 29th, 2014 3:19pm


Omg I'm glad my story triggered such emotion! Thanks for reading my love x

Fri, August 29th, 2014 9:28am

Joseph Mark

Wow! Everyone handles death differently, and Charlie took it well. He shouldn't have lied to his son, though. I look forward to reading more of your work.

Sun, August 31st, 2014 1:27am

Lanre Sumon

I was scared, it really got my attention how do you do it ? Wow well it's a very nice story. ????

Mon, September 22nd, 2014 12:33am

Oleg Roschin

My heart aches... It's so touching and emotional, it's clear you've put your soul into this. It's also powerfully written, the language is beautiful, the descriptions are spot on, with just the right amount of detail. In particular, the opening and the closing paragraphs are just perfect. Great work, I'm sorry I've discovered it so late!..

Mon, April 25th, 2016 7:34am

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