The Girl With Leukaemia

(Inspired by TFIOS) Aisling Rivers has been diagnosed with Acute Myelogenous Leukaemia since she was 8 years old, and up until now, her life hasn't sparked any fun at all. It is a constant drive in and out of hospitals and their hospital beds, a normal day is impossible. Having a life is impossible. Finally, she meets a boy that is her age and she leaves her current situation completely to befriend Jett Nolan.

Jett Nolan is a notorious vandalist and has a buzz for putting up fights. He has been to court the previous two times and he assumed that it would be the same routine for the third time. Attend a court meeting, settle out any fines and then spend hours in a youth detention centre but his punishment this time was different - community service, in a hospital, filled with sick and old people. Not what Jett had in mind... at all.

She was looking for a friend and all he needed was some company but what they didn't know was that they would become so much more.


9. The Girl With Leukaemia| 7


The Girl With Leukaemia| 7

- A i s l i n g -


It's been days, weeks since I last saw Jett. I rarely go outside the room anymore and chemotherapy has been exhausting as always but unfortunately more than usual. I'm not even allowed to go wandering down the ward unsupervised because Dr Johansson as well as my parents are apprehensive that something might happen to me not that I care anymore. I can't even walk with my parents or the nurses without wondering when I'm going to stop breathing. I wanted something out of the ordinary in my life and I had it but now I've pushed it too far to reach and grab it back again. My parents try and visit me every day for as long as the visiting hours let them before we split paths until the next day. I don't bother having long conversations with them like I used to and Dad has noticed but, Mum always tries to make things easier for me in other words she doesn't want to think about what's going to happen to me, she distracts herself by doing things and even though I can't comfort her through hugs and words, I always do my best to try and smile for them. Make them know that I am going to get through it as best as I can because I can't have them worry, it will be harder for them to let go in the end. 

Winter has passed and even though it is the beginning of spring the snow still falls through January. Unusual as it is for me, I still can't help but smile a little that the snow has stayed this strong for so long. Almost determined to not let winter disappear just yet without its final mark on the world until it comes again for another year. I hear the doors squeak open and turn to gaze at the clock, it's just past nine, visiting hours have opened so I guess my parents have come for their usual visiting. I turn back to the window without saying anything and allow them to do their usual things around the room but I sensed that something was different. I turned to find myself looking at the person I didn't imagine to ever see in a long time and I'm not sure if I'm happy or angry but that didn't change the fact that he was here looking directly at me and my face couldn't place an expression clear enough for me to know how I was feeling. 

"Hey" he says through a small, nervous smile but I couldn't return the smile. I wanted to deep down but, he's done so much that I'm not sure I can forgive him. Does mum or dad even know that he's here but what I wanted to ask more than anything was how did he know and how could he possibly be standing in front of me and just... Stare. He begins to take a few anxious steps forward and I'm not sure if I want him anywhere near me but he's been gone for so so long and I let him. I let him walk and his strides become more confident.

"I don't know whether I should grab you by the shoulders and hug you or grab you by the neck and shake you. Since I don't have the ability to shake my arms in a rough situation I guess I'll go for the hug" I say through a raspy slightly unfamiliar voice. I haven't opened my mouth in so long and neither have I spoken a word about anything which makes the voice that comes out of me foreign yet it feels nice to talk again. He grins with he's teeth and dimples similar to mine for every eye to see and I stare into the same eyes that mirror my own. He leans forward softly and engulfs me into he's warm leather jacket and suddenly I feel a whole new energy surge through me. He releases me and sits down on the chair beside me. I observe how he's changed over the past years since he's been in New York. He's dark brown hair which was now slightly short at the back and grew longer at the front was tousled, he's face has not aged since which is warming. 

"So how was delinquent camp, Theo?" I say cheekily and I manage to put on a true smile one that I haven't used for a long time. Theo smiles but, doesn't answer so I leave the subject alone. I don't have the need to push for answers anymore.

"How have you been little sister?" He asks sadly but still manages to keep a bit of happiness on his sorrowful expression. How have I been? Have I ever asked myself how I have been since everything only to know deep down that I'm not fine. My hair has begun to fall out strand by strand and now I wear a lilac scarf around my head, I can't help but feel so useless and frail. I hate that I can't do anything, all I do is stare out the window or sleep and it doesn't make me feel any better. So no I don't think I've been doing alright but that's not what I tell him because he hasn't been here long enough to know how challenging it's been and I don't want to scare him.

"I'm stronger than titanium" I say lying through my teeth. Theo doesn't question it, he just stares at me with a sad glint in his eyes that doesn't seem to leave his path. I grab his hand that lay on the side of the bed and softly squeeze it while smiling at him, he smiles but it wasn't the same one he entered into the room with. 

"I was released from the camp after they reassessed my behaviour during the years and it's improved substantially so they allowed me to come home. I went home and expected dad to be angry as he usually is with me but that wasn't what I returned to. Both of them they just looked so tired and they hugged the life out of me. At first I was taken aback but once they told me what happened" he looks down to our hands and squeezes gently. I want to tell him that he can stop if it's too difficult but I feel like he needs someone to listen, he needs to take it all out of his system. 

"They told me th-that you had can-cancer. I mean how is that even possible. How can you- go before me. I was supposed to look out for you but I let everyone down. I let my little sister down" he chokes out unable to look me in the eyes anymore, he breaks down and cries. Tears that I never expected to see fall from his eyes alone are falling and I feel the need to cry but nothing comes out yet all I want to do is comfort him, I pull him gently up on the bed and hug him tightly while patting his back. 

"It's okay. It's going to be okay. I promise" I whisper in his ears before planting a kiss on the side of his temple. I close my eyes and allow my tears to fall freely but I don't feel the pain, it's fading. I hear the doors slide open and I want to open my eyes to see who my next visitor is but I already know, I know who's here. 

"I hope I'm not intruding but, I'd like to speak with Aisling please" I allow his voice to fill me with the the missing tingles that I've yearned since forever. I release Theo from the hold and ask him to leave for a minute, once he disappears I look out the window unable to see how he's changed that is if he's changed at all. 

"Why didn't you tell me?" Jett says quietly trying to hide the sadness in his tone but clearly he's failed because I caught it. I'm not sure if my mind is not processing everyone's emotions correctly but no one is angry or annoyed or anything but sad which angers me slightly but I try not to think about. How could I have told you that I am a ticking bomb one that doesn't care about time until it causes collateral damage to everything and everyone that I care deeply about. It's not easy.

"Would you have treated me differently?" I say gently.

"How could you have gone out of you way just to be my friend and no I would never have treated you any different whether I had known or not because having someone even take a minute to glance my direction and see past my attitude and messed up emotions just to have a conversation is someone that I can waste a day and more with just so I can have someone to listen for even a few minutes" he says taking a step forward one by one with each word that comes out of his mouth until he is right next to me.

"And despite everything you put up with me and my arrogant ways" I felt his cold hand on my cheek, turning my face so that I could see into his dark brown eyes that sparkled beautifully and for the first time I was able to see yellow specks around his pupil which made me adore his eyes all the more. 

"You gave me a reason to do something with my life and I tried my very hardest to use that reason to make something of myself and I did. For you" he bent down until all I could see was the top of his messy brown hair. He reappeared a couple of seconds later with a sheet covered canvas the size of an A3 paper yet a bit bigger. He removed the cover and turned it around until all I could see was an explosion of colour on the canvas and I wasn't sure what I was supposed to see until very slowly Jett began moving backwards and eventually the whole colours came into a picture.

"I'm sorry that I just left without saying anything. I'm sorry that I was useless. I'm sorry that I couldn't be the friend that you expected me to be and I'm just sorry" I gasp as I stare in awe at the painting. I make sure that I absorb every important detail in my mind. All I could think about was that he knew me. He knew who I was. He knew a long time ago. How? I don't know but I don't want to think about it right now. The picture was saying it all and I remove the blankets off of me eager to touch it, my feet make a wobbly step down onto the cold floor and Jett hesitantly steps forward but I shake my head at him. It's like the time when a baby begins to learn its first steps as they take in their environment and the adventures their little feet would lead them to. I feel so helpless but I attempt to make it to him and slowly but gradually I do. My hands grab onto his forearm and he drops the canvas gently down onto the floor with his other hand and I latch my free hand onto his shoulder and look into his eyes one last time before I hug him tightly. Tighter than I've ever held onto anything and I was determined not to let go of my special little something ever not when I've just got it back. 

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