(A/N: In Hazel's POV)
It was again time to attend Support Group. Since making such a drastic improvement regarding my health, I hadn't gone as much as I used to. But the times I did go, it was only really to see Isaac and support him the way Augustus used to (it is called 'Support Group' after all). But going, for more than one reason, still now pains me in ways that remain unexplainable...
I stepped inside the cavernous building, this time able to climb the stairs with a lot less struggle than on previous occasions. Not much had changed visually concerning the Literal Heart of Jesus, except a drastic descent in the amount of people who attend the group (which was, of course, very good, as it meant like me everyone was becoming slowly well again). After having a few sips of lemonade, and saying hi to the few people I knew, before introducing myself to the couple I didn't (2 women a bit older than me, both new to the group, and both with Breast Cancer), Patrick for the nth time began his 'ballless-ness' speech. Some things never change...
(A/N: Help! How do I avoid the writing being permanently italic?) Me and Isaac talked, for in fact only the second time this past month, and it made me glad I could be there for him... Like I could be there for Gus' parents in all our times of need. It's heartwarming having a friend you know can't see you; because they like you simply for the things you say, and pay extra-close attention to the things you say, for that matter. I imagine speaking to me from Isaac's point of view must be a lot like speaking through the invisible place me and Augustus used to visit; you feel so close to the person, yet being unable to see them somehow makes you feel so far apart. The only difference is, Isaac's 'invisible place' is forever being visited; yet the one that once felt so close to my grasp, that made me feel lighter than air when he spoke, was now gone forever. But I didn't want to visit it alone. I would never bring myself to pick up the phone in the hope of a miracle, because if I did I knew I'd hear nothing but endless silence (or, of course, one of Augustus' parents would pick up. But calling someone else never feels quite the same; quite as magical).
The end of Support Group neared, and I suddenly felt bad that, due to my oblivious daydreaming, I'd barely payed attention to what anyone (other than Issac, when I'd been speaking to him) had said at all. Patrick began reading the list he always read (which by now, everyone despised- even the newest members had quickly grown to find it exhausting just listening to, not to mention depressing), and a knot hung helplessly in my throat, as it always did. My heart began throbbing, as it always did. And, to top it all off, my whole body became cold and stiff, before starting to shake, as it always did. I cleared my head of all distracting thoughts, pinching myself as to not suddenly fall into the trap of yet another daydream (as it seemed to be happening then quite often), and took a short, yet deep breath, before glancing sideways at Isaac. He too seemed to be in quite a state, and it then became clear to me that we were now the only people who appreciated, and cared to listen to, the infamous, and ongoing, list of names. I prepared myself for the inevitable...
'And last, but most certainly not least, Augustus.'
As always, Patrick's eyes quickly flicked up from the paper he was holding to catch my reaction. And not for the first time, I masked the heartbroken, physically sickened expression that so commonly plastered my slightly-less-puffy face on this occasion, with that of someone without a care in the world; pleased that I wouldn't have to hear such a drawl until the next time I decided to attend the group, like everyone else.
However, and yet again, everything inside of me shattered.
A/N: I'm sorry for again discussing the 'invisible place' on the phone; as I mentioned before I'm running out of ideas, plus I thought the need to describe the situation in more detail (which I hope I did)
Thank you to every reader; you're all the reason I continue writing (and will hopefully become a published author someday)! Also, my friend, Ashleigh (who as well reads every chapter, which I'm grateful for), for giving me the idea to revolve this chapter entirely around Support Group; I needed an idea and you gave me one : )
I look forward to writing again,
See ya, Nerdfighters 👓