Title: The News (1/1)
Date Written: 8/28/02
Summary: This is a brief vignette of a painful moment in young Nick's life.
Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction. The characters in this story are borrowed from the TV show "The Guardian". No money is being made from this story. Any resemblance of a character in this story to any real person living or dead is purely coincidental. Likewise, any resemblance between an organization depicted in this story and any such actual organization is purely coincidental.
Inside the master bedroom of the comfortable two-story home, a mother and her eleven year old son were alone. Anne Fallin was lying in bed, propped up by pillows. She required a lot of rest these days, as her nearly fifteen month battle with ovarian cancer had drained her of most of her strength. Her son Nick, a handsome boy, sat at the desk in the corner working on his homework. The only sound in the room was the soft scratching of his pencil.
After a few moments, footsteps were heard in the hall, and mother and son looked up to find Burton Fallin at the door. He was a tall man with dark hair that was noticeably receding on top. He sported an impressive mustache atop his upper lip. At forty-eight, he was the head of a successful law practice, and a man to be reckoned with.
Anne said pleasantly. Come in.
Burton paused to greet his son with a simple, before proceeding to Anne's side. Nick nodded to acknowledge his father's greeting, but quickly returned his attention to his school work.
As Burton approached the bed, he smiled, and said, How ya feeling?
Anne attempted to return his smile. A little better. The doctor gave me a new prescription for the nausea, and it seems to be helping.
Burton nodded, then pulled up a chair close to the bed, and sat down. He reached out and took Anne's hand in his. They looked at each other silently for a moment, then both turned their eyes to Nick.
Anne said. Come over here, honey, I need to talk to you for a minute.
Nick glanced at his mother, then put down his pencil, and came over to the bed.
Sit here, baby, Anne said gently, taking her hand from Burton's and patting the bed beside her. Nick complied. He examined the faces of both his parents curiously. He could see tears forming in his mother's eyes, and his father's expression was deadly serious. Sudden apprehension showed on his face.
Anne said slowly. You know since the doctors discovered that I was sick they've been trying different treatments to, to get rid of the cancer.
They've done their very best, sweetheart, but nothing has worked. And now...and now there's nothing else left for them to try.
Nick stared at his mother as comprehension dawned, and then said, You mean, you mean...
Tears were flowing freely down Anne's face now, and she turned a plea-filled look to Burton whose eyes were also damp. He took her hand again, gave it a little squeeze, and said to Nick, Son, the doctors say your mother's cancer has spread. They say.... He paused to clear his throat. They say she only has a few months left.
Nick stared in shocked horror from his father to his mother, then threw himself on his mother's chest, and began to weep in heart-rending sobs. Anne put her arms around her son and hugged him tightly, as Burton reached out and patted his back. Long minutes passed before the sobs finally began to subside. After he fell quiet, Nick continued to lay against his mother. In another few minutes, his parents realized he had fallen asleep, exhausted by his crying jag. Burton offered to move Nicholas, but Anne told him to leave him where he was. He then said quietly, All right. Well, I, uhm, I guess I better get back to the office.
Anne nodded, and said, Thank you, Burton, in a low voice.
Burton returned her nod, and stood up, then walked to the door. The last thing he saw before leaving the room was Anne's hand gently stroking the fair hair of their son.