the year at cannes by petermore

21 Feb

“You look like her.”

The words took Agnes by surprise. Sharon had been so silent that Agnes had forgotten there was someone attached to the plasma she was changing.

Agnes looked at her quizzically, trying to recall if this was part of a conversation she had forgotten she was in. It happens. Sometimes patients want to speak and an overworked nurse whose English was still “getting there” was apt to be only casually involved. Before she could ask anything, Sharon added more.

“You have her eyes.”

“Who’s eyes?”

Sharon stared at her annoyed. The annoyance changed to realisation and then apology.

“The girl at Cannes.”

“I do not know this girl?” Agnes finished securing the plasma bag.

“Of course you don’t.”

“Oh.” Ordinarily Agnes would have left now, but she hung round awkwardly like someone who is pretty sure they have been invited to stay but not 100%.

“She looked like you.”

“The girl at Cannes?”

“She was very pretty.’

“Thank you.” Agnes blushed and shifted the plasma pole a little.

“My husband thought so.”

For the first time Agnes sensed some bitterness in the words. Sharon bit her lips and started murmuring to herself. Agnes felt a prick of guilt at being glad the conversation would no longer involve her. She was busy and nothing Sharon had said had made much sense. And murmuring meant being alive and having some sort of brain function – which for some patients was more than they could hope for.

As Agnes reached the door, Sharon called out.

“Odette!”

Agnes turned and hung in the doorway. Sharon was staring at her, her eyes filled with decades of brine.

“Je vous pardonne.”

Agnes nodded and smiled. “Thank you,” she said without knowing why and left. An inexplicable sense of having done good followed her around all week.

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One Response to “the year at cannes by petermore”

  1. ingridfnl February 21, 2011 at 5:12 pm #

    What a wonderful moment in time. The tension is great.

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