Stop and ask, stop and ask, and then I finally found neurology. Billy was sitting on the side of his bed fully dressed with a bag in his hand.
“There you are!” I said as I walked in his room. He stood and we hugged. He was so happy to see me he picked me off my feet and kissed me! He finally let me down. “Boy!” I said, “I want to go out and come back in!”
“It was lonely here last night,” he said. “Nobody came, well, not counting the police and child services. I talked to Mom on the phone, but she didn’t have a way here. She said that she was very sorry Angel hit me with the pipe, but I must have done something to set him off. I can’t believe she said that!”
“You’re kidding, I mean, I know you’re not, but that’s crazy! You don’t think that she’s scared of him, do you?”
“I’ve done nothing else but think. She’s scared, I’m scared, I think Greg’s scared, too. You know that he lives with my mother. He is a good man. He owns the shop with his brother, Angel’s father. He knows his stuff about Harley engines and there aren’t too many around who can tune them right. It’s an art. He’s a good salesman, too. He said he would start teaching me the business, but there’s Angel to deal with.”
“Angel works in the shop, too, I suppose.”
Billy nodded and smiled at me. He liked it that I caught on to things. “When gamily gets hurt feeling, they hold grudges. Until we can get feelings out of the way, I’m just going to school and keep doing my own stuff, and that means staying with you, for a night to see if they keep Angel, if Mama will have me.”
“Oh, my, God, Billy, if she says no, I will somehow get you through the living room and down the stairs if I have to do the horsey carry on my little back!”
A nurse came in with papers in her hand. She looked up at me, then at Billy, “This must be Ronni,” she said smiling, “he’s done nothing but talk about you.”
“You talked about me?”
“Of course, I did, I’m proud of you,” he said.
“Woah, Oooooo!” That noise came out of me and I burst into tears. I grabbed his strong hand and put in on my cheek and cried.
“Oh, no,” the nurse said, “now look what you’ve done.” She got some tissues out of the drawer on the food tray ad gave them to me. “You’ve broken her heart, Billy, you know that, don’t you?”
“I didn’t mean to! What did I do wrong?”
I shook my head and looked up at him. I couldn’t stop. My chest hitched repeatedly.
The nurse chuckled softly, “No, Billy, you talked to her sweetly. Her heart is new. Nobody ever said words like that to her. Love her and kiss her. Tell your how you feel about her.”
Billy put his palm gently on my cheek and I stared his watery blue eyes. “I love you, Ronni. I fell in love with you the moment we met.”
“What’s that smell!” To me, it sounded like I shouted.
“What was that?” the nurse asked me. She didn’t hear me good.
“It’s an ammonia capsule, sweetie. You fainted.”