It had been another long week living at good ole Slappie’s. With Veronica gone, Slappie had been stuck to me like gum on a shoe. It was annoying to say the least.
So when I came home to find a strange girl alone and crying in Slappie’s bed I was actually relieved.
I tiptoed into Slappie’s bedroom dungeon and peeked my head around the corner. “Hi, do you mind if I shower in here?” I asked the strange girl.
“No, it’s fine. You must be Asterisk, my name is Becky. I’m sorry if I’m bothering you,” she apologized Inbetween sobs.
“You aren’t bothering me. What’s wrong?” I empatheticly asked.
“I just found out that I’m pregnant and I don’t know what to do,” she confessed. “I’m homeless right now and Slappie is letting me crash here for a while.”
“Oh wow. Are you going to have the baby?”
“No! I want to have an abortion but I’m too far along! I’ll have to have a second term abortion and Slappie told me it was really painful and that I could die! She’s been scaring me all day! She told me that I’m a horrible person and she’s been lecturing me about birth control! I didn’t even think I could get pregnant!”
“Wow, well how many weeks along are you?”
“I don’t know!”
I sat down on the bed, “Okay when was your last period?”
“May tenth. But my period is never regular. I skip them all the time.”
I opened my calendar, “Hmm that puts you at 14 weeks. I suggest you go to planned parenthood in the morning, you are right on the verge of second term.”
“I already called them! The lady said I was too far along for a regular abortion!” Becky cried.
“Listen, just go down there and lie. Tell then your period was on the following week. They will have to do an ultrasound anyway to determine the size of the fetus before they preform the surgery.”
That seemed to mellow her out a bit.
“Even if you have to do a second term abortion, it’s still early in the pregnancy. They will give you pain medication. You will be okay, don’t listen to Slappie, she’s a little,” I paused for a second to find the right word, ‘off.'”
“She was telling me all day what a terrible person I am and accusing me of using abortion as a form of birth control. She is a fucking nut, isn’t she?”
I nodded in agreement then let out a sigh, “That’s not cool Becky. What you need right now is support, not judgement.”
“I don’t care what Slappie says about you Asterisk. You are a nice person.”
I got up and took my shower. When I was through, Becky was still in the bed in tears.
“Do you still want to talk?” I asked my new friend.
“You want a beer?” I offered.
I went down stairs and grabbed myself a Bud Light then spent the majority of the evening counseling Becky. Once she was calmer, I handed her a copy of my book and told her it would make her laugh and keep her occupied while she was there. Then I went to bed.
She never did read it.
The next morning I got up and ready for work. I was just pouring my morning coffee when Slappie joined me in the kitchen.
“Becky is pregnant!” she announced.
“Yes I know. I talked to her about it last night.”
“She’s fucking irresponsible, right?” she asked me.
“It happens Slappie,” I defended Becky. “I had an abortion when I was 19 so I can’t judge anyone.”
“You were 19. Okay? Becky is 28, right? She should know better! Abortion is not a form of birth control! I would never have one! Okay? I told Becky she needs to use condoms EVERYTIME! Huh?”
“Look Slappie, I think what Becky needs right now is support. Maybe cut back on the lecture until it’s over?”
“She needs to be responsible! This isn’t her first abortion, okay?”
“Really? That’s strange. Then why did she tell me she had no idea what to do?” I wondered aloud. I looked over to Slappie, “I gave her a list of resources last night and explained the easiest way to go about it. I advised her to make a trip to planned parenthood this morning.”
“I’m gonna take her! That’s why I’m up right now. Huh?”
“That’s great! Let me know how it goes. I’m late for work.”
I scurried out of the condo and made the long trek to the salon.
A few days later Becky had the procedure. Slappie escorted her to the hospital and once it was over and she was able to leave, brought her back to the condo to recover.
The following morning, Becky developed a slight fever.
“How are you feeling?” I asked her.
“Not good,” she admitted.
“I don’t want to scare you, but if you are a running a fever you need to go to the hospital. That’s the first sign something is wrong and it can be dangerous,” I warned.
“I’ll be fine! Last time I ran a fever too and the nurse told me it was normal.”
I pulled out my phone and looked it up, I was right. Immediately, I sent the link over to Becky to prove my point but she wasn’t convinced.
“You know what Slappie did? Once I was let out of surgery, she took me to the store to buy condoms before bringing me home! Can you believe that?”
“What a cunt,” I mumbled.
“She was complaining about you the entire time. She said that you were upset she ate your food after you told her she could have it and that you are an alcoholic.”
“I told her she could have SOME of the food not all of it! And I like to drink, so what?” I defended myself.
“I kinda don’t blame you about the drinking,” she admitted.
I checked on Becky later that evening and her temperature had gone up.
“Here,” I said, placing a frozen rag on her head, “Hopefully this will take your fever down a bit. You really need to go to the hospital,” I warned her once again. “I’m really worried about you.”
“I will in the morning,” she promised.
I kept an eye on her most of the night and continued to change out her cold compress inbetween beers. Slappie went to work but checked in via text. Becky’s sickness only got worse and the following morning Slappie finally convinced her to go in. As it turned out, the doctor hadn’t finished the procedure correctly and there were still birthing fragments left inside of poor Becky. She had to have a second procedure to complete the abortion.
Becky made a fast recovery and just hours after surgery, she was released.
Slappie left to retrieve her and about ten minutes later I received the phone call.
“Asterisk!” I heard Slappie’s familiar voice on the other end. “I need you to come get Becky! ‘Cough’ I’m being admitted into the hospital!”
“What? YOU are being admitted? Why?” The news had caught me off guard.
“I’m having an asthma, ‘cough’ attack, ‘cough, cough’ I can’t breathe!”
….and there it was folks! Slappie could no longer handle NOT
being the center of attention. She decided to steal the medical thunder away from little Becky.
I jumped in my car and drove the two miles to the local hospital. There standing on the front stoop was a drugged, half lucid Becky. Her eyeliner smudged under her eyes and the back of her hair in knots. She was wearing a hospital gown, leggings, slippers and just one sock.
Guess who was sitting in the wheel chair?
That’s right, our own laughable, middle aged stripper. Slappie!
“Asterisk! Over here, ‘cough, cough’!” Slappie screamed, her voice echoing through the corridor. There was an annoyed nurse standing behind the wheelchair with her hands grasping the handle as Slapperoo breathed into a paper bag pretending to be hyperventilating.
I ignored her and immediately ran over to Becky. “Here, let’s get you into the car!” I opened the passenger door and helped her to sit down.
“Slappie’s car, you have to move it…” she mumbled. “My stuff. I need my stuff. Everything is blurry. Hello Mr. Cloud…” Becky mumbled, trailing off.
“Asterisk! You have to move my truck! The keys are inside! ‘Cough’,” Slappie demanded.
I took my own car into the parking garage and left Becky inside sitting on the passenger seat while I walked all the way back to the front of the hospital to fetch Slappie’s truck. I moved it over to the parking area as well, though I didn’t find a spot even remotely close. Once it was parked I had to walk back to the parking garage. Becky was still in the car babbling nonsense. The only part I could make out was she needed her things and they were still in Slappie’s truck.
Slowly, I drove my car over to where I had parked the truck. Once stopped, I went to fetch Becky’s belongings.
I peered inside the window and was shocked to find the biggest cow print suitcase I had ever seen. Still, I opened the door and attempted to pull it out. The damn thing must have weighed as much as a stupid cow. What the hell did she have in there? It took all I had to get it out and loaded into my car. I looked at Becky’s small frame and couldn’t begin to imagine her even lifting it. No way was I carrying it upstairs to the bedroom.
The last thing I did before driving back home was return Slappie her car keys.
By that evening, Becky was lucid again. Slappie decided that she was going to stay the night in the hospital, you know, to suck up as much sympathy from as many people as possible.
I didn’t humor her one bit. Actually I pretty much ignored her. Instead, of staying sober and waiting to see if she needed a ride I decided to open a bottle of wine and Becky joined me.
We stayed up all night laughing. I cooked us a seafood stew which I knew would piss off Slappie (I wasn’t allowed to cook meat on her stove) and I used the hair color I bought for Slappie to touch up Becky’s roots. Why it wasn’t until the sun came up that we went to sleep.
Somewhere around 9:00 am the hypochondriac made it home.
I didn’t hear the door slam, I didn’t hear her stomp up the stairs. It was in the middle of a screaming lecture that I awoke.
“Fucking bitch! I can’t believe you didn’t answer my text! I had to make my ex husband come all the way from LA to drive me home from the hospital today!” she yelled at me from the bedroom door.
“You were supposed to drive me home!” she continued.
My mouth was a desert and my head was spinning. There was no way I was getting up this early. I had only been asleep a few hours, I still had a hang over to sleep off.
“I left you your keys, why didn’t you drive yourself?” I questioned.
“What? I can’t drive! I just got released from the hospital! Are you going to take me to pick up my truck now or what? Huh?”
I was half asleep and partially drunk, but still that bitch wasn’t making any sense.
“You couldn’t drive ten minutes ago, but you can drive now?” I asked.
“AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!” she screamed as she stormed out of the room.
That turned out to be my last day living there but alas, that’s another story!
Copyright Wendi Bear 2015