Note: Transcripts are generated using speech recognition software and may contain errors.
one the beginning I want to begin from. I was very young when I first learned the power of a broken heart. Fortunately, or maybe unfortunately, it was not my own heart that taught me this truth. My heart, after all, was already broken, and that's why I'm here, I thought wryly, glancing up from the all too familiar patient room, Florida Apollo City Hospital. Between the tarnished sense of sterility, It's ash colored tiles and the dulls white walls. I almost felt at home in the last six years. I'd come here a to least once every couple of months. Between all my visits, I had counted the cabinets along the wall countless times, even if I always forgot how many there actually were. In the end, that wasn't the only thing I'd for gotten either. I frowned at the sudden, overwhelming scent of iodine. How long have I been sitting here to have forgotten that I hated that smell? It wasn't just unpleasant in itself. It also brought up a wide array of unpleasant memories. What is it, Raya? Despite my discomfort, a small, reassuring smile was already on my lips as I looked over at my grandfather through the loose stresses of my coppery hair. I saw him watching me with a concerned look on his face. My grandpa was a thin man with a bushy white beard and kind, ageless eyes. Every day since I'd finished elementary school, it seemed as though he was getting shorter as I was getting taller. As I gazed at him, taking in his plain clothes and his oversized coat, I thought how easy it would be for the average person to dismiss him, to see him as harmless and old, barely indistinguishable from any man walking in the street. Grandpa would never be that to me. No, to me. He was my hero. Grandpa was the one who brought me back to the United States after my parents died in a car crash in Norway when I was seven years old. After nearly dying in the crash myself and losing what seemed to be my whole world at the time, he was the one who kept me going. He was my hero then, and ever since, he had become a friend, a mentor and a confidante. Unsigned, Grandpa, I said, letting his dark chameleon eyes meet my own blue violet ones. As I held his gaze, I felt the worlds of unspoken trust passed between us, and I saw his concern visibly lesson, of course, that still didn't stop him from asking the inevitable question. He crossed his arms and leaned back against the faded medical poster on the wall behind him. Do you want to talk about it? We have a few moments before Dr Digger comes in. It was a Ziff. He knew I was desperate to hide the truth from him. But then I supposed Grandpa already knew some of what happened. School officials would have had to tell him something when they asked him to come for May, my fingertips tightened against my cot, pressing into its smooth plastic and crumbling the overlying paper beneath the brown and white colors of my Rosemont Academy uniform. I felt the back of my legs tingle with alarm. If you tell me exactly what happened, I might be able to tell you what went wrong. We will need to figure it out. I went still for a long moment, long enough to make it seem like I was thinking over his words, but I already knew what went wrong I'd broken my best friend's heart. Grandpa Side seeming to step back. Everything will be all right, Raya. This is part of growing up. I'm just still processing it all. I lied. It doesn't help that I feel guilty. Guilt misapplied is an abuse of the heart. Well, I would know something about abusing my heart, I replied jokingly, glancing around the room. After all these years coming to see Dr Dinger, Grandpa Odd smiled, knowing my humor was as much a way for me to protect myself as it was to reveal myself. It is true that in the last couple of years since we've started to come and see him, you would know matters of the heart inside and ah, but the hard often has a mind of its own and a realm all to itself.