There was nothing decent on the tele. Suzanne flicked through the choices on Netflix and discarded everything. She wasn’t in the mood for a comedy and didn’t want to sit through a murder or a police procedural. She told herself it wasn’t because of her worries, that was daft of course. Those sorts of things happened either to other people and you only heard it on the news, or in fiction. Though she didn’t know where Lucy and Ginny were right now, there was nothing sinister about it. It was all a huge mix-up that would be solved tomorrow when they all met up at the hospital.
She didn’t remember Ginny saying anything about going away but maybe she had. Maybe they had been told and simply forgotten. When she thought about all the events in order it had been Lucy who had started the fuss. Suzanne tried to think through all the recent weeks, had there been something? Though they were close Ginny was a private person. There had been the odd occasion in the past when she hadn’t told them she was having tests or treatments. She said it was because she didn’t want to worry them and didn’t want them to feel obliged to come with her. She could bring nothing to mind right away but, after all, she hadn’t known about this appointment. They were close but they still had their own lives, private.
As for Lucy, well that was obvious, she had stomped off because of Steve. She knew that Steve would call Suzanne and didn’t want to get her involved in a nasty row. She was sorry her friend hadn’t felt able to confide but here it was again. Private lives. It was probably how come they had been able to keep the friendship going all these years. Mutual respect.
Suzanne felt better. She felt slightly smug at how mature they all were. She made a cup of cocoa and took it up to bed with her Kindle. She was looking forward to the next day when it would all be sorted. She’d suggest a meal out after. Or maybe she should have her friends back to her house. She could put a casserole in the oven before she went to the hospital and then they could come back and have a nice meal together and laugh about the turmoil of the last few days.
When the phone woke her it was still dark. The house was silent. She felt the familiar frisson of panic this always brought as she reached for her phone and glasses on the bedside table.
Number withheld. She clicked to answer. There was silence. An open line. “Hello. Who is this? Lucy is that you? Ginny?”
She switched on the bedside lamp and pushed herself into a sitting position. “Who is this? Come on. What are you playing at? Speak if you’re going to.”
There was silence. And then faint and difficult to hear a small sound. Her name. Something that sounded very much like a sob and then nothing.”
The hairs on her arms stood on end and her stomach turned over. What the hell was that about?