dedicated to my friends, and everybody that wanted a second chance in life.
waiting for fish.
by rachel "starlight" fallin.
“You have cancer.”
It was a flat out answer that came out of the doctor's mouth as he slapped some test results on the examination table.
It was this answer that shocked David, a thirteen-year old boy who wouldn't have imagined getting a disease as bad as cancer.
David's mom, Leah, stared at the doctor without blinking her pretty violet eyes. David was sure her eyes would pop right out of her skull.
“What? C-can you test again, just to make sure it's not some kind of mistake?” She stammered, her eyes still wide open. She continued as the doctor shook his head.
“Please... There has to be a mistake... No one in our family has had a history of cancer... David's been a healthy boy all his life, he eats well... He plays sports... He
doesn't do anything reckless... How could this happen?” She grabbed her purse and buried her head in it, her blond hair strands falling around her face, concealing her
“Mom...” David started, but stopped. He too was quite shocked, but he knew cancer could happen to anybody, no matter how healthy you were.
He looked back at the doctor, “Is it bad?” He asked.
The doctor made a tiny shrug, “It's in the middle, but it may get worse. We won't let that happen though.” He then tapped Leah on the shoulder, who's head slowly
popped up, red and puffy from crying. He started to inform her about treatments that would hopefully help David get better.
David was determined that the cancer was nothing, and would pass away just like the common flu, but he had his doubts. It was then when it struck him; something he
never really realized the minute the doctor walked in with the test results:
David could die.
Over the next few months, David was on a steady dose of chemotherapy. His messy blond hair started falling off in clumps and he was eventually growing bald.
Besides this, he continued on normally with life. It didn't really affect him.
Or so he thought.
Whenever he came back for another doctor visit, they would always say, “You're getting better.” but the thing was, David didn't feel any better. In fact, he felt worse all
the time. The doctors were lying, probably only to make him feel better and believe he was going to be cancer-free any time soon, as well as to calm down his mother
who was still shocked about the whole thing.
David tried to stay positive, but he could feel himself going along slower and slower everyday. He was getting lethargic and less interested in the things he loved to do.
He stopped playing sports, and began to eat very little. It dawned on him that he may as well be dying, and all the treatments the doctors provided did nothing, but he
was stubborn, and pushed away his negativity.
One day, when David was out riding his bike, he traveled along a dirt road towards a cemetery, his tan jacket he was wearing whipping out behind him, looking like the
cape of a superhero.
When he got there, he rested his bike against the iron fence of the cemetery, and pushed the gate open with a small creak.
He walked along the rows of graves, looking at the names of dead people he never knew in his lifetime. There was one here that he knew very well, however, and he
eventually reached the exact grave. And there, he knelt down, plucking a simple yellow flower that grew beside it, and laid it on the grave.
On the grave, the name “Robert Mason Fisler.” was carved in bold, and antique handwriting. David placed his hand on the name and took a deep sigh, closing his eyes
as he did.
“Dad?” He whispered, “what's it like to die?”
David sighed again and stood up, remembering the horrifying incident from two years ago, where he got a call from his dad's fisherman buddies who said David's dad
went down to untangle one of the fishing nets, and never came back up again. When the coast guard came, they never found his body until a few weeks later after
searching the sea bed thoroughly. He was cremated and they buried his ashes here in this cemetery.
Since that day, David's mom fiercely protected David, as he was the only person that was left for her. She always made him wear a seat belt, and sit in the backseat
of the car, she always held his hand when he walked across a parking lot or crosswalk, he had curfew at an early hour, and she watched his eating habits regularly.
But now his mom was hopeless against the evils of cancer, and with David readily slowing down, it seemed the end was coming near.
A few more months passed, and the doctors were still comforting David and his mom by saying he was doing just fine and would get better soon. David was starting to
get a little aggravated at the doctors. Even if he told them he felt like he was feeling worse, they told him it was probably just a side effect of the chemotherapy.
David proved them wrong, however, because a week or so after his latest doctor visit, he was found lying unconscious on his bed. Of course, his mother took him to
the hospital, and he was kept there for a few days when the news finally came out that David was dying.
His mom decided to visit one night, when David was resting in his hospital bed, feeling worse then ever, and knowing that this may be his last night alive.
She sat next to him on a plush armchair, and stretched out her arm so she could stroke David's head.
David's eyelids flickered shut, then opened again, then shut again. He repeated this over and over, but he knew sleep, or even death, wasn't far off.
“Mom...” He croaked weakly, trying to grab her hand in his, but even this small effort was too much for the dying boy, and he gave up quickly. His mom realized that he
wanted to hold her hand, so she moved her hand from his hair, to his hand.
David had so much on his mind to tell his mother, but time for him was running out. So, to save time, he whispered “I love you...” then his eyelids drooped again, and
this time, it was permanent.
With a sigh of exhaustion, that reflected all his hard work he had done in his short life, he mumbled, “I'm going to take a long nap now...”
David could feel his mother's hand shaking in his as he said this, and with sparkling tears streaming down her face, she sobbed, “Don't fall asleep... Don't fall asleep...”
With the last of his power he still held in his body, he managed a small smile at his mother and mouthed the words “good-bye.”
And with his mother squeezing his hand tight, and the rhythm of her other hand stroking his cheek, his eyelids fluttered shut, and the last breath flew like a bird outside
of his body.
And with that, David's body lay still, forever.
David awoke suddenly with the sound of ocean waves and sea gulls cawing overhead. He felt around him, feeling warm blanket's of an untidy bed. He then realized that
the ground was moving up and down, like a smooth earthquake.
He sat upright and looked around at his surroundings, noticing that he was in the cabin of a boat. And not just any boat, it was his father's fishing boat.
David stared out the circular windows in confusion. Last thing he remembered was being in the hospital and feeling very weak and tired. But... Then what?
Realization struck him. He was dead. But wasn't he supposed to be in Heaven, in the clouds with the angels? Or was this some kind of his own Heaven, because he
missed his father?
He swung his feet over the side of the bed and walked around barefoot for a while in the cabin, getting used to the rocking feel of the boat under his feet as it floated
over the water.
He opened the door to the cabin, and stepped out onto the main deck, and what he saw next stunned him greatly.
There was his dad, whole and fresh, sitting on the edge of the boat with his fishing rod in hand, and the fishing line in the water. He hummed his favorite song as he
reeled it back in, and cast it back out.
“D-dad?” David stammered.
In an instant, his dad's face swung around and he smiled wide as he saw his son standing there on the deck of his boat.
“David! I was wondering when someone would join me here.” His dad exclaimed, ushering David over to sit next to him.
David obeyed and sat next to his dad, watching the bobber on the fishing line float among the surface.
His dad noticed him staring at it and said, “I've been fishing here for two years, and never caught a thing.”
“Did you try moving to a different spot?” David asked. His dad shook his head.
“I have no idea where I am, so I have no idea where the good fishing spots are.”
David nodded then a question struck his mind.
“Dad, do you have any idea how you got here?”
His dad started for minute, then stopped, thinking hard.
“No, all I remember is waking up in the cabin of my boat with no one with me... However, for some reason I remember being some place dark and cold, and I couldn't
David nodded again and said, “I think we're dead.”
“I'm not so surprised about that.” His dad said, “wait, if we're dead, then you're dead too?”
“Yeah. I died of... Sickness I guess.” Already, David was forgetting about his deathbed.
“Well, it's good I'm here, I don't want you fishing alone like I was for two years.”
Suddenly, bubbles surrounded the bobber as it was pulled under, fishing pole bending towards the water.
“Got one.” David said as his father reeled in his newest catch.
His dad smiled, “Finally.”