The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #11814   Message #89980
Posted By: Peter T.
26-Jun-99 - 12:43 PM
Thread Name: Story: Sherry Aims, Hobo Nurse (Peter T)
Subject: RE: Sherry Aims, Hobo Nurse
[I have received 2 e-mails asking whether this was my ending for the story (I am happy for the other thread to roll on, I just sort of liked these two characters on their own. Funny. I thought about it some more, and reluctantly, here is my real ending....]

(Much, Much, Much later)
When she woke up, he was sitting in a chair, dressed in his beatup clothes, looking out the window, whistling low to himself.
Sherry lay there, the tide of sleep falling away from her. She suddenly thought to herself, that man is conjuring up the lonesome whistle of a train. He is as gone as if he were never here.
He turned and caught her eye. "Awake, beautiful?"
She could not decide in that moment whether she hated herself for being beautiful, or for not being beautiful enough to hang on to him. Why had she fallen in love with this drifting man, like an oarless boat on a river to nowhere?
He knew what she was thinking. "Oh, come on, Sherry. You know me by now. That's just how I am. I have traced tomorrow's journey along the lines of many a sleeping woman's back."
She lifted herself onto one arm. " You know, Frisco, I think you think that there is a bigger and better truth somewhere down the line, and it never occurs to you that if you stay in one place, you might be able to dig down and find it where you stand."
He took her thought, as he always did now, after all they had been through together these many months, the struggles and the music and the long hungry days, and he weighed it seriously.
"You could be right, Sherry, you could be right. I have always thought of it a different way. The Navaho always talk about the people of air, the people of wind, the people of earth, and the people of fire. They all have different ways of working towards the truth. I am an air person, I think, or a wind person: I sniff the breeze, and the breeze moveth where it listeth, I guess."
"Please don't go, please, please."
He sat down on the bed. "Goin' isn't anything, really. Part of me will always be along with you, Sher, you know how it goes, don't think twice, it's all right."
She sat up in the bed, straight and suddenly mad. "Don't give me that folksinger crap. It is all crap. Go if you are going, but for once in your life, shut up about it. "
Frisco took a long look at her, as if he was taking her picture and developing it, and pasting it into his album. She stared back at him, defiant.
"If it is any consolation, Sherry, I do love you a whole lot."
"Don't you say that to me just when you are going out the door. You want me to be hooked on you even though you have moved along, like all the other damn women in your life. I won't give you that satisfaction. Saying you love me doesn't mean the same thing going, as it does staying."
He shrugged his shoulders, and got up off the bed. He took his guitar, and his pack, and went out to wherever it was he was going.
Sherry Ames, Hobo Nurse, sat there for a few moments, hugging herself against the pain. She listened stupidly for any sound that he might have turned around in the hall and was coming back. The sound of the elevator down the hall came and went five, ten times. Then she got up wearily, put on her bathrobe, and went to the bathroom.
When she came back in the room, she moved back automatically towards the bed; then suddenly stopped.
"Hospital corners can go fuck themselves." And she started slowly in on her life again.