PG13 (to be safe).
Blair continues to heal...
Beta: Thank you to Jayne Perry for the beta-reading and pattrose for the cover art. All other artwork is by me.
24 Little Hours
By Leesa Perrie
So, yesterday, we reached the campsite. Not quite out in the
wilds like we used to go, but still off the beaten track a
managed the terrain, with a little help.
Cover art by pattrose
Simon, Jim and Daryl set up the campsite while I watched.
they went fishing. I watched. They cleaned the fish they had
caught. I watched. They made the evening meal. I
Then Daryl did some truly wicked impersonations of his teachers at
school. I had to smile. Then he impersonated Jim. We all cracked up,
though Jim tried desperately to look upset. Then Daryl
impersonated his dad. Simon tried to look unhappy, but the
laughter was infectious. I don’t think
so much for, oh, a long time now.
Then Daryl did an impersonation of me. Not me, now, but me
the accident. Jim and Simon looked unsure of my
laughed and laughed. Then I cried.
I vaguely remember Simon and Daryl going off together, leaving me
crying my eyes out on Jim’s shoulders. I
how long I cried, but I guess it was along time. Jim never
anything, just rubbed circles on my back, and handed me some tissues
when I had finished.
I guess I needed to cry.
And now, it’s the end of the next day. And what a
Daryl apologised when I woke up. He was embarrassed that he
made me cry. I told him it was okay. And it was okay. It
So, after breakfast, we went fishing. I was going to watch
but Jim and Simon set up a chair on the river’s bank and
me into it. Next thing I know, there’s a rod in my
hand. What could I do? I cast a line.
Well, I caught two fish. Jim helped me – it was difficult to
them in from a sitting position. I realised I was enjoying
myself. It felt strange. Like I shouldn’t
be. But I
Simon and Daryl had wandered down the river a bit, but were still in
sight of us. It was after a quick lunch that it
Another defining moment in my life. I looked and realised
Jim had zoned out on something. He was doing the statue
impersonation, not the puppet with cut strings one, which was
I was going to call Simon, but I realised that I
Daryl wasn’t in on the Big Secret yet. So, it was
me. Me, the damaged guide.
I carefully got up and made my way over to Jim. It
easy, as he had waded out into the shallows. I had to be
careful where I put my crutches, testing each placing to make sure they
wouldn’t slip and dump me in the river. I was
that terrified, of falling. Of hurting myself even
But Jim needed me.
I made it to his side with no mishaps, just one close call. I
to drop one of the crutches so that I could touch Jim. I
him and talked to him, and within a minute he was back. He
surprised to find me in the water with him, but soon realised what must
have happened. He smiled, said thanks, and helped me back to
chair, after retrieving my fallen crutch.
I spent the afternoon thinking. Pretending to fish, but
really just thinking.
I had thought I was no use to Jim. Or at least, not a great
of use. Not anymore. But I could still help him. I could
I guess I had an epiphany of sorts. Because suddenly life
didn’t seem so bleak and hopeless. Hope
was still a small flame, but it was there. And I was going to
cling to it.
It’s late now. I’ve been in bed, well, in
bad, for some time. Just thinking about life. You
life, the universe and everything. And the answer
It’s doing the best you can. Making the best of a
situation. It’s not giving up. And I had, almost,
Tomorrow, we will be heading back home. I can’t
wait to get
to physio. I have a lot of work to do, but I’m
ditch the crutches. I’m going to walk
I’m going to go back to the Rainier and get on with my life
there. I’m going to be Jim’s guide at the station,
maybe out in the field a little. I mean, interviewing
should be okay. Going to crime scenes once they are secured
be fine as well. And maybe I can find other ways of sneaking
in the field with him. I’m not just going to sit at
desk and do paperwork – no way.
You know, there’s a song that I can’t get out of my
mind. Don’t remember who it was by. It
like; ‘what a difference a day makes, 24 little hours, and
difference is you.’
Yeah, 24 little hours can make a big difference. But in this
case, the difference is me. The real me. The me I
be. The me Daryl impersonated. Cause he’s back now,
me. Oh I know there will be set backs, times when the
hits, but I’m not going to let it win. I
me if I did, after all.
‘What A Difference A Day
Makes’ - Words & Music by Maria Grever
Adams. Recorded by Dinah Washington, 1959