Once more, Howard carried the weak Theodore from the balcony to the safety of his bed. Theodore looked as white as pure parchment, hanging as limply as a dis-guarded rag doll.
“Bonita I feel that I am struggling…..to….. breathe!” He gasped desperately.
Theodore began another violent coughing fit, his lungs rattled as a great deal of blood trickled from his cracked lips. Desperately, Bonnie grasped the clean chamber pot which sat under the bed, well aware that there was far too much blood to be caught in a small handkerchief. Theodore gasped for air like a fish out of water, semi-drowning in his own blood. Bonnie wiped away the trickle of blood which flowed over his chin. Theodore slumped against his pillows.
“My god ! I wish there was something I could do to help you. I feel that today was far too much for you. I should have never encouraged it!” Bonnie cried.
Theodore placed his head upon Bonnie’s shoulder. She gently stroked his hair in attempt to bring him some comfort. Theodore closed his eyes, up turning the palm of his right hand. Bonnie gently stroked his elegant fingers cradling his hand in hers. She brought it to her mouth kissing it tenderly,admiring his stunning sapphire ring he wore. Here Theodore slept, his hand still in Bonnie’s. As the lingering hours dragged, Bonnie felt her eyes growing heavier and she allowed herself to fall asleep in the chair with her head placed upon his bed. Theodore’s soft breathing was the only gentle reassurance that he was still alive.
Upon Bonnie’s awaking, Theodore was sicker than ever. There was little hope. His hand felt so cold, yet there were so many blankets covering his wasted body. Bonnie left his side momentarily, placing some more lumps of coal in the fire. Some embers floated gracefully up the chimney, the vibrant flames slowly warming the room. Bonnie glanced over her shoulder. Prince Theodore lay as white as a sheet appearing stiller than ever, he wasn’t?…..
“Oh no! Theodore!” Bonnie firmly shook his shoulder. He opened his eyes slowly and Bonnie’s own were filled with salty tears of relief. “Oh thank god! I thought..!” She placed her head upon the side of his bed and wept.
Prince Theodore stroked her long hair. “Please don’t cry, we have a little time together left.”
“Stay with me Bonita.”
“Of course, I have been with you for the past few hours.”
“Thank you. Don’t be sad. I will remember you always Bonita. You have been a key part of my life.”
Bonnie nodded. “And you mine my dear, how I will cherish those wonderful memories forever.”
He continued. “Would it be foolish to ask?…” He whispered. “As a friend would you lie beside me? I should like to know what it feels to lie beside another.”
“Why of course. It is not a foolish request at all.”
Bonnie sat upon the bed facing the door, glancing over her shoulder at Theodore. Bonnie slipped off her boots and lay on her side facing him. How shallow and fast his breathing is! She thought. She placed a hand on his shoulder. Bonnie stroked his hair lovingly and ran her fingertips over his structured cheekbone. He smiled.
“Hmmm how soothing. You have meant a lot to me Bonita.” Bonnie smiled, stroking the soft material of his white cotton sleeve.
“Likewise! Will you drink some water?”
Theodore nodded Bonnie rested his head against her shoulder, holding the glass to his pale lips. He took a couple of delicate sips, pausing for a brief moment before swallowing. Theodore gasped as even drinking was proving to be very difficult. Theodore shook his head in refusal to drink anymore, Bonnie adhered to his request and placed the glass down upon his bedside table.
To be continued….