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The Italian Lesson [Installment 1]
Part I: Calabresi
The last time I saw him, I wanted him dead.
Now here he was. Standing by the door, very much alive. When I opened my eyes I couldn’t see him clearly –– the muffled sounds of the EKG and the low thrum of the fluorescent lights made my head hurt and he hung back in the shadows.
Still, I thought I saw the corner of his mouth curved upward in the beginning of a smile, the kind of smile he flashed at me when he knew he’d won.
He moved toward the bed. I pretended not to notice and turned away as best I could, feigning disorientation. The closer he got the farther away my life seemed. My life, the idyllic life I had built away from him, was slipping away. Then I remembered once wanting him dead—I had felt such horrible guilt afterward. It just wasn’t like me. But I was a different person now, to the extent that that’s possible. He reached for my hand and, before I lost consciousness again, I thought, “Instead of wanting him dead, I should have been more proactive.”
And I felt no guilt at all.