PREVIOUSLY ON EXTRACTION
“You’re not a weekling.. you’re the strongest person I’ve ever known.. people weeker than you have survived this cancer… You can also survive, if you believe. Trust me”
“I trust you..”I breathed out..
“I don’t like to see you break down like this.. You won’t die..”
“I won’t die.. I’ll get treated… I won’t die”I rumbled
“That’s it… You’ll get treatment immediately after the wedding.. I’ll drive you to the hospital”
“Yeah!!! I’ll start the treatment after the wedding.. I won’t die”
“You won’t die”he pecked me..
“I won’t die”I whimpered hugging him…
“Why would you die???”a familiar voice spoke up and I pulled away from Travis warmth..
Staring at him in awe..
“How long have you been standing there??”I asked..
“A while now”he muttered, clearly irritated by my questions..
“How much have you heard??”I asked standing up from my sit..
While he walks slowly towards me..
“Not much.. That brings me to my question, Nisei… Why would you die??”he counted each words..
“Emmm!! It’s not what ya thinking..”I mumbled..
I don’t even know what he’s thinking right now..
“I heard you clearly, Nisei… And please don’t lie to me”James pleaded…
“He’s gonna find out sooner or later”Travis muttered
“I know..”i shouted shunning Travis…
He looked hurt..
“I’m sorry”I mumbled and he forced a smile on his face..
“I’m waiting for my answer, babe”James said drawing my attention back to him.
Should I lie to him??
He’s having a hard time, I don’t wanna add to his worries..
“You wouldn’t lie to your friend.. Would you???”he asked walking closer to us..
“No”I breathed out..
What should I do???
He deserves to know the truth.
“I deserve to know the truth”he murmured glaring at me..
‘why is he so mad??’i asked myself..
“You know how much I despise the idea of people hiding something important from me.. I thought you considered me as your friend”he whispered..
“Don’t blackmail her emotionally… She’s going through alot right now..”Travis chipped in .
“If my ears are not deceiving me, I clearly heard her saying she won’t die, and you confirmed to her that she wouldn’t die..”He persisted..
“Tell me the truth”he shouted..
“I have Gastric cancer”I blurted out..
He looked at me in awe, staring dumbfounded at me.
“Travis explain better to him, please”I said sitting down exhaustively on my couch..
“Gastric cancer also known as stomach cancer.. According to the test results, she’s at an advanced stage, the third stage to be precise..
But the doctor have adviced she undergo chemotherapy and radiation therapy before the surgery..”Travis explained..
“Ooohhh!! Gosh”James slumps onto the couch..
“Don’t freak out on me.. dude”I glared at him..
Pretending like I wasn’t affected my his actions..
If my best friends could behave like this, how would my parent and family react to this news…
The room suddenly became quiet, each of us glued to our thought..
“I guess, were the only ones aware of this now..”James broke the silence..
“Yeah!! It should stay like that until after the wedding..
I don’t want them to worry unnecessary…
And you guys are gonna pretend like nothing is wrong..
Is that clear???”I questioned..
“Yes boss”they whispered simultaneously..
James was struggling to hide his tears, so i looked away from him..
It’s making me uncomfortable..
“I need my besties hug right now”I breathed out..
In a blink of an eye, they both embraced me tightly..
“It’s just a sickness.. I’m not gonna die”I said to them but strangely, I was convincing myself..
“Wait!! When did you find out??”James asked breaking the hug first..
“Today.. Though the symptoms started before my brother’s engagement.. can you imagine I thought, I was pregnant, when I vomited at my brother’s party..”
“That explains what Travis meant by lady stuff.. I thought you were on your menstrual flow”James chuckled..
“Nope!!! I thank God, I wasn’t pregnant for that crazy boss of yours”I chuckled softly..
“He’s still your boss too”James pointed out…
“Why aren’t you at the office??”I asked curiously
“I brought a deal for you to review.. There’s a conference meeting by 10:00am tommorow and you gat to be there..”James said..
“No probs.. Any opportunity to put your boss into his place, that I wouldn’t miss at all…”
“That’s a good idea. You need a distraction..”Travis spoke up
“Kicking Fabian’s sorry ass, it’s a great idea . I don’t wanna miss such scene..”James laughed..
“Give me the deal… I hope this is something tangible..”
“It’s a preposition to the BOD (board of directors) on our new branch proposal in Miami..”James explained..
I opened the file, scanning through the document attentively..
“James, coffee or wine??”Travis asked standing up..
“I thought the normal question should be coffee or tea”James teased..
“Yeah!!! You don’t like tea, you either drink coffee or wine..”Travis rolled his eyes..
“Wine.. strong wine, I need to clear my mind..”James replied..
“Thought as much… Babe, what do you want??”
“Strong wine..”I replied imitating james pronunciation..
“I’ll go through this documents later..”I muttered… I toss the file aside and James chuckled quietly..
“That reminds me, I’m glad you didn’t change your lame password.. I wouldn’t have been able to get in nor would i have any idea that you’re ill..”James said..
“Don’t barge into my house like that again.. apply courtesy”I snapped at him
“I ran the bell several times.. You weren’t at work, you weren’t at home, Travis also wasn’t in his office.. You guys practically disconnected yourselves from this world.. I was scared something bad happened to you..”James explained..
“I’m glad I found out.. See, I’m handling the news better than i expected, better than you expected too”he said.
But I know, we all are hiding behind a mask..
We’re all pretending to be okay..
“I’m getting better at mixing drinks now”Travis complimented himself handing each of us a glass of strong wine..
I couldn’t help but notice something off with him..
His eyes are puffy, swollen and blod shed..
He has been crying secretly…
“Cheers to long life and friendship”I spoke up ignoring their dull expressions..
“Cheers”they said chorusly before drowning their wine..
“This wine is great..”I said raising my thump at Travis…
“My glass is almost empty..”James grumbled..
“I made a big bowl..”Travis chuckled..
“I’ll get it..”James said running off..
“What happened to your eyes”I asked..
“I don’t know something entered my eyes.. But I’m okay”he said dismissively..
“James..”I called out..
“This is a very big bowl..”I mumbled
“And I brought some cheese…”James added..
“I think it’s a good idea for me to resign before I begin my treatment… I don’t want him to know.. I don’t need his pity”I said quaffing my drink..
“There’s no need for that, he’s leaving the country after the wedding.. He wouldn’t notice your absence”
“Ooohhh!!”I puffed before taking a swig of my drink..
“I don’t want my family to know either.. I just want this cup to pass over me..”
“Your family deserves to know.. Who’ll sign the undertaking.??.”Travis asked
“What if you don’t make it..??”James blurted out..
“She’s gonna make it, dude.. She just have to..”Travis countered
“Easy guys.. I’m right here.. I’ll tell my family after Paul gets back from his honeymoon.. Because I don’t want him to cancel his trip because of me..”I paused as I guzzled my drink..
“I don’t want Fabian to know at all.. if he gets back from his business trip before I’m discharged, tell him i resigned.. I don’t want him to be suspicious of anything.. I won’t forgive anyone that tells him the truth… Even if I die, I’ll taunt that person and make his or her life a living hell..”I threatened..
“Easy babe.. I can’t believe you ever loved him at all..”Travis interposed..
“I despise him.. That’s only because I loved him.. All I crave for right now is to make his life miserable.. I want him to suffer the way I did.. I want to snatch everything he cared for away from him.., I want him to know how terrible it is to live after abandoning someone that loved you..” I said grinding my teeth furiously..
“I think you should forgive him.. Let bye gones be bye gones”Travis suggested..
“Bye gones can never be bye gones unless you buy a gun”I said and they burst into laughter…
“I love this side of you, way better than the soft loving side, and you’re way much funny”James said trying to contain his laughter..
“I feel so alive.!!!”I breathed out..
Though I’m dying..
I have unaccomplished goals to achieve… I can’t die so soon…
“The treatment will work”James said sobbing quietly..
“You have great will to survive.. The treatment will surely work on you”Travis added as he cried along with James..
I subconsciously, started crying…
Is this how scary death is to every human???
Will I survive this battle???
Can anyone fight against the will of God??
Can anyone conquer death??
“Someday, we all must surely die.. Is this my appointed time to depart??”I thought out loud sobbing heavily..
We embraced each other as we cried out together…
I just have to fight… If it’s my appointed time, I’ll submit to fate.. if not, I’ll fight hard to survive..
I won’t give up without a fight…
We sang off keys as we drank together, drowning away our sorrow, pain and sadness…
James and Travis, my true best friends.. My loyal friends..
I’m lucky to have them…
“Drink more”James stuttered
“I need to be the sober one here.. Travis is drunk and so are you”
“Sobering sober”He slurred before falling asleep…
Travis murmured something which I could hadly comprehend..
I laid them properly on the rug before laying down in the middle of them..
As if sensing my presence, they both wrapped their hands around me..
I placed my head on James chest to balance myself while Travis rested his head on my chest tightening his grib on my waist..
“Don’t leave”he mumbled..
“I won’t!!”I proclaimed..
I listened to both their heartbeats until I dozed off…
THE NEXT DAY
“Dude, here’s ya coffee”I said placing the cup of coffee in front of him..
“Hope I didn’t snore too loud last night??”he whispered and I chuckled..
“Nah!!! Not to loud, i barely notice.. I slept deeply”
“I’m back!”Travis exclaimed excitedly..
“Shouldn’t you be in the hospital??”James asked..
“No dude.. I only had two patients today but the second one bailed out on me.. Her appointment has been rescheduled for next week..”Travis explained stealing my cheese…
I just choose to ignore him..
“Stop stealing her cheese”James glared at Travis..
A strong wave of nauseousness hits me..
“Let him have it.. I’m full”I muttered.
“Are you okay??”Travis asked staring curiously at me..
“Yeah!!! I think so..”I choked on my word.. And I rushed to the bathroom opposite the kitchen..
“Babe!!”Travis and James panicked rushing after me..
I vomited blood..
“Blood!!”I freaked out weakly slumping on the floor but Travis caught me, he held me closely to himself..
He washed my face and helped me rinse my mouth.
“Take her away!”he told James..
James quietly wrapped his hands around my waist guiding me out of the bathroom..
Minutes later, Travis walked in with a thermometer..
I complied with Travis as he checked my temperature, then he checked my pulse..
“Good, nothing calls for alarm”he said before walking away..
“What’s happening to her?? Why don’t we rush her to the hospital??”James asked Travis as he sat down beside me…
“It’s normal in her condition.. The wedding is tomorrow, if we get her admitted, it’l surely draw the attention of the paparazzi..”Travis explained
“That’s another punishment of being a celebrity..”James muttered and we chuckled together..
“Can you be able to attend today’s meeting??”James asked
“Yes.. I just need to rest for a while, I’ll take my bath when I feel better”I answered..
“I’ll bath you myself..”Travis declared..
My face became flushed with excitement..
“Are you shy?? He has seen you naked before..”James said mockingly..
“I’m not..”I replied..
“I don’t want her to be left alone… Her safety should be our top priority..”Travis declared..
I smiled at him before resting my head on Travis lap while James shifted to the edge of the couch.. He gently placed my legs on his lap..
“James, why are you scared of seeing me naked??”I asked
“Because, it’ll make me feel awkward.. both your ex’s were my friends too.. And I don’t wanna be acting like a weirdo around you”James explained
But I’ve seen his half nakedness, why should he be uncomfortable around me??..
“Okay..”I muttered closing my eyes..
“Have you cross-checked the deal??”James asked while Travis caressed my hair gently..
“Hmm.. I made few corrections..”I replied with my eyes closed tightly together..
“No business talk, guys..”Travis grumbled..
“You’re the odd one amongst us.. You’re a doctor”I teased him and he chuckled..
“But it’s good to have a doctor as a friend.. it makes you feel secured and save especially when he’s around you..”I whispered but audible enough for them to hear me.
“Good morning ma”the security greeted me..
“Good morning sir”the security greeted James and Travis..
I convinced him to tag along with us, so he wouldn’t be bored at home..
“Sure, your big boss won’t make a fuss of my presence here??”Travis asked me staring awkwardly at the building.
“I’m right here, I won’t let him scare you off so easily”I said pulling his cheeks awkwardly..
James chuckled softly..
“Since when did big boss tighten security over here??”I asked James
“Over a month now.. No one gets pass them without ID, even if you did, that gateway is computerised, your ID is the pass..” James replied..
Why didn’t he explain this new development to me at home.
I can surely deceive that robotic machine..
I just need to handle those stone faced securities..
“How can I enter without an ID”Travis grumbled again..
“Let’s go.. This will be fun”I said grabbing hold of his hand as we marched inside the building.
The guards let James pass without even showing his ID..
I walked pass them without ID holding trembling Travis..
“Excuse me ma!”someone called from behind me..
James grinned mischievously at me.
I wore a bright smile before slowly turning around..
“I’m Thomas, my little girl is a big fan of yours, today is her birthday I would be very happy if you signed your autograph on the gift I bought for her..”Thomas ask politely..
“What a coincidence!!”I exclaimed..
“What’s ya daughter’s name Sir and how old is she??”I asked..
“Treasure Ma, She’s clocking 6 ma..”he replied..
“Here’s a photograph of her, I’m organizing a small birthday party for her..”he said happily and opened his wallet for me to see her photograph…
“She’s beautiful..”I drooled..
“Get the gift ready, I’ll sign it before leaving.. it Should be done before 2pm”I instructed..
“Thank you ma..”he bowed his head before rushing off happily like he won a trophy..
“Can you order a cake, a ball gown of her age and marching shoes. White shoe, pink dress would be okay”I said to Travis..
“So, your tight security bullshit, was a prank??”I asked James..
And he nodded his head while laughing uncontrollable..
“Remind me to strangle him later”I whispered to Travis..
“Yes, babe”he mouthed..
“But it wasn’t all a lie.. You got a free pass because you’re a celebrity and you’re a special employee here”James defended himself and I hissed, walking past him to my office with Travis trailing behind me.
I’ll surprise that little girl..
“How would you feel, if your favorite celebrity shows up at your party??” I asked opening my office door..
“I’ll be shocked, amazed and extremely happy..”Travis replied..
“You’re planning on showing up at her party”Travis asked..
“You’re one smart therapist.. Yes..”I replied happily..
“That’ll be the best surprise ever..”Travis laughed…
“I also need ya help.. I need to know Mr Thomas address..”
“That’s a small task for me..”
“Good, also find out the time for the party.. “
I just hope paparazzi won’t sneak up on me..
Life of a celebrity is kinda weird..
“I don’t want anyone to think I’m doing this to create a good public image for myself..”I muttered..
“You’re a celebrity now babe.. There must always be criticism.. But I know you’re motives are true and sincere, that’s all that matters”
“You always know how to make me happy.. You’re the best, dude”I pecked him before grabbing my file..
“Make your self comfy while I get to bore myself at that damn meeting.. Take care”I blew him few kisses before walking out of my office..
I met James standing outside his office waiting for me..
“I heard, the big boss is moody today”James spoke up and I chuckled..
“That’s his problem to deal with, he lacks good business ethics.. He shouldn’t start a day with a dour mood.”
“Wait!!”i exclaimed and we both halted.
“Is that the reason why we are going into the conference room five minutes before the actual time??”I asked pointing at my wrist watch..
“Hmmmm!! Not really. I just don’t want him to vent his anger on us, especially, when he probably knows you came in with Travis”James explained..
“Damn you, James.. I don’t give a damn about what he thinks or his actions towards me.. I’m not in any relationship with him, he’s just my big boss.. He has no right to vent his fustration on me..”I said grinding my teeth sounding extremely pissed off..
“Nisei calm down… it’s just a hunch.. it won’t happen “James said reassuringly..
“I’m not concerned about that.. He wouldn’t dear try his draconian attitude towards me, else I’ll teach him a harsh lesson”
I paused as I saw our team mates walking towards us..
“Good morning sir, good morning ma”they greeted chorusly..
“Morning”james and I replied chorusly..
“Let’s go”I said as we walked together towards the conference room..
They are all acting nice and humble before me after I became a well known reputable personnel..
I would call the meeting a complete waste of time..
It was extremely boring and dull..
Everyone was afraid to make mistake except for James and I, I just overlooked his behavior..
The presentation was dull..
Miss Augusta was trying to impress the big boss and not to piss him off..
Even though, everyone knew he from onset of the day, he was irritated..
But things got better before the signing of the deal..
At least, his mood became better, he smiled briefly..
“Miss Akiko, can i have a moment with you, in my office..?”Fabian asked..
“Yes Sir..”I replied before walking up to meet James, while Fabian walked away with his secretary trailing behind her..
“I’ll catch up with you later, Keep Travis entertained.”I requested and he nodded his head before walking away..
I entered the private elevator, heading to big boss’ office..
I halted at Janette desk..
“He’s waiting Ma..”Janette spoke up..
“Drop the formalities..”
“You’re a celebrity.. you deserve the formalities ma..”she replied..
“You’re my friend.. You’re only allowed to address me as Nisei..”
“Okay, Nisei”she mumbled and I chuckled..
“I hope I still gat my job intact”I murmured and she burst into laughter..
I swinged the door opened without knocking..
Fabian gestured for to sit down..
“Are you gonna reprimand me??”I asked sitting down.
“No, I need your help on a surprise, I’m planning to give my sister”he replied loosening his tie..
“I know they already have a honeymoon plan but I want to give her something special.. But I don’t know what to give them”He explained..
Their honeymoon is my present to them..
“That’s a though situation.. You can buy her jewelries, car or even a mansion”I blurted out..
Suddenly, i started to feel dizzy and the urge to vomit..
“Mansion.. that’s a great idea.. instead of debating which house to stay after the wedding, I’ll just buy them a mansion”
“Perfect choice.. Alright, I’ll take my leave Sir..”I stood up from my sit..
“Thanks alot..”he whispered barely audible…
She looked kinda pale as she turned around walking out of my office..
I wanted to ask her, why she came to the office with her doctor guy, Travis ..
But I couldn’t bring up the question..
What if she reads meaning to my curiousity??
What if she yells at me again??
But what if there’s a chemistry between them..
He calls her babe..
He stares at her mesmerizingly..
His eyes glitters when she smile..
He has that loving look that Paul has for my sister..
I just don’t want her to get hurt again..
She needs someone who truly love her.
Someone like her brother, Paul….
My phone beep interrupted my thought..
Irritated, I picked up my phone..
Due to my irritation, I did not feel the need to view the profile of the caller using my Truecaller..
I just accepted the call..
“Hello”I spoke up, my voice depicting my irritation..
“I missed you..”a very familiar voice replied and my heart miss a beat..
Even in my wildest dreams in never imagined to hear this voice again…
Anger slowly consuming my heart..
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