My vision was blurred as I looked around the small room. I could make out three figures, two of which were sobbing.
“I’m so sorry, but your daughter doesn’t have much longer to live. The cancer is untreatable and has moved to her lungs,” the doctor whispered with a solemn tone.
I knew they were talking about me. I tried to say that I would be okay, but I was too weak to do anything. I couldn’t even cry. Footsteps inched towards my side. My vision focused on my mother’s face. She gently caressed my cheek.
“Mom,” I barely mumbled.
Her lips curved at the ends to form a smile. I realized this was it. I didn’t have much longer, but I wasn’t ready to go. I didn’t want to leave this way.
“Hailey,” she started. “I love you.”
I couldn’t tell her I loved her back. The hospital room felt dense with sadness. My eyes began to feel heavy and I grew tired. I closed my eyes.
Slowly, my eyes lightly flew open. I wasn’t sick anymore. I looked around to see a child’s room that was filled with stuffed animals. I noticed I was dressed in a pink dress, which was definitely not normal for me. I realized my hair was short and blonde instead of brown. I also saw I wasn’t in the hospital any longer. Was I dead? I saw a young girl sitting next to me.
“It’s time for a tea party, everyone,” the girl stated. “I’ll be a host, Sarah!”
I looked at Sarah with wonder. What was I doing in her room? I saw her room was very pink. From the dresser to the floor it was mostly pink.
She looked directly at me and said, “Hailey, you need to drink your tea.”
“Me?” I asked, unsure of if she would know I was talking.
“Yes, silly. You are my best friend,” Sarah giggled childishly.
Then it hit me. I was this girl’s imaginary friend. I am dead, but not at the same time. I had a new life and a new responsibility. I gently picked up the empty teacup and took a sip.
I smiled, “Wow, this is yummy tea, Sarah.”
Her smile stretched from one ear to the other which made me feel joyous. I couldn’t believe I was able to have this opportunity. I was never going to leave her side.
Before I knew it morning had come. I couldn’t wait to see what today had planned. I looked over to see Sarah grabbing her backpack.
“Sarah? Where are you going?” I asked.
“I have to go to the doctor for an appointment. You come with me,” she smiled.
Sarah paused and her smile disappeared, “I’m sick. I forgot what it is, but yeah.”
In the doorway, a woman stood. It was Sarah’s mom. Her long, brown hair fell perfectly onto her shoulders. Her eyes were a gorgeous ocean blue, and I was mesmerized.
“Who are you talking to, honey?” she asked.
“Mom, it’s Hailey. She’s my friend.”
Her mom shook her head. I could tell she didn’t believe her daughter which broke my heart. Sarah started to walk out the door and I quickly caught up.
I followed Sarah into the hospital. It was the same hospital where cancer patients got treatment. It clicked in my brain that Sarah had cancer.
“Sit over there and a nurse will call when they are ready,” the desk lady said.
I walked with Sarah to the kid’s waiting section. There we played with toys. I laughed when Sarah tried having a square fit into a circle.
“Sarah Wellington,” someone called.
“Oh, that’s me. Come on, Hailey. It’s time!”
My heart was heavy with sadness as we entered the small testing room. She was so excited about something so awful. It wasn’t fair. The world continued to spin as this young girl suffered. It was then I decided I wasn’t going to be the Debby Downer for this girl. I was going to be just as happy as she was. We would stop the world together. We could do anything.
“Sarah,” I whispered.
She looked at me with curious eyes. Her big eyes looked into mine.
“We can do anything!” I smiled because I knew it was true.
The doctor interrupted us as he walked into the room.
“Miranda, can I talk to you outside?” the doctor asked Sarah’s mm.
She nodded and walked after him. It was like watching a lost puppy, yet different. I looked back towards Sarah who was now watching her feet.
“No, we can’t,” Sarah faintly mumbled.
I could sense the defeat she felt. I knew how Sarah felt because I had gone through the same. Yet, now I’m here with her.
“Hey, stop. We can do whatever we want,” I said with excitement. “If you want to fly a plane, then I’ll be there right beside you. Anything you do, I’ll do with you. You can’t let one misstep get in the way!”
Sarah chuckled, “Yeah, you’re right.”
“You and I are going to be forever together. Stuck like glue. Even if you forget about me, I’ll be here as your guardian angel.”
Sarah hugged me tightly. At that moment, I knew Sarah would get past this. She would overcome cancer. I turned to see the doctor walk back in with Sarah’s mom. Suddenly, the room grew dense.
The doctor cleared his throat, “We found that the cancer is gone. The treatments have worked effectively, but-”
“But what?” Sarah asked impatiently.
“It’s possible it will come back. We have prescribed medicine that’ll possibly stop it from coming back. We also will need to see you regularly.”
Sarah and I both smiled widely. The cancer was gone! Who cares about coming in regularly if it means being free of cancer? Hearing this news was a double win. This news made me feel like I had done something so good. My death helped this girl live! Now, we were both going to be living once again. We left the hospital feeling like we had overcome the biggest thing. We could climb mountains if we wanted. In the car, I grabbed Sarah’s hand in mine.
“Forever together,” I promised with confidence.
In the beginning, Hailey dies. Hailey then becomes Sarah's imaginary friend. Sarah and Hailey aren't the same characters.