Chapter 8. Ticker Trouble
“Damn it, Megan, how the hell should I know?” I asked into the phone at my ornate office for AC Records in Los Angeles, unlike the comfortable one I had back in White Plains. At that moment, I wished I was home in New York, not here in the high-stress environment of Los Angeles that made me crazy just riding in the traffic to the office. At least at home, I could deal with Megan with a look or a simple answer, but across the country, Megan could hassle the piss out of me over nothing.
She just didn’t get that I had a full calendar between meetings and appointments and that I had no time to argue with her when she was ready to lay into me again about not putting a file back where it belonged.
All morning I was hot; I couldn’t cool off no matter what I did. My heart raced with the rise of my temper, and right now, I was in no mood for Megan’s shit.
“You don’t have to yell, Alex. Just say you don’t know where you put the file, and I’ll tear your office apart looking for it.”
“Damn it, Megan, why didn’t you do that before you called me? It’s so hot in here. The air must be off.” I reached for the handkerchief in my pocket and wiped my brow with it, unable to explain to her or anyone else what was happening.
“I’ll let you go, then. Bye,” replied Megan who sounded as if her feelings were hurt by my yelling at her. I’d get the cold shoulder from her for at least two days after I arrived home until I apologized profusely for that one, I knew.
Feeling like a cinder block had fallen on my chest, I buzzed Mrs. Simms on the intercom.
“Margie, help,” I said. She ran into the office with Gonzo, my next appointment, on her heels. My arms felt like they were on fire, and I could barely breathe. While I was gasping for breath, Mrs. Simms loosened my tie and shirt while Gonzo dialed 911. I don’t remember much after that until I was at the hospital. There were people hooking tubes up to me, and nurses whose faces were surrounded by the fluorescent lights above them, making my eyes hurt to look at them as they asked me questions I didn’t care about answering.
Then I blacked out again. The faint beeping in the background sounded distant to me, but I was out for the most part. Honestly, I don’t think I slept that soundly in a while, and I know I hadn’t for at least the last month.