Dixie woke up to a tight clasp on her upper arm. Her eyes were blurry, and she felt disoriented while tried to see the source of the attack.
“Good morning love,” Angie said. She was sitting in the recliner with a book in her lap.
The tight grip on her arm relaxed, and she realized it was just a blood pressure cuff.
“Sheesh, why are these things so tight?” she asked, grimacing.
“That’s technology for you,” Angie replied. “You have to take the good with the bad.”
“So, what’s the good?” Dixie asked, with one eyebrow raised.
“The good is that I’m getting out of here today. The doc says I’m fit as a fiddle, more or less.”
“I’m supposed to get out of here today too, I think. My head doesn’t seem to hurt right now, which is a blessing,”
“How about the ringing in your ears?”
“Well, there is still some ringing, but it wasn’t as bad as it was,” Dixie said, sticking a finger in one ear to see if she could somehow make it stop. She frowned.
“Eleanor says that is common after explosions. She ought to know – she took care of a lot of people who had seen action during the war.”
Just then, a nurse walked in, followed by a doctor. Dixie cocked her head to look at them and hoped for good news.
“So Dixie, how are you feeling this morning?” the doctor asked.
“Well, my mouth feels like it is full of cotton balls but other than that I feel much better,” she replied.
“Are your ears still ringing?” he asked, as he leaned over her bed and prepared to look in her ears.
“A little. I can hear you now, but it isn’t clear like it used to be,” Dixie replied.
“That’s good news,” he said, smiling at her. “I don’t see any ear damage, which is wonderful considering how close you were to the explosion.”
“The police think it was made by an amateur, so maybe I just lucked out,” Dixie said.
“How about you get out of bed and stand up for me,” he asked.
The nurse moved the overbed table, while Dixie removed the blankets and moved to sit on the side of the bed. The doctor helped her off the bed, and she stood a little wobbly at first. She regained her equilibrium and smiled.
“Good, good,” the doctor said. “I don’t know how you managed to avoid any burns or serious injury. You’re lucky. Maybe you have a guardian angel?”
“Maybe,” Dixie said, smiling.
“I’m going to let you leave today if someone else drives you home, but if you have any problems, I want you to come back. The nurse is going to make an appointment for you to see an audiologist.
Dixie nodded and sat back down.
“I’ll get your discharge papers signed, and you’ll be free to go after breakfast,” he said, and then left.
“So Dixie, maybe we can go home together?” Angie asked.
“Yep, as soon as we can find someone to drive us,” Dixie replied.
“No problems there – we have Eleanor! Her car is big enough for everyone,” Angie said, winking.
It was true – the old Lincoln could seat about eight people comfortably, and at least four people in the trunk if you wanted to sneak them into a drive in.
Dixie stretched her sore muscles and sat back on her bed. She nibbled at the breakfast that the nurse brought in - toast, coffee, and fruit while she listened to Angie talk about the latest news.
Angie told her about the funeral of Charlene Mussel that was coming up that weekend. The Casserole Crew would show up in full force for the wake, and she was trying to decide what casserole to make. Eric Mussel was going to be a widower now, and he was considered a great catch.
Angie had decided to get on with her life after her accident. Dixie, on the other hand, was worried. If the police didn’t catch her tormentor soon, she worried that the next wake the Casserole Crew attended would be hers.