A4, G2, H2, with Foster as the sickie
A4. “I think I’m going to be sick.”
G2. “It’s okay if you want to open a window.“
H2. “Lay your head on my lap.”
Ava turned off the car’s radio, hoping the silence might help. Beside her, Foster’s eyes were screwed shut, his face ashen and drawn. The migraine had come on suddenly, with no aura to let them prepare or signal that they should head home. By the time they realized it wasn’t just a headache, it was too late.
Foster made a pained sound in his throat, and Ava, unable to do much else, reached over and clasped his hand.
“Just keep your eyes closed,” she said, speaking softly. “We’re almost home.”
“Really don’t feel good,” Foster hissed through clenched teeth.
“Go ahead and open a window. The cool air might help.”
Foster fumbled blindly for the button before managing to roll down the window. He leaned his head back against the seat and let the breeze cool his face. It seemed to do the trick.
Eyes closed, Foster let Ava guide him into his apartment.
“Here,” she said gently, easing him down onto the couch. “Just sit here for a second. I’ll be right back.”
Foster did as she asked, trying to breathe through the pounding in his head. His stomach lurched unpleasantly, and he gripped his midsection, willing the nausea to pass.
He heard Ava enter the room, and a second later felt the couch dip as she sat down beside him.
“I brought you some water,” she said.
Foster shook his head miserably. “I think I’m going to be sick.”
“That’s alright. I came prepared.” He felt something press against his chest, which he identified as the small plastic wastebasket from his bathroom. She placed her hand on his back, rubbing it slowly.
Stomach churning, Foster gagged once, but all that came up was air.
“Let it up if you need to,” Ava encouraged.
Foster gave another dry retch, and another, his stomach turning itself out while his head split. “Oh, god…”
“Deep breaths, sweetie.”
Foster gave another unproductive heave.
“I don’t think anything’s going to come up,” Ava said after a moment.
But Foster’s stomach had other ideas. He heaved again, and this time a wave of vomit burst from his lips, splashing noisily into the wastebasket.
“Oh, Foster,” Ava murmured. He belched up another wave in response. “Okay, okay, that’s it. Get it up. You’re going to feel better once it’s over.”
Foster shook his head. He didn’t feel better at the moment. In fact, he felt like he’d never feel okay again. His head ached beyond words, made worse by each heave.
Ava sat with him patiently through it all, squeezing the back of his neck in an effort to lessen the migraine.
Finally, blessedly, the nausea subsided.
Foster wiped the tears from his eyes, shaky and weak from the pain.
“Do you feel like you’re finished?”
Ava set down the wastebasket and motioned him to come closer. “Here, lay your head on my lap.”
He did as she asked, sighing in relief as she began to massage his temples. His stomach began to settle, and his headache became almost manageable.
“Just relax,” Ava said. “Try to sleep, if you can. I’ve got you.”