She sat on the edge of the sofa, her fingertips nervous, conscious of the frayed seams, worn upholstery and dulled paisley print. The ceiling fan squealed as it spun, and the humidity in the room was oppressive. Her blouse clung to her with sweat, and she could feel a bead of sweat run from her hairline to her brow.
Just being there had not been the plan. She had been sucker punched. Winded and brought down by some cosmic joke.
She shifted in her seat, and looked at the door. She could go. No one would know. At least not for the next half hour, and that was long enough to get out of town. She became aware of the waiting room’s cello music bleeding in crackles through a speaker precariously mounted in the corner of the room and her stomach churned.
She stood, clutching her purse to her side, looked at the two other pale faces sitting waiting too, and she strode towards the door. As her hands wrapped around the door handle to leave, she heard her name over the speaker:
Miss Marshal, to room 7 please. Ms Marshal.