My eyes went to the mass on the chest film: big, dense, and ugly, surely a lung cancer. I looked at my former piano teacher, my friend, sallow, emaciated, and withered. I felt as if a lump of lead had dropped into the pit of my stomach.
Earl (not his real name) said, “My family doctor wanted me to see a lung specialist, and I told him I wanted you.”
I faked a smile. “I appreciate the compliment. It's been what, eight years?”
He shifted in his chair. “Sorry. It hurts if I sit still very long. You still playing the piano?”