The old doctor asked Heath if he was depressed.
Heath shook his head, no. He was shocked his blood pressure wasn't sky high.
Heath looked away and out the warped window of the old building. Dr. Cartwright's office was above the bank. He felt like he was part of an old wild west show. The paper covers rustled under him as he shifted his weight. He was still in his khakis from school, but just in a tank now because it was so warm out now. God, he hoped the old man didn't look under shirt or down his throat or even touch him for that matter.
"Sometimes." Heath managed to shake his head. He couldn't get the the blood pressure mechanism off fast enough. He hated that thing. He was afraid it would be on so tight that it might cut his arm off. "You know, my first year teaching." Heath squinted. Wondering if public school was easier. Here, everyone knew your business. Or thought they did.
"So what do you do, to relax?" The old docter was back to questions.
Heath broke out in a laugh. He just couldn't help himself. He took a deep breath.
"What's so funny?" The doctor's thick gray mustache moved around so that Heath felt a tickle, of slight laughter, still in his throat. He coughed.
"Uh, nothing, um, I-I used to smoke."
Before Heath knew it, the old doctor handed him a cigarette and lit it with his lighter. Heath was startled.
"I-I gave up smoking, you know." Heath choked then, but he was soon smoking as if this might be a little, one shot life-saver.
"OK, you want to tell me whats really going on." The old doctor looked him in the eye. "You're fine. You're just scared. Somebody like you who's been on stage a good portion of your life, shouldn't get stage freight now. You're a teacher."
"Are you Father Keegan's doctor?" Heath winced as if maybe this had to be the strangest doctor he'd met. The old doctor sounded as if someone had told him things. Heath took another puff from the cigarette.
"No. But we usually have breakfast together every morning." He told him.
"You and Father Keegan?" Heath looked at him out of the corner of his eye. He thought a kitchen full of nuns got up at four in the morning just to make a master piece for the Father to chow down on. Alone. What did this mean? Now he wondered who Father Keegan confided in.
"You have a problem with that?" The old doctor gave him a stern look.
"No, no..really I don't." Heath cleared his throat. "Its just, yes, I'm going through some problems. I guess."
"Personal?" The old man lit a cigarette too. Heath could imagine the doctor and Father smoking cigarettes and drinking coffee, talking about how the world was going to hell in a handbag.
"Well, yeah." Heath blinked wondering if the old doctor thought he was sick over world hunger or something. Now that he thought of it, he guessed he was being rather shallow about all this. "I-I got married." Heath told him. "My boyfriend and I got married."
"Huh." That was all he got out of the doctor and a slight cough.