The Last Note
After that day on the beach, Hutch noticed Starsky started to fight back. First, barely noticeable, but slowly the signs became more clearly. He seemed to regain more of the old Starsky again as the days continued and a certain spirit began to show. He tried to give the handicap a place in his life, which was a good sign, even though there were often days that he was sombre and depressed.
Despite the odds, slowly Starsky’s hearing began to return. It came in bits and pieces and Starsky was both exhilarated as well as confused. It wore him down immensely. The first few days when he began to pick up the middle pitched tones again, he was even more jumpy than before, swirling around at the slightest sounds.
But he was delighted when he began to hear Hutch again. If Hutch spoke slowly and loudly and faced him, he was able to make out what he said. The first few words he really understood were, “Are you hungry?”
Starsky sprung up like he’d been stung by a bee and embraced Hutch with child like enthusiasm. “I can hear you!” He said loudly. “Yes! Yes I am hungry!” He snuggled up in Hutch’s arms and then let go, happy, shining.
The blond felt a warmth run down his spine. Starsky was on his way back. Not completely healed and probably with a long way ahead of him, but he was on his way back.
The process was a slow one. It took months before Starsky was able to hear low and high pitched notes, but they did return. He returned to his duties, welcomed by his colleagues and friends. The memory of that dark period began to fade as days turned into weeks, leaving it further and further behind.
One evening, as Starsky was vacuuming his bedroom, he found a note under the bed that had escaped the vacuum cleaner time and time again. He picked it up and looked at it. A soft smile spread over his face. Gone were the months of despair, the loneliness, the fright, the dizziness and the imbalance. Gone were the months of deafness. It was a bad time, scary and painful, a period that he never wanted to relive again.
In all that turmoil, there was one thing that had kept him going, all the time.
His friendship with the one man who would never cease to be his friend, no matter how bad things got. He looked at the note, subconsciously smiled warmly, and stuck it in the frame of the mirror.
Elsa, May 2004