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Creamy-white, that’s what she wanted. Her lips were cracked and dried blood laid neatly in-between. She whispered this wish, inaudible at first. He kneeled closer to her body, covered in porcelain white sheets, straining to place his ear low enough that her lips scratched his lobe. He worried his thumping heart would muzzle her, that her wish would be thwarted from the pounding.

“Go,” she pleaded, even her whisper cracked.

He sprinted down the ward, bumping into a few bodies, his heart now hammering his throat. Outside, beyond revolving doors, were rows of the bougainvillea whites she wanted.