I woke several days later with only Brom as company. He helped me get out of bed, which I’m not sure I could have done on my own. At the table, he ladled me a bowl of stew and set it in front of me. “Tsan made it,” he said by way of explanation of where it had come from. “He figured you might wake up sometime today. Sorry it’s not very warm.”
“That’s all right; I can manage a little heat, thanks.”
Just as he set a bowl down for himself, the others came in, so he ladled them up as well.
Tsan gave me a once over and asked, “How are you doing?”
“I’m feeling very abused, but I’m doing okay, I guess.”
“Good.” He clapped me on the shoulder, which jarred more than one painful spot, and then he left.
As soon as I could breathe again, I heated everyone’s stew and finished my own and then another, and then another.