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John Irving

“But first, he knew he had to apologize for hurting Dr. Larch’s feelings – it had all just slipped out of him, and it made him almost cry to think that he had cause Dr. Larch any suffering. He went straight across the hall to the dispensary, where he could see what he thought were Dr. Larch’s feet extending off the foot of the dispensary bed; the dispensary medicine cabinets blocked the rest of the bed from view. He spoke to Dr. Larch’s feet, which to Homer’s surprise were larger than he remembered them; he was also surprised that Dr. Larch – a neat man – had left his shows on and that his shoes were muddy.
‘Doctor Larch?’ Homer said. ‘I’m sorry.’ When there was no response, Homer thought crossly to himself that Dr. Larch was under an unusually ill-timed ether sedation.
‘I’m sorry, and I love you,’ Homer added, a little louder. He held his breath, listening for Larch’s breathing, which he couldn’t hear; alarmed, he stepped around the cabinets and saw the lifeless stationmaster stretched out on Larch’s bed. It did not occur to Homer that this had been the first time someone had said ‘I love you’ to the stationmaster.”

John Irving, The Cider House Rules
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The Cider House Rules The Cider House Rules by John Irving
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