Chapter 5 - A Force Love Contract With GANG LEADER

The train finally reached Portland. The city had just had heavy snow. Workers were cleaning the city with snow removal trucks and spreading salt in the middle of the roads, which were noisy and jammed. The melted snow and salt made the road dirty.

The temperature was -13 degrees Fahrenheit, and all of Kate’s limbs were numb by the time she got to the hospital. She wasn’t aware of the cold because her heart was eaten by her deep worry. Portland Mercy Hospital, 13th floor.

She finally saw her father, lying on a bed with pipes connected to his body. She had not seen him for a year, and he looked totally different. His face was dry and gray, his cheekbones protruded, and his skin stretched over the bones like a tent. Her tears gushed out immediately.

Her father became skinny in the past year, and he had stomach aches from time to time. He didn’t take it seriously and bought some medicine at the drugstore to kill the pain. It was not until a few days ago, when he coughed up blood, that he went to the hospital for a checkup.

The doctor informed him that he was in the middle stages of stomach cancer and recommended him to get to Portland Mercy Hospital. Her father was not insured, and they ran out of the five thousand dollars they brought with them quickly. The doctor told them that surgery and after-treatment would cost about $100,000. It was an astronomical figure for a family like them.

Her father wanted to go back home and save the money so that his son could go to college. Kate’s mother and elder sister, of course, did not agree with this. Her elder sister had asked her husband to try to borrow some money from his parents, but it was not going smoothly. Kate’s younger sister was in college, and her little brother was in high school. They didn’t know about their father’s illness yet.

Kate sat by the bed and listened to her mother, telling her about her father’s condition. She drank a mug of hot water and warmed up. She said, “Father cannot leave the hospital now. I have three thousand dollars here. We can hold on for a few more days with this. And we will think about what to do next.”

It was not easy to think of any solutions; Kate knew that this would take some thinking.

Without insurance, staying in the hospital was like burning money. Kate’s three thousand lasted only three more days before the hospital started to urge them to pay the bills. Her mother and two sisters were anxious and sad, but they had to conceal their feelings in front of their father.

bank outside the hospital gate. She imagined herself wearing a mask and rushing into the

ed man with sunglasses and a dark coat, showing a m

and up. She composed herself and

s is Mr. Fox.” He paused and then a

ed. She had fallen int

atted with her, “Don’t you feel cold? Portland is quite different from Los Angeles. Probably

the shop, she saw Curly-hair immediately. He raised the co

she saw

sweater and a shirt under it. He looked handsome

doors. Not knowing if it was because of the abrupt tem

the seat opposite him and sa

d over and

ally. They kept silent and seemed to melt into the background. In the center of the table, there was a small vas

om the outside. She felt a little discomfort in this confined space. The table between her and the man could not block

is silent stare made her nervous, and she pretended to look away. When she looked back, she met