This is a Love Note.

Donation Day

A troubled girl meets a grateful guy at her bi-weekly platelet donation session.

Tropes – Strangers to Lovers, Meet Cute

I’m still not used to it.

The whirling sound of the machine as it separates my blood into plasma, platelets, and red blood cells. My platelets look like yellow mucus as they collect in the small hanging bag. 

The machine beeps, signaling the nurse to hightail it over here. A petite, South Asian woman presses a button on the machine and encourages me to squeeze the heart-shaped ball in my hand. “How are you feeling, sweetie?”

“My lips are a little tingly.” 

“Here are some Tums. That should help. You’re doing great. You’re about halfway through. Let me know if you need anything else, okay?”


She turns to the chair on my right. A lanky, sandy-haired guy is also halfway through his drawing. I can tell it’s his first time because he keeps looking at the blood filtering machine like it’s an alien that’s going to come to life and eat him whole. “How are you feeling, hun?”

“Oh, um, good, thanks.”

As the nurse walks away, he turns to me, “This is pretty weird, huh?”

I fiddle with my phone for a sec, not used to strange men making conversation with me. I try to play it cool. “It’s alright. You get used to it after the second or third time.”

He squeezes his own heart-shaped ball. “How many times have you done this?”

“Hm, this is my second time this month. Been doing this for 3 or 4 months. I guess 6 or 7 times now.” Actually, I’m pretty sure this is my 10th time but that number sounds too high.

“Whoa, that’s really nice.” He gives me a lopsided smile, the corners of his eyes crinkling as they meet mine. “What makes you so generous?”

“Oh, it’s nothing,” I flush, not used to praise. “I don’t volunteer or donate to charities. This is the least I could do. What about you? Why are you here?”

He clears his throat and fiddles with his shirt, “My mom was in a pretty bad car accident last month. Blood and platelet transfusions pretty much saved her life. Figured I should pay it forward, ya know?” I don’t know what to say. I wish more people thought like that when my mother needed it. 

He grimaces and ducks his head, peeking at me from the corner of his eye. “Guess it could’ve been your platelets that did the trick…so thanks um…” He turns back to face me with a bashful smile. “Sorry, what’s your name?”

I can’t help but chuckle and return the smile. “Maggie. It’s nice to meet a potential beneficiary.”

His smile widens into a delighted grin. “I’m Will. It’s nice to meet you.”

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