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The only problem with an invisible friend, one that talks to you inside your head, is that other people can’t hear the voice. For instance, you are walking along in the park with a group of friends and you hear, in your head, “Duck!” You duck. What else would you do?
   In your own eyes, you have behaved rationally, reacted to a sudden warning. To your friends, you just hunched up, bent over, and covered your head for no apparent reason. No point in trying to explain it.
   Such is my problem with the irrepressible Tim, who lives inside my head. Well, he doesn’t live just in my head, he actually lives in my house. Let’s say he can occupy two places at the same time. One, is in my house; the other is in my head. Got it?
   He can be at home, or driving down the street, and talking to me while I am at the store. I hear him, loud and clear, just like a telephone call, inside my head.
While he is an incredible musical talent, he can also be a gigantic pain in the derriere when he chooses, which luckily is not too often. Truthfully, he only does it if I’m with John.
   I like to think Tim looks just as silly laughing his ass off all by himself. I can always claim I saw a bee.
   Surviving cancer was my greatest accomplishment, until last month, when I accidentally solved a crime. In a small town like Monarch Beach, that gives you immediate notoriety. With a population of less than three thousand there’s not a lot to talk about so anything new is a welcome diversion. To solve the first murder in the town’s history moved me up to legendary status.

   Cancer treatment is never easy. The side effects can be as devastating as the disease. In some cases the side effects remain after treatment. Adding to the confusion is the long list of side effects, never the exact same for any two people.
   The cold is shared by most, as is losing your hair. Even hair loss is different from patient to patient. I was bald as an egg for two years and still had to shave my legs. Talk about unfair.
   Chemo was awful, not going to lie about it. Radiation was painless, just caused more hair loss, like I had any left. Completing my treatment took almost a year and at the end of that time I was advised to have two more weeks of radiation – to the brain.
   Most chemo does not cross the blood or brain barrier so the additional brain radiation was a preventative measure. Completely painless. The radiation oncologist explained it perfectly. Some patients experience a flash of blue light, some experience a smell of ozone. I got both. And I got a bonus.
   My prime side effect was Tim. No idea where he came from, or exactly when he showed up – he was just there one night and stayed. He announced himself with a flash of brilliant blue light inside my head and the smell of ozone. Related? I thought so.