The following is an excerpt of a story I have recently written:
I do remember Elliot’s child. His name was Rupert, I believe. He was a rather happy child, and was always trying to do things to make others happy. One time when Elliot invited me for dinner with his family, his son came dashing into the living room, clown make up messily scribbled on his face, giggling happily. He hugged my legs tight and was so excited to see me. He was five at the time, and his brown hair was messy and curly, and his freckles were splattered across his cheeks.
And he kept those traits until recently. One night Elliot rushed three boys into the emergency room on stretchers. One of them, unfortunately, being his son. The boys were badly burned. I couldn’t see Rupert’s freckles, for they have been covered by blood from his wounds. His messy curly hair was now scorched. In fact, all three of the boys were in this condition. They received immediate treatment, however, only one survive. Unfortunately, it wasn’t Rupert.
These boys had passed at such a young age, too. THe other, Gordon, was fifteen, and Rupert was thirteen. We don’t know how, but they became short of breathing. It was hard to watch Elliot weep at his own son’s bedside. I remember when he first came here to America from England, he told me the many goals he had for here. One of them, very specific.
“I hope as well as any doctor with family would, that I should never have to work on one of my own family members.”
It’s unfortunate how that never came true. I put my hand on his shoulder as he cried, holding his son's hand firmly. I’m not even sure what happened exactly, but it must have been awful enough to take two out of three young boys’ lives. But, it isn’t my business, so I shouldn’t get involved with it.
Days later a man of about twenty years old had to have surgery, and Elliot and I were part of the team to do the procedure. And of course, we did, but it was a two part surgery, and only part one was done that day. After the fact, Elliot had stayed behind to do a check over.
Our procedure for part one involved mending the rib cage. Our patient had been hit by a city bus when on his way to his school, just nearby the campus, supposedly. Crushed his chest and fractured the skull upon landing. To be honest, I felt rather sorry for the kid.
So after Elliot had left the room I invited him into the cafeteria while we were on a break. I decided to ask the curious question on my mind.
"What exactly were you doing in the room after the surgery?"
He paused and sipped his coffee slowly. "Oh. Well, if I should be honest." Another pause. "I was wishing good luck. Telling him that we will try to fix everything."
"Why just try?"
"Trying suggests the possibility of failure."
All of a sudden he glared at me, enraged. However, it didn't really seem to look like him. It's like got...darker. Like, his tone just seemed very dark and his eyes...just dark. It also looked like the color of not only from his skin, but his clothes as well, have drained out of him a bit.
"We both know very well it could fail, Clyde." he growled at me.
I closed my eyes and took a breath. "I was just trying to be optimistic." When I opened my eyes again Elliot looked normal. As if he didn't just completely have pure hatred within him.
"Well, it is very much appreciated."
It didn't seem appreciated about thirty seconds beforehand.