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I smiled back at him. Dr. Kimball turned to see who I was smiling at. He turned back and smiled at me. He cleared his throat before speaking.

“Okay, everyone. She is Emily Parker, 17, and she showed symptoms of chest pain, nausea, irregular appetite and insomnia. Can anyone tell me what she is suffering from?”

I thought that he would answer because he knew but he remained silent.

“Sir, her symptoms indicate that she has CHD but that is common only in the elderly.”- One of the girls spoke up. She had long hair; blonde and was tall.

“Yes, Miss Stewart that’s correct. But I’m afraid that she does have CHD.”

“It’s a rare case.” He spoke up.

“That’s right. And can anyone tell me what causes this?”

The questionnaires continued for a while. I just sat on the bed upright trying to think what to do when they were just looking at me writing notes on their clipboards as the doctor spoke. I looked at him, he was writing the notes too but most of the time he was just listening. He looked at me occasionally and smiled. I had to return his handkerchief today. Soon they were done and they were about to leave. I wanted to call out to him but I didn’t know his name. “Excuse me.” Everyone turned to look at me. I smiled. “Oh, I’m sorry just him.” I looked at him. The others left and he came close to the bed. “Wait here.” I rummaged my bag and gave him the handkerchief.

“Here, I washed it.”

“Oh, thanks.”

“No it’s okay. Thank you for the other day.” I smiled as I returned the hanky. “I’m Emily, by the way.” I offered my hand. He shook it and said

“I’m J.”


“No, just J.”


“The alphabet J?”

“Yes, the alphabet J.” He laughed a little as he said this.  J sounded weird.

“Is it short for anything?”

“Yes.” He just said yes. I thought that he would say what it was short but he didn’t. I thought maybe he doesn’t like his name so I didn’t pursue it.

“Well then J, thanks for your help.”

“It’s okay. I’ll get going then. I have some few classes again.”

“Oh yeah, sure bye.”

He went out the door, I was about to climb on my bed when he came again. He didn’t enter the room he just stood by the door. His hands folded.

“You won’t ask what J stands for?” I let out a laugh, he came back for this. “Umm, well if you want to then tell me.”

“No, its fine just other people ask me what it stands for but you didn’t.”

“You look like you want me to ask.”

“Well, I do.”

“Okay then, what does it stand for?”

“I don’t tell anyone what it stands for.” I laughed a little. He was funny.

“Then why did you ask me to ask you?”

“Just.” He smiled and turned to go away. I tried guessing his name. “Is it John?” He just shook his head and went away. I climbed on the bed smiling by myself. Lillian and Ben came in. Lillian was squealing my name. “Emily!!”

“What happened?

“Who was that guy just now? Is he the doctor?” I smiled looking at Ben.

“Is this why you came to the hospital?” Ben said messing up her hair.

“No, just asking you know, for example if something happens then we know who to call.”

“Smart girl.” I said laughing.

“Sly girl.” Ben said sitting and putting an arm around her. I looked at them.


“How adorable.”

“We know.” They chimed in together. We talked for a long time. It was amazing how Lillian could talk without even stopping to catch her breath. All her sentences would either start with ‘You know what…’ or ‘You won’t believe... ’ without her I wouldn’t be updated. She stopped to drink water.

“Oh Emi, I have some good news and some bad news.”

“Even me.” Ben said.

“Oh what happened?”

“Well since the football match is next month I’ve been selected to lead the cheer. Since Kimberly, the head is going out of town.”

“Wow, Lilli that’s amazing.”

“Yeah but it also means I can’t come here regularly. What with all the practice.”

“Oh don’t worry about that. You’re the head cheer if only for a while but you are and you should go and make the school proud.”

“Really? You don’t mind?”

“Well I won’t lie, I will miss your insane stories but you can call or text. Don’t worry and do great, okay?”

“Thanks Emi. You’re the best.” She said hugging me. “And also get ready for your message box to start piling up.” I laughed and nodded.

“What about you, Ben?”

“I just have bad news. Our school paper is going to shutdown.”

“What? Why?”

“Because we don’t have enough members.”

“But we need at least four and there’s four excluding me, right?”

“Well its three now. Susan quit after joining the math club.”

I remained silent trying to think. I mean the school paper was really important to me and Ben and the others as well. They can’t just shut it down.


“Is there any other way?”

“There is.”

“What is it?” Lillian said unable to bear the suspense. So was I.

“Emily will have to send articles even in her absence.”

“Well that’s easy. You made it sound like someone had to die.” I said.

“Wait but what about your health?”

“I‘ll be using my fingers to type. I’ll be fine and it gets boring out here I’ll have something to do. Don’t worry.”

“That’s great. Thank you so much.”

“It’s my paper too.”

Lillian was worried that I would feel bad that she wouldn’t be able to visit me and Ben was worried about me typing? I really was lucky to have such good friends. They brought out treats to eat and even though I wasn’t really hungry I ate with them. Lillian ate the cookies and looked at me asking,

“How did your day go?”

“Good actually. Well mom had to go out for some errands and then I had a checkup and oh I also met the hospital gardener, Mr. Seymour we watered the plants together and he told me about all about flowers. And then after having my medications, the doctor came in with some interns for an educational thing I guess...”

“Oh, oh like in the movies.” Lillian said excitedly.

“Yes, exactly and I guess now I know how awkward the patients feel when there are so many people examining them. Oh and also the guy you saw?”


“He’s the one who lent me the hanky the other day.”

“Ooh, interesting.” They said together rubbing their shoulders together.

“How is it interesting?”

“I don’t know. You tell us.” Lillian said looking at me; her eyes were that drunk kind. I hit her on the shoulder and laughed at her assumption.


“Well, he’s one of the interns and  ...”

“What’s his name?”

“J” I smiled as I said this.

“J-A-Y?” Lillian spelled out.

“No just J.”

“What’s that just J?” Ben asked looking confused.

“I know, I said the same thing. Apparently it’s short for something.”

“For what?”

“He didn’t say.”

“And you didn’t ask?”

“I did but he didn’t say.” I smiled remembering how he came back to ask me to ask him but in the end he didn’t even clarify anything.

“Oh I get it what’s he trying to do.” Ben said after remaining silent for a while.

“What’s he trying to do?” we asked together.

“He’s trying to be mysterious so that you’ll be interested in him.”

“Yes and then you’ll fall in his web and by the time you realize what has happened it will already be too late.” Lillian joined him. I laughed out loud for a long time. At a point my chest hurt a little so I tried to calm down placed my hand on my chest rubbing it.

“Everything okay?”

“Yeah, it’s just that you guys have painted him into this spider weaving a web.” I wiped my tears as I said this. They stayed for while and left soon.

Today was a good day. I met Mr. Seymour, I had so much fun with Lillian and Ben and I met J. What was his name actually? It was already dark.

 The day went by peacefully not fast or slow. I hoped that I would have more days like this. The nurse came in with the dinner and medicine.

“Miss Parker.”

“Please call me Emily.”


“Emily, your mom called. She said that she had been trying to call you but you didn’t pick up. She’s worried; I think you should call her after dinner.”

“Oh, yes of course. Thank you.” I was out in the garden and I guess my phone was in silent. I called her up. She said that she couldn’t come today because some relatives were in town and she promised to come back tomorrow. I told her not to worry, after wishing me goodnight she hung up.

I decided to go out for a walk again. Just as I opened my door, J was right there. He smiled at me. I smiled back. “I was going to stop by your room.”

“Oh, you needed something?”

“No, just wanted to ask you if guessed my name yet.” He said smiling.

We started walking towards the lobby, I didn’t even realize that.







“Why don’t you just tell me then?”

“That’s no fun.”

“I’m not going to get better at this game, you know?”

“Just try.”

“Okay, then Janet?”

“That’s a girl’s name.” His voice was low; bass. He ran his fingers through his hair and smiled.

“Haven’t you met boys with girl’s name?”

“No, I haven’t.”

I kept guessing for a while. I didn’t get it right. Finally he said, “How about this instead of guessing everything today you can guess once in a day?”

“Only once?”




“Well because I think you have eliminated half of the names today itself.”

“Okay, then once guess everyday till I leave.”

He asked slowly, “How long will you be here?”

“I guess a month or so.”

“Well then you have enough time.”

We walked for a while talking about stuffs. He wasn’t shy but didn’t open up either but I had just met him, so I couldn’t really say anything. He walked me to my room and wished me goodnight.

“Oh and when is your internship ending?”

“Two months.”

“Then I guess I have enough time. Good night, Jim?”

“Nope, and you have run out of chances. Goodnight.”

I entered my room and tucked myself into bed. I don’t know whether it was the day or I was getting weak, but I was tired and felt sleepy, not so sleepy but I wanted to sleep.



Submitted: November 17, 2017

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