Smells Like Teen Spirit Baby

All Work and No Play

I glanced up at him and grinned.

“I dunno, lots of our patients think lying down for hours and having needles poked into them is Hell, but, hey, I guess you’re different.” I said lightheartedly.

The corners of his mouth tweaked up a smidge. Not quite a smile, but a huge leap of improvement from depressive to the point of suicide.

I took a deep breath and began the mandatory round of questioning.

“Sir, do you know why you’re here?”

Any traces of a smile were stolen from his face, and a terrible cloudiness engulfed his expression.

“You know the answer to that question.” He replied coldly.

“I know it sucks, but, you know, hospital procedure.” I tried explaining.

He regarded me with stony eyes and sighed.

“Please,” he said, “please don’t make me talk about it.”

I observed him for a moment. More than his words were tempting me to forget about the rules. He was either genuinely miserable, or the best actor in the world.

“Tell you what,” I offered, “if you cooperate and make the whole rest of this experience easy for me, I won’t make you talk about it.”

At that moment, I felt proud.

He relaxed, just a bit, mind you, and the corners of his mouth tweaked up.



I’m not going to say that the next few weeks were easy, but there did seem to be a certain flow that was unlike any other I’d encountered since starting my last year of med school. One of my classes had finished exams early, and, after concocting a few very good lies, I’d been able to convince the Student Schedule Coordinator to let me take one of my exams early. I had single handedly finished my last year of med school a month early.

Unfortunately, there was still my internship at the hospital, and Mala wasn’t going to go easy on me.

“Sleeping again?” Mala whined through the phone. I opened my eyes and contemplated throwing the godforsaken phone against the wall.

“Of course not,” I yawned, “What do you need Mala?”

I heard him sigh, and my curiosity instantly piqued.

“We…need your help.” He said.