Our plane landed safely at the airport, and we disembarked away from the main building. There were cars waiting for us to take us back to the chateau. “Is this really necessary, my good man?” asked Mandar, “it is not at all comfortable.” “Yes, it is very necessary,” I said, “I do not want anything to happen to my surgeon right now.” “But really, no one even knows who I am, or even that I am here, for that matter,” he said. “It is only until we are safely back at the chateau,” I said again.
We got off the plane after the others were all off. As our feet touched the ground, shots rang out, hitting Mandar. He fell to the ground while my team returned fire, killing all four men that had attacked us. They ran over to see if there were anymore and to see if they had any identification on them. But there was none, not one piece of ID at all.
But obviously whoever put this device in me knew about Mandar being a surgeon and knew that Mandar was coming on this plane to help me. “Are you okay Mandar?” I asked. “Yes, yes, I am fine,” he said as Rock helped him up. “Look at this dirt on me,” he said, “and it is a new suit too. And thank you for this vest, now I understand your concern. But who knew that I was coming?”
“That is a good question,” I said, “but someone knew, and they knew that you were a surgeon coming to help me. That is why they shot only at you and not at any of us.” “I will see to that!” he exclaimed, “No one will get away with such a thing!” We got safely into the cars and there were no more incidents on the way back to the chateau. Once inside we sat down to relax and have some tea before heading to bed. I was lying on my bed with Muffin beside me when Jenny came walking in.
“Do you not knock?” I asked. “Nope,” she said, “besides, you knew I was coming.” Well, she was right about that. “Steve, I am scared,” she said, “I have never been so scared in my life. I do not know what I would do if you, if you…” She put her head down and began to cry. “Come over here,” I said to her. I sat up and she sat beside me. “No tears,” I said, “I am not going to die, I trust Mandar to do this operation, he was an excellent surgeon before.”
“I know,” she began, “but I just do not want to lose you, I, I…” I put my hand over her mouth. “I understand,” I said, “it is going to be okay.” Then she hugged me. At that moment Sigurbjorn walked in. “Do you never knock?” I asked her. “Nope,” she said smiling, “besides, you knew I was coming.” “There is definitely an echo in this place,” I said smiling, “yes, it is time for my massage, and I do need it. I think Jennifer needs it too.”
“She already had her massage,” said Sigurbjorn, “but I am willing to do more.” Jennifer then left for a few minutes. I looked at Sigurbjorn, she was crying. Well, I was not feeling stressed, but I am beginning to feel that way now. “I am sorry, Steve,” she said, “it is just…all that is going on right now…and the thought of losing you…I mean, I…” I put my hand on her mouth.
“No tears,” I said, “I am not going to die, I trust Mandar, he will get the device out safely.” I had the impression that this conversation already happened. Sigh. I am really getting stressed now. I hope no one else comes in. Sigurbjorn gave me my massage, a bit longer than usual, actually, a lot longer. Then she and Jenny stayed, and we talked for quite a while until I finally fell asleep.
The next day our outdoor/indoor operating room was ready, all clear plastic to let in the natural sunlight. But as we were getting ready for the surgery a thunderstorm came along and then dark clouds remained the rest of the day. Well, there is always tomorrow. The next day arrived, and dark clouds remained. But around noon the skies cleared, and the sun was shining brightly again.
We brought in kerosene lanterns and lamps just in case, and it was a good thing. Just as the surgery began, the clouds returned, very dark and menacing. Chung raced around lighting the lamps and held two lanterns over me while Mandar did the surgery. Everyone waited in the clinic. Poor Jennifer broke right down. It is a good thing we have Galyna with us, she went over to help Jenny right away. Meanwhile, Chung could see the worried look on Mandar’s face…
To Be Continued.
©2022 Steve McLeod.