With his sister's life at risk, Andy must decide how far he is willing to go to save it.
Chapter Description: With his sister's life at risk, Andy must decide how far he is willing to go to save it.
This is Ambrose, the author of Jumper. Due to an accident I’m no longer registered as its author, but hey that is ok, hope you like this one!
"Be careful I think the skis are lying on the ground up there.”
“I am careful mom!” Andy shouted back to the voice coming from the entrance to the attic.
Taking his attention back to the dusty surrounding he absentmindedly went with the hand through his somewhat brownish hair which was now full of webs, while using the the flashlight in his right hand to scan the surrounding for what he searched.
His mother would have no problem finding it, but ladder was steep and the attic was definitely no place for a woman in her 25th week of pregnancy, especially with her becoming thicker and so immobile rather fast as expected by twins.... though there was no reason telling her.
After some more seconds Andy found the box his mother had described lying under an old chair and opening it he found mobile with horses, sheep and cows which had been his once.
There was no reply which made him guess his mother had gone for the toilet as she did quite often now, or drinking something, so he looked at the mobile a second.
It wasn’t his mobile anymore, as this had not been his home for over a year now since he moved out after earning enough in the bookstore to do so. Happy as Andy was about how his life was turning out he felt touched that his mother had kept this piece of his old life and now even planned to share with his two sisters, especially since he knew with him out of the house there was pretty little he would be able to share with his siblings.
“It looks fine.” Andy said, walking downstairs the mobile in his left hand “Just wash it once and....”
Half down the ladder he saw something which made his heart stop beating for a second. His mother sat on the floor, her back leaned against the wall, sweating and breathing quickly, her eyes showing pain and shock.
“Mum!” He exclaimed in shock, dropping the mobile and rushing to her side. “What is it?”
“Call...” she breathed heavily, her long, blond and still beautiful hair falling in her face. “the ambulance.”
Standing at the reception of the hospital Andy was loosing the last of his nerves.
“No I won’t fill out form! This is my ID, Sarah Marson is my mother who has been brought here nearly half a hour ago by your ambulance and I need to know how she is!”
Turning around Andy discovered a bold man in white suite, holding a terminal board.
“You are Mrs Marson’s son? Good! Follow me please.”
Andy hurried to stay at the man’s side as they walked to the corridors leading deeper into the hospital.
“I’m Dr. Russel.”
“How is she?”
“Come in.” Dr. Russel told the younger man, leading him into a small room which was seemingly used for regular check-ups. “Your mother isn’t in danger.”
The doctor eyed Andy a moment before he crossed his arms in front of his breast.
“Does she have any siblings? Family? Her husband?”
“No, grandmother died last year, grandfather years earlier. No siblings and no relatives we have much contact with. Bill, I mean Bill Roberts her husband since half a year is pilot and I believe somewhere in Asia. I tried to phone him, but he isn’t taking up. Can I go to her?”
“I just come from her, she is in the check-up. One of the Fetus is death. The other is in greatest risk, I’m sorry.”
Andy stumbled as if he had been struck, sitting down on the chair standing in the room, the doctor still standing in front of him, looking sympathetic a moment.
“It is a failure in the kidney to handle an important enzyme. This sums up and is slowly poisoning the fetus once it started using it. It was impossible to detect before and now, despite us injecting blood-cleaning drugs into you sister’s body, it is too late for her to get hers cleaned.”
The doctor stayed calm as Andy got paler and paler.
“Does my mother know?”
“She knows one of the fetus is death yes.” Dr. Russel noticed “But I wanted to talk with you first before I tell her about the other one.”
“I will tell her.” Andy said, feeling his legs shaking, but somehow managing to rise again “She needs me.”
“There might be a way to safe the fetus, but there is a risk... a very large one you would have to take while the result would be completely and I repeat myself completely uncertain.”
The younger man starred at the doctor, his mind racing.
“Do you need my kidney? Take it I will sign every form.”
“Even if your kidney had the right size.” the doctor explained, calmly “The fetus wouldn’t survive such an operation.”
“We are one of the few hospitals with experience in age-regeneration.” the bold man explained “Do you know what that is?”
Andy knew, he knew that even the loneliest hermit in the world probably had gotten the news by now, that years ago scientists had managed to control aging and even reversing it, leading to... interesting results.
“I heard this regenerates cells, could it...”
“No.” the doctor replied firmly “The problem is in your sister’s cells a regeneration would not help because the waste product stays... your sister needs something like a dialysis the placenta can’t provide so that this cleans the waste in a way neither drugs nor her system can.”
“Then how can I possibly help goddammit?!”
Andy felt felt cheeks turning red as he bellowed on the man how was so frustrating calm.
“Your sisters were monochorionic twins... they shared the same placenta which also filters the blood. If there was a healthy fetus sharing this system its kidney could filter the waste for both.”
Realization what the doctor was suggesting kicked Andy like a hammer and he had to sit down back in the chair.
“Me?!” he asked unbelieving “A fetus?! Doc I mean...”
“You have the same blood type which makes it optimal, but I won’t lie to you about the risks Andy. It has been done before for different reasons, but with babies. Regressing an adult to such an age means a risk... every pregnancy means a risk.” the doctor began massaging his face. “It might be too late already and the cleaning doesn’t work. Even if the operation is a success.”
Russel stopped, starring directly into the younger man’s eyes.
“We face the problems of memory loss. This has been proven to be treatable, even by regressions as young as preschool age and beyond, but this is different situation as a fetus brain is wired differently... you might face the fact that you will loose great parts of your life.”
Andy struggled, still founding it hard to think as the whole events of this afternoon seemed to chase each other through his mind.
“But it would be temporary...” he asked cautiously “I mean once she is healed you can age me back and...”
Russel sadly shook his head.
“Age progression is difficult Mr Marson and even if there are progressions in the next years you will most probably have to age normally all the way.”
The younger man found a cold growing in him.
“I need to see her first.”
“Of course...” the doctor gave in “There is no need to tell her about this possibility if you decide against it.”
“How long have I to decide?”Andy asked as they walked to the door.
Silently the man walked alongside the doctor until they reached the door of a room a nurse just left.
“Go in,” Russel said, turning to the nurse “I need to look over the data first.”
Slowly Andy walked in, finding his mother taken care of by another nurse who checked the infusion while she held her belly which covered with little sensors leading to a monitor which was slowly beeping.
Slowly the son walked to his mother, softly touching her hand as she starred ahead blankly with tears streaming from her eyes.
“Andy.” she slowly began, making the son think that the doctors had given her drugs. “One of your sisters...”
“The doctor told me, mom I’m so sorry.”
Slowly she pressed Andy’s hand.
“I haven’t reached him.”
His mother nodded, trying so very much to compose herself, and right now Andy felt a burning hatred for Bill Roberts for not being there while knowing at the same time it was undeserved.
“They didn’t want to tell me how your other sister is doing... oh Andy.”
It was this moment and maybe more than anything else that he didn’t want to lie to his mother, that Andy made his decision.
“Mom I talked with doctor Russel, my other sister is in danger, but there is a way to save her.”
Sarah Marson’s eyes focused on her son.
“Please, tell them I will do everything.”
“There is something I must do mom...”
“Something safe...” Dr. Russel said, walking to Andy from behind. “Though still very brave.”
It took some minutes for the doctor to explain it.
“No!” Sarah exclaimed. “Andy you can’t... no!”
“It is for my sister mom.”
“You can’t risk your life like that... I could loose you both.”
“Actually.” the doctor threw in, “It is pretty safe for both... or rather the three of you.”
“It is more like a kidney-transplantation than anything else.”
Despite this words and the assuring smile on his face Andy felt a strange feeling in his stomach as his mother looked at the monitor where the nurse was watching the scene with visible interest.
“It is safe?”
“Once the transplantation has been made it is as safe as any other pregnancy.” The doctor promised.
“Andy do you truly know what you are doing?” Sarah asked sweating.
“Yes, I’m saving my sister.”
“Oh Andy I’m so proud of you.”
Andy touched his mother’s hand one more time before turning to the doctor.
“When do we begin?”
“Just subscribe that.” the doctor said, handling him a terminal board with a form on it.
Going through it Andy found a lot of paragraphs releasing the hospital from any responsibility, but this was just like he had expected, so he took the pen doctor Russel offered him and subscribed.
“When does the treatment begin?”
With this words, the doctor pulled a syringe out of his coat, filling it with a liquid out of a vial he pulled out of his bag. After a second of hesitation, Andy offered his arm and Russel quickly injected the serum into the vein.
The words of his mother were sorrowful, but too late anyway.
“How long does it needs?”
“One and a half hour more or less.” the doctor said, placing the syringe into his bag. “Is there anything you want?”
Andy needed a moment to think properly as the full weight of his decision and its complication came down on him.
“A laptop. With a good internet connection.”
“This can be arranged.” the doctor promised. “We need to run some tests with your mother, Mrs Curley will bring you to a room. I will come to you later.”
Andy knelt besides his mother, holding her hand.
“It will all be okay.”
The son embraced his mother one more time before following the nurse outside.
“What you are doing is very brave.” the nurse noticed as they walked through the floor.
Andy said this without paying really attention to the words, as he starred on his feet. Probably he was just imagining things, but the Nikes felt looser.
“Will I be treated as a an adult all the time?”
The nurse seemed surprised by this question.
“Of course.” she said, hesitating a moment. “Naturally there are practical limitations... but we take care that our patients feel good... and the legal position is clear.”
Andy nodded, though he had heard the moment of insecurity in the nurse’s voice.
“What about the medical care after... after my birth.”
Mentioning it he had to swallow, but now he actually felt better. It was true that speaking about it helped.
“Dr. Russel is the expert.”
“I know, but he is looking after my mother and I really want this information as soon as possible. Please.”
Both had stopped walking, standing on the clean floor as another nurse passed by.
“Based on our standard-procedure you will get immediate psychological and psychical therapy. This helps your body not to forget any of its skills and memories of course.” the nurse explained. “Since your case is special I guess your therapy will last years... I’m only guessing of course.”
Andy nodded, holding a poker-face as they continued to walk down the floor.
“We have another regeneration patient here.” Nurse Corley explained as the reached the room. “She leaves soon, but you can talk to her while I organize the laptop.”
With this words the nurse opened the room.
“Occupied.” A young voice came from the closed bath-room.
“Mr Marson is taking residence here.”
Andy noticed that the voice sounded particularly cheerful and he couldn’t but ask himself if she had somehow smuggled alcohol into the hospital. If so he needed it.
“Your bed is that at the window.” the nurse said, showing him the clean bed. “Please rest a bit, I will hurry.
With that the nurse left, leaving Andy to slowly walk to the bed, laying his jacket over the chair standing at it. Checking his cell-phone the man still found no reply from his step-father and put it back in his jacket. A moment later he decided to test the elasticity of the bed and found he could live with it at for the time left.
Andy looked up at the TV which was depressingly black for someone searching distraction.
“Mind if I switch on the TV.”
“No problem.” the voice said.
As Andy grabbed the remote control from the table under the TV and switched it on he threw a look at the clothes on the other bed. A long gray skirt, a dim-green shirt and a pair of gray shoes didn’t give the impression of a person who wanted to be seen too much.
Sitting back on the bed, Andy felt his shoes now definitely a bit too loose and put them on the floor while laying down and enjoying an episode of Two and a Half Men. He didn’t have time to see as much as a scene when the door to the bathroom opened and a sexy young woman, seemingly just beginning her twenties walked in.
She smiled as noticed Andy’s stares, crossing her arms before her big breasts which were only covered in a white shirt which ended about her belly button under which began her jeans... or rather the part of the jeans barely covering more that two thirds of the hips and the beginning of the long, slender legs. Beautiful brown hair fell until it reached the firm butt and her blue eyes sparkled with joy.
“Was worth every cent, what do you think?” she asked.
“Mhhh...” Andy said, for a moment lacking words. “Sure!”
His cheeks grew red as Mrs Knoxx giggled.
“I’m sorry I didn’t want to stare.”
The woman who had definitely a lot of a girl just just smiled and shook her head walking over to her bed in her red high heel pumps.
“Don’t be silly.” she said in a more serious voice as she pulled out a rucksack from under her bed and began putting in the now too large clothes lying there. “I made the regeneration to get this reaction. Once I go to my high-school reunion I hope to get starred at by everyone.”
“You will definitely achieve this!” Andy noticed. “My name is Andy Marson by the way.”
“Allison Knoxx... but call me Ally.” Ally hesitated a moment in packaging before smiling “Yes Ally is great. Why do you make this regeneration?”
“I plan to move in with my sister and she insist on the same age.”
This lie had come easy enough, but once he had said it the man had to laugh loud, especially when he noticed that his shirt grew slacker.
“Sounds like a lot of fun.”
“I hope it will be.”
A knock on the door brought a stop to the conversation and a man in his late fourties, maybe early fifties walked in, gray lines shimmering through his already a bit thin blond hair. He smiled, though a bit perplexed when he noticed the young woman, but thus lost no time and threw herself on the man, giving him a long passionate kiss.
“Allison. I can’t believe it.”
“Oh you will George tonight I will make you...”
The woman stopped herself and looked a bit embarrassed at Andy.
“Andy this is my husband George Knoxx, George this is Andy Marson.”
“Hello.” George greeted and the look of his goodhearted smile and ’Ally’s’ momentary insecurity only strengthened the expression that it were father and daughter standing there.
“Andy is doing a regeneration like me.” Ally explained.
“As you can see it is a full success.” George noticed, embracing his young wife. “I will make it next week, too.”
“Speaking of, lets talk to Dr. Russel.” the woman explained, grabbing her packed rucksack from the bed before turning to Andy. “Andy Marson... do you mind if I send you an E-mail? Or do you have a Facebook account? We could chat about our experiences if you like!”
“Sure.” Andy said with an only half-faked smile “Facebook will do it.”
“Great.” Ally said, walking over to her husband and leading him out. “Bye! And believe me its best to just relax and let the years go by!”
“I will remember this. Have a nice reunion!”
At once as the door had closed Andy spread his arms, noticing how his sleeves now definitely hang slacker from his arms and even seemed to be longer now.
“Just relax...” he whispered to himself.
But a part of him didn’t want to relax and had even grown. Maybe it were just the hormones who played mad as his body chemistry worked in hyper-drive, but Ally had looked fantastic and it would for sure be his last chance to have this sort of fun for a long time.
Making his decision, Andy sat up, feeling that his socks were still tight enough and began to walk into the direction of the bath, but before he could reach it nurse Curley walked in. She pushed a cart with a black laptop and three bottles of water on it.
“Do I disturb?”
“Nono.” Andy lied with a smile. “I was just going to look at myself in the mirror.”
“The one in the bath is rather small and high, but I could arrange one which shows you the whole body.” the nurse offered as she pushed the cart to the side of Andy’s bed. “This is the fastest Laptop I could lay my hand on.”
“I have some spare clothes of smaller size down in the cart if you need it. Do you have another wish?”
Andy looked at the nurse his mind racing, but finally he shook his head.
“Fine I will leave you alone. If you should need anything else, just press the button.”
Andy nodded and waited until the nurse had left to take a look at the lower section of the cart, finding a different sets of patient clothing several sizes too small for him. The nurse was intelligent and caring she....
The man shook his head to stop his thoughts from wandering. There was no time for this now, if there ever had been, not if he wanted to pull his plan through properly.
Quickly he grabbed the laptop and sat himself on the bed, pulling his socks up as he did so. As it now rested in his lap, the laptop was easy to start and it seemed to be connected to the internet by a hospital-wide connection. Of course all this didn’t really matter to Andy as he activated the internet-browser and activated his e-mail account.
Thinking a moment, he quickly formulated a letter to his boss, telling him that he regretted to inform him that he did have to quit. Andy hesitated, his boss had been someone he had almost called a friend, so telling him the truth was an option, but in the end he decided against it as there were enough other complications already.
Sending this letter he formulated another to be sent to anyone in his contact-list, stating that he would be away at last for a couple of years and though he would miss them all he could not be more specific.
This wasn’t fair, at last not to those he thought his friends, not at all, but telling the truth would only bring him some comments of how bloody mad he was, given they believed him. Not knowing what else to do, Andy switched to Facebook, activating his account.
He changed his status to ’Inactive for some time... but sure to be back!’ when the chat-window opened. Had it been anyone else Andy would have just ignored it, but he and Mary Karsowsky were close... no, were one step from beginning a relationship.
Mary: What is going on?!
Andy: I have to go.
Mary: Not without explanation!
Andy: It is complicated.
Andy smiled at the thought of how she probably sat now back in her couch at home, her intelligent, curious brown eyes starring at the monitor, her brown hair probably a mess. She was no beauty like Miss Knoxx had been, not even near that but... she had it.
Andy: Listen, you won’t tell this to anyone. My mother is pregnant with twins, did I tell you?
Andy: There were some complications and they need me for a transplantation...
Mary: So you will lay low for a month?
Andy: Mary I’m in an age regeneration hospital, one of the twins is death and they will implant me in her place so what has killed her won’t kill my other sister, too.
Mary: Tell your fucking lies someone else. I thought we had something together.
Mary left Facebook and Andy starred at it some time until leaving it, too. Maybe he could send her an e-mail with information about the hospital, if the laptop had a built-in-camera he would even have considered sending her a photo of his current state. Still Andy felt that this was wrong, there was no future for them even in his dreams and if hating him helped her to go on, so be it.
He didn’t know how long he was sitting there starring on the laptop, when Nurse Curley came in, shoving in a large mirror about his size. She smiled on a strange way when she noticed him sitting there.
“Happy with the connection?”
Deciding to use the mirror to get some other thoughts, Andy laid the laptop on the bed and slid off it. Standing he instantly his jeans and underpants instantly fell to his ankles and as he looked shocked at his reflection in the mirror a boy... a boy of maybe 13 years met his view, looking so very stupid in the oversized shirt as if he was playing a game of dress up he was much to old for already.... or still.
Perplexed Andy looked at his sleeves which covered his hands completely and then back into the mirror.
“I...” he began, noticing how his voice broke. “I hadn’t thought it happens so fast.”
“This says everyone who makes this regeneration.” Nurse Curley said, laying a hand on the boy’s shoulders, who suddenly realized how very naked he was under the shirt and that a specific part of him wasn’t at the other part of puberty, yet. “The second pair of clothing should fit you now. Dr. Russel and Dr. Steinmetz want to speak to you and your mother.”
“My mother. How is she?”
“Still fine considering the circumstances.” the nurse explained, withdrawing her hand much to Andy’s happiness. “I will wait outside.”
Once she had left, Andy again looked at the mirror, spreading his arms, showing how much its sleeves had grown too big for him. He shook his head and undressed himself, picking up the set of patient-clothing he seemed fitting, shortly looking at himself.
The hormones were still raging in him, but they were pushed back by a feeling of guilt over not having thought about his mother and sister after he had left them. It were they who were suffering and his thoughts about desires he would probably miss for some time were more than selfish.
Having dressed himself in a wide gown with a fitting underpants, Andy quickly stepped into his slippers and joined the nurse outside. Together they walked down the floors whereby the boy wondered how large the nurse had become. He even believed to see two nurses chatting and stopping once they saw him, but decided to ignore it, as they soon reached the room he had left his mother in.
Upon entering Andy found his mother talking with Dr. Russel and another doctor who was blond and looked very tensed behind his glasses.
“Ah hello Mr Marson. I’m Dr. Steinmetz.”
The doctor extended his hand which Andy accepted, feeling a bit disturbed by the look of youth the man radiated, but guessing that he had made a regeneration himself, probably largely for advertisement.
In the end it didn’t matter at all, as the boy quickly walked over to his mother who was lying with the same machines attached to her as he had left her. Still, she looked better, thought it could be that the look of total surprise had driven away the pain for the moment.
“Oh Andy.” she said, touching his face which hadn’t the clue of any beard.
“It is ok mom.” Andy lied. “How are you?”
“I’m feeling better.”
As she said this she still held his face while touching her stomach with the other hand.
“We managed to stabilize her and your sister.” Dr. Russel said from behind, having told the nurse to leave. “Please sit down so we can explain the next steps to you.”
Andy looked up at the man and pulled a chair near to his mother to be able to hold her hand while sitting on it.
“I have specialized in prenatal-operations.” Dr. Steinmann explained. “And I’m one of the few persons who have ever done an operation to reconnect mother and child.”
Andy felt his hand pressed by his mother, but didn’t look at her as he nodded.
“Your regeneration is advancing as planned and I’m currently assembling my team who will make the operation.” Dr. Steinmetz explained, looking at mother and son. “Once you’ve come near your due age in around one hour, we will begin to operate you Mrs Marson and prepare you for the connection. The critical point is the reattachment of umbilical cord and belly button. My former operations were done mainly with artificial-grown placentas and preterm births or those who were less than a month outside the womb. Since it is so long that you were connected your body needs to be accepted again.”
“You mean there is a risk.” Sarah Marson asked, clenching her son’s hand.
“We make the connection already outside the womb.” Dr. Steinmetz tried to pacify her. “We see if the connection is completed and won’t set him in if we aren’t sure it works.”
“If it shouldn’t work the risk for Andy is still minimal.” Dr Russel added turning to the boy. “You will be in the 25th week but your body will be more to a newborn as you will be stronger and your lungs will be functioning better than that of a pre-term this age.”
Andy nodded, suddenly being very aware of his breath, knowing he might not need it so a long time.
“Once the implantation is completed the pregnancy can progress normally.” Dr. Steinmetz said. “Of course we will watch it carefully. Do you have any further questions?”
Andy shook his head, but his mother looked up.
“What happens with my dead daughter?” Sarah asked, holding back her tears.
“We can arrange whatever you want.” Dr. Russel said, looking compassionate.
“I will wait for Bill.” she noticed. “We must decide this together.”
“Of course.” Dr. Russel agreed.
“I’m sorry mom. I couldn’t reach him, yet.”
“It is okay Andy.” Sarah said, going through her son’s brownish hair as she had when he had been younger before turning to the doctors “Could you leave us alone a moment?”
“Sure.” Dr Russel said and left with his colleague.
“What have I forced you into?” Sarah asked her son sceptically.
“I did it for my sister mom.” Andy replied earnestly “Don’t forget this.”
“You loose your life. Your job...”
“I don’t worry about it and you shouldn’t either.” the boy stopped as an idea crossed his mind. “But there is something you could do... my stuff in my flat. You can’t hold the flat, but maybe Bill could take my stuff and store it somewhere?”
Andy hesitated a moment.
“Can I touch your belly?”
He winced under his mother’s surprised look, not even knowing where the urge had come from, but after a moment she smiled widely, maybe the first time since he had found her one the floor.
“Of course darling.”
Andy reached for the belly, careful not to touch any of the sensors and felt the warmth with his somehow delicate hand. Suddenly, shocking him enough to pull it back again, he felt a kick.
“She knows what you do for her.” His mother said still smiling and having begun to shed tears.
It knocked and Nurse Curley looked in.
“I must ask you to leave now.”
Andy nodded, smiling at his mother.
“I’ll see you mother.”
“I’m so proud of you Andy.”
Without saying anything and feeling tears dwell in his eyes he left the room, finding the nurse waiting for him.
“Everything all right?”
Andy nodded and quickly wiped his tears from his face.
“Come.” the nurse said a warm tone “I’ll bring you back to your room Mr Marson.”
Andy followed silently, looking at her button now nearly straight by his face and feeling.... nothing.
As they reached his room, the nurse handed him a pill-bottle.
“This is something you have to take.”
“Laxative.” Nurse Curley said, sighing on the look the boy gave her. “According to Dr. Steinmetz your bowels and bladder have to be empty when... when you are implanted.”
Andy thought about it a moment, but after all he was facing right now this would probably be the least problematic part.
“One pill every fifteen minutes, eat nothing and drink nothing but water.” the nurse instructed him. “I will bring you to Mr. Steinmetz when the regeneration has progressed .”
With this she left, leaving Andy alone in the large room and the boy found himself wishing for a moment that he had someone there to speak to. Sighing the boy went to his bed, and turned his attention to the pill-bottle in his hand.
He opened it, quickly overcoming the child-lock and shook one of the gray pills in his hand, grimacing as he flushed it down his throat with a glass of water. The effects weren’t instant, so Andy laid on the bed and threw a look in the mirror.
The image was shocking, as the boy looking at him was just looking too mischievous, too perplexed in this moment with the little freckles on his face to be anything else than a child barely ten years old, his hair just begging to be ruffled...
Determined to get this image out of his head Andy grabbed the remote control and switched the TV on, finding nothing of interest as Two and a Half men had already ended and the other shows, or the news seemed just boring. It was when he reached the Disney Channel that his attention was stopped by the voice of and picture Kim Possible.
He wanted to change to another program but the scene reminded him of one episode he had seen when the show had started. Of course he had been already too old for such shows back then, but having decided to watch it just once he was stopped by some friends coming to visit him.
Deciding to give it a try and finding the show strangely appealing, Andy turned the TV louder and was about to laugh about the first joke when he noticed how his bowels began to rumble.
Holding his stomach the boy left the bed, losing his trousers and underwear in the movement and nearly falling over them. Not even trying to get them on again he half-naked rushed to the bath where after a second of relieve he noticed that he was now completely hairless everywhere below his brows.
Feeling it was save again to go leave the bath-room Andy grabbed the lost clothes on his way back to the bed and disposed them in the cart, grabbing another pile of clothes. The boy scowled as he noticed the colored stars all over the clothes, but put them on anyway as everything seemed better than his overgrown shirt.
Sitting back on the bed he threw a look at the pill-bottle and quickly opened the laptop. Trained in such Andy googled the name of the laxative, finding some interesting advertisement describing it as the most effective laxative on the market, or as a customer described it Mr Run, cleaning not just the bowel, but the bladder, too.
He starred at the pill-bottle, knowing it was about time to take another dose when his cell-phone rang. The boy looked at the TV where Kim was discussing something with Ron Stoppable, quickly switching it off as he did not plan anyone to find him watching such.
Andy quickly took the cell-phone out of his jacket, expecting one of his friends or even Mary to phone and ask what the hell he was smoking. Instead he recognized the number as belonging to long missed Bill.
“Andy I got your messages.” he greeted from somewhere in Asia “I just made a stop-off and have just some minutes what happened? Is something with Sarah?”
“Bill finally I thought you never got my message. Listen I...”
“Who are you boy? How did you get Andy’s cell-phone? Did you steal it?”
The ’boy’ was speechless a moment, until he realized that his voice had changed along with his body.
“No, Bill listen it is me Andy.” Andy said, trying very much to sound sensible. “Sarah and I are in hospital we....”
“This isn’t funny. You better bring the cell-phone back to its owner or I will call your mother and the police.”
Andy starred at the cell-phone in a mix of shock and surprisingly amusement. For a moment he couldn’t but feel disgusted by his step-father for not listening and giving him a chance to explain. Finally he sighed, overcoming his frustration and began typing a SMS which contained some information which could prove that he was who he had told him to be.
In the middle of it the boy looked up, wondering if it did any good if he would go into details of what was going on, especially with the part of one sibling being dead. He caught sight of the pill-bottle and knowing it was time for it swallowed a pill followed by a deep swallow of water.
Making a decision he added a quick summary of the the day’s events including an urgent request to call him or the hospital as his mother’s phone was probably left back in the house. In the middle of writing he found his bowels and bladder calling again, but suppressed them to get finished, knowing Bill could have to deactivate his phone every moment now.
By the time he had finished his message, Andy had to press his hand against his crotch and the second he had pressed the send button the boy jumped off the bed and began running to the bath. He only made half his way when his increasingly shrinking bladder released itself into a war stream, wetting his underpants and thin cotton-trousers at once.
Andy was frozen in the movement as he felt the warmth growing and slowly spreading itself over his legs. As to complete the debacle his bowels stopped fighting, releasing a soft, warm almost liquid mass which pressed against his back. In his shock he barely registered the knock at the door and when it opened he found himself starring quite helpless up at nurse Curley .
“Mr Marson is someth...” she began, stopping when she noticed the spot between his legs. “Oh I see. Just throw the clothes in the trash-can and take a shower, I will catch you some fresh clothing.”
In a mix of desperation and thankfulness the boy nodded, feeling himself suddenly very little.
Once the nurse had left, Andy went into the bath, where he began crying as the whole humiliation of this moment and the time in front of him came crushing down on him. The little boy barely managed to compose himself enough to put off his clothes, crying even more at the smell and sight of it, throwing them in the trash-can before he stepped into the shower-cabin, finding the taps just in the height of his head.
He was still shedding tears when the hot stream of water touched his face, but the big attack of childish emotions had passed, allowing him to quickly clean and dry himself with the towel he found. Right when he was drying his hair his bladder called again and he managed to climb on the toilet which now seemingly had grown to the size to swallow him.
It was then when Nurse Curley’s voice called him through the door.
“Mr Marson I leave you some clothes lying at the door I will come back later.”
Having finished and hearing the door shut again Andy still naked quickly opened the bathroom and grabbed the pile of clothes in front of him. Once again safe in the bathroom the little boy looked at the pile, finding the gown printed with small rockets, small dinosaurs and smiling tigers much to infantile, but knowing that there probably was nothing else of his size. The new soft slippers with fasteners seemed practical, but taking the gown he discovered his new underpants to be a colorful training pant complete with an encouraging looking Buzz Lightyear and Woody on it.
Shocked the little boy starred at the encouraging looking motives a while longer, asking himself if the nurse wanted to make fun of him. Angrily he opened the trash can, intending to remove this embarrassing object when the odor coming from it made him stop.
He didn’t need it, what had happened did so because he did have to inform his stupid step-father, but if he had another ’accident’ it would be much less embarrassing and clean if he had it in this training pant.
Reluctantly he looked at it a moment, before he opened it and stepped in, noticing how the elastic waist band helped to make it fit perfectly. The little boy quickly dressed himself in his hospital-gown, hoping that no one would notice it under it and thankful that without a mirror on his height he didn’t had to look at himself in it.
When Andy stepped out of the bathroom in his comfortable slippers, he noticed the unusual thickness pressing against his legs, trying to ignore the feeling as he walked to his bed.
Climbing on it proved to be no small effort and he had just managed to do so, fully intending on loosing himself in the depths of the internet, when it once again knocked at the door and Nurse Curley came in, holding something.
“Mr Marson I know it is hard to you.” she said, placing the colorful potty in front of the bed, a roll of toilet paper next to it. “But your bowels and bladder needs to be clean before the implantation or you might be poisoned. This is just so that you don’t have to spend all your time left on the toilet.”
“How long do I have?”
“We are already preparing your mother and the doctors need to prepare you, too. Fifteen minutes maybe less.”
The little boy starred at the clock, which was ticking mercilessly.
“Please leave me alone.”
“I will come to you then.” the nurse said with true compassion in her voice. “Please remember taking the pills and drink a lot.”
With this she left and Andy felt thankful that at last she hadn’t decided to stay to make sure he would take them as if he was a little boy needing supervision. He looked at the pill-bottle and then at the potty again and wished he could curse the one responsible for the age regeneration.
Knowing he had little choice now, Andy grabbed the bottle, taking another pill and swallowing it with a sip of water before returning his attention to the laptop. Out of curiosity the little boy googled for ’age-regeneration’, finding tens of thousands of articles.
Clicking at that of a human right-activism group he found them arguing for the free distribution of the medicine to the poor, another site showed interesting graphs showing the sinking of births in the countries it was obtainable to an acceptable price. Andy had reached a site in which the government was discussing a bunch of laws, mostly regarding retirement and legal age for obtaining alcohol in the wake of the recent developments when his intestines rumored again
The little boy, now more a toddler than anything else let himself slide down the bed, landing on all fours and loosing his gown which had been pulled over his head by this. It was when tried to get it on again, not mentioning his slippers that he suddenly knew that he wouldn’t make it to the bathroom as his bladder began to feel as if it would burst, too.
Frantically looking and feeling his training-pant all to clearly pressing against his lower half Andy looked at the potty. When he walked over to it he felt the first drips of urine escaping his penis and beginning to warm him, but in the end he managed to reach his destination in time and step out of his training-pant before more could happen, sitting down with a sigh of relieve.
His bowels emptied in what was nearly an explosion and the hot stream of urine that streamed against the plastic-protection in its front made him wet from its squirts, but at last he felt better now. Sitting naked on the potty Andy looked at it and thought that it would even be acceptable if it didn’t have a Winnie-the-Pooh head in the front, but the plastic on his button didn’t feel cool and it had saved him of further humiliation so there was no reason to complain.
As his bladder and bowels slowly calmed down, the toddler looked around, noticing how very high the TV, the windows and the beds seemed now. Even his jacked hanging on the chair seemed as if it was worn by a giant and the knowledge that he had worn it not even three hours ago made Andy feel even more lost and a mad instinct nearly lead him to place his thumb in his mouth.
Though he successfully fought the instinct, instead beginning to carefully wipe himself clean with the toilet paper, the toddler felt a very important question rising in his mind. When he felt it was safe again Andy rose, putting the just slightly wet training-pant back on. He ignored the warm feeling in his groin as he knew he had nothing to clean it now and looked up at the bed.
It looked too large to climb on now, but the toddler was determined and used the grips of the carts drawer to foolhardily come high enough to reach with his pudgy hands for the laptop on the bed’s top.
Half falling down Andy managed to hold the laptop securely as he landed, but his feeling of triumph was diminished by the feeling of warmth he suddenly felt at his crotch as his bladder released another load of urine.
Carefully holding the laptop he toddled to the potty, pulled down his training-pant and took place there once again, the laptop in front of him. Happy it hadn’t shut down, Andy googled for the key word ’Mind-wiping’ and ’age-regeneration’. His search was hindered as he suddenly realized he had forgotten how to spell the first word and had to fight hard to get the second right with his small fingers who suddenly seemed so much harder to control. In the end it was the completion function that saved him.
What he found disturbed him greatly as there was an article on the website of the Science, being about the ethic and juristic consequences of using age-regeneration for a rehabilitation program for prisoners or even as an alternative to the death-sentences as some experts seemingly favored. It was to his total shock that Andy found Dr Russel’s and Dr Steinmetz’s names amongst the experts suggesting such.
The toddler’s bowels began to work without his permission but Andy paid them no mind as he knew that every second counted now. Googling further he found another article where two experts discussed the effects of extreme youth to the brain. One pointed out that patients regenerated to the age of teenagers for various reasons seemed to prefer this age’s lifestyle and that the few having so far back as per-puberty seemed to have problems remembering or understanding adult concepts. The other argued that such were temporary effects which varied from case to case and that the knowledge of the own identity had always remained intact.
Andy was such absorbed in googling other articles that he didn’t notice when the door opened and Nurse Curley entered. He looked up, suddenly realizing how very much like a toddler in potty-training he had to look.
“I’m jast gooling.” he excused himself, finding his voice suddenly sound very young. “Goo goo.. Searching.”
The nurse nodded and Andy noticed the bag she was wearing under her arm.
“Are you ready?”
The toddler nodded, closing the laptop and standing up, realizing a moment too late how very naked he looked like and pulled up his training-pant, his cheeks flushing red.
“It is okay.” the nurse replied, taking a look at the contents of the potty before grabbing him under the arms and placing him on the bed, a treatment he allowed to happen without protest. “I see a lot of naked men here you know?”
Andy now standing on the bed just eye to eye with the nurse nodded though being very aware of the fact that the term man didn’t apply to him anymore.
“You take this very well.” the nurse noticed, laying down the bag besides him “I hope you understand what we have to do now.”
With this words and to Andy’s horror she took a diaper with an Oscar the Crouch motive on it out of the bag, then a diaper-changing-pad, a package of wet wipes some baby powder and baby oil.
“No!” Andy exclaimed, making a step backwards and nearly falling if not for the nurse grabbing his left arm.
“We run out of time and the doctors can’t bring you to the toilet every time.” she explained, looking straight into his eyes.
The toddler looked away in shame and found himself starring at the mirror. Seeing himself, a baby dressed only in a training-pant which looked threateningly as if it was coming down brought the reality of this situation back to him and he nodded.
“I’ll make this fast.” the nurse explained, carefully spreading the diaper-changing-pad and laying him down on it “Besides I noticed your poo is just clear slime now so you won’t have to take the pills anymore.”
“Promised?” Andy asked begging for just one good news as the nurse opened the training-pant by its side.
The toddler looked away from the nurse who was now lifting his but by lifting his legs to put away the training-pant from under him to the wall. He closed his eyes so the only thing forcing him to notice what happened was the strangely good feeling as she wiped his bottom and crotch clean and the somehow calming smell of the oil and the baby powder the nurse spread there.
Finally Nurse Curley put the fresh diaper under him and lowered his legs, fixing the diaper in a quick movement.
“Ready.” she said “You can open your eyes Mr Marson.”
Andy did so as he was pulled to stand upright, having problems to find his balances for a moment, but the nurse supported him.
“Wasn’t that bad, was it?”
The toddler didn’t respond but when the nurse was kneeling down to take up his hospital-gown he accidentally looked in the mirror finding himself sucking at his fingers.
In disgust the toddler forced his fingers out of his mouth, happy the nurse seemingly hadn’t noticed it, too.
“Raise your arms please.”
Andy did so and found himself covered in a gown which covered even his feet, making him wonder how he was supposed to walk, but before he could formulate a question, the nurse took him on her arms and carried him out of the room.
“The doctors are already waiting.”
The toddler wanted to protest, but then he remembered how every second put his sister and maybe even his mother at risk, so he stayed silent as they left the room, leaving the remnants of his life behind.
When he looked down on the floor he suddenly realized how high above the earth he was and instinctively nestled closer to Nurse Curley, such feeling her soft breasts pressing comfortingly against his body.
“It is ok.” the nurse whispered in his left ear.
She held him tighter, making him more aware that his bladder just released itself. Not wanting her to see his face the toddler, rested his head on the nurse’s shoulder and looked around while the nurse entered the elevator.
They were not alone as Andy noticed that a red haired woman, together with her young daughter who probably just visited Kindergarten. The child looked up at him, dressed in a leaf-green dress wearing pink sandals and wearing a small Dora the Explorer Rucksack on her back.
“Mummy is the baby sick?” she asked, the curious blue eyes glittering above her nose which was full of little freckles.
“Just a little bit.” her mother answered, laying a hand on her daughter’s shoulder while exchanging a glance with the nurse. “But the doctors will make it all right again.”
“Indeed I just bring him to a little check-up and then he can back to his mother and sister.” the nurse added in a sweet tone just as the doors of the elevator opened again.
“Say goodbye to the little baby Anna.” the mother told her child.
“Goodbye little baby!” the little girl said happily, waving after Andy as he and the nurse left the elevator.
“It was good of you to remain silent.”
The nurse’s praise made Andy feel better, but only slightly. In the elevator he had realized how much older the girl had been than he, would be older than he even when he grew up again, but more than that he had felt as if the girl was a big girl, felt jealous of the kindergarten she for sure visited and games she was able to play.
Andy wanted to talk about it, but felt unsure how to formulate the complex thoughts the right way, something not made easier by the pooing he felt happened but could not control. Before he could say just a word, they reached a door which looked very much like the same to Andy who had turned to look forward again.
The room was large, at last it seemed so for Andy as he looked around, discovering Dr. Russel, Dr. Steinmetz and an unknown female, clearly a doctor amongst them. He also noticed various medical-instruments in the room, most he couldn’t identify, except for a particular scary incubator.
“Hello Andy.” Dr. Russel said with a warm smile. “How are you.”
“Fine.” the baby said, noticing his ridiculous high voice and how hard it seemed to force his mouth saying this.
“Good, let me introduce you to Dr. Canerts.” as he said this a woman dressed in white with unusual short hair and green eyes stepped forward. “She is an expert in preterm-care.”
“Hello Mr Marson.” the woman said.
Doing so she extended a hand to the toddler on the nurse’s arm which he shook carefully, or rather she shook her hand as Andy marveled how large her hands were as his own barely could grab two of her fingers.
“Helo.” the baby managed to squeak under great concentration.
“Mrs Curley please bring him over to the table.” Dr. Russel said as Dr. Canerts and Dr. Lancester whispered amongst themselves “Mr Marson we will have to make an ultrasound of your stomach to see your bowels and bladder are truly empty.”
Andy nodded and the nurse carried him over to a examination table. The green plastic-cover covered by small ducks and doggies felt weird on his skin as she sat him down. Furthermore the diaper was warm and squishy from his pee and poo and despite that the baby didn’t find himself feeling any disgust, just slight comfort as he said there noticing his legs were spreading in a strangely wide angle.
“Lie down please.” Dr. Canerts said pushing in a ultrasound-unit from a side of the room.
Andy did so, noticing that Dr. Lancester just left, most probably to see his mother. Thinking of her let him suddenly wish for nothing more to be near hear, to be held by and...
“Mr Marson I must open your diaper.” Dr. Canerts said.
The baby shrieked up from his thoughts, realizing how unfitting they were for an adult and felt himself suddenly whimpering.
“It is ok.” nurse Curley said, holding his right tiny fist and letting it disappear in her hand. “We are all experts here.”
“Allja...” Andy began, unable to even formulate the word ’alright’ rightly.
“The loose of speech is something we had to expect.” Dr. Canerts said. “Try rising your left hand two times to say yes, the right two times to say no. Do you understand?”
The baby raised his left hand two times.
“Good!” the doctor said, untapping the diaper and opening its front, revealing Andy’s tiny wee-wee. “Let’s begin.”
Quickly she had put some sort of gel on his stomach which felt terribly cold and made him whimper out of a reflex. Nurse Curley laid a warm strangely calming hand on his shoulder as Dr. Canerts began leading a sensor over his tiny stomach and lower abdomen, looking at a monitor.
“All empty.” Dr. Canerts explained with a smile. “You can put him out of the diaper now.”
The nurse nodded and removed Andy’s diaper, wiping him clean and leaving him lying naked on the plastic. Hoping to cover it the baby tried to sit up, but as much as he tried his body did manage to do this complicate movement, causing him to twitch.
The nurse tried to calm him down, but Andy felt a wave of frustration rise in him which came dangerously close to emit as a tantrum. He finally managed to turn around, lying on his stomach at last and feeling very proud of it.
“Please take him to the scale.” Dr. Russel said.
Andy felt himself lift up and in nurse Curley’s secure arms he was carried to a infant scale
“We measure your weight and compare it with your birth records.” Dr. Russel explained as Andy was placed on the plastic pod. “Once you stop regenerating, shown by the stop off weight-loss I will give you another dose which begins your final regeneration-phase down to your sister’s age.”
On the scale naked Andy lifted his left hand two times to show he had understood, yet in his tiny head he wondered how mad he had been to agree to this. He tried to cover his little penis with his hands but found himself lacking the motoric skills to do much more than twitch. Furthermore infant felt weak and knew he would be so much weaker at the time of the operation, so much more helpless.
An idea blossomed in him beautiful like a rose. He could rise his right hand a few time and show his decision to stop it now. There was nothing they could do to stop him and if they at last tried the growth-hormones on him he would maybe even end up with a date with Mary in some years.
His mother would understand and his sister... would die. The infant laid on the scale as the doctors watched the number on the scale’s indicator decrease and thought about how much worse it would be for a fetus who had not even seen the light of day.
“The regeneration has stopped.” Dr. Russel noticed. “Are you ready?”
Andy raised his left hand two time, noticing how his view on them became deluded as his eyes slightly grew weaker. When the doctor’s needle hit the baby he was proud to not even whimper.
“We will bring you to the operation room now.” Dr. Canerts explained, picking him up. “This will be quick.”
With these words she put the infant into the incubator and closing it once it was done.
Andy felt a strange feeling of warmth as he lay on the soft cloth and was slowly pulled through the room out on the floor. Though he knew on an intellectual level that this was due to the heat generated by the incubator to make sure the pre-term didn’t freeze on an emotional level he felt very safe and cared for.
Looking up at he lamps of the floor the infant wondered how it would be like to be implanted and looking at the people around him he wondered how they would remember him, as his true self or as what he had become.
Then they had already entered the operation-room and his thoughts stopped as he saw his mother on the operation table, sleeping already, but clearly her. A few precious seconds later he was transported beside her, but her head was separated from him through a curtain and only saw her swollen, now open belly.
“We got him.” A voice, Andy believed to recognize as Dr. Lancester’s said somewhere. “I open his access you prepare the cord.”
Andy only saw white figures in the distance around his mother, but then for a moment he saw all to clearly a small figure, just like him, being taken out of his mother’s belly. It was limp and blurred, but the infant knew at once it was his dead sister now being removed and couldn’t but whimper at her fate.
“Andy.” Dr. Russel said, “Dr. Steinmetz will now give you a shot with medicine which will open the veins connecting you to the cord and an anesthetization, then we will make some cuts and prepare you for the linking.”
The infant nodded, at last he wanted to, but the muscles of his neck proved too weak and even the raising of his left hand seemed problematic, making him nearly breathless.
“I activate the oxygen.” Dr Canerts said from somewhere and breathing became easier again.
Andy was so relieved that he hardly noticed the opening of the incubator and the invasion of two giant hands, one holding a scalpel. Somehow he felt the pain of the needle and second later but when the nurse and the doctor held him, he only felt an odd twitching as another white figure worked at his navel.
“Done.” Dr. Steinmetz said. “Dr. Mcgilligan cut the link now.”
Despite the giant hands holding him and his eyes being a shadow of what they were hours ago, Andy managed to see the little figure of his sister being removed from the thin cord, packed into a towel and brought out of his sight, now and forever.
“The cord works, lets get him linked.” someone said.
The infant who was now a preterm felt how his incubator was moved closer to his mother, something he liked very much. Seconds later an odd, bleeding hose was brought closer to him and
“Hold him tight we use the laser now.”
Andy felt the strong hands grabbing him tighter, one even holding both of his legs and if he would still be able to do so he would have told them that this was unnecessary since he hardly felt strong enough to move at all.
A second later he felt strangely hot around his navel, a feeling which lasted for a felt eternity.
“Connection made.” Dr. Steinmetz said “Both arteries and the vein connected. How is the patient?”
“Stable.” Dr. Canerts noticed. “Andy are you fine?”
The hands did no longer hold him and he rose his left hand, stopping when he noticed how thin, red and nearly transculent it had become. Still wondering and before he could begin to feel afraid he noticed something odd. From one second to the other he had lost the urge to breath!
Carefully the toddler tried to inhale air, but all he got was a cold feeling in his breast and when he stopped doing so he felt fine too.
Surprised he looked up at the bright spots he knew where the doctors knowing what was going on.
“He has lost his breath-reflex.” Dr. Canerts noticed. “Andy do you feel alright?”
The preterm lifted his left arm twice, feeling suddenly even weaker, slowly growing cold and even the warmth of the incubator was no help.
“We can’t wait no longer.” A voice said in the distance.
“Got it.” Dr. Steinmetz said, looking down on his patient. “Andy we are placing you in now, ok?”
Andy raised his tiny left arm again.
Instantly he was picked up carefully by hands in plastic, making him see the cord connecting him with the depths of his mother’s belly and was slowly lowered . Suddenly felt his legs placed into some sort of liquid. then his torso and then his head. The preterm didn’t panic, as he felt too tired to do so, but welcomed the warmth which seemed to have the perfect temperature to comfort him.
Without fearing to drown he opened his mouth, tasting the amniotic fluids and finding them strangely appealing. Within a second he even found himself inhaling it, filling his lungs with something warm and strangely comforting.
Suddenly there was a pressure on his head he couldn’t resist and he was pressed down deeper into the sack by a giant rubber-like hand. Seconds later he felt a strange skin encompassing him, realizing it was the amniotic sack, quickly sealed by a laser. The preterm knew he should have felt worried, but the skin darkened the light which had begun to hurt his eyes so he felt rather relieved.
He calmed and finally noticed the strange rhythmic sound which after a moment Andy recognized as his mother’s heart.
Suddenly another layer, the uterus, closed and it became even darker and tighter. The few light coming through the two skins being red and weak. It wasn’t until then that a sudden flash of realization hit Andy that he was at the point of no return, no longer a legal person or anything someone would have thought to posses things like a mind. Worse something could happen while was in there and he could do nothing at all but to....
The skin of his mother’s belly closed and his eyes which were not used to such darkness saw nothing at all.
He panicked but stopped when he noticed a strange movement at his side. Perplexed he turned getting a similar response to his movement. Suddenly the former man realized it was his sister who seemingly had just woken up and his panic vanished by a feeling of love.
His sister by his side, Andy felt strangely calmed by the sound of the beating heart as if a part of him remembered that and due to tiring day the fetus slowly drifted into a slumber trying very hard to remember Mary’s face but failing as he fell asleep.
Three days later
Bill hurried into the hospital-room where the nurses had told him to find his wife. Worries and weariness marked his face as he hadn’t slept since he had learned of what had happened.
“Sarah.” He exclaimed as he saw his wife lying on the bed, reading a magazine.
“Bill.” she exclaimed, embracing her husband as he practically jumped into her arms. “Oh Bill I missed you so.”
“Sarah what happened?” he asked. “The twins, Andy....”
“It is all right now.” Sarah said, removing the blanket to reveal her clearly pregnant belly. “Everything will be all right.”
To be continued somewhen...