Authors: Morris Fenris,Jasmine Bowen
the door opened, and the kindly doctor stuck his head in, checking her vitals, and making notes without disturbing them.
Arthur said, softly to him. “Tell me the truth.”
The first time he asked, Dr.
Hever only shook his head.
“The only thing I ask of you is that you let
Tony in when the time comes, to say his goodbyes.”
Arthur nodded. “Of course.”
He had seen death many
times, seen ones who were nowhere near as sick as Annalise just slip away. It baffled him that she could be so sick, so listless and still live. It almost seemed cruel to keep her alive. In his day, someone this sick would be granted peace. Someone half as sick as Annalise would be given last rites. How cruel modernity was to be able to prolong this.
But the second time, the doctor’s expression was perplexed.
“What is it?” Arthur’s heart leapt into his mouth, fearful that he would lose Annalise now and forever.
“Her vital signs are
… rising. And her fever is breaking,” he shook his head in surprise, and went to a drawer, pulling out vials. “I need to take some blood from her, to test and see what’s happening. Are you able to stand it, if I pull blood?”
“My cravings are quite controlled,”
Arthur replied. “But will it hurt her?”
“Hold her hand, and she won’t even notice. I’ll take
these right to the hospital and be back by morning.”
He was true to his word
. Arthur heard him come back in, and heard the house start to awaken around dawn. But he didn’t dare run out to ask for the results, for he was too fascinated by what was happening in the room.
The color had returned to
Annalise’s cheeks and she opened her eyes, bright and full of life, as the sun came in. He wasn’t sure, in her state last night, that she would ever look at him again, but she did with a smile.
“It’s Christmas,” she said, sitting up slowly. He was quick to guide her, making sure she didn’t move to
Annalise, relax,” he said, and she shook her head.
“You don’t understand. We have to go out to the tree. Will you take me then?”
“Yes, dear,” he replied, and she laughed at the typical response. Her body felt fragile, her bones clear under his grip as he helped her up. But unlike last night, he could feel strength in her fragile state, her blood pumping, her heart pounding, as if it were trying to break through a barrier.
Slowly he helped her out the door to where the rest of the family was gathered. And to his amazement,
saw his brothers standing by the tree with the Hever family.
…” he said in shock, and Gregory turned to him, his arm around Rosa, a closeness they didn’t normally exhibit.
“Well, it’s Christmas
, brother. We couldn’t be separated.”
The presents under the tree were wrapped
neatly in shining paper alongside two families mingling with smiling faces. Tony approached Annalise carefully, his wounds still raw from their fight, but she gave him a hug before going back to Arthur’s arms.
“My apologies, my Lord, for my harsh words yesterday,” he said, evenly. “My head was not clear.”
“I know the feeling well,” Arthur replied, helping Annalise to settle on the couch, unsure of how she wanted to proceed. This was, after all, the man she had carried on with for years, and he wasn’t sure what their status was. But she leaned against Arthur, taking his hand, and kissing him on the cheek, and he got his answer.
“Before we open presents, because you children never seem to grow up,” Dr.
Hever smiled at his adoptive family, “there’s something that needs to be said.”
The others turned their attention to him, and he raised a mug of coffee in a toast.
“When Gregory came to us requesting Annalise, we were fearful of the idea, of the very notion. But we had no idea where that path would lead us. I’m so glad that you, my princes, are able to join us in sharing this special day. I know that Annalise’s mortality has become quite a concern over the last few days. Everything happens for a reason, and this reason was to bring us together, to be with family and the ones we love. The Hevers and the Bugressons have clashed many times over the years, but here, perhaps, that feud ends.” He took a deep breath. “This morning, I went to the hospital to spin your blood, Annalise, because your vitals rose during the night. What I found surprised me.”
Arthur’s hand, shaking at the news.
“The last round of chemo appears to have started to work, a bit retroactively. While the cancer cells are still prominent, they are fewer and far between now
. As well,” he smiled at Rosa, the only other human in the room. “Rosa agreed to be tested this morning for bone marrow, and, it’s a Christmas miracle. She’s a match.”
gasped, bringing her hand to her mouth. Arthur turned to her confused, and she offered him an explanation as she did many times before. But this was the greatest explanation of all.
“A bone marrow match cures cancer. Not just puts it into remission, but it cures it.”
“What?” Arthur’s jaw dropped, and he looked to Gregory, whose eyes were twinkling. “This is true?”
“What humans can do for one another is a miracle, in this modern age,
Arthur. It appears your story with Annalise is not in its final chapter.”
“You’ll be fine?”
Arthur turned back to her, and she kissed him full on the mouth in front of everyone, her smile wide.
Arthur,” she replied, and he wrapped his arms around her, unbelieving.
she had first walked into the room, he did not want to live, did not want to be what he was. The modern world was horrible, and offered awful alternatives. But now he thanked the gods for modernity. They had saved Annalise. They had given them a Christmas Miracle.
Maybe the modern age wasn’t so awful after all. And maybe, he’d give it a try, as long as she was by his side to teach him.
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About the Authors
Fenris was born into a poor family in the Fiji Islands. Thanks to his own grit, determination and the support of his loving parents, he was able to embark on a journey that has seen him attain a good education and work in many parts of the world. He is now enjoying life with his wife and daughter in Manila, Philippines.
Morris has been writing since childhood, drawing on his experiences in life and emulating the styles of his favorite authors.
Morris enjoys reading and writing in a wide range of genres and has plans for many more books. If you’d like to get in touch with this author, please message him on Twitter at #MorrisFenris, find him on Facebook or send him an email at:
Jasmine Bowen’s professional acting debut was at age nine, selected out of 70 children to perform beside Lenny Graf in his “Rainbow” Tour. Jasmine broke into the film industry at age 16 in the action movie,
Jamie and Eddie: Souls of Strife
. The film recently won awards nationally and across the border. At 17, Jasmine moved to Toronto starring in Brett Kelly’s
alongside Joe Estevez. She has appeared with Donald Trump, the Black Eyed Peas, U2 and the Cliks. In theater - her passion - she has performed at Canada’s Wonderland, Nuit Blanche, the CNE, Passe Muraille, Buddies, and worked with Canadian Stage as part of their 2012 Gym Artist Group in The Loyalists. She hosted The Elephant in the Room on Remic TV for a year and the Cache Metals Market Overview on AM 640 radio for six months. Her new show, Spots, launches December 2013.
Jasmine has recently take
n her writing to the next level publishing plays, novels, novellas and short stories under her own name, and ghostwritten for clients. She believes that her training as an actor helps to create more realistic characters and dialogue. Her own novella series,
Children of Drumania
, has two titles out and is due to release a third in early 2014.
Acting or writing, Jasmine loves creating characters and living in make-believe lands.
Visit her at: