â€œWeâ€™re sorry, but the tissue damage is irreparable. Itâ€™s spreading. Youâ€™ll start to feel the pain in a few days, then, nothing at all.â€ The silence in the room gave way to a gentle sigh from Russ, whose eyes looked up at the Doc with longing.
â€œDoc, whatâ€™s my time?â€ he barely choked out.
â€œHonestly, Russell you have about a week, maybe two.â€
Russâ€™ girlfriend just looked up, concerned, but Russ didnâ€™t seem phased by the time he came to ask about the only alternative safe enough to use this day and age. â€œCan they prep the machine before that? I mean theyâ€™ll be able to clock me in, right Doc?â€
Checking his clipboard, the doctor made a few hums and clicks as if he were prescribing medicine for a cold. A sense of nonchalance hung about him before his brows rose, â€œWell, we do have an opening in about five days. Early morning, though. That wonâ€™t be a problem for you will it?â€
â€œFive days?â€ The patient nodded as he mulled it over before looking to the corner seat where his girlfriend was. â€œHoney, we got anything going on Saturday morning?â€
â€œUhmâ€¦ you got that job interview in the afternoon.â€ Her words showed the most concern out of anyone in the room.
â€œShit, youâ€™re right. Wait, I can probably make it back before then, right?â€ Hopeful eyes glanced to the doctor who already started to yawn at the whole situation.
â€œYeah, Russell, I think everything will be okay. Now I wrote down what probably caused the long-term effects, and the guys at the machine lab will be able to tell you some ways to fix it all up.â€ The Doc checked his watch as he handed him a note card. â€œRussell, I have other patients today, so just give me a call last week and let me know things are fine and Iâ€™ll bill you for this in a couple of days.â€
Smirking as he glanced over the card, Russ shook his head, â€œRight, rightâ€¦ but Doc, câ€™mon! I can understand the smoking butâ€¦ caffeine? Alcohol? This is going to be tough convincing me to quit this.â€
Shrugging, the doctor opened the door to exit, â€œHey, I donâ€™t make the laws of time, I just tell you what you got to fix to live, Russell. See you around.â€