Chapter 2

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I rushed into the emergency room of the Saranac Hospital, my mind screaming one thing: please don't let her be dead.

I marched up to the front desk, cutting ahead in the line to reach the only lady working there.

"Excuse me, ma'am, but you have to wait in the back--" the woman began saying.

"Screw the line! Where's my grandmother?! They said she had a stroke. I need to be in there," I said, my voice sounding hysterical. My hair had fallen out of the neat bun it had been in at the start of the day and now fell wildly around my face. I was sure my make-up had smeared from crying in the car on the way over. But I didn't care what I looked like. I just needed to see my grandmother.

"I realize that you're here for an emergency, ma'am, but you have to wait just like--" the woman.

"Ah, fuck you," I shouted, leaving the window and walking forward. I pushed open the door that led to the emergency room, the woman at the desk yelling after me. Ignoring her, I strode forward, placing my hands on the counter in front of a nurse who was sitting at a computer.

"Can you tell me what room Martha Hansen is staying in?" I asked the nurse, trying to keep my voice level.

"Who are you?" the nurse asked.

"I'm her granddaughter. I was called by a woman named Jennifer," I replied.

"Hey, Jen! Did you call a Miss Hansen here?" the nurse called to a petite blonde looking woman.

"Uh, yeah. She's Martha's granddaughter, right?" the nurse named Jennifer replied, coming forwards.

"Are you Aria?" she asked me.

"Yes, that's me," I said. "Is my grandmother all right?" I asked.

"You have nothing to worry about. They're preparing her for surgery as we speak. Come sit down and I'll explain what happened," Jennifer replied, reaching out and grasping me by my arm. She pulled me toward a row of chairs that were placed against the wall. I guess she had seen how pale I had gotten and decided it was best if I were sitting.

"She had a stroke earlier this morning, but luckily, Dr. Cameron, the heart specialist here at Saranac, had her wearing a medical alert bracelet at all times since she lives alone. Your grandmother was smart enough to activate it and the paramedics were able to get there in time and revitalize her. Dr. Cameron ran some tests and he said that she needs a by-pass surgery," she explained to me in a gentle voice that was supposed to be calming. I took a sharp intake of breath.

"It's all right. Bypass surgery is one of the most common types of surgeries and Dr. Cameron is amazing. Your grandmother is in good hands," Jennifer said.

"When can I see her?" I asked.

"Well, the surgery typically takes a few hours and then she needs to wake up from the anesthesia. I'd give it three or four hours," she replied. I sighed and nodded, wrigging my hands together. "Maybe while you wait, you can go home and change and get comfortable?" she suggested.

I shot her a dark look. How the hell was I supposed to go home and get comfortable while my grandmother was in surgery? I didn't care if it was the most simple kind of surgery in the world. She was still getting cut open and I wanted to make sure she was all right the second she woke up.

"I'm fine," I grunted. "Where's the nearest coffee machine?" I asked.

"Right outside the waiting room," Jennifer said in her sickly sweet voice, smiling at me. I grimaced back and got up to find the machine.

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