Thursday, May 19, 2016
September 9, part 2
I had the pleasure of talking to all of Clan Aslada. I do not use the term ‘pleasure’ as a euphemism either. It was a very real delight, because they spoke to me from their whirlpool. The men were having a nice soak. Their wet, glistening torsos were above the churning water, looking all muscled, manly yummy. I think I stammered over my hellos, but I don’t remember the early part of the conversation too clearly. Whew.
I finally recovered my senses to ask Jaon if he’d heard anything about Nang. No was the answer. Jaon didn’t seem too worried about it.
“He’ll turn up if he doesn’t get himself killed out there,” the Nobek told me. “The route from Earth to the Empire is still pretty lawless, especially for a lone Kalquorian. The fact Nang doesn’t want to be found by us puts him in greater danger of crossing paths with our enemies. We may have heard the last of Dramok Nang.”
I bit my lip over Jaon’s cavalier attitude. He was probably right to be confident. Heaven knew my ship had run into more than its share of problems even with the protection of destroyers and fighters. What chance did Nang have out there all alone?
I also kind of felt ill over the idea of something awful happening to Nang. He turned out to be a mess, but we did once share something. As scared as he makes me feel, I didn’t want anything truly bad to happen to him. I just want to see him shoved in a nice padded cell until he gets his senses back.
I shoved aside all of that to smile at the delicious vision of Meyso. “So what do we need to discuss about my mom?”
He smiled, making my heart flip-flop. Who can resist a man who looks good and intelligent too? And is sitting half-naked right in front of you, carved muscles begging to be touched? Yow.
“The first thing we need to take care isn’t medical at all. You need to establish an affidavit of legal guardianship over Matara Eve. That will clear the way for you to make decisions on her behalf.”
I stopped admiring his gorgeous body to think about what he’d said. “I thought I already had that.”
“Informally, yes. The doctors who saw Eve on Earth deferred to you on a temporary basis due to the history you gave them and their observations of her behavior. That was backed up by the tests Dr. Nayun ran.”
“I have to make it formal?” I squirmed a little at that. Mom would be enraged if the dementia allowed her to understand I would be making all the decisions for her. Major decisions, as in letting Meyso play in her gray matter. Yeah, that would not go over well.
“Once on Kalquor, yes. You have to assume legal guardianship over your mother in order to sign off on the procedures, which are medicinal and surgical.”
Aslada added his input, his modulated voice smooth as silk. “It’s simple enough. I’ll have my lawyer draw up the papers. You sign off on them, he attaches the medical evidence of your mother’s inability to make decisions on her own behalf, and sends it in to the judge who will give his approval. It will all be done within a day.”
I’d had that power back on Earth. It hadn’t been easy to sign those papers then, robbing my mother of her right to decide her own fate. It didn’t matter that I was doing the right thing to keep her safe. It was still an awful step, facing the fact that my strong-willed mother needed a keeper. Now I had to do it all over again, but this time they would be altering her instead of simply keeping her from hurting herself.
I knew it wasn’t just that Meyso would be treating the dementia that had stolen Mom’s ability to live on her own and make her own decisions. I was also on the brink of having the bipolar disorder that made up her personality remedied at long last. A decision that should have been hers to make ... one she would never go for.
Did I have the right? Was I playing God by taking away her almost-constant anger, the sudden outbursts of maniacal cheer, and the suicidal bouts of depression? It seems like a stupid question, but that was the mother I had known before dementia subverted those qualities, along with her fierce protective instincts when she thought I was threatened. There had been moments so overpowering that she would have to grab me in a fierce hug while telling me over and over how much she loved me.
How much of that would the surgeries take away? Who would Eve Monroe be when the illnesses were erased and she became the person she could have been? Would I even know my own mother when it was all done?
We talked more about the procedures themselves, the recovery time, the rehabilitation that would be involved later. Yet the decisions I had to make kept me from absorbing a lot of that. I even found it difficult to appreciate the men’s gorgeous bodies.
Before, fixing Mom’s problems were all a theory, an event far into the future. Now the time was at hand. When Aslada told me he’d talk to his lawyer that afternoon and to expect the documents to arrive in the next couple of days, my heart went into overdrive. Could I really do it? Should I? And if I do, will she ever forgive me?
As God is my witness, I just don’t know.