The piles of tablets he needed to pick through before lunch
were all knocked on the floor next to his desk, the holo displays overhead were
chock full of windows marked urgent but were entirely ignored. Jack didn’t want
any distractions; he needed all his focus as he wiggled a familiar clip on tie
across his desk top.
“Get it, you freakin’ adorable beanie baby lookin’ buttface,
kill it,” Jack cooed at the small
tottering kitten that swatted at the red silk. The kitten mewled, a big sound
for such a tiny thing, opening its tiny mouth so wide its eyes scrunched up. It
kept trying to pull back, to ignore the tie, but as soon as Jack would give it
a wiggle sure enough a potato sized puff ball would latch onto it with awkward
“That’s it, shred this piece of shit. You’re gonna thank me
later, kitten,” Jack snorted,
repeating the endearment under his breath and chuckling while the fur ball on
his desk grasped the clothe and flopped onto its back, chewing at the fabric
and kicking at the tie with its back feet.
The puff bean was growling properly now with all its micro
fury, snagging and tugging threads out of place, when Jack’s ECHO went off. He
considered turning his ECHO off before reading the incoming caller’s ID, and
sighing dramatically. With a grimace he answered, flipping the call on speaker
so he could tug the tie and drag the pissed kitten across the desk.
“Whatchya got?” Jack drawled.
“S-so it’s permanent,” came a shaky feminine voice. There
was an audible gulp.
“Huh. Well R and D’s airlock or mine?” Jack smirked, letting
the little tiny baby cat chew on his fingers as it lost interest in the tie.
“Sir, before I answer that it’s my duty to inform you that
while the change is permanent we are pretty sure we can have him go through an
augmented exposure, one set to change him back but, um, not back but reform
things again so that – “
“Ugh, shut it nerd. Now how sure is pretty sure?” Jack interrupted,
holding one paw between his fingers while the kitten took on an offended
backwards ear tilt as it tried and failed to take its paw back.
“V-very! So sure, we are just,” there was a weird dry
sounding gasp, “we are so totally sure. One hundred percent.”
“Mmmkay. See ya in ten,” with that Jack hung up. Scratching
at his stomach he manhandled the kitten, bracing his hand under its soft tummy
and picking it up in a way that all legs dangled free. There was a small cry as
Jack stood, then came shivering all throughout the little tater tot’s body.
“Oh, yeah. You’re afraid of heights,” Jack mumbled. Shifting
his hold Jack cradled an arm to his front, bracing his kitten between his arm
and his chest. He briefly locked eyes with the kitten before it tucked its face
nervously into the crook of Jack’s elbow.
one of the things i loved most about moana was how well she did with figuring out solutions for problems and how logical and intelligent she was like advising the people of her island, escaping the cave maui trapped her in and even helping out the baby turtle to the ocean when she was a freakin’ baby
You’re gonna say it’s because, technically, a child with a working brain stem can’t be declared brain dead even though he’ll never walk or talk or move or eat, even though he’s missing the parts of his brain that he needs to have a life. Not just be alive, but have a life. To love, to think, to know words and feelings, to be conscious. You’re gonna talk to me about medicine and technicalities and the failings of science. Yeah. But the thing is, that’s not why you won’t do the harvest. It’s because it’s unimaginable. What I’m asking you to do is unimaginable. It’s horrible. It’s excruciating. I’m asking you to help dismantle my baby for parts. And there’s no piece of anyone’s soul that can hold that and feel okay. But I’m asking. I’m asking you. I’m his mother. And I’m asking you to do this. And you want to know why? It’s because I did a little research, Sam. Science. In Chicago, there’s this baby girl, 6 weeks old, with pulmonary hypertension who needs new lungs. Outside Detroit there is a 10-day-old boy who was born blind, but could see if he had new corneas. I read this blog about this 14-month-old kid named Gideon in San Diego who’s been on a heart-lung machine for months because he needs one tiny valve in his heart. There’s burned babies who need skin. There’s infants who need livers, and toddlers who need kidneys, and there’s even this one 4-month-old girl named Lulu who needs a multiple-organ transplant. My baby could save all of those babies. He could be responsible for kids leaving the hospital and going home and growing up and falling in love and having sex and arguing with their boyfriends and making mistakes and living and maybe not ruining their lives with drugs. What I’m asking you to do is unimaginable. But it’s also everything those other mothers could ever imagine. I’m his mom. And I’m asking you to do this. If I can get there, why can’t you?