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V1C2.20?01-27-22 The Vision (6421)

More of an Inquisition – Mike Spiro {JHMC NYC on Friday Day 6 at 3:15p}

“Mr. Spiro.”

I felt a tap on my shoulder. The cute resident doctor was running the show and our eyes crossed paths several times as she directed where we sat. She was very professional. “May I call you Mike?”

She was wearing a short blue skirt under her lab coat. I had to concentrate on her words.?”Yes, I like Mike.” I was wanting to tease her but my mind was not quite working at high efficiency. I really was struggling to remember her name. Did I even know her name?

“Are you feeling better?” Doctor Rodriguez looked into my soul with her dazzling hazel eyes. That look really got my heart pumping. The Doc started smiling. Maybe she could see that I was excited.

“Sure. I m ready, just waking up. Doc, Can you tell …” I got cut off mid-sentence. I could not see Doctor Adams but I heard his voice.

“Sonia, let’s start the recording.”

Ms. Stevens’ hair was a bit frayed but she was calm and confident. She went in front of the camera and gave the date and time. “Ready.”

“Mr. Spiro, we are here today recording our medical evaluation. This recording will be principally used for medical purposes but it may be used by the police. Do you give your consent?”

“Yes.” I nodded my head. “Again, why are the police here?”

“Mr. Spiro has given his consent to record this session. This evaluation is being done differently because you were found unconscious at a crime scene. The police are here to listen for any clues that can help them find the perpetrators. But the most important reason we are here is for you. We need to determine any memory issues you may have if any.”

Can you start from the time you left your home to come to the hospital?” Doctor Rodriquez was all business.

?”Sure. While I wake up, can you tell me your name?”

The Doc seemed embarrassed. Dr. Adams interceded. “Mr. Spiro, are you able to talk with us now? Can we stick to your story?”

“I’m only asking the young lady her name. Do you have a name?” I smiled at the resident doctor.

“I am resident Doctor Rodriguez.”

“Do you have a first name?” I smiled at her.

The doctor looked around and played with her hair. Then, as she looked down at the ground and coyishly slow into my eyes, she said softly, “Melissa. My name is Melissa. Can we continue?”

I finally saw Detective Branigan hiding in the back behind Nurse Sharon. He was talking on his cell phone. It seemed like he finished his call on his cell phone when Melissa and I were flirting but had a weird smile on his face. It was a small room. When his attention turned to the inquisition, I could see his eyes roll and I figured that whatever was going on between me and Melissa was making him a bit loco. I continued. “Sure. An hour after Cresha and I arrived at my home, I moved our bags into the house, I changed into my swimsuit. I did laps for about 30 minutes and then I dressed to go out between 7:30 and 8 am. Oh, and I called my office to let them know my schedule and I messaged later to cancel any meetings. Is this detailed enough? And can we get to the part where I find out why I am tied up?”

Melissa nodded and Dr. Adams didn’t even look over at me. I looked back and Branigan had disappeared.

Then, Melissa surprised me and looked up for a second, “What did you do for the hour before you brought the bags in?”

Was she trying to trick me? I had to take a moment to think about the question and consider my answer. “I wasn’t doing anything. I think I looked around the place, had some more coffee, and took a dump.” I smiled. “Sorry for the graphic. I used the bathroom. Why are you asking me these kinds of questions?”

Dr. Adams put his hand on his chin to stroke his goatee. “Currently, I am your doctor but I also work for the police. I need to know if you remember what happened last night. You are not under investigation yet. If you were, the detective would read you your rights. Did you message or call your office?”

“Doctor, I feel like I am being interrogated. I did both. In fact, I just told you. Are you even listening to me?” I paused and then looked at him quizzically. “I messaged and called my office. Get a subpoena and you can check my phone.” It seemed like they wanted more detail. “Hmm. I recall I bent a Venetian blind and squinted my eyes because the sun was so bright.” I saw Melissa smile. That was great. “Like I told you before, I was restless when I got home. I had no sleep; I couldn’t sleep if I wanted. I exercised a little while. Eh, I swam laps. I had coffee. I used the bathroom. Finally, I decided it was best for me to get out of the house and clear my head. I called up to Cresha that I was leaving, it was around 7:30 am, … By the way, where is Cresha?”

The young resident perked up and said matter-a-factly, “Your wife is…”

Dr. Adams put his hand up to motion to Melissa to stop. “Mr. Spiro, we will tell you everything but we need for you to try and remember what happened. Where was your wife while you were looking around.. et cetera?”

“First, you all keep saying wife. Cresha is not my wife. She is much more than a wife. She is my partner, my lover, and the mother of my child. Where is my girlfriend? This child, my child, Gwen, is here in the hospital and NO ONE has told me how she or the baby is doing!” I was really on edge and I saw everyone’s reaction to me. I continued. “That moron doctor Swaggart should be shot for wanting to kill my granddaughter. But my friend, the father, and I stopped him! And you have not told me about where my friend Ed is and why I am tied up! But you will tell me, hopefully, now. I am tired of waiting.”

A voice broke my train of thought. “What do you mean that the doctor should be shot?”

I recognized the detective’s voice.?I saw everything was going south. I tried to sound calm. “I was not being literal. I just want to know, what is happening with my family and why am I tied up?” Maybe repeating it a bunch of times would have an effect. And it is recorded too. I could not understand what needed to be so secret. Doctor Adams walked up to Doctor Rodriquez and whispered in her ear. I decided to say something to clear the air. “Returning to this morning, I felt anxious and overwhelmed when I arrived at my home. The shower and coffee did nothing to help me deal with the news that my daughter was in intensive care at a hospital. I first looked around the place because I could tell my daughter had been there recently. I needed to take a walk to clear my head. I called up the stairs to let Cresh know I was leaving but I did not hear a response. She was probably in the shower. I put my jacket on and turned off the lights.”

I saw everyone in the room turn their attention to everything I was saying.

“Cresha met me when I arrived at the hospital. Our daughter, Gwen, was admitted here a few days ago. Oh, before I walked over, I pulled my phone out of my pocket and called Ed Dawes. I waited a long time for him to answer. I hate waiting on people to answer a call. After about 20 rings, he answered the phone…”

Detective Branigan stopped me. “Mr. Spiro, a body matching a description of your significant other, was found in your home in the shower. You claimed to be the last person to have seen and spoken to her.”

“You mean Cresh? My god! I was trying to register my feelings. When I found myself tied up, I imagined this being a real possibility. I started feeling a bit helpless like I was being set up, like in a movie. “I spoke to my wife when she arrived at the hospital.”

I noticed that Nurse Sharon was holding my hand. “Nurse Sharon was here.”

Branigan continued, “You also were very upset at Dr. Swaggart for suggesting the termination of the pregnancy.”

“Yes, he was an asshole.”

Branigan froze. “Was?”

“Sorry, IS. Dr. Swaggart IS an asshole.”

Detective Branigan looked over to one of the officers with either glee or astonishment in his eyes. “We ran tests on the knife found at the scene that was used to kill Dr. Swaggart… The lab called this afternoon. I was told that Ed Dawes and your prints are the only ones on the knife. No one remembers and there is no record of Cresha Garcia arriving here at JHCU.”

“Detective, I didn’t kill anyone. Ed did not kill anyone. I have not even seen him since I arrived in New York. Ed is my friend and he is a really easy-going guy. he would never hurt anyone.”

“Mr. Spiro, we have an APB out for Ed Dawes. And I am now formally placing you under arrest for the murder of Cresha Garcia. We have a warrant to search your home. And yes, we need your phone. These fine officers will now handcuff you and read you your rights and show you the warrant for your phone. You should consider getting a really good attorney.”

Two uniformed officers came over and added a handcuff to my already strapped-down right arm while affixing the other side to the bed rail.

I started rubbing the nurse’s hand between her thumb and her index finger. Nurse Sharon smiled, stood up, and tried to move my hand to my lap. The straps and handcuff did not permit the movement but Nurse Sharon stepped back.

The detective cleared his throat. “Dr. Adams, please send me a copy of this video, and please do not further question Mr. Spiro. We will need to clear the room and we have officers posted outside. No one, and I mean no one, is to enter this room without clearance from me.”

The Angel Investigator – Ikart?{Outside JHMC Spirit Realm 8:00 am – Ikart Spirit Reporter Earth Times}

“I am Ikart reporting for a Special Edition of the Earth Times. Again, the spirit realm appears to be in turmoil, according to a reliable source in the High Court. The leadership council has been working to discover the facts surrounding the disappearance of two angels in the Earth region. The spokesperson for the High Court has worked closely with community leaders and the Earth Federation of Angels to lower fears and increase confidence in the security of Earth. Back to you, Raka.”

“Did you get that?” I could feel my editor’s spirit and he was anxious about something. Angels are not supposed to get anxious or worried but that is human imagination, but it is normal for many spirits to get nervous. Humans make shit up when they don’t know. There are a few humans that do know about spirits but they usually are very low-key or become controllers. But anxious angels do happen… like this wing-ette, Kisit. I took out a pack of American Spirits and was looking for a lighter to light up a cigarette. Kisit was a relatively new angel and looked at me disapprovingly.

“Yes. We are done. But, I just need to ask you a favor… please!”

“Can we do this later, Kisit? I need to go to another stakeout.”

“Wait. I just want some more background information for Salina in the AmerAsia Local 400? She is keeping the angels informed of how the families are doing there and trying to get volunteers to assist there on their off time. I told her I’d ask you. She’s giving me a recommendation to get into the security academy.” I sensed something more. And regardless of Ikart’s motivations, I needed to keep some things close to the vest.

“So this has nothing to do with you liking Salina? Maybe a previous life or something like that? And you know, she might be flirting with you just to find out what I am doing and tell the bad guys. Have you thought about that?”

“I am going to ignore your distrusting words. Angels are not supposed to have relationships. I just want to get my GA wings. Remember, Kelel says that Guardians are precious in His sight.”

“Oh, that stings! Do you think my role is minor? Journalists are never approved of by the masses until they need the information we dig up. We all deserve to know the truth.? And Kelel really needs me now to do this right.” I know that wasn’t what Kisit meant. He just didn’t like me prying into his business. “Do you have a light?”

“I don’t know how Kelel works with you.”

“No problem, Kisit. You are always here for me.” I said jokingly. I blew a flame and started up my cigarette. Humans don’t think spirits have a sense of humor. They are so wrong! “Kisit, in the spirit of helpfulness, I will?read my notes to you.”?I was breaking myself up.

“That won’t help…” I wasn’t listening.

“According to Ziccona, her GA, Maria left the house at 6 a.m. wearing a light overcoat over a gold button-down blouse, black slacks, and a nice comfortable pair of black walking shoes. It was a beautiful day but Maria felt like there was something not right. I made a note that she had some fear. But she just stuck to her daily routine: she left her home in Jackson Heights, meditate, grabbed a coffee and lunch for later, and caught the E Train to the Van Wyck Station in Jamaica New York City. Jamaica is a well-to-do neighborhood in the New York City borough of Queens.” I paused reading for a moment and took a puff.

Kisit was looking down shaking his head.

“Don’t mention these exact locations… I should not have read those out loud. I don’t want this information to get to the community leaders there. It might start a panic and Kelel will be mightily upset with me… but mostly you!” I looked up at Kisit with a sly look. “He might even suspend you. But I know he approves of me sharing the information.”

“Ikart, I won’t mention exact locations, but Salina knows the area where you are reporting. This is not what she is looking for anyway.”

“These are my notes… important stuff. Let’s continue. Her mother, Cristina Withers, Maria’s mother, watched and waved to Maria from the kitchen window. Cristina, is a recent widower. I do not have the most important fact here. This is a job that Hiwen completely botched. He is the one who left Aaron unprotected!”

“Yes. But Hiwen left them unprotected because something happened to him. The Angel Council suspects Lucifer.” Kisit was acting pretty naively; he didn’t really care about this investigation, he just wanted something to take back to Salina. Angels know that Lucifer is credited for a lot of things that he never did. Hiwen was probably eliminated because he knew something or was in the wrong place. And I was pretty sure it wasn’t Lucifer because the person doing this had to be a master controller. Lucifer is a rogue controller and can only control weaker minds. It was still a possibility to keep in mind. But whatever it was, I was going to find out. I was investigating this and I was not about to tip my hand. I liked Ikart but I did not trust Salina to keep the information confidential.? Loose lips sink ships. I looked at Kisit; he was not listening carefully. “What are your thoughts, Kisit?”

“I don’t know. That is why I am asking you. You are an investigative reporter and you are telling me garbage. Salina says that she has it on good authority that Lucifer wants to show Jehovah that he can get to anyone he wants.”

“Whoa Kisit! This is just another conspiracy theory to throw people off. It seems these angels were nothing special and their clients were ordinary humans, also. On the other hand, Gabriel wants more training for GAs; he may be creating a problem to solve.” Salina was probably just regurgitating what was said at one of her council meetings. I wondered, ‘Why would they offer up a theory that is not remotely true? There were no facts suggesting Lucifer. Perhaps the person responsible was happy to have a fall-guy. Could that person be the all-powerful Jehovah? He had a large dominion. Jehovah would never approve of the elimination of his angels, but he must know what is going on in his backyard. Or his boy is keeping the sinner hidden, being his usual forgiving self.

“Earth to Ikart, earth to Ikarth… are you with me?”

I can’t read this. I wrote something important here. My writing is hard to read sometimes.” I was setting up another provocation.” Can you read this?

Kisit floated over to me and looked at my notepad. “No… it is complete chicken scratches.”

“I think it says, ‘Cristina has a slender frame and is quite elegant even in a bathrobe.’ “

“Ikart, you will never get an assignment if you continue to act like a human. You are an angel and cannot behave this way.”

“I am quite content with my assignment, thank you.” Kisit acted very proper and it was nice to tease him.”One of the Dalai Lamas said a simple life leads to contentment. And Philip said he has learned to be content in all circumstances. You need to chill my brother.” It was really Paul in his letter to the Philippians but I really loved poking Kisit.

“Just keep going, Ikart. I will figure things out by weeding out the garbage from your notes.” Now Kisit was trying to push my buttons.

“Hmm. Garbage, eh? Cristina’s code name is Nana during the day. And she spent the day taking care of granddaughter, Lakita.”

“This is common knowledge. Please, try to be a bit more direct and to the point. Is Cristina fearful? Is she praying?”

“Ikart, direct and to the point are the same thing. You are redundant. Also, many people pray. I was at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center at 7:30 am to check on Ziccona and Nurse Maria Withers. Ziccona told me that Maria had just prayed for protection for her family and friends, and the further spiritual development of a team she wants to assemble, especially Lakita. And FYI. Ziccona still has her halo up her …. well, you know where. Ziccona also said Maria was feeling a bit better once she started her routine today. So to answer your question, her fear has gone after meditation. I wrote some other notes here if I can read them. I was being more serious here.”


“Emortis is the GA assigned to Maria’s mother, Cristina. According to Emortis in her last prayer, Cristina is thankful for having two special people in her life and most especially her granddaughter, Lakita. Cristina is often lonely after becoming a widow. The Spirit Guide Laka is assigned to be the GA for Lakita. Telel has assigned Emortis to keep an eye on Laka while performing his regular duties. Emortis told me that every morning, Cristina waits for Lakita to wake up so she could fix her breakfast, discuss homework, and go for daily walks if the weather permits. That’s it.”

“I’m going to see Selina.” Kisit turned to walk away.

“Did I hear a thank you? We are always supposed to be thankful. We are angels! Remember?”

“Thank you.” Ikart sang it out and kept walking, shaking his head, muttering about how he would figure out what to tell Selina. Finally, he opened up his wings and disappeared.

I laughed as I threw my cigarette butt. I checked for my pack of smokes. I felt them; I could not believe I lost my lighter. I tested my wings and headed for my stakeout.

Meeting the Family – Maria?{Day 2 Rm 326 JHMC 8:30 am}

When Maria arrived, Maria put her scrubs on and went to see Sharon Thomas, the nurse she was relieving. Sharon reported that two of Maria?s patients had been discharged and were waiting for their rides. Ms. Gwen Garcia was assigned to Room 326.

Sharon and I went to Room 326 to meet and answer any questions with the patient?s father and mother. As we entered, the father was with the patient and the mother had her head down, perhaps praying. The father looked up at us and turned to face us. We walked past the mother.

?Hello, Mr. Garcia??

?No, nurse. My name is Mike Spiro. Gwen is my daughter. Cresha, here, is Gwen?s mother,? he said, pursing his lips and directing his head and lips to point towards Cresha.

Cresha picked her head up for a moment. ?Hello Nurse.? she put her head back down.

?My name is Nurse Maria. There are two Marias on staff so my full name is Maria Withers. You may call me Maria or Nurse. I am relieving Nurse Sharon. If you have a question, I can try and answer it. But I will be back in an hour or so if you want to think about it and ask me then.?

?Maria, my friend Ed Dawes is very close with Gwen. He will be here soon. May he visit also??

Sharon spoke up. ?The visiting policy is two visitors who are immediate family members.?

I interrupted. I looked at Sharon and said, ?Mike, we don?t have many visitors now in the ICU. It will be ok for now but this may change, ok??

Sharon nodded. Mike replied, ?Thank you, Nurse. Do you know my daughter?s status?? Cresha, who seemed to be resting, picked up her head and looked directly at me. But Sharon answered.

?The notes indicate that Gwen does not seem to have much trauma, but fractures were possible so a full-body CT was performed and we did a full blood workup. There is no evidence of any fractures but we did find that the patient is pregnant. It’s not unusual to see patients that have no evidence of injury in the CT. These things take time to develop, so the doctors called neurosurgery. We have done several follow-up CTs and she is on an MRI schedule. The patient has had a complete neuro check every hour. Now, we are continuing to monitor. But the bottom line is that the doctors don?t know why she is still unconscious. The doctors did not report a neurological response but breathing is ok. The patient was assigned to the ICU and Dr. Swaggart decided to intubate. It is too early to discuss this but you may bring it up with the doctors when they come by on their rounds.?

?Thank you, Sharon,? I then asked if there were any requests or questions. Only Mike responded with a shake of his head. The mother?s head went back down.

Mike looked at me then at Sharon. “Nurse Sharon. You are telling us that my daughter has no problem.”

I replied, “Your daughter is under observation. It is common that an injury does not become apparent until later.”

Cresha looked up. “But it has been over 24 hours and you have seen nothing?”

Sharon replied. “Nothing to this point and she is doing well.”

Mike pretentiously wiped his forehead and was a tad bit sarcastic. “That relieves me.”

I replied, “Your daughter is in the ICU for a reason. It can be very serious. We have her under observation. I suggest you talk to the doctors when they come around on rounds.”

Mike stared out for a second. “Thank you for explaining everything to us.” Sharon was stunned and she turned and walked out of the room.

“Mike… Cresha, I will be back later. It was very nice to meet you.” I turned and walked back to the nurse?s desk.

Ed Arrives – Ed?{Day 2?Nurse’s Desk JHMC 10am}

I went directly to the nurse?s desk to see Gwen and I was directed to Room 326. Gwen was the only patient in the room. When I walked in, I saw Gwen. She looked so beautiful and at peace laying there. Mike was at the side of the bed and Cresha was by the door with her head down.

Cresha looked up at me and Mike turned around and quickly walked over.

“Hey buddy!” Mike gave me a big bear hug.

?Hi, Mike. I got here as quickly as I could. How?s Gwen??

I walked over to Cresha to give her a kiss. She stood up and we embraced. She smelled good. It reminded me of Gwen.

?I am so sorry, Cresha.? All of a sudden, my knees began to buckle. I was trying to not break down. I could only think about the last time I saw Gwen after our argument.

Cresha gave me a kiss. Then we all looked at each other as I wiped my face and said absolutely nothing. After a long awkward pause, “You both said you had more to tell me.”

Cresha and Mike looked at each other and Mike said, “Let’s step out into the hallway.”

“Can we first pray for Gwen?”

Mike looked a little stunned. “Really?”

“Cresha said that you were serious about God… we have talked about it many times.”

“Ok. fine. But you pray, please.”

“Ok, no problem.” We walked over to the bed and we held hands. I put my hand on Gwen’s legs but on top of the blanket she had and Cresha held Gwen’s hand.

“God, we thank you for bringing us together here. Gwen, we miss you and we pray for your healing.? We ask you God to surround Gwen with your angels to comfort her. We ask that her Guardian Angel will protect and heal her. We are grateful that you grant us days to enjoy the earth and all that comes from it.? Bless us and grant us peace.”

Cresha stroked her hair and started playing with her ear as she teared up.? I am not sure why I looked at Mike but Mike started to visibly shake. He was looking at Gwen and mumbling to himself.

?Mike are you ok? I waited about 10 seconds and Mike did not respond. ?Hey buddy, this is the second time your mind just went whacko; the first was on the phone this morning. I know this is a difficult time …?

?No, Ed. I?m fine? Mike?s demeanor went back to normal. Mike and Cresha walked out into the hallway.

I kissed Gwen and followed my family out into the hallway.

Mike looked devastated. ?Ed, Gwen had a serious accident. A car hit her, we think. It was a hit and run if it was. Gwen was heading to our place in Queens to cool off and talk to Cresh on the phone… about you, evidently.?

I started feeling emotional. I turned away and tried to wipe my eyes so the others did not see.

Mike continued. ? The good news is that the doctors cannot find anything wrong with Gwen and that she should be fine. We are all just waiting. Also, I need for you to not blame yourself. We know that the two of you were having issues. Gwen told Cresh that she had a bad argument with you, but listen. Just before the accident, Gwen told Cresh that she trusts you; she just felt frustrated. Ok?

Ed nodded.

“Ed, I need to ask you an important question? Are you ready??

?Of course, Mike. What is it??

“The doctors say that Gwen is pregnant. Do you think you are the father??

?I imagine I am the father, Mike. I don?t think Gwen was seeing anyone else but me.?

?Gwen told me she was only with you,? interjected Cresha. ?She is serious about a partner marriage with you.?

“Did you tell her about us?” I am not sure why Mike does this with us. He tried to do this “look straight into my eyes” thing like he has a truth detection system.”

“Of course, Mike. But she already knew. And I think you already know that. She wants to meet Mary.”

Mary Johnson is my second partner in a polyamory open triad. My first partner was Cresha?s sister, Nikki but we separated because I moved back to the United States to open my photography business office in NYC. When I left, Nikki?s found Arthur. Nikki did not follow the rules; none of us were ever on board with this creep. Arthur was a real shit and was fucking everything that moved after Nikki became sick. He disappeared real quick when I learned that he had been intimate with Gwen too. Gwen and I were very close before Nikki?s death and we grew closer after I dealt with Arthur.

“I?ll tell you more about what happened another time, but I didn?t even know it was Gwen when we first hooked up. She had a disguise.?

Mike and Cresha looked at each other quizzically.

I continued. ?Gwen called herself Sara. I did not recognize her until she told me who she was. I told Sara,? I mean Gwen, about my wife before anything happened. I followed the rules. Mike, I followed the rules! I felt so connected with Sara that?I asked?her to meet Mary.?

I paused. Mike looked like he had seen a ghost.

“Disguise?” Mike was mumbling after that.

?Sara, ?. I mean Gwen, was so excited and happy and agreed to meet her, but she confessed her identity. At first, I was really pissed! I did not appreciate her dishonesty. But I could not be mad for long with Gwen. Of course, Mary knew about my love for Gwen. She knew I loved her since she was a kid. Mary asked me to give it 6 months and if we still were serious, then they would meet.?

Mike’s brow furrowed like a Bullmastiff. ?Cresh, did you know all this??

?No, babe.? Cresha hesitated. ?Well, I knew something was going on with Gwen. I didn?t know she was pretending to be someone else.?

I wanted to set everything right. ?Mike, we were so in love that after two months, Gwen was begging me to talk to Mary to change her mind. I told her that we needed to follow what Mary requested from us. And Gwen flipped out! I think I should have listened to her. This is why I said Gwen?s accident is my fault!?

Mike came over to me and gave me a hug. ?No, my friend. This was an accident that has nothing to do with you.?

Mike let go after a short while and smiled at me. ?Ed, Cresh, and I are going to take a short walk and get some coffee in the break room they have down the hall. We will leave you with Gwen. Let?s talk later.? I nodded. Mike and Cresha got up and walked out. And I went over to Gwen?s side.

The Breakroom – Maria?{Day 2 3rd Floor Breakroom JHMC 11:00 am}

Two patients were to be moved out of the ICU. They were supposed to get out earlier but their room was not yet available. Not unusual. I put my notes into the computer and drank my coffee.

I passed the breakroom. The father and mother were in the breakroom and I heard them speaking Tagalog, I think. It was mixed with another dialect that I was not familiar with. Being the daughter of diplomats, you get exposed to a lot of languages and cultures. I just waved and continued to the room. As I passed out of sight, I heard them say Victoria and Peru. It just hit me when I heard those names together. My Mom took me to Peru once to go to Machu Picchu. I have a half-sister named Victoria in Peru whom I met. I do not know if she is alive or dead but I see her in my dreams. I pray for her often and once a month, I say the rosary too.

I continued my walk over to Room 326 to check on Ms. Garcia. There were no doctor?s orders and no requests from the doctor. The patient was unconscious. I just made a superficial check of the equipment and the drip in place. The boyfriend was there beside the patient. I decided not to check the sheets until a little later. I just wanted to talk to the family if they wanted to ask questions. I just wrote the names of the current staff on the board for the patient and was about to leave when the boyfriend spoke.

?Nurse. My name is Ed Dawes. Is my girlfriend going to be ok? I just learned she is pregnant, is the baby ok??

?I am only supposed to talk to immediate family members. I can tell you that Ms. Garcia is in a coma and we are waiting for her to come out. We are monitoring her and the baby. The doctor reported that the baby is in the early first trimester and most likely, Ms. Garcia did not know she was pregnant.?

?Thank you, nurse. Will the baby be ok??

?The doctor will be coming soon to check on Gwen. He can give you more information. Just ring me if you need me. I am Maria.?

My talk with Ed Dawes seemed to have gone well and I was looking forward to my mid-day call to my mother and daughter. I walked down the corridor and decided on a whim to step inside the breakroom, just out of curiosity.

?I spoke with the father, he is quite upset.? I was hoping for a response. I made myself look busy by walking to the vending machine to buy some M&Ms. I did not want to linger too long but I was hoping to ask some questions. I just needed to find an opening. I smiled in my head because that was my father?s line. ?Don?t linger.? I missed my Papi!

?Ed is worried that he caused the accident by arguing with Gwen,? Cresha said. ?He is not logical sometimes and especially now. Will the doctor be here soon?? Mike looked at his watch and rolled his eyes. Cresha told him often that both Ed and he were illogical.

?He should be here in a couple of hours.? I was playing with the bag of M&Ms undecided if I was going to have any. I will let you both know so you can all meet with him.?

?Thank you, nurse?, Mike said. He put his headphones on, leaned back, and closed his eyes.

I turned to leave and turned back. ?Cresha. It is Cresha, right??

Cresha nodded.

?Umm. I heard you talking Tagalog or some Filipino dialect. Are you from the Philippines??

Cresha smiled. ?No, I was born in Peru. My real name is Cristina but I was adopted by a diplomat in the Philippines. They changed my name to Cresha. I lived in Davao Oriental after my father retired. Are you Filipino??

I told her no. I smiled. ?I am Peruvian. Originally from Andahuaylas. I was adopted by Mexican diplomats, Aaron and Martha Withers.?

Cresha?s jaw dropped. ?Mike!? No response. Cresha took off a shoe and threw it at Mike. Mike opened up one eye and contorted his face while taking off his headphones. ?What!??

?Nurse Maria was adopted by the Withers!!!!”


?So? Cresha just repeated what Mike said but said it with conviction and the wrinkled forehead and clenched fists. Mike shook his head and was about to put his headphones back on but for a quick moment, he knew better. He probably realized that Cresha had “that look” which meant she might throw a chair.

?Mike?. Sometimes you are just not paying attention!? Mike shrugged and decided to piss off Chresha. Mike calmly put on his headphones with his left eyebrow raised and a little-boy smirk.

And that is when a moment of clarity happened to me. It was like time stood still. I realized why I was here. “Guys, it is a miracle that I am here talking to you. It all makes sense. It is undeniable! It is a miracle!” I didn’t realize that I was shouting. “I don’t know why I didn’t see it before.” Cresha and Mike were smiling oddly as if to say, ‘look at this crazy woman!’

Ed walked into the room so quickly, he slid to a stop. “Maria, I could hear you all the way down the hall. What are you talking about?”

“My father’s connections that got me this assignment. I narrowly …. and freakishly escaped death in Mexico. I got a vision out of nowhere warning me not to return home and to leave for the US. But there’s more!

?I had a vision in Mexico that led me here to this little insignificant hospital! In this vision, my stepfather told me that a woman I treat will lead me to The Other Side. I thought that was the woman from the agency who hired me here in New York. Now, I don?t think so!?

Cresha turned and faced me. And with large saucer-round bubbly-blue eyes she said, ?I know who you are now. It was you! Yes, it was you and ?. You rescued me and my sister. It was you and? ? Cresha had a hard time talking for a few seconds and then collected herself. ?You saved my life when I was just a baby!!!? Cresha got up and nearly threw me on the ground when she ran up to me and gave me a giant hug.

Cresha?s eyes were opened up and she had an indescribable aura emanating from her body, she was electrified and brightly illuminated. She was seriously scary. She continued, ?I know that we are here together for a reason?. I believe that Gwen did this. Yes, she did. Somehow she is connected to a source of power that is calling us to do something. You, Maria, are the key to understanding this connection and somehow my little girl will use this. For what purpose, I have no idea.”

I didn?t expect this when I came into the breakroom. I certainly did not take the time to consider the consequences. Excitedly, I just blurted out in a loud voice, ?I don’t think it was Gwen. Victoria brought us together. Would you like to know about Victoria?? Cresha’s eyes opened wide and you could hear an audible gasp.

Again, Cresha came to me to give me a hug but this time she put her arms around me tenderly with tears rolling down her cheeks.

Mike took off his headphones.

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