For Fluffy

“She had two legs when the ambulance took her from the house!”

“What am I supposed to do! She had one leg when they admitted her.”

Bradford turned in the direction of the raised voices. He turned to head nurse Selina. Selina didn’t look up from her report but quirked an eyebrow that meant she had dealt with the last big crazy and it was his turn. Sighing, Bradford headed towards this big crazy.

Bradford was a big man, stocky and well muscled, with a cat portrait tattoo snaking his left forearm, a trio of silver rings in his right ear, and a fuchsia streak tucked into his man bun. In his pink scrubs, Brad stalked into the Room 8 and crossed his arms. Rev. Robinson and Nurse Bree stopped shouting at each other and started shouting to be heard by Bradley. He headed for the patient, Poletti, Giuseppina. She was very old, small, and as fragile as a china doll. Poletti was in a coma, her face slack with translucent skin framed by neat snowy pin curls. She reminded Bradford of a baby bird that had fallen from a nest. He thought when she was a little girl people probably called her Gia and now her neighborhood probably called her Mrs. P. Bradford examined Mrs. P’s well worn hands with perfectly polished nails.

“Mrs. P. wouldn’t want this. Bree hurry down to the cafeteria and find the paramedics who brought her in. They are probably by the vending machines. Have them find that leg and get it up here. Rev wrangle all the family into one room and stall for a few minutes, pray, sing, whatever but keep them out of this room until I give you the word. Let’s make this right for her before her family comes to say their goodbyes. Go!” The nurse and the clergyman rush out. Petting his forearm, Brad headed over to the floor’s central supply for some tape.

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