Chapter two

"Look! I have a four year old son at home, alone. He's waiting for me. So, can we make this quick?" I lied for the fortieth time that day, in the most sweetest voice I could manage.

The man still won't budge. 

I was frustrated. I rubbed the sides of my head with my thumbs, head facing down then looked back at him.

"Can you please open up! I'm trying to help you." I said, on the verge of giving up.

"Who was with you? What happened, really?"

Nothing!

"I'll be your lawyer for free. Just...just say something." I said desperately, frustration growing.

I stood up from my seat, angrily slamming my hands on the metallic table, pushing my chair away from my legs and walked out of the dimly lit interrogation room.

"I've done my best. The man won't budge." I told Mark, the head of LAPD.

"Get back in there and make him talk."

"Hey! I don't take orders from you. I came here by my own will and I'm leaving by it too."

"Becca, we need his testimony. It  is our only way out. If we don't get him to open up any time soon, I'll get suspended."

"That's not my problem, is it? If the police decided to get involved, that's up to you."

"Becca!" Mark insisted.

"No amount of pleading will return me back to that room with a very hard nut to crack." I said, crossing my arms. 

"He's not at all a hard nut. He's deaf." Marlon said as he appeared through a different door from the one I came in through.

"Couldn't I get a heads up before I tried all my possible tactics, completely embarrassing myself? All that time I was wasting my time on a deaf man. Wow!" I complained. 

"Get back there then. I'm sure you know how to use sign language."

I looked at my wrist watch then back at him.

"Sorry, but I have an appointment." I said stepping past him and out the door Marlon, his assistant, had come through from.

                       

 "I'm here to see doctor Xander." I said at the reception. 

"Are you Becca?" The nurse behind the desk asked.

"Yeah! I am." I  said smiling, fake smile if I may add. I don't smile.

"You seem ovedressed for the typical Californian weather."

She commented as she stared at her computer screen.

I looked down at myself. I had on a black, long sleeved crop top with laces on the chest and at the back, accompanied by a pair of fitting black pants and black leather ankle boots. My fawn hair laid on my shoulders but pinned on the right side.

I moved my eyes back to her, deciding to keep the remarks to myself making a mental note to break her if I ever meet her outside the hospital. Otherwise, she would have hated me, which I could care less but I wanted to be attended to quickly than been thrown down on the patient waiting list. Being soft sometimes is pressuring. 

"Third floor, the room just across from the elevator." The nurse said.

I smiled again, not muttering any word and walked towards the elevator.

Once in the empty elevator, I took out a lollipop that I had tucked in my boots. I couldn't miss having one. That and smoking. Somehow, they made me feel relaxed. 

I never knew how I started in smoking. I was fully aware of its risks and possible health outcomes, but I continue with it anyway. Mostly, I nimble on lollipops than smoke but either way, I'm in danger of lung cancer. 

The elevator finally opens to the third floor. The floor looks more of an apartment hallway than a hospital one, with its carpeted floor and bracket lights on every wall after each door.

I walked straight to the room I was instructed. It was awfully silent. Even my heeled boots weren't allowed to offer as much noise as they normally would, by the carpeted floor. 

It was bizarre!

I knocked on the door and without any time wasted, the door was opened. A middle-aged man stood by the door and examined me.

"Becca!" He called.

"And I presume you're Dr. Xander." I said with a twinge of coldness. 

"Uh...yeah! I never thought you...you never replied to my..."

"Quit drooling, old man. I'm here professionally and so should you. Now, if you don't mind, can I come in?"

"Uh...su...re. Sure! Of course!" He said, clearing his throat and awkwardly stepping aside to let me in. 

"Welcome to my laboratory." Xander said as I stepped inside.

I nodded in approval. 

The room was spacious, white floor, white walls, the windows were wall-length but tinted to reduce the amount of lighting in the room by the bright blinding filament tube lights. Despite being full of various medical equipment, it was really neat.

"Do you work alone?" I asked.

"Yes, unless of course I need some assistance. Otherwise, a communal public lab on the second floor is at my disposal. This one is private."

"I like it!"

"You do?" He asked desperately. 

I glared at him acidly.

"My apologies. Professional it is." He said, cheeks flushing with embarrassment. 

I nodded then sat on a white wheeled chair in the middle of the room.

"So what are we doing?"

"I would love to start immediately. Dr. Baldowski is coming up with the machine."

"What am I subjected to here?" I asked.

"Well, if you're lucky, you won't suffer any brain damage."

"And what if I'm not?"

"You see, we have to drill through your skull, through the meninges careful not to drain the cerebrospinal fluid useful in protecting the brain from mechanical damage. If at all anything goes wrong while we drill, like interfering with the spinal cord, you may be subjected to paralysis. Or if we damage the arachnoid in the meninges, we may deprive the brain oxygen and nutrients, which may lead to more serious defects." Xander demystified. 

If he observed clearly, he would have noticed the fear in my eyes which I quickly hid with my usual coldness.

"Okay!" I breathed. "That's not at all scary." I added with evident sarcasm. 

"Now, how is it going to work?" I asked.

"We believe that the cerebrum stores all the memories. Only that the recent past and the present ones are much stronger than the ones for the longer past which we are going to try and find then the machine will record them." 

"Are you positive that it would work?"

"We are yet to know. You are our first patient, remember? I was careful to include that in the mail. But, if at all anything, you are free to back off."

I stayed silent, thinking of my next step. I wanted to know what happened to me but was I ready to take the risk? I wanted to know how my parents looked like, I really did. I wanted to know how the hell I lost my memory and how I ended up with an old couple.

What was my origin, my background? Was it worth it though?

"I'll do it. May the odds be defied." I concluded.

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