(If you’ve forgotten what happened before you passed out, you might want to read the previous part of this story first.)
A masked doctor in scrubs is busily stitching up your bitten-off arm. She notices you’re awake and pulls down her mask.
“Oh, hey there.”
You see she’s a young, Asian woman, with long, dark brown hair and glasses. But she speaks with an Australian accent.
You sit up and wince at the pain. “Who … are you?”
“My name’s Hayley,” she says.
You feel like you’ve heard that name somewhere, but you can’t quite remember—
“That’s Dr. Throssell to you,” interjects a familiar voice from across the room.
You look up — and see me and Tom Burns standing in the doorway.
I continue: “Meet Dr. Hayley Throssell … my wife.”
“Your wife is a doctor?” you ask.
“Well, yeah. Didn’t I say that in one of the emails?” I say, stepping into the room.
“Technically I’m a psychiatrist,” Hayley interrupts. “But I do have experience working in the ER … so sometimes I have to help patch up any escapees that end up meeting the animals here.”
She wipes her hands on her gown and stands up to leave. “Okay, that should heal up as well as possible,” she says. “I’ve got to get back to the kids.”
She gives me a peck on the cheek and walks out.
I turn back to face you. “You’ve been out for 24 hours,” I say. “No need for any time-travel this time, it seems …”
You hold up your arm and inspect it. It feels weird not having a forearm.
“So I’m like this … forever?” you wonder out loud.
“Yep! You’re screwed,” says Tom, shrugging.
“Not necessarily,” I say. “There is one person who might be able to fix this.”
You sit bolt upright. “What? They could fix me? Who? Where?”
“He’s a … guru of sorts,” I say, thoughtfully. “I consult him often. But he’s not easy to reach. In fact, to get there, we’re going to have to go … out there.”
I point out the window. Your gaze traces my finger … and you stop in shock.
It’s a distant mountain in the middle of the island.
“If we leave now, we can make it there by nightfall,” I say, strapping on a backpack and picking up a rifle. “But we’ll have to hurry. This place isn’t somewhere you want to be walking around after dark.”
You gear up and get ready to leave. And then you remember — your phone! Got to bring that.
You pick it up. And notice there’s been a new email from me sitting there all this time.
Well, might as well have something to read on the trek …
(Continues in your inbox)