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What the Heck? I Gotta Be With You

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“LADY CAPULET: Alack the day, she’s dead, she’s dead, she’s dead!

CAPULET: Ha! Let me see her. Out, alas! She’s cold;

Her blood settled, and her joints are stiff;

Life and these lips have long been separated.

Death lies on her like an untimely frost

Upon the sweetest flower of all the field.

NURSE: O lamentable day!

LADY CAPULET: O woeful time!

CAPULET: Death, that hath ta’en her hence to make me wail,

Ties up my tongue, and will not let me speak.”

 

The next morning when Theo woke up she realized it was April fools day. It felt like a sick joke considering all that was going on. She checked the time and felt bad for sleeping until 10:23am. She checked her phone next, as she picked it up it vibrated. A text from Eliza, which she immediately opened.

 

   |   Elizabeth Hamilton: Hi Theo, we have some more news but it’s not something to say over the phone. If you could head to our house asap, my sisters and Philip’s siblings are waiting, we’re gonna do a video call and update everyone at once.

Theo: I’m on my way there now

 

Theo quickly got dressed and went down stairs. Her mom was in the kitchen. “Morning mom, I gotta go over to the Hamilton house. Could I take your car?” 

“Be careful please, and if you head anywhere else for fun top up the gas please.”

“Always do.” Theo said and grabbed the car keys. She drove quickly but didn’t speed and soon got to the Hamilton house where she was welcomed inside.

“Thanks for coming Theo, Alex and Eliza wanted to update us all at once, and we were just there 4 hours ago so there must be new big news.” Angelica explained. “You know Philip’s siblings right?” Angelica asked. 

Theo nodded. “Angelica junior, or Angie to keep from mixing her up with you, Alex junior, or Al to keep from mixing him up with Mr Hamilton and James.” She said, easily identifying the kids.

Angelica smiled. “Yes, and this is that missing link me and Eliza were telling you about. Mine and Eliza’s sister Peggy.”

Peggy extended her hand.

Theo shook it. “I’m Theodosia but everyone calls me Theo, because Theodosia is my mom.”

Peggy smiled. “Nice to meet you.”

“Okay, now that we’re all here let’s call Alex and Eliza.” Angelica said and pulled out a laptop and set it on the kitchen counter. Angie, Al, and James sat at the breakfast bar, while Theo, Peggy, and Angelica stood behind them.

Eliza quickly answered the video call. “Hey guys.” She said, trying to look happy to see her kids and sisters, but was obvious that something else was keeping her from being happy.

“How’s it going guys?” Alex asked.

“We miss you.” James said innocently.

“We miss Philip. We’re sick of not knowing what’s going on with him. When can we see him?” Angie cut to the crap.

“We know, and we’re sorry. That’s why we’re doing this call.” Eliza said.

Alex rubbed his face a bit, he clearly hadn’t taken the time to shave since Philip was hospitalized. “Philip’s latest labs just came back. The new antibiotics are finally doing their job on fighting the infection, but it’s a couple days too late unfortunately.”

“What do you mean?” Theo asked, fearing the worst.

Eliza sighed. “Philip’s liver is failing and the liver failure isn’t responding to meds to repair it, and with all the other meds he’s on, it won’t get better without drastic measures.”

“Philip needs another surgery. But we can’t just do it, because he needs a liver transplant, so we need to find a donor first.” Alex explained.

“I’m the same blood type, I’ve never done any drugs, I’m in perfect mental and physical health and there’s no family history of liver or disease,” Angelica started.

“Yes, you are, we talked to the doctor about that because I knew you’d offer. However the doctors are hesitant to operate on you because of all the blood you’ve donated the past four days. Your heart has been working over time and putting you under general anesthesia could cause more problems than it’s worth.” Eliza explained.

“Dad’s the same blood type, maybe he could do it?” Angelica offered.

“They won’t do it, he’s over sixty, by nearly 15 years.” Alex explained. “I wish one of you could though. They put him on the transplant lists, but there’s unfortunately a lot of people ahead of him, despite him not having long without a new liver.”

“I’m A-.” Peggy frowned.

“Could one of us do it?” Angie asked.

“No. You have to be 18, and even if any of you were old enough, you all match up with me or mom, Philip is the odd one out. We can’t.”

“Is this some sick joke?” Al asked. “I mean, it is April Fools…”

“I wish it were buddy.” Alex frowned.

“How bad could this turn out if we don’t find him a liver soon?” Theo asked.

Eliza had to hold back tears.

“It hopefully won’t come to that but I won’t sugarcoat it. This could be fatal.” Alex said, and quickly wiped his face, the kids might not have realized it, but Theo recognized he was wiping away tears.

“But it won’t get to that because they’ll find him a liver. If it takes long enough they can probably use Angelica’s anyway.” Peggy reminded everyone.

“Why are they wasting time though? Why not take aunt Angelica’s liver now? I mean, do they think we’re gonna find someone who could actually do it and wants to in time?” Angie seemed to be growing frustrated.

“Because there’s already been a lot of strain on her heart from donating approximately a fifth of her body’s blood volume in less than a week.” Alex explained. “It’d be shifty even if she’d only donated once for Philip.”

“Who should we be turning to for other potential donors?” Angelica asked.

“Close friends, I’d say family but we’ve kinda exhausted the limits of that, um, yeah. They have to be over 18, B- blood type, no history of substance; alcohol or drug abuse, healthy mentally and physically, someone with a good support system for afterwards because it’s not an easy surgery, no family history of major lung disease, no hepatitis, and of course they have to be willing to do it. It also helps if their body size is close to Philip’s but it’s not a necessary requirement. They also can’t have travelled out of the country in the last six months.”

“Uncle John is out then, Frances can’t take care of her dad by herself, not to mention they probably can’t afford for him to miss the work. Uncle Hercules is a freaking giant not to mention the family history of heart problems. Uncle Laf just got back from being in france so he’s out.” Angie rattled off.

“Not to mention that only an estimated 1.5% of the population are B-. That’s why I was so insistent on donating blood for him, you don’t know how long the blood they have in the blood bank has been there and I just wanted to keep him safe.” Angelica added.

“In other words, Philip is in trouble?” James asked.

“That’s one way to put it buddy.” Alex sighed. “But, try not to worry. We’ll find him a liver. He’ll be okay.”

 

They talked for a while more and Theo left not long after the call ended. She went home and curled up next to her mom on the couch.

“I don’t want Philip to die.” She mumbled after a while of not saying anything. 

“What’s going on?” Theodosia asked.

“His liver is failing and they’re having a hard time finding a donor because of his blood type and it’s rarity.”

“I’m sorry honey, but I’m sure they’ll find him a liver soon.”

“It feels like the world wants him dead. His grandfather is too old, and the only other family member with the same blood type has donated too much blood this week for them to be able to safely operate. I hate to say it but I think I’m beginning to lose hope that he’ll get better. He just keeps getting worse and worse. One step forward, like 7 backward.”

“I know it feels that way honey, but you just have to hold onto hope. You gotta just, pray that he’ll be okay.” Theodosia said.

Theo repeated the words in her head. ‘You just gotta hold onto hope that he’ll be okay’. It sure as hell didn’t feel that way.