a/n: i'm so fucking rusty. have not written properly in months. wrote this while working on editing league and it helped so I thought i'd post. some of this is based on real life experiences (so be kind). the writing is proper shit i know (haha) and there isn't nearly enough making out and sex (i'll fix that in an edit some day). also disclaimer i've got nothing against nurses or doctors or anything and if it comes across that way, my characters and i apologize.

Sterile Field

You know that meme about medical school? The one that goes medical school is so easy it's like riding a bike only the bike is on fire and you're on fire and everything is on fire and you're in hell. Well fourth year of medical school is a bit like that only you've stopped riding the bike because you can't give a fuck anymore.

I stare blankly at the charge nurse whose been gaffing at me for the last ten minutes. Apparently, I've pissed her off because I've somehow invaded the holy sanctum of sterile field. There's a bridge of creeping magenta across her nose that I've been tracking since she started. It's the color of cherry kool-aid, which, incidentally, is my favorite kind.

Sterile field, for those of you who do not spend all of your life in the hospital, is the sea of blue paper that covers all the things in the operating room that can and will get you sued. That includes the patient, the operating instruments, the physicians performing surgery, the scrub techs handling the instruments to the physicians performing the surgery, and, occasionally, the medical student deemed worthy enough stand at the table and watch the physician perform the surgery. The absolute worst thing you can do is to break the sterile field. As a third year, I existed in a state of perpetual fear of the sterile field. It was the blue line between me getting yelled at and me getting yelled out louder.

As a fourth year, however…

"Are you done?" I drawl, crossing my arms over my chest so they won't accidentally strangle her.

"What?" the charge roars. Cherry kool-aid is now grape kool-aid. I don't like the grape flavored as much.

I briefly consider using my razor sharp wit to cut her where it hurts, you know, in like her soul or something, but then I remember I haven't got any and it really doesn't pay to piss off the nurses. I've been thrown out of an OR only once in medical school. The memory of that humiliation is more than enough to stay any dreams I have of an acidic, witty come back. Maybe on my last day.

Yeah, I'll save it for my last day.

"Look, I'm not scrubbing in, okay. And I won't breathe in that general direction or whatever."

The creep on her nose turns a color I can't quite describe and definitely would never drink. She gives me one last piercing look of deep loathing before bustling off to go boss someone else. I return to what I was doing. Namely, casually leaning. Barely paying attention. Trying not to pass out from lack of sleep. I got two hours yesterday because I was up trying to come up with passable bullshit for my residency application essay.

Tragic, I know.

Luckily today's case is a routine tubal ligation, so I won't have to pay too much attention. I've been in at least a hundred of these since this rotation started. The patient is a G13 P8 (that means she's been pregnant thirteen times, and only 8 made it). Lovely lady. Reminds me of why I stay in medical school every time I enter her room; caring about patients, doing no harm, incidentally owing the government a quarter of a million dollars, not being qualified to do anything else…

I let my eyes slide closed. I wear glasses so unless someone is really, really looking they won't see past the glare. Words are happening in the air, all at the same time. Someone's completing prep on the patient's abdomen, (three minutes until first cut!). Someone else is doing a first count of all the instruments (20 laps, 2 cockers with teeth, 2 cockers without teeth…). The anesthetists are trying to decide if they're happy with their spinal block (ma'am can you feel this? Is it like a pain or a pressure?). And now they are doing sign out.

This is a 40 year old, G13 P8 female, birth date September 18, 1976…

"Honestly thought Magda was going to kill you just then," a voice chuckles next to where my ear would be if my scrub cap hadn't swallowed it.

These are not familiar words.

I roll my head to the right, bleaker open my eyes. The person assaulting me with their attention is also in scrubs, but unlike mine, his do not look like he slept in them. He's tall, because I am short, and from the look of the arms crossed in front of his chest he and the gym are good friends. I try not to track the path of the veins that rope in and out of his forearm muscles. I don't try very hard. His face is covered so I cannot see anything past his eyes, which are dark brown and bubbly like an A&W root bear float.

I decide to sleep later.

"We've been like that since day one. I think she hates me because I'm a boy."

"Pretty sure she'd hate you if you were a girl, too."

"Probably." I swing my leg over, and hug the wall with my shoulder so we can talk face mask to face mask.

"So you and charge nurse are on first name basis?"

"Kind of have to be."

"Have to be?" I demand suspiciously.

"Well yeah, she's my mom. She makes me call her Magda at work though."

Behind my mask my mouth drops open so far it cracks my faulty TMJ. This is worse than when I was ten and was informed by my brat older sister that David Tenant was not gay.

A&W eyes starts laughing again. "Just kidding, man! You're too easy."

I scowl. My heart is still racing a bit.

"I'm harder in the bedroom," I snap without thinking.

"Oh really?" A&W eyes asks with interest.

"Shut up. I didn't mean it like that."

"Sure, sure. So what's your name?"

"Medical student."

It's less salty of a reply than you think. Up here they don't bother to remember your name because so many students pass through month after month. Also they don't care. The only thing lower on the totem pole than medical students are probably the cleaning people. They don't even get identifiers. I'm pretty sure people think they are all the exact same person.

"Medical Student. Funny, so is your brother or sister named pharmacy or something?"

"Philosophy actually," I banter back, proud of myself for managing wit in the face of his throaty chuckle after everything he says. It finds the shiver center in my brain and makes me buzz like a fluorescent light mosquito trap.

"Philosophy? That's pretty cool. I was a philosophy major before I got into this."

He leaves it at that. So of course I have to ask.

"And you are?"

"I should think that would be obvious."

"Is it?"

"I'm Nursing Student."

"Student? Shit, we're probably cousins then."

"Mm, probably not. I'm from the western clan of the students. We spell it with a double 'o'. Don't feel bad, it's a common mistake."

He's facing the sterile field so I can't see his expression, but I can hear the laughter in his voice. He's playing with me and I must admit I like the game. Suddenly this routine operation is not as routine as it promised.

We don't talk much after that, namely because charge nurse keeps giving us death glares. It doesn't matter though. It's better. Every once in a while he leans over and asks questions and I feel the dead jade of senioritis lift as I answer his curiosity and temporarily remember mine.

The end comes too soon. Magda comes and gets him. My resident is breaking out of her scrub clothes and I have to hurry to catch up with her. I turn back before I push through the double doors of the OR to see if I can get a last look at Nursing Stoodent, but he's too engrossed in what he's doing and I end up walking away.

I continue to meet Nursing Stoodent in the OR, always with the only parts of our body visible being are our eyes and his arms and my arms. I always wondered how girls in Saudi Arabia could manage a flirt in their full niqab and abayas down to their toes, but I think I'm getting an idea of how they do it.

It's all in the micro-expressions. Nursing Stoodent flirt-touches with a casual flick of his eyebrows and the intermittent crinkles at the side of his eyes. He can whisper with his pupils when they get wide so they are all that I can see; when they get pinpoint so I can't. At least it feels like he's doing all of this.

I am not so versed as he is at these micro-expressions or replying to them. All I can do is get very hot in the face and laugh too hard at his jokes and reply too quickly to his questions and generally make a fool of myself. Because nothing says sexy like eager right?


When we are not in the OR he is a ghost, or maybe he is not because I don't know what he looks like. I half heartedly stalk the faces of the nursing students who pass through the department, but none of them look at me like the recognize me. Which is understandable. He probably doesn't know what I look like either. It's a wonder we ever find each other in the OR. One night I had a nightmare that what was actually happening was I was just talking to a different nursing student each time and dumb fuck that I was I didn't know.

And fell for every single one.

I'm dramatic. It is dramatic. But to be fair, there really is no other way this could have gone down. Dramatic and idiotic is the only way I know how to do love. I think it is because my single mother raised me on a steady diet of k-dramas and telenovellas. I've been fucked since I was five.

Nursing stoodent isn't helping the matter. He insists on being the most charming thing since David Tennant put on a dark brown suit, mussed his hair up, and called himself the Doctor.

Take the other day for example:

"So, do you watch the walking dead?" Nursing stoodent asks, deciding we've spent enough time pretending to pay attention to this cervical cerclage.

"Who doesn't?" I reply curtly. I have to reclaim the balance in this relationship by intermittently being rude and obnoxious. My glasses slide down the bridge of my nose and I shove them back up.

"My favorite character is Darryl," Nursing Stoodent says, ignoring me entirely. I don't think I have ever actually thrown him off-guard. It annoys me immensely. Yes, yes.

"At this point he's almost the only reason to watch," I have to agree. Even though I am simultaneously being annoyed with him. Hormones. I have too many of them. Anyone who says girls are too emotional has never met a guy with a crush. I'm surprised my pheromones haven't caused a wild animal to attack me yet.

Nursing stoodent is still talking. So, obviously, I listen too much.

"I'd quit if they killed him off, honestly."

"I'm on the fence about that," I say, glad to have something to have backbone about. "I mean, I will quit hands down if they get rid of Darryl, but at the same time this is the walking dead where anyone can die, right? So I'm almost losing respect for the show for not being able to kill him because of fans. It's almost like how Tyrrion should have died ages ago in the Game of Thrones"

"Hey, I like Tyrion."

"So do I. That isn't the point."

"What is the point?"

"Balls," I reply with gusto. "They just haven't got any."

"Because they won't kill our favorites?"

"Because their fear of losing me for killing my favorites outweighs their commitment to staying true to the story."

He laughs. I love that I have made him laugh. It's almost like I've actually done something good with my life. Other than be my mother's favorite child. As well as her only child. You're welcome, universe.

"So you're into badasses then?"

"And balls."

"Well we already know that. What with you being all hard in the bedroom."

"I'm hard in other places, too," I volunteer. Look at me being all brave and flirty. I have to admit, I stole that from a movie. I myself could never come up with anything that fast.

"Good to know," Nursing stoodent says with a knowing look.

And that was it. One knowing look that did things to my body, one side glance, and everything inside me turned to puree. Thank fuckfully, he never actually sees all of this disintegration. I am an M4. I have mastered the M4 swag that only came of knowing enough to not look like an idiot but not having any of the responsibility that comes with being an intern.

That being said, my relationship with Magda continues to deteriorate, even as my whatever-it-is with Nursing Stoodent soars.

I keep promising myself that one of these days, when she's in one of her snits we're going to have a talk, but then the time comes and I figure I'll just do it later.

I've got plenty of time.

Unlike the deadline for my personal statement.

Because really, what new way am I going to find to prostitute myself to academia that I haven't already abused for my college and medical school essays?

I've been wandering around distractedly because Magda kicked me out of the operating room this morning. It was an external cephalic version, which, if you don't already know, is super rare. Basically the baby is facing the wrong way and the doctor literally grabs the mother's tummy and tries to turn the baby from the outside. Neat stuff.

Anyway, there were fifteen of us in the room, counting me, another medical student, and four nursing students (not my nursing stoodent. I think), so Magda felt that it would be better for the patient if we left. Only, she didn't really say it like that. She snapped it like it was an order coming from on high and we had to obey because it was her.

Not gonna lie, I almost ignored her and asked the attending what she would prefer, but I let it go. As I so often did. Because I didn't want trouble and there is always tomorrow to get even with Magda. Or, you know, the end of the rotation or something.

But back to where I am wandering aimlessly. Because I have not had OR time today, I have obviously not seen my Nursing stoodent, so I am engaging in my new favorite pastime of figuring out which of the many people walking by might be him.

I tag all the cute ones of course. I can't know for sure, but I know nursing stoodent is cute.

"Excuse me, can I speak to you?" a terse voice snaps somewhere to the left of my blind spot. I'm still a bit day-dreamy, so it takes me some time to re-align. It's Magda.


She indicates one of the triage rooms and closes the door behind us. I try not to think about what could be so serious that it requires closed doors. I briefly consider texting my resident and asking her to come in and be with me – like a witness or something. I feel strangely cut off and alone. It's disconcerting.

Magda claps her hands and purses her thin lips together. Whaif-blond blond hair is tied back severely under the scrub cap she refuses to take off. Surgeries were this morning, but I think she thinks it makes her look more official if she always seems like she's just stepped out of saving lives in an OR.

"I just wanted to make sure you understood why I had to kick you out of the OR this morning," she begins.

I raise an eyebrow. "I understand perfectly," I say, baffled as to why we are having this conversation and why it must be so private. I'm pretty sure everyone who was there understood."

"Yes, but I feel that you gave me shade when I asked you to leave."


"Yes, shade," she reiterates, using teenage words in her forty-year old mouth like they belong there. "You gave me a look when I told you to leave and you didn't do it immediately."

"I don't remember-"

She cuts me off. "You made me feel invalidated like what I said did not matter."

"I'm sorry?" I manage, still confused. "I did not mean to make you feel that way. Nor do I remember any particular look?"

"Well you did," she insists. "And honestly, I was acting in the patient's favor and even the attending was wondering why there were so many people in the operating room."

"Yes I understand," I say, feeling as if a barrage of some odd flavor is being unloaded on me.

"And I felt it was my duty to do what's best for the patient. So from now on I feel if you're not directly involved in the case you shouldn't be allowed to be in the OR."

I want to demand why me of all the other students who were in the room. How I could possibly have given her shade when I wasn't looking at her. Why she would even use a word like shade. Because I was black? Because I was a boy? Because I didn't fit in somehow?

She goes on like this for about five minutes, vacillating between reminding me how my attitude is offensive to her to propping herself as the champion of patients.

She finally tires herself out. It is my turn to talk, and all I find myself saying are words of contrition and more words to excuse behavior I don't remember doing. She nods with deep satisfaction and storms out, as if, now that she's wrung me out to dry, the matter is all settled.

My knees wobble. I feel like I want to vomit, but I force myself to go outside into the waiting room. My resident asks what is wrong but I smile and say there was just a misunderstanding, nothing is wrong. My friend texts to ask if we're doing dinner today. The idea of actually eating food makes my stomach want to roll. I almost cancel. I agree anyway.

I thought when I woke up today the nightmare would be over, but I feel like I've stepped into a new one. A worse one. Every time Magda looks in my direction, I flinch and it's worse if she happens to be walking where I need to walk.

And it's not just with her that this is happening. I flinch with the other nurses too. Because of course, Magda must have told them what happened. They all have probably been talking about me in their little huddles, looking at me out of the corner of their eyes, judging me as harshly as they judge that one attending behind his back.

I know I sound paranoid. But that's probably because I feel paranoid. I feel like there is a target on my back and no one is friendly. Not even my residents, even though they have nothing to do with this. Even though there is nothing they could have done. Even though I didn't reach out to them.

Some very small part of me is angry that they didn't protect me from her.

Almost as angry as the part of me that is angry at myself.

I feel raw, like I've been sunburnt. Very badly sunburnt and anything and everything stings. A patient asks, innocently, why I'm in the room as if I'm not supposed to be there and I almost burst into tears. The lady at the desk asks me, gently, to turn my tag around so people can see who I am and all I hear is scolding laughter. The garbage guy glares at me for standing in the way. He glares at me every day. Today I just have a meltdown and run to the bathroom and sit there and cry. I've literally been crying on and off for 24 hours.

Congratulations ma. You got the girl you always wanted.

Shit. I shouldn't say that. Boys cry too. I'm crying. Fuck, I can't stop crying. It's humiliating on so many levels. First, that it gets to me. Second, that it gets to me so much. Third, that I can't get over it. I pride myself on being stronger than this. I pride myself on having been through worse than this. Hell, I'm black gay man. Growing up in small town America, with small town American values, with the name Elias VanHorny. There is no insult I haven't heard.

I thought I was hardened. I thought nothing could get to me.

I thought I was better than this.

Fourth year made me soft. The nurses were nicer. The people gave me more respect. I thought I was one of them. And it fucking sucks to abruptly realize how much you aren't.

Predictably, since I can't look the nurses in the eye without imagining their dismissal, I also avoid the OR. I haven't seen nursing stoodent in a week. And if I'm being truthful with myself, I'm avoiding him as well. No doubt, he's probably heard what happened. I don't want to see him with this face.

And I don't want to see him wearing their faces.

It's been a week that I haven't seen nursing stoodent and I'm starting to get used to the idea. It's better this way. There are no real friends here, anyway. I just need to get used to it. I wave to the front desk lady like I always do – she's the only other person of color in here, but for one nurse who I'm not sure I trust because she never even looks at me unless I talk to her first.

I feel like I've been thrown back to the stone ages. Talk only to people like you and you'll be safe. Trust no one else. This is the kind of paranoid thinking I used to get mad at my friends for back home. Half of me is offended that I feel this way. The other half, the half that feels the spots where my skin is raw doesn't care.

I keep promising myself redemption. I promise myself I will call her out. I will demand to know why she picked me. I'll tell her what I don't appreciate her tone either and she triggers me like I apparently triggered her.

It doesn't come of course. Every time is never the right time. Someone is giving birth. Or she's not alone. Or, we're not alone. Or the attending is already yelling. Or I just fucking want to go home.

Each day I say this will be the day I tell her off.

Each day passes and I say, tomorrow.

Until finally tomorrow comes and I find out, she's gone.

"She quit yesterday," Nurse Stacy is gossiping up at the huddle. It's afternoon and my last day of service. My last day to catch Magda. "Some issue with upper management."

"Girl knew how to get on everyone's nerves," Nurse Eli agrees. "Do you remember that one time—" and she launches into a story of … I don't know what. I stopped listening after the part where she's gone.

My breathing gets all weird and shallow again and all the numbness that covered my pain off for the last few days springs anew from a wound being ripped open. She's gone. I'll never get to tell her. I'll never get to do anything.

Blindly, I head towards the OR, drawn to the scene of my crime like a masochistic inveterate. I don't know what I'll find here. Maybe a memory that will justify everything – justify her yelling at me. Make me realize how wrong I was so that it won't feel so raw. Make it so that I don't feel like the whole aura surrounding my exile was just about me.

I push open the doors and step into the empty room. The lights are on even if surgery isn't happening in here – I guess they like to be ready. The bed for the mother and the baby are pristine, almost inviting. You could almost believe that the miracle of birth is beautiful as opposed to you know, a miracle that anyone survives it.

I'm wearing a scrub cap and shoes and a mask. There aren't any open instruments, but its been drilled into my head so many times it's habit now. And it makes me feel calmer. This way, I have no identity. This way no one can pick me out unless they feel special need to stare at my arms. This way I blend in.

I feel like a coward even thinking it.

"Long time no see."

I jump three stories inside my skin.

"I've been busy, " I mutter.

It's Nursing Stoodent. He's wearing full scrubs as well. I feel less lame.

"Missed you in here. Got a bit boring talking TV shows to myself."

"Maybe you should watch less shows," I say unkindly.

He only chuckles and steps into the room, letting the heavy doors close behind him. He is as I remember him, charming, goofy, easy. I'm probably not as he remembers me though. Hell, I'm not even as I remember me. I feel broken and disgusting. And I'm disgusted that something so stupid broke me.

He crosses the room, sits on the operating table, easy as you please. As if he's not committed seven crimes against sin.

"You shouldn't be up there," I find myself stammering.

"We shouldn't be in here at all," he says, shrugging. "Go big or go home, I say."

"You shouldn't be up there," I repeat.

"Come shouldn't be up here with me," he encourages.

"That doesn't make any sense."

"And yet you know precisely what I mean."

I do. Heavens knows I do. But that could be because I only listened to the "here with me" part. And anyway, being around him is making everything feel less terrible. And cold. And I don't know raw. I think it is because every time I talk to him, I feel like I'm transported to somewhere else.

So I hop up onto the table.

"Why haven't I seen you around?"

"I've been around."

"Yes, but why haven't I seen you?"

"I've been busy."

He stiffens next to me. It is the first time I've ever seen him be anything other than calm and relaxed and charming. I was starting to think he was a two dimensional character. Which, considering all of my love life is on television I've never had an issue with.

Still, this addition to his dimensions…

"Did I do something?"

I blink at him as if he's gone completely stupid. I actually have to look at him because I cannot believe any of that just came out of his mouth. He's talking with his eyes. They aren't wet and rimmy like my dramatic ones are, but they are cinched at the side. Pained. And his voice isn't as confident and self assured as usual.

He truly believes this is about him.

"No." I sigh. "You didn't do anything."

The cinches in his eyes abate a little. "Then, what's wrong?"

"It's sterile field. I fucking hate sterile field."


"Like, I understand its importance and I get the legal shit about patient care, but I hate how it makes you feel you know? If you're not sterile, you're dirty. You can't touch anything. You can't touch the ones who are sterile and they cant touch you – its like there is something wrong with you. And then they reinforce that by yelling at you, constantly, about the sterile field until you internalize it. It's a massive divider – it becomes more than a hygiene thing or a patient care thing. I hate how it makes me feel like an outsider. And I hate when I am in it making other people feel like outsiders."

"That's a whole lot of thoughts about blue cloth and iodine."

"I just…" I just feel like exploding. I don't understand my emotions. I'm sick of the feelings.

I have been fighting outside myself because I didn't defend myself. I've been fighting inside myself to prevent myself from making her words true. I've been fighting not to feel like an outsider – like I don't belong here.

"You just what?"

"Well you must have heard already. The big blow out with me and Magda. The grand …"


"How can you not. Everyone gossips about everyone here."

"Mm, not that I've heard. But, I haven't really been listening."

This idiot is far too easy to fall for.

So, I tell him the story, because he worked so hard not to hear it (I'm going to ignore the possibility that there may have been nothing to hear). At the end of it, I don't feel even a little bit better. Barring your soul just makes you feel more raw and open and disgusting and lame. I wish I hadn't told him. He wouldn't have had to know how ugly I am on the inside.

"Sounds like she was just looking for someone to blame," Nursing stoodent says. "Or she was having a super shit day and she just lashed out."

"It's not even about her!" I snapped, annoyed and annoyed and annoyed because I finally have the words and I don't want them. "It's about me. I let myself down. I couldn't even say anything to protect myself. I just stood there and let her yell. "

"Why does it bother you so much?"

"In my head I always imagined when I had a proper showdown, I would be stupendous. I would know what to say. I would never let someone disrespect me like that. But I didn't. I didn't say a word. And if I can't even come up with the words to defend myself how the hell am I supposed to be an advocate for my patients? Or anyone? I'm just going to fail every time. And then today I come in prepared to at least try and redeem myself and Magda isn't even here."

Yes, I'm crying again. The level of pathetic in this room has reached unknowable heights. This may be related to why I can't write my residency essay. I felt damn ready to enter college out of highschool. That essay was brimming with all kinds of confidence because I knew I could do that shit. I felt hella worthy to demand entry into medical school, too. College was more academia and I did that in my sleep – more often than not I actually was asleep. Lectures were never my thing. As I enter residency and I look at myself, however, I don't feel ready to go out there and be a doctor. And I don't know how to convince anyone that I'm ready either.

Things like Magda, things like this, just prove how not ready I am.

Nursing stoodent takes my hand in his and holds it. I'm not looking at him, but I'm going to imagine his eye speak is saying something like 'fuck me' or something. Useful, soul healing shit like that.

"It's not like TV you know. No one is ever great at standing up to a bully the first time."

"Are you going to tell me the story of how you had a bully and how you eventually stood up to them?"

"No, actually, I was going to say, standing up to a bully takes practice."

"So I have to get yelled out more times for this to work out?"

"Actually, you are the one who needs to yell at me"

I look up.


"Tell me everything that you would have told Magda."

"Why would I do that? You're not her."

"I'm as good as. She really is my mom."


"So, let your rage out. I'll be the conduit."

"I'm not going to yell at you."

"Why not?"

"Because you're not who I'm mad at."

"To be fair, you're not mad at her either really."

He has a point. "Fine. If you were Magda—"

"Like you're talking to her."

"Magda, I am sorry—"

"You'd really apologize again?"

"Magda, I understand—"

"You understand?"

"Am I doing this or are you?"

"Well you're doing it terribly. None of this would bother my mother at all."

"Fuck you."

"Try again."

And I do try. I try again. I try about fifty times and you know what? I still suck by the end of it. I don't sound as cool as I want to. I don't stun anyone with my wit. I don't even remotely impress the machine that is whirring in the background.

"This is stupid."

"Practice usually feels that way," Nursing stoodent nods wisely.

"Well, I want to practice something else." I snap.

"Is there anything else you're horrifically bad at?"

I glare at him sideways, but I'm also sort of laughing.

"No, but there are some things I am very good at."

"Oh yeah?" he challenges.

"Yup," I scoot closer. "Apparently, I'm really, really good at breaking sterile field."

"We've already done that," he points out.

"Not the way I do it."

And before he knows it my lips are on his and our masks are flying off and we're backed against the pregnant lady birthing bed and Magda really doesn't matter because he's actually a fucking good kisser.

He also doesn't stay stunned for very long. Or at all. Actually I'm pretty sure he saw me coming. I feel him smile against my lips and I smile back. And then have enough of the mushy stuff and kiss some more.

"I like your way of breaking field," he murmurs, when we feel like a break is needed. To breathe and stuff, you know.

"I like it too."

I pause. "You're not really Magda's son, are you?"

He laughs for real this time. "You're way too easy…"

And we fall against the bed and truly fuck up sterile field.

a/n: the end