"Alexandra, tie your hair back." The voice of my supervising Doctor, Percy, carries across the room. I pull my hair back into a straggling pony tail and throw him a dirty look. We were meant to be in the theatre already, but it seems that a morning lie-in is not such a good idea after all, especially not as a medical student. Helping out in theatre was said to be fun, but I can't see anything fun about it. Standing round for hours whilst the surgeons around you try to do their very best to not kill the person they have just cut open. That day was different though. There was a reason why I had got myself on that day's schedule for surgery. Doctors aren't really meant to be in surgery when they know the patient intimately, but that time was different.
Walking down the short corridor that leads to the theatre seemed like it took a lifetime. The doors were flung open, the gloves were put on, and then we were in. Open heart surgery could take hours, so doctors would swap half way through. I had promised him that I would be there and so I was, but I was only there for the second half. He looked like he was asleep, but the tubes that ran around the theatre gave away that there was danger here. He'd been afraid, he'd never wanted this, but I guessed that this had been the only way. The young get hit so hard. It seems that the good always got the punishment for the things that the bad did, and never the other way round.
I believe that he can get through this because of his brother. They were like two sides of the same coin. They were inseparable when they were very small and they were still inseparable now, even though they lived three hundred miles away from each other. Ryan lived in New York, in the heart of the United States and Michael lived in London, in the United Kingdom. Michael was the cheeky brother, always getting Ryan into trouble. They would run around, completing these ridiculous plans that Michael had concocted. Ryan was the smart one of the two. He would complete all of his homework on time and he would usually be in bed by nine on the dot. Lexi and I now have to look after the kids because their parents were killed during the 9/11 attacks. Their parents, my uncle and aunt, worked in the Pentagon and were unlucky enough to be in the sector that was being refurbished. That was exactly where the plane hit. You don't think that things like that could ever affect your family until they do, and then they hit you hard. Ryan and Michael were only fourteen and eleven, and to lose your parents like that and then have to go and live with your cousins must have been a real shock to them, but that is the way that things have to be. Then Ryan had to have open heart surgery.
So, we were stood in the theatre. The machines are sending my senses into overdrive already and I'm starting to panic. The doors smash open and the doctors spin round. The woman standing at the door beckons to me; I can't see her face as it is obscured by shadow. I turn to Ryan, I don't want to leave him, not now, but I start walking towards the door. I close it slowly behind me. It's Gemma facing me, the receptionist, and she starts walking quickly down the corridors, "You've got someone to see you." We power walk into the lobby; I'm still thinking of Ryan. The woman who turns to face me is young. She has blonde hair that comes up to her shoulders. She can't be any older than Ryan. Gemma turns to face me, "I'll leave you here. Alexandra, you won't be going back into theatre." I sigh and the girl laughs, "Hard day?" I smile a sad smile, "The worst." She held her hand out for me to shake, "I'm Claire." She looked nervous. I shook her hand, "Alexandra. Is there something I can help you with?" Claire smiled, "I hope so. I'm not sure how to put this. I was adopted, and my adoptive parents moved here because they thought that it would help me find my birth family. You might be my sister."
Shocked does not cover how I am feeling. A sister. Yes, me and Lexi have always gotten on so well, but to have another sister would be incredible. So maybe that was what mum had meant when she said to us to look after our sister. She was looking at me now, Claire, trying to gauge my reaction, "Do you know if you had a sister?" I smiled at her, "I was never told that I had another sister, but mum mentioned once that we might not be the only ones." Her eyes lit up, "We? There's another sister?" I nodded, "Her name is Lexi. You have cousins as well, Ryan and Michael." She had very definitely gone into excited schoolgirl mode, "Could I meet her? Lexi." I smiled, "Not yet. She lives in the UK." Her face sank a little, but was renewed as she heard a voice behind her, "Claire?" Behind her was an older man, obviously her Dad, because she ran at him and gave him a hug with such enthusiasm. I put my hands in my pocket. She brought him over, "Alex, can I call you Alex?" I nodded, "You must be Claire's father." He shook my hand, "I'm Mr Fletcher, but you can call me Noah." I smiled, "Noah it is. I'm glad to have had the pleasure of meeting you Claire." I quickly wrote my name, full name, and number on a piece of paper because I could see Percy beckoning me over, "Here is my number, Noah, of you want to call me to arrange a meeting. It's been great to meet you, and I'm sure that next time, we can talk more, and maybe, you can meet Lexi." Claire beamed as she hurried to the elevator.
I almost sprinted over to where Percy was stood. He was smiling, and I guessed that was a good sign. "He made it." I sighed, "Good." Percy turned away and started to walk away, "I thought you should know, considering how much he means to you." I hurried along beside him, "How did you know?" He stopped to look at me, "Ryan told me. He said about how much he respected you. He even helped me plan your recommendation." He handed me a certificate, "Congratulations Dr Wilson." and left me standing in the corridor, staring at the gateway to my future.