Publish Novellas 16 May 2021
EPISODE 4 – COMPATIBILITY
Someone will be the involuntary lung transplant donor on a remote island. This intensifies Jayson’s resolve to escape.
Blood, Sweat, and Tears
Brian is currently the one-eyed captive…
Jayson is freaking out in response to Brian’s revelation. “What type of mad scientist runs this place? Can anyone even survive a lung transplant? Why are you so nonchalant about it?
“Pipe down! I told you how dangerous these people are. Perhaps I’ve said too much. Just get your blood drawn and vitals taken. There is not much you can do in handcuffs and shackles,” Brian warns.
“Just get me to a computer or a phone. I can get help. You don’t need to do anything else,” Jayson pleads.
“There are no computers on this island that I have seen. There is only a satellite phone for Dr. Toussaint. If you don’t get your blood drawn, they will hunt you down. Let’s go now!” Brian says insistently.
“But there must be computers if they are performing transplants,” Jayson replies to no response, as they walk.
In another area of the island, Caroline is equally troubled about forced medical procedures, but Isabela downplays the blood draw. “They just want to make certain you’re healthy. Remember, none of the workers can be sick here.”
Despite protests, both Caroline and Jayson get their tests before being escorted back to the dining area. Caroline and Isabela set the table. Caroline eats more than she did during breakfast. Jayson, on the other hand, does not eat anything. He just studies the surroundings with a stern expression.
After Isabela and Caroline clear the table, Brian leads her back to the dilapidated cabin with Jayson.
“Are we going to get separate rooms? We are not a couple,” says Caroline modestly.
“This is the last cabin. You have to share,” Brian replies.
“But there are no walls for privacy,” Caroline continues.
“You’ll just have to work it out. Here we are.” Jayson and Caroline enter. Brian then locks the door behind them.
Referring to the joke made when on the plane, Caroline says, “It looks like we are roommates.” Noting Jayson is visibly upset, she changes the subject and asks, “What else did you find out?”
“If we do nothing, one of us is going to die!” Jayson grumbles in frustration.
“What are you talking about? Who? How?” Caroline asks in fear.
“Dr. Toussaint is no Saint. From what I can tell, this is some type of organ harvesting mission. One of us is about to lose a lung. That’s what the blood tests are for,” Jayson reveals.
In tears, Caroline runs for the door but cannot open it. Banging three times she begs, “Let us out. Let us out!”
“No one’s there. Try to calm down. I’m working on a plan,” Jayson says, as he sits on his bed.
Caroline sits beside him. “Okay, let’s think. Help will come. Who knows we’re here?”
“No one. I found out we are not even in Fiji,” Jayson says.
“We’re not? Then were are we?” asks Caroline in shock.
“Somewhere in the Indian Ocean, perhaps. I wish I had my watch with GPS to tell for sure,” says Jayson.
“Well, I’m counting on my dancing pilot, who happens to be a programmer. I’m sure you’ll figure something out soon,” Caroline says confidently.
“Apparently, there are no computers and my flying experience has been limited to 30-minute trips around the harbor. Even if I can get into the cockpit, I could not fly us back to Hawaii,” Jayson reasons.
“Stay positive. You’ll think of something,” reassures Caroline as she walks back to her bed and lays down.
“My boss and my flight instructor know that I am on this trip for a week. Neither will look for me before then,” Jayson says while lying on his bed, looking up at the thatched ceiling.
Caroline commends him for finding out so much in one day. “Tomorrow, we’ll get more clues.”
“You’re right. Perhaps good behavior is the only option at the moment, so we can get these restraints off,” Jayson concludes. “Tomorrow, let’s try to find out why everyone is so docile.”
“For now, perhaps gathering more information is the best plan. If you don’t mind, I am going to get some rest,” Caroline says.
“Sure, go ahead,” Jayson replies. Eventually, he also falls asleep.
Brian returns at dusk on Tuesday. From the other side of the door he shouts, “Last call for supper.”
Jayson and Caroline look at each other and wag their heads side to side. “No, we’re good for the day,” Jayson shouts back.
“Wait, I want to use the toilet,” Caroline interrupts.
Brian says, “Come with me.”
When she returns, Jayson is sleep for the evening.
Wednesday morning, they know the routine and line up at the door with their toiletries.
“Get as much information as possible. But remain on good behavior to get restraints removed,” Caroline reminds Jayson.
After three taps, Brian opens the door and leads them to the outhouse before orientation.
Dr. Toussaint addresses the five enslaved workers with security at his side.
“I hope our new guests are adjusting to the jet lag. Make it through today without incident and tomorrow you may have full use of your hands.
“Two distinguished surgeons arrived last night. They will be assisting with work in our infirmary. Try to stay out of the way of their bungalows. Focus cleaning on your own living quarters and the dining area. If we we need you for anything else, we’ll let you know.”
“Sir yes, Dr. Toussaint, sir,” they shout in unison.
“You are dismissed for breakfast.” After Dr. Toussaint leaves the platform, the workers head to the dining area for fresh fruit and roasted root vegetables.
Jayson wants to get into some deep questions but starts off on a lighter note. “With no dinner last night, I’m starving.”
Brian says, “Pass him the roasted yams, carrots, and yucca. They stick to your ribs.”
“Thanks, good to know,” Jayson replies appreciatively. “I guess we have to eat with our hands because they don’t trust us with silverware.” No one responds.
“Any news on our VIP guests?” Jayson asks.
“Keep your voice down,” Brian warns while savoring some mango. “They are doctors, here to perform a potential transplant. According to Sheena, we are expecting Dr. Daniel Hobbs, a vascular surgeon who comes often and Dr. Fatema Seshadri, an Indian pulmonology surgeon.”
“There seems to be quite an international crowd. I assume Dr. Toussaint is British. How do they get an Indian surgeon?” Jayson queries innocently.
“Yeh, you picked that up. This island is protected by the Indian Navy,” Brian reveals softly.
“Really? Does the Navy know we’re here? Perhaps they will save us if we can get a smoke signal to them,” Caroline suggests.
Isabela, who has been here the longest, says, “Everything done here is with the cooperation of the Indian Navy. The island is off limits to all other nations, and vigorously defended. They are not our saviors.”
This leaves Jayson and Caroline speechless.
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