Written to the Thimbleful Thursday Prompt from yesterday, of the same name.
“It’s a cloned heart, freshly made in our lab.”
Dr. Hischa was very proud of the heart in a box. It was displayed like the crown jewels, held up for the cameras and, more importantly, for the patient. “This heart isn’t the heart of a donor. Nobody had to die for it. It’s your heart — but your heart as it was when you were a teenager.”
The patient, a woman in her eighties, coughed out a laugh. “Hopefully early teens.”
“Had wild teenage years, did you?” Dr.Hischa remained jocular, but a very observant viewer might have noticed a slight twitch.
“That’s a good word for it. Wild.” The patient chuckled.
“Well, now you can be young at heart, ah-ha-ha, again. Won’t that be wonderful? Now, let’s just…”
Prepping included reams of paperwork; recovery included weeks of testing and physical therapy. When the cameras once again turned on Ms. Palorin, she was lounging sideways on a chaise, her children and grandchildren eyeing her uncertainty.
“So, Ms. Palorin-”
“Oh, call me Milly.”
“So, Milly.” Dr. Hischa’s smile was strained around the edges. “How are you feeling?”
“I have to say, I haven’t felt this good since I was a teenager the first time. I feel great. This is the bee’s knees. I can run up stairs. Want to see me do a cartwheel?”
“Mom!” Her eldest daughter, sporting pinched face and frown lines, threw up her hands. “Mother, you can’t! Act your age—”
“-not your shoe size, nyah, nyah. I know, Catherine. But right now I feel like acting six. Or maybe sixteen. This new heart is wonderful, Dr. Hischa!”
“It’s wonderful that you’re feeling capable of being more active again, Ms. Palorin. Now, of course, the rest of your body will still require some care. I do recall from your chart that your broke your hip two years ago, so cartwheels might be a little over the top…”
“Pshaw! Besides, I said call me Milly. ‘Ms. Palorin’ sounds so old, and Mr. Palorin has been gone for thirty years—”
“Oh, Cathy, it’s not like it’s not true. Anyway. I’m having a blast with this new heart. I think I’ll go out and see what the kids are doing these days. What do you say, Susie?”
Her granddaughter, of about the age to be called “kids these days” grinned widely. “Of course! I can show you the new dances, too. It’ll be wild!”
“Ms. Palorin, your hip—”
“What? It’s not like you can’t just clone me a new one. And then,” Milly laughed, “I can be young at hips again, too, and think how much fun that will be!”