He walked down the hallways with a firm and elegant stroll, slowly and carefully removing the blue latex gloves from his hands as he made his way to the door, disposing them along his surgical mask in a nearby trash bin. He was satisfied with the work he had done as accentuated by his proud expression, another excellent operation executed with mastery and care, all that was left was to announce the good news.
He opened the door at the end of the long hallway, immediately meeting with a couple eagerly waiting on that empty room for him. The waiting room had an aura of cleanness and purity, it felt like a very professional and modern complex, but more than that, it felt somewhat sterile.
The Atliees had been waiting impatiently and worried for the results and just by looking at Dr. Allen's face, they knew everything was right. He took his squared glasses off and put them inside the pocket of his white medic coat, turned his brown eyes towards the couple and made it official.
"The procedure was successful" Dr. Allen informed to the couple's relief.
Mr. Atliee embraced his wife and kissed her in the top of her auburn curls filled head, she could barely hold her excitement.
"Does this mean we can see our daughter now?" Mrs. Atliee asked.
"Your daughter is yet to wake up from the anesthetics," Dr. Allen informed as he was given a clipboard by the hospital's staff, "don't worry, you'll be able to see her soon, but first there are a couple of things we need to settle" he said as he filled the forms.
"What's going to happen to
" Mrs. Atliee asked doubtful, "
" she sounded awkward.
"The spares, that's what we call them" Dr. Allen said, "that's exactly what we need to arrange" the Atliees were a bit estranged by this.
"Spares?" Mr. Atliee repeated, the term sounded so unprofessional and pretty rude for what they actually represented.
"We believe that term is friendlier to our clients and patients," Dr. Allen continued to fill in the forms as he spoke, "what do you have in mind for your daughter's spares?" he asked.
There was a brief moment of silence.
"What options do we have?" Mr. Atliee asked.
"Well," Dr. Allen began his explanation as he was used to this routine, "Most of our clients choose to entirely dispose of their spares, you'd be surprised at how common they pick this option, but there are other alternatives, first one being a donation
"A donation?" Mrs. Atliee echoed.
"That's right, if you choose to donate your daughter's spares the hospital will preserve every healthy spare for transplant and will donate them to several other hospitals for people waiting for organ donors," it was pretty much self explanatory, Dr. Allen thought, "Your final option is 'storage', in which we will preserve all of your spares and keep them ready in case your daughter might need them for an emergency, one can never be too careful about what may happen, they might come in handy" there was a brief pause on his speech as he noticed a hint of interest on the couple. "Naturally this option comes with a monthly fee and you may choose to cancel this service at any given moment, in which case, your daughter's spares will be donated" he added.
The Atliees thought about it for a brief moment and swapped some whispers, but they quickly decided, as if they had already thought about it in advance.
"We would like to have them stored" Mrs. Atliee affirmed.
"Just like you mentioned, they might come in handy in the future" Mr. Atliee added.
"It'll be our pleasure" Dr. Allen then handed the clipboard and a pen to the Atliees, "I just need you to sign these forms, both of you, here and here respectively" he said pointing out the right places to be signed.
Dr. Allen quickly received the signed papers and removed a stub from them, which he handed back to the Atliees, "Due to the nature of procedure your daughter just went through she might suffer slight migraines, dizziness, nausea and other symptoms," they had already heard this, but Dr. Allen was required by the hospital to inform them once more, "with this stub you can pick medicine to prevent them on your way out, while you might notice progress on your daughter in a few days, it is advised that she takes this medicine for a period of four months."
Coincidentally as they finished arranging these issues, a nurse approached Dr. Allen to inform him that the Atliees could finally see their daughter; "Follow me, please" Dr. Allen led the way.
They were particularly excited and curiously nervous too, they felt as if they hadn't seen their daughter in a long time, or as if this was going to be the first time the saw her in their life. The door opened slowly, letting the light of the room pour into the hallway, the slightest glimpse of their girl illuminated the couple's face with glee.
"Hi" the girl said with a weakened, rough voice.
Her parents began to tear up, they felt blessed to see their little perfect girl sound and safe; she had her mother's beautiful amber eyes and straight black hair which resembled her father's; her skin looked pale in contrast to her parents' but that was due to her time in the hospital.
"How are you feeling, Fawn?" her mother asked.
"I feel fine
" she replied, "
my voice sounds weird though" she noted.
"Don't worry darling, you'll get over that soon" her father claimed.
"It's not just my voice," Fawn barely managed to look around as she spoke, "my whole body feels weird."
"The anesthetics are wearing off, it's normal to feel like this" Dr. Allen clarified.
how did all that go?" Fawn asked smiling.
"It was a success, you have nothing to worry about, my little princess!" her mother exclaimed overjoyed as she gently hugged her.
"Somebody help me
She tried to speak, but not even the faintest whisper came out, the words stood in her mind only.
"It's so cold
somebody help me
No matter how much effort she made, she couldn't speak, she couldn't move, she couldn't do anything but watch, and hear.
Footsteps came and went, blurry visions of blinking lights and formless figures walking nearby limited by the none descript walls of her prison. She knew people were out there, but no one approached her.
"What am I seeing?
Still no words could be heard, her struggle was meaningless, she couldn't make any body movement at all, she could only feel the coldness of her "cage", watching those figures go about.
"Somebody help me!"
Fawn yelled with all the strength her lungs could allow, waking up startled and kicking, tossing her bed sheets aside and jumping out of bed involuntarily. It took her a few moments to realize it had all been a dream.
" she sighed as she scratched her head. She was careful while doing so, she didn't want to feel that piercing pain she experienced every time she touched her scar, a reminder of a severe accident she had when she was younger, or so claimed her parents, Fawn had no memories of such accident.
"Fawn!" Her father screamed as he violently made his way into the room, "What's going on?! Is everything all right?!" he asked with an outmost worried tone.
"I had that weird dream again
" Fawn said embarrassed.
Her father sighed in relief, turned the lights on and sat by her bed, "You scared me there, I thought something bad had happened to you this time" he said as he invited Fawn to sit by his side.
Ever since she came back from the hospital roughly a month ago, Fawn had been having weird dreams from time to time, very similar to the one she just woke up from, sometimes she could see, sometimes she couldn't, but she never could speak or move and a tremendous coldness assaulted her skin.
"I'm sorry" Fawn said as her father wrapped his arm around her.
"Everybody has bad dreams from time to time
" the father said trying to comfort his precious girl, "
But, you have been taking your medications, right?" he asked, sort of ruining the moment.
"Yes dad, I have been taking them on the clock without fail" Fawn declared.
"Had to ask, you know Dr. Allen said these sort of dreams would be more frequent if you didn't take them" Fawn knew this very well, but she didn't quite understand how the medication and her operation would have any effect on something she thought was purely related to her mind.
"Is it safe to come in?" Fawn's mother asked peeking through the door's frame.
"She just had a bad dream, sweetheart" the father said.
"Is that so?" the mother said with a tone that sounded half concerned, half endeared, "Don't worry princess, it's over now" she said as she sat by the bed and embraced Fawn along her husband .
"If you're taking your medications and these dreams keep coming back, maybe there is something more to them?" the father mused, "Fawn, ever since you began having these dreams we've been worried, we really wanted to believe your medications would make them stop, but there might be something different happening here" Fawn already knew this conversation was heading down a bad trail.
"Do you think there might be something wrong up here?" Fawn asked, poking her own head.
"No, it's not like that sweetie" he made an effort to not sound rude, "I just think that perhaps something is troubling you and your feelings, something you may not be ready to tell us
"I don't get it" Fawn said lowering her sight.
"What your father is trying to say is, maybe we could get someone to help you understand your dreams and what they mean, possibly help you overcome them
" before she could finish, Fawn interrupted her mother.
"You want me to see a shrink?" Fawn bluntly asked.
"We're not going to force you to see a shrink" Her father said attempting to not offend Fawn, surely it wouldn't be nice if she felt as if her parents thought she was crazy.
"You will only see a shrink when you choose to," her mother assured, "we're just telling you this because you have to know, there is nothing wrong about letting people help you and it's best to resolve these sort of things before they grow out of proportions."
"I am not crazy" sobbed Fawn.
"We know sweetie," her mother said, "We just want you to think about it."
"Then I'll think about it" Fawn replied grumpily.
The couple kissed their daughter good night and prepared to leave her bed room, "try to get some rest, Princess" the father said, Fawn just nodded and covered herself again intending to sleep. Her parents turned off the lights as they left the bedroom, but Fawn had her eye still wide open, she was thinking about what they had just said, contemplating her choices, was seeing a shrink so bad? Did her parents think she was crazy? No, that couldn't be.
"They care about me, everything they do is for my own good, every choice they have made was the best for me
" Fawn thought, "
perhaps it truly would be for the best if I saw a shrink
" her thoughts went before she finally fell asleep.
Fawn over slept that night, by the time she woke up it was already past afternoon and her parents were nowhere to be found. She wasn't surprised, they had told her they had to go to an important meeting, she wasn't sure what the deal with that was, but they had frequent meetings like that.
Fawn served herself the meal her mother left her and peacefully ate it by the kitchen with absolutely no problem, however, by the time she was done and just as she washed her dishes, she clumsily dropped a big, round plate.
"Oh dear!" Fawn exclaimed as she saw the plate break into about six pieces.
She quickly stopped doing the dishes and instead cleared the table and gathered all the pieces on it. She thought that maybe if she fixed the plate, her parents wouldn't get mad over her mistake.
Fawn knew her father had a hot glue gun on his tool box (thought it never occurred to her that perhaps hot glue wasn't the best choice for fixing something you put your food on). She rushed to her parent's room and searched through the closet for the tool box, only to find two seemingly identical boxes.
Fawn opened the first box she could reach, which turned out to house her father's fishing gear, not his tools. Among the hooks, lines and lures, Fawn found something that caught her attention like nothing before.
"What is this?" she asked herself as she held a photo of her dad during a fishing trip, by his side stood a boy, perhaps a year or two younger than herself, smiling after catching what seemed to be the biggest fish he had ever seen.
Fawn was mesmerized by the picture, she couldn't look away from that boy, who looked like a miniature version of her dad. Her eyes started to tear up, her head started to fill up with a weird emotion that she couldn't quite understand.
"What is this feeling?" she pondered, tears flowing from her eyes and running through her cheeks.
She was baffled, she was crying, but she didn't feel an inch of sadness. The emotion she felt was more close to nostalgia over a time long gone, but how could she feel nostalgic about that picture? It made no sense, she didn't remember ever going on such fishing trip, nor who that boy even was, yet, there she stood, watching the picture and crying.
"I don't understand!" she cried as her emotion became stronger, a warm and tickling feeling invaded her entire body and she still couldn't stop crying, she was just stuck there with her nostalgic feeling that felt neither happy nor sad, "Why am I feeling this?"
Moments later Fawn heard the front door open, her parents were already back home. While she thought that they would not like to find her snooping around their closet, she didn't move, her conflicted feelings didn't let her think things clearly.
"Fawn, what are you doing there?" Fawn turned her face to her father as she heard him calling, "Why are you crying?" he asked.
"I don't know" Fawn replied.
"Where did you get that?!" her mother yelled as she got into the room.
Fawn's father was slow to notice it, but when the picture was brought to his attention his face got ghostly pale and he jumped at Fawn and snatched the picture from her hands, "why are you messing with my stuff?" he yelled with a mixture of anger and fear.
"Who is that on the picture?" Fawn asked ignoring what his father just said.
"Well, uh, he... you see
guh..." Fawn tilted her head a bit as she saw her father fumbling his words nervously, unable to string coherent sentences.
"He's your cousin" Fawn's mother said while snatching the picture from her mumbling husband's hands, "This picture is from a fishing trip your father took with his brothers a few years ago, sweetie" she calmly said.
"Oh! No wonder he seemed somehow familiar to me" Fawn said clearing the tears from her eyes. She figured she possibly met her cousin before and she just didn't remember him, like a lot of things in her life.
"Is something wrong, sweetie" the mother asked.
"No, im fine" Fawn paused for a brief moment, "Well, actually I broke a plate, I was looking for the hot glue gun, sorry."
"Don't worry about it Fawn, your father will fix it," she was getting off the hook surprisingly easy, "just get out of our room."
Fawn thanked her mother for being so understanding about her mistake and left the room, closing the door behind her.
"What the hell is this?!" Mrs. Atliee asked her husband angrily, it was a rhetorical question, "How could you leave this picture where Fawn could find it?" she raised her tone.
"I had forgotten it was there" the man said, "It's been so long since I went fishing, I just hadn't looked in there all this time" his voice sounded submissive, he knew he had screwed up big time.
"You're an idiot!" Mrs. Atliee yelled, "You know what Dr. Allen said! No pictures, no diaries, no evidence! Anything that could trigger any memory on Fawn should never fall on her hands!"
"I thought we had already locked away everything, I am sorry!" the man said.
" We can't risk this happening again, we need to scout the entire house for anything we may have missed and we should dispose everything" Hearing this surprised Mr. Atliee.
"Dispose everything?" he echoed, "But all those memories will be
"Gone" Mrs. Atliee said interrupting her husband, "I don't like it anymore than you do, but it has to be done, for Fawn's sake."
"For our daughter
" Mr. Atliee reluctantly agreed.
That night Fawn had yet another bad dream.
" she whispered, but once more, her words couldn't be heard.
Everything is entirely black, her eyes are completely shut and they don't seem to budge.
"Please, let me go
She struggles, but her limbs remains immobile, she's helpless to the assault on her body.
"Please, stop, please
Fawn could feel several hands touching her body, sending unpleasant chills all over her it, she felt dirty, but those hands didn't seem to be doing much to her body, mainly just holding it, carrying it around, moving it.
"Let me go..." she still was unable to speak or do anything.
Little by little, the feeling of coldness began to fade, but never completely she never was able to move or open her eyes, she could only feel those "alien" hands holding her body and hear some inaudible whispers.
"LET ME GO!"
And just like that, Fawn was awake. So far this had been the worst dream of them all, all her previous dreams had been about being imprisoned, immobile, but this was beyond terrifying, she was shaking.
"Another bad dream?" her scream had made her father spring to action. Fawn looked at him whimpering and nodded, he hugged her to calm her down
"Maybe, I do need to see a shrink."
"Tell me, how's school going?" a sophisticated, aged woman asked Fawn while taking small notes.
Going to the shrink wasn't anything like Fawn had imagined (but it never is, isn't it?), unlike what silly movies and TV led her to believe, she wasn't laying on a fancy couch or anything as if she was being studied like a freak, instead she was on a cozy room, very average looking, where she talked about herself for some time as her shrink asked her some question, nothing out of the ordinary. Fawn was starting to think it was just about venting and feeling better about herself, but she still couldn't see how that would cure her from her bad dreams.
"School is nice, I think," Fawn began to explain, "little before my operation we moved to a different part of the city, so that meant a new school. I thought being the new girl would be hard, but so far it's been a gentle ride" she paused as if she was trying to think of what to say, "I kind of don't remember how my old school was to be honest, but I don't really recall ever having a bad experience in any school ever."
Fawn was being entirely honest, she had been in all her sessions so far, but this time her psychiatrist didn't seem very interested on what she had to say about her school.
"Fawn, if you will let me a bit blunt here
" she called her attention.
"I think you're dodging what really is troubling you?" the shrink accused.
"Excuse me?" this was news to Fawn, "How am I dodging anything? I have been answering all your questions, opening myself entirely honestly!" she truly was, "And I never felt we were stuck, I mean, my bad dreams have decreased since we began."
"I am glad to hear that," the shrink said, "but you told me about a very disturbing dream on our first session."
Fawn was well aware of that, as it was the dream that convince her to give in and start with these sessions.
"Have your parents been doing anything 'bad' to you?" the shrink asked.
"Say what?" Fawn couldn't believe what she just had heard.
"Do your parents beat you?" that was a highly improper question, "touched you in a way that made you uncomfortable?"
Fawn's head turned red with anger, how could this woman dare to even imply such a horrible thing about her beloved parents?!
"Are you out of your mind?!" Fawn yelled completely outraged, "Gosh! How could you ask such a horrible thing! Of course they haven't done anything like that!" she was just fuming, "What is wrong with you?!"
The shrink wasn't what Fawn thought, but she never thought she would make any move like this, she felt so insulted, this was so out of place, and maybe Fawn didn't know much about psychology, but she was sure this was highly inappropriate and unprofessional.
"Sorry to be so direct but I had to ask" the shrink said taking notes, Fawn's shock and anger denoted that she was honest and her parents certainly hadn't done anything bad to her, "I was instructed to ask you this, I had no choice and I hope you forgive me."
"I am not okay with this!" Fawn cried, "I thought your job was to make me feel better, not to insult me like this!"
"Again, I am sorry, but I had to ask you this, I have to make sure that my patients are being raised in safe environments
"But this isn't about how I live!" Fawn didn't show any signal of calming down, "I am here because I have bad dreams, not some freaky soap opera trauma!"
"I'm just doing my job, Fawn."
"And who ordered you to ask me such horrible question?" Fawn inquired.
"That I cannot tell" the shrink replied.
"What happened to 'anything you tell me here remains between you and me'? What kind of shrink are you? You can't tell me? Well, maybe I don't feel like talking either!" And so, Fawn didn't say anything else.
The shrink fully admitted she had made a terrible mistake and handled the fallout poorly, so she cut the session short and let Fawn go. She would have much to explain to Fawn's parents and her boss.
However, Fawn would have to wait for her parents to pick her up, as they were busy elsewhere, they had a meeting with Dr. Allen, about something important that couldn't possibly wait.
"Please have a seat," Dr. Allen greeted the Atliees, "and take a deep breath, this is going to be a little complicated" he said.
"Is something wrong with Fawn?" Mrs. Atliee asked concerned.
"No, no, Fawn is fine, this something different
" Dr. Allen assured and took a deep breath, "Someone once said that human beings only use ten percent of their brain, you ever heard that one?"
The Atliees looked at each other puzzled, "Yes, but it is rubbish" Mr. Atliee said, "isn't it?" Mrs. Atliee added.
"Yes, indeed it is!" Dr. Allen replied, naturally, "Human beings indeed use their brains to full capacity, but this silly saying helps building the picture of what I am about to say."
The couple just gave Dr. Allen another estranged look.
"The brain is a complex system," he began, "in essence, the average person is indeed aware of about the ten percent of what his or her brain is up to, they think that the brain only does what they are aware it does: calculating mathematical value, having ideas, making decisions and the like" the doctor was setting the ground to make his explanation as accessible as possible, "the complexity of the brain is what makes our services so special and unique, it took extensive years of research to just begin to understand how the brain works, many of the researchers that made our work possible didn't even live to see their lifetime of work become reality."
"Could you get to the point, doc?" Mrs. Allen demanded impatiently.
"What I'm trying to say is, when it comes to the human brain, there is no room for doubt, no room for errors" as he said this, Dr. Allen slammed a book on his desk for the Atliees to see, "Your daughter's spares disappeared" he said bluntly.
"What?!" the couple yelled in shocked unison.
"It happened about three weeks ago, according to our security records" he began to explain, "It was an inside job, a group of members from our staff stole several spares, including your daughter's" he said.
"And why did you wait until now to tell us?!" Mrs. Atliee yelled furious, "This is an outrage!"
"Mrs. Atliee, I need you to calm down" Dr. Allen plead, staying calm and cool, "We waited until now because we have already tracked the culprit and brought him to justice
"So you have recovered Fawn's spares?" Mr. Atliee asked.
"It's more complicated than that, the authorities are investigating the subject, they were able to recover several of the spares, but three spares remind missing
" It became harder and harder to explain for Dr. Allen.
"Aren't you doing anything to find them?!" Mrs. Atliee was getting more and more upset, and rightfully so.
"Due to the nature of our services, we can't be totally open with the investigations, yes we got the FBI on it as much as we're allowed to have them in the case, but you got to understand, that investigations on this extremely delicate case will have slow results."
"The thief probably sold spares! Can't you send the FBI to investigate any connections the thief might have? It's not like the spares got up on their own and ran away!" Dr. Allen remained silent to this implication on part of Mr. Atliee.
For a moment, there was an awkward silence.
"Due to the nature of our work, we had to study every work on the human brain, no matter how obscure or flat out ridiculous it sounds" Dr. Allen pushed the book on his desk towards the Atliees, "Again, there can't be mistakes when it comes to the human brain."
The Atliees looked at the book, "The Psycho-Neural system: the hidden truth about how our brain works" was the title, naturally they thought this was some sort of Sci-Fi title or something.
"The thief claims your daughter's spares attacked him in a sort of feral trance and ran out his hideout barely covered" Dr. Allen said with a straight face.
"Are you out of your fucking mind?" Mr. Atliee said reaching levels of fury on par with his wife's.
"Dead fucking serious" Dr. Allen said, taking the same level of speech as Mr. Atliee to denote how serious this was, "Do you seriously think we would be telling you this if we didn't really think it was a possibility?" Dr. Allen asked still with a straight face.
The Atliees remained silent, but their disgust was palpable.
"This book contains the lifelong work of Dr. Victor Venzwornns, he believed the human brain communicated with the rest of the body in a way more complex than any other organ in it, he began his studies on the Psycho-Neural system" Dr. Allen then opened the book where his bookmark laid and handed it to Mrs. Atliee, "Venzwornns believed that the brain emitted a special psychic wave pattern that communicated with the numerous nerves located all over the body, and these would return similar specific wave to supply the brain with information."
"I thought the nervous system worked on something more akin to electrical impulses" Mr. Atliee said trying to remember his education.
"That is true" Dr. Allen affirmed, "Venzwornns thought that the nervous system as we typically know it was big part of his theorized system, that served as a backup system of sorts, while he believed that the brain gave priority to these 'psycho wave patterns', the neural impulses were used to verify information with the brain and reinforce the veracity of what the body is up to."
"Is this going to go anywhere, doctor?" Mrs. Atliees said annoyed.
"Venzwornns' theory was disaccredited as he couldn't prove that these wave patterns existed, since to do so he would need to have a working brain de-attached from a living body to send these waves to said body, naturally during his life time there was no way to do so and since his own theory supported the idea that the human body could work running only on the nervous system as we know it, the whole thing was dismissed as untrue."
"Then?" The Atliees' patience was wearing thin, "It's impossible for Fawn's spares to run around brainless, right?"
"Back then they said a brain transplant was impossible, but yet here we're in business, you got the daughter you never had and a missing son without a brain." The Atliees sighed collectively to this statement.
"So it's true then?" Mr. Atliee asked trying to grasp what was going on, "Is it possible that after we transplanted our son's brain into Fawn's body it remained alive and, somehow, connected to his brain, despite it being INSIDE Fawn?" As he spoke, he realized how ridiculous it sounded and growled frustrated.
"I know this is hard for you to understand, we're equally shocked at this development, but as I said, before getting the business of brain transplant running, we had to exhaust every possibility, no room for mistakes
" Dr. Allen was interrupted.
"When it comes to the human brain, we get it!" Mrs. Atliee yelled in frustration.
"We made experiments, we can tell you that Venzwornns' Psycho Wave Patterns are very real, but our studies revealed that very few of our tests subjects had them, meaning that not all human beings have them, further tests also revealed to us that this wave patterns couldn't travel very far, separating a living brain with such wave patterns from its body merely a foot would result in the subject's body instant death, we discarded the possibility of someone creating wave patterns powerful enough to break the foot limit, the idea of someone like your daughter transmitting her wave patterns across this unimaginable distance was preposterous!" Dr. Allen exclaimed.
"So it's like we have a son and a daughter?" Mrs. Atliee inquired.
"Not quite, it is literally one brain controlling two bodies," Dr. Allen explained, "we even believe that your daughter's nightmares had been caused this whole time by her brain receiving information sensed by her original male body while it was in storage, she didn't realize what was happening because her medication is meant to entirely suppress her memories of her old body and to eliminate her male persona for good."
"It makes sense in a weird twisted way, the feelings of entrapment was caused by whatever containment facility you had the body in" Mr. Atliee mused as he began to understand.
"We keep the spares frozen as means to prevent decay, but in your daughter's spares' case, it was just keeping the body hibernating" Dr. Allen concluded.
"So when are you planning on recovering our son's body?" Mrs. Atliee asked.
"We're doing everything in our power to locate your daughter's spares, we're deeply sorry about all the grief we're causing you, but the best thing you should do is focus on what you do have, your daughter, Fawn" this sounded reasonable, "If we never manage to recover your daughter's spares, we'll refund all the money you paid for storage and an additional bonus for the trouble."
"That's our son's body you're talking about!" Mrs. Atliee roared outraged.
"Yes, the son we convinced to give up his brain so he could be our daughter, then stored his body in case Fawn might have use for it" Mr. Atliee said full of shame, perhaps for the first time understanding what he had done.
Mrs. Atliee stood silent as it all sunk in. Suddenly, Dr. Allen's phone rang, excusing himself to the Atliees, he picked up the phone and received some bad news.
"That was Ms. Rollan, your daughter's shrink, seems like she and Fawn had a misunderstanding on her fault, you see and I hope you don't take offense to this, she was asked if you were abusing her in anyway
" Dr. Allen explained.
"How dare you!" Mrs. Atliee yelled.
"Please, as we tried to understand what happened to your daughter we had to verify this sort of thing, be glad to hear Fawn said you didn't and Ms. Rollan believes her, and so do I, you're good people and we had to make sure Fawn was in the hands of good people like you" Dr. Allen quickly excused himself.
"I guess that is true
" Mrs. Atliee admitted and sighed.
"Right now you need to go pick up your daughter and it is best that you keep all of this secret from her, understand?"
"Understood" Mr. Atliee replied.
"This is not over
" Mrs. Atliee sighed resentfully.
In mere minutes, Fawn was on a very silent and awkward car ride with her parents, she didn't know why they were so silent and gloomy, but she wasn't saying anything about her session as she believe she would upset them if she told them that her shrink thought they might be bad parents. Fawn instead looked out her window, peacefully.
"huh?" she mumbled.
Fawn looked around, startled, something was wrong, not only out her window, but around also her. Suddenly, faint glimpses of people started appearing around her, like lingering ghosts walking on a crowded boardwalk.
"What's going on?" Fawn wondered as the 'ghosts' became clearer.
Suddenly, the scenery around Fawn shifted, she suddenly was in a crowded boardwalk, and all those ghosts were real people, breezing around her at high speed, as if she was running, but that was impossible, as she was on the back seat of her father's car
but there was no car anymore!
"Where am I?" she asked scared and suddenly she was back to the car.
Fawn began to hyperventilate, she breathed agitated and scared, her surroundings shifted from the car to the boardwalk at random, the sounds, the sights, the smells and feeling seemed mismatched, her mind was overloaded by her senses, too much information she couldn't handle, her body began to twitch, the feeling was insane, so alien and intense, she felt as if she was in two places at the same time.
"Watch out for the people!" Fawn screamed as she saw solid people around the car (though they weren't there).
The tires of the car made a piercing screeching sound as Fawn's dad hit the breaks in the middle of the street and turned his head towards Fawn.
"What's wrong, Fawn!" he asked anxious.
"I got to get back home
" an almost naked boy said to the crowded boardwalk he was desperately dashing through.
"I got to get back home!" Fawn demanded to her parents.
"I got to get back home!" a male voice yelled, "I got to get back home!" a female voice cried.
"I got to get back home!" both voices cried in unison in entirely different places, "I got to get back home!"
Fawn's father panicked and hastily decided that he should do as his daughter commanded, so he drove back home as fast as traffic laws allowed him. Meanwhile a boy plowed through the streets like an enraged beast, his trajectory and turns were firmly ingrained on his instincts and he violently pushed everyone on his way aside.
Fawn stood on her home's front yard, motionless, speechless, waiting and worrying her parents who silently stood by her side. Suddenly she took a couple of steps forward, she saw him, he was on his way at full speed, a barely clothed boy arrived and stood in front of her. He stood there also speechless, just like Fawn.
The boy was identical to the boy on the picture Fawn had found inside her father's fishing box, and it caused the same effect, powerful emotions she could not understand flooded her and tears almost immediately began to flow through her eyes, surprisingly, the boy began to cry too.
"I understand everything" they both said in unison.
Just like Dr. Allen had warned, seeing evidence of her old self triggered memories on fawn's brain that her medications could no longer suppress, seeing her male body made everything comeback. Both bodies turned to their parents and both ran to hug them.
"What happens now?" both bodies asked again in unison.
"This case is a breakthrough, it will revolutionize our business!" Dr. Allen exclaimed excited!
Moments after Fawn's reunion with her old body her parents called Dr. Allen to see what should be done about this most curious case, so they gathered on the hospital where the transplant took place.
"As much as I would wish to continue and study Fawn, the decision of what happens is hers and only hers" Dr. Allen said.
"Can we raise them as brother and sister, they're literally our children" Mr. Atliee said.
"It's not like that, they're your daughter with an extra body on her command, she is just one person" Dr. Allen explained.
"The doctor is right" Fawn and her male body said, "How can I be two persons if I'm just one person?"
"Then, at this point, only what question remains, who do YOU want to be?" Dr. Allen asked in a very serious tone.
Fawn stood silent, both bodies, they looked at her parents and then at each others, Fawn already had made her choice, both bodies sighed before she revealed it.
"I was born a male, and I never was a hundred percent okay with this brain transplant" Fawn said.
"But, this procedure is something I agreed to willingly," the male body spoke, "you talked to me about it, and even after you told me my memories would be erased and my original self would cease to exist, I agreed to do it, because, this is what you wanted for me, this was something that would make you happy and I was more than willing to do it, because deep in my heart, I knew my parents would never do something bad for me" he declared.
"Do you mean
" Fawn's mother spoke, but she was cut short.
"This body is going back to storage, after all, it is my spares" the male body spoke.
"Please, this time, don't try to erase my memories, as long as I am aware, this problem should never rise again" Fawn said.
"Are you sure about this, Fawn?" her father asked.
"This is my gift for you" both bodies said.
They all gathered around the containment unit, the Atliees hugged their son for the last time and Fawn saw her spare body enter his cold prison willingly. She saw as her former body froze and for the last time, seeing that boy's face made her cry, this time she knew exactly what she felt, she was happy about what she chose, she knew she wouldn't regret it, and neither would her parents.