The old rusty fan creaked loudly as it tried in vain to circulate cool air around the warm room.
‘This is all we could find about your daughter sir.’ Edith said and dumped a box full of papers on her overflowing desk. She sneezed for emphasis before collapsing into the old couch which served as the chair for her table.
The room was small, overcrowded and dusty. It was filled with large cabinets and piles of boxes and had one small window at the back with bars accross for ventilation.
Max stretched out his hand to touch the documents which had been layered by a thin film of dust. It felt like gold to him. At last, just maybe he could meet her before…
‘You sure did give me a Herculean task.’ Edith grumbled and crossed her arms on her almost flat chest.
‘I am sorry Edith… I really need to find her.’ Max stated, still staring at the documents.
Edith leaned forward and pushed some papers away to make room for her elbows and arms.
‘Why did you wait this long to try finding her?’ She enquired with raised eyebrows.
Max remained still. He didn’t know whether to tell her the truth. It wasn’t that he hadn’t tried searching for his daughter- fear had crippled him. Each time he had taken the decision to start looking for his daughter, he had always drank himself to a stupour and convinced himself otherwise.
‘You should know that I did some more investigations.’ Edith stated bluntly, interrupting his thoughts.
‘Your daughter is very ill.’ She continued.
‘Ill?’ Maxwell asked, raising his eyes from the documents to look at her.
‘I am sorry but…doctors said she had just a few days more to live. She is in her final stage of leukaemia.’ Edith concluded sadly.
Maxwell withdrew his wrinkled hand from the pile and allowed it to drop to his lap.
She was dying?
How could his only daughter be dying?
He had always wanted to meet her and talk to her and apologize for having left her all alone.
He remembered Dr. Kay’s warning two days earlier,
‘Your body is shttung down quickly Maxwell. You have just 72 hours to live. There is a test antedote we have available. However, we can only administer it in your last twenty four hours at a specific time.’
With tears in his eyes, he asked;
‘So if I could make it to where she is today, would I see her alive?’
‘I am sure you would.’ Edith replied softly, stretching out her hand to touch his.
He looked at his watch- three more hours for the antedote to be administered.
‘How long does it take to get to the hospital she is in?’ Maxwell asked.
Edith thought a while and replied;
‘About three hours by train.’
Maxwell shot out of the chair and headed for the door. He would rather spend his last moments with his dying daughter than take an antidote to save his life and live with just memories of her.
God bless you