“Sure,” Jacob said. “You’ll let them know we are back here.”
They followed the woman through the hospital to a small, empty waiting room. Jacob settled Jill on his lap. While he held her, stroking her hair and back, Jill cried her heart out. When her tears evened and her breath was deep, he got her some water.
“I’m going to call Mike,” Jacob said. “I have a friend who works emergency at Denver Health. I’m going to call him as well. He might be able to help. Is it all right to get my friend’s help?”
Jill nodded her head. Watching Jacob on the phone, she felt almost drunk from the release of emotions. She was so used to being in control, so used to having to be in control, that she felt ungrounded. When Jacob slipped his arm around her, she tucked herself into him. Surrounded by his warmth and scent, she was safe.
She only let go of Jacob when Megan peeled her from his embrace.
Mike arrived not long after Megan. Her two oldest siblings were all set to take over when Jacob’s doctor friend, John Drayson, came into the room. Tall with dark, curly hair, he shook Jacob’s hand and then spoke with Mike. Mike introduced him to Jill as the husband of an old army friend.
“It’s very unusual for a child to have this kind of reaction,” Dr. Drayson said. His accent was foreign, British, she thought. His cobalt blue eyes were present, clear, and kind.
“I was stung when I was pregnant,” Jill said. “I … I’m allergic to bees … I didn’t have insurance … I mean for the baby … what the state gives you … but not for an allergic reaction. I got really sick.”
“What about Katherine? Has she ever been stung?” Dr. Drayson asked.
“About a year ago,” Jill said. “We were at the Botanic Gardens. Trevor wanted to take a family break. He was … studying for finals. She likes to run out ahead and just ran into the bee. Trevor wouldn’t let me take her to the Emergency room because he … he didn’t want the disruption or … the expense, I guess. I was horrified that she would die … but Trevor said it was my fault for not watching her. I’m not a very good mother. I took her to Walgreens. It’s across the street from Pete’s and I know some of the pharmacists … from working at Pete’s …. It was the only thing I could think of … The pharmacist was very kind. He told me to give her Benadryl. He made a place for us by the pharmacy so he could make sure she was all right. It took a while, but the Benadryl eventually worked. He told me she might die the next time she was stung.”
“Her reaction makes more sense. Without treatment, any allergic reaction can get stronger with each event,” Dr. Drayson said. “This is the Trevor from the engagement party?”
Jill’s head jerked up to look at the doctor.
“My wife and I were there as Jacob’s guests. You put on quite a show. My best friend is the lawyer who kept shouting from the back. You’ve traded up, my dear.” Dr. Drayson nodded his head toward Jacob. “Is there anything else you can tell me?”
Jill shook her head. Biting her lip, she whispered, “Trevor said … I … Is Katy going to die?”
The retelling of Denver Cereal, Volume 1 continues tomorrow...
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