"Well Mr.McIntyre we've reviewed the intricacies of your case", Dr.Freedman spoke to his patient in a comforting tone.
"But", he continued, "The board has refused to look further into it."
Steve McIntyre's eyes swelled up, "This is my last chance to straighten things up with my brother. Please give it some thought. There's no other donor that would be available to do this."
"The board is aware of that fact and it also knows about your charges Mr.McIntyre. We can take no chances, your body has to be detoxified", the doctor replied.
"And how long would that take?"
"Depends. Your status reports are off the charts. Between me and you, what kind of lifestyle do you follow Mr. McIntyre?"
Steve didn't open his mouth. The growing silence between both reached the point until the doctor grew tired and left the room.
A few moments later, a woman in her sixties enters the room in a strange lethargic pace. Her face is wrinkled and a smile shines when she sees Steve. It was her Mother.
"After all these years...", she spoke out and before she finished Steve got up and hugged her tightly. He began to cry.
"I thought... you'd never come back Steve", she hushed a whisper.
"Well I'm here now. Aren't I?", he replied.
"But all this time has gone by. How's Mary and the kids", she asks.
Steve puckers his lips in misery at first bit then spoke out, "Mary. You see Mom. She....she left me Mom. Left me and took away the kids. Oscar's going to a good school and Martha's doing well as an artist."
"You must be so lonely son. I never want to lose you from my sights again. But how did you end up here. All these cuts and bruises."
Steve didn't reply. He didn't want to scare his Mother. But they both knew what must have led to this. Steve was a runaway ever since he came of age. A true rebel who crossed a few lines, immersed with the wrong crowds and developed a taste for things that would kill most. Psychiatrists would blame it on any Father figures but there weren't any to begin with.
Steve and his brother grew up in a broken home where their Father left them with their own miseries to deal with when they were just eight. Somewhere along the line Steve went astray. Alcohol abuse came first, followed by anti depressants, sleeping pills and painkillers. The night before he had one too many and dented his fender and his mind.
"When I woke up in the hospital Ma", he said,"I saw that Max was here. I wanted .... I needed to repay him for all the trouble that I caused him."
"What do you mean dear? Did you....no you din't?"
"Yes Ma, the doctors transplanted my kidney. Don't worry I've been clean."
She hugged him close as the doctor entered.
"His body rejected it. I'm sorry but he won't be able to make it."