Diary of a Teen Prodigy: The College Life - Taming the Golden Boys: Volume 3 (Chapter 5, page 1 of 1)

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Chapter 5

John Hopkins Campus
“Former medical student Caleb Meriwether enraged over the recent Appellate court ruling in favor of John Hopkins Medical School regarding the ownership of the intellectual property of a dissertation identifying itraconazole — an antifungal drug typically used to treat fungal infections, has taken over the microbiology laboratory of the prestigious university. During his graduate studies, Mr. Meriwether assisted with researching and writing in part the dissertation with noted Professor and world renowned Microbiologist Dr. Miles Michaels. Dr. Michaels later went on to be named a Nobel Prize candidate in 2008 for his findings in this dissertation.
Meriwether is said to be armed and dangerous with six confirmed dead and several wounded… The extent of injuries of the hostages is unknown at this time. Police estimate his weapons to be M-16, AK-47 rifles full-auto and .45 ACP; rounds unknown. Police have released the names of the remaining hostages: Professor Dr. Kae Min Jung, Resident Dr. Sarah Ann Leibens and two first-year students: Tae Young Chung and Penelope Joy Tate… Police are withholding the names of the deceased pending notification of relatives. Meriwether demands are to be given full credit as a co-author on said dissertation, previous unpaid and future royalties and complete exoneration for his crimes.” The media outlets blasted throughout the airways twelve hours later into the standoff. My heart sank to the pit of my stomach. Hearing her name as a confirmed hostage made me shrink a little on the inside.
“George, what’s going to happen to our babies?” I heard a distraught mom asking presumably her husband about their unfortunate children. My heart went out to the mother.
“Connie, relax its going to be okay. We have to believe that.” The husband responded. I could tell that he was putting on a brave face for his wife. His voice seeped with emotions as he forced himself to sound strong and confident. Suddenly I heard the sounds of soft muffled sobbing. I turned around and saw the woman snuggled in the crook of her husband’s arms quietly weeping. It broke my heart. Before I could turn back around to focus on the situation at hand; a crazed voice over a scratchy intercom P.A. system exploded the airways as the lone gunman shouted:
“I won’t be ignored! I won’t be ignored. I won’t be ignored…” He repeatedly shouted as gunshots ripped the airways again and screams of despair, horror and fear echoed behind them. Suddenly through the open mic on the P.A. a voice could be heard saying:
“Oh my God, I think she’s dead.” My heart stopped at the curiosity of who had he just killed?
“Oh God no, don’t let it be Penelope,” I heard the woman behind me sigh right before she fainted from the stress of it all. That’s when it dawned on me; those were Penelope’s parents.
Cambridge, MA
MIT Campus
I sat glued to the television in the student lounge portion of our dormitory with life on campus coming to a sudden halt as we all followed closely the unfolding hostage standoff at John Hopkins Medical School. I felt like this was a story in a storybook; it couldn’t be real. It couldn’t be happening to someone I personally knew and was just happily with me not even one week ago. Just last week we were in New York City eating pizza and ice skating and shopping and enjoying a couple of Broadway plays and crying and laughing and living life. Just one week ago, we were all living happily ever after in our own little way. Suddenly it occurred to me, it only takes a moment to change a life – a destiny forever.
It took less than a second for Zai to cheat on me and destroy the trust that we had shared; and now it had taken less than a second for some crazed madman to stop and put my life on hold with the impending danger to one of the closest persons to me; my cousin who was like my sister- Penelope. I watched as they finally sent in a sniper and brought the ugly standoff to a bloody end. In conclusion: eight dead (including the gunman), two critical and one in grave condition. My hands shook as I held my cell phone in my shaking hands watching Daisy’s number flashing before my eyes. I could only imagine the news not to be good. I wanted to answer the vibrating phone; but for the life of me I couldn’t bring myself to pick up the call.
“Nevada,” Cody said bringing me back to reality as he wrapped his arms around me and walked me over to a nearby table and I sat down. I wasn’t even aware that I was crying.
“Nevada, answer your phone. It’s your mother.” He gently spoke. I wiped at my tears with the back of my hand. Cody reached for some stray napkins that happened to be lying on the table. He squatted down wiping my face first and then holding the napkins under my nose he said:
“Blow.” I felt much better.
“Hello,” I finally said into my phone. I felt Cody squeezing my shoulder gently offering me support and comfort. My eyes began to water again.
“Okay, I’ll make arrangements.” I allowed the phone to fall from my ear onto the table as I sat numb and in a daze. Cody pulled up a chair next to me and sat facing me.
“What?” He asked. I couldn’t talk. Before long an onslaught of tears came rushing out of me as I threw myself into his arms and soaked his clothes with my tears and sobs. My grief was great and I couldn’t stop even had I wanted to.
Chicago, IL
“Get up.” I heard a familiar gruff voice saying to me as I felt a hard and heavy hand smack across my bare ass. Opening my eyes to the blaring sunlight was brutal. I squinted as I shielded my eyes from the glare and looked up into my father’s disdainful eyes. He watched me lying naked in bed with Vanilla. Thank goodness she was still asleep.
Geez he had really lousy timing. Vanilla was a hot mess sprawled over me with her hair wildly about her and a sheet barely covering our nakedness. The room was more than a little in disarray with our clothes strewed about as if we had been in a hurry to get them off. I pulled at the sheet attempting to cover my manhood that was displaying signs of readiness for another round.
“Get dress… Starbucks in ten…” He showed me his back as the door slammed shut waking up Vanilla. God she was drop-dead fucking gorgeous like this. I swear I wanted to have her again, but Father sounded serious and I had already wasted three minutes just watching her. I smiled when I thought about us ironing out and clarifying our relationship. We had decided that we would give exclusive dating a shot. The concept was new for both of us; but I seriously did not ever want to have another encounter like the other night when I got a chance to meet another one of her friends with benefits. I know it’s a chauvinistic way of thinking; but I just can’t accept the girl I’m banging; banging other dudes. That somehow seems unnatural to me. Sorry, I’m not that mature or evolved yet.
“Morning,” she mumbled bringing her own sunshine in with her smile. I had my pants on and was throwing my blue pullover sweater over my head. I leaned down and gave her a kiss. Mm, she still tasted like maple syrup and I started getting hungry again.
“I’ll be back,” I said hoping she would wait for me. She was up and throwing on her underwear as she said,
“Sorry, I’ve got registration…. Gotta go.” Just as she finished throwing that slip of a dress over her head Jeda walked in.
“Morning,” he greeted with a coffee in hand.
“Thanks,” Vanilla said snatching his coffee from him and waving good-bye as she dashed out the door.
“Where you going this early?” He asked.
“Pops waiting for me downstairs.” I explained as I soon followed Vanilla out the door.
John Hopkins Hospital Trauma Center Level 1
If the earlier standoff/ hostage crisis had been pandemonium on meth; then right now in the emergency room it was the Twilight Zone in Bizzaro World. I was still having my outer body experience except the entire external world was moving all around me either in slo-mo or fast-fro. Doctors, nurses, lab technicians, specialists, police, social service, consultants, residents, media, fire, paramedics, family, concerned friends, neighborhood outreach groups, ran the gauntlet of traffic running in, out and through the emergency room.
Penelope was admitted unconscious with a single gunshot wound to her neck that had severed her right carotid artery. She was suffering from hypoxia, lack oxygen to the brain. She hadn’t been declared clinical brain dead; but everything looked grave. She had been masked, IVed, and prepped for emergency double surgery: repair and suture of the artery and an emergency C-section to try and save the fetus. Her mom had been admitted for observation and was now heavily sedated to keep her calm and from hyperventilating again. From what I understood, Daisy and Nevada were en route and I hadn’t had a chance to call Zai and them.
Truth is I just couldn’t bring myself to accept that Penelope was like this. In my mind this was a nightmare that had gone really bad. I couldn’t wake up from it and I couldn’t muster up enough energy and strength to change its fate. I accepted this as part of my punishment for my cruelty to her. However I prayed and begged God not to make her pay for my sins: take me instead God; take me.
“I finally get to meet the father of my grandchild,” I heard her father’s voice coming up from behind me as I stood looking out the window in the surgical waiting room. It was now past midnight and I couldn’t remember the last time I slept.
“Sorry about that sir. I just found out about the baby a couple of days ago.”
“I believe it.” He said as he stood next to me sharing the view out the window.
“Penelope was adamant about not revealing your identity.”
“I’m sorry sir.” I immediately stated. “It’s my fault.” I admitted.
“Let’s talk about that later… I’m just glad to know that my daughter has someone who cares about her.” Her father’s eyes were wet with tears; making my own eyes water.
“How’s Mrs. Tate?” I tried to get the focal off of Penelope.
“She’s sleeping finally. I just hope there will be good news when she wakes up.” He said with worry.
“It will be,” I stated defiantly. “It can’t be any other way.” I declared refusing to believe that this was anything but a really bad nightmare that I would eventually shake. Mr. Tate looked at me curiously and I returned his stare. After studying me, he patted me supportively on the shoulder and then:
“Well I believe if it had to be done by your will alone; then it’s already done.” He said after having observed my determined and positive attitude of this situation.
“George, how is she? Where’s Connie?” Daisy’s voice broke into our space interrupting our conversation. George looked exasperated and depleted all of a sudden. He literally collapsed into the arms of his sister. I helped Daisy get him over to the couch and then I ran to get a cup of cool water from the cooler.
“Mm, thank you,” he said as he finished drinking the entire cup of water.
“God Daisy, pray for them.” His voice wavered and tears slipped from Daisy eyes.
“How long has she been in surgery?” Daisy posed her questions to me. I wasn’t sure if she knew who I was, but I responded anyway.
“It’s been over six hours.”
“Still no word?”
“She delivered a relatively healthy baby girl; two and a half pounds (1.23 kg).”
“Have you seen her?” Daisy asked with mixed emotions.
“No they’re running tests, trying to stabilize her and checking for trauma and any signs of injury.” I responded.
Abruptly Daisy asked, “Who are you?” Her question took me off guard making me find humor in the moment.
“Sorry, he’s the father.” George surprised us with his sudden burst of second wind.
“I’m Luis…”
“Aren’t you one of Zai’s friends?” She queried as her recollection suddenly kicked in.
“Yea, I just found out about the baby a couple of days ago. I came here to discuss things with Penelope; but I arrived just as this crazy mess got started.”
“So Penelope doesn’t know you’re here?” George asked.
“No sir, she’s not aware that I even know. I tried calling her; but I guess all of this was going on at the time or she was in class with her phone off.” I explained.
“Ah, now it makes sense why Nevada didn’t want to get involve.”
“Please don’t blame them; this is all my fault. But I’m here now and I’ll make it right.” I pledged.
“Mommy, where is she?” Nevada’s voice surprised me. This was the first time I had ever heard her refer to her mother as ‘mommy’. I was scared.
Chicago, IL
“What?” I asked swaggering into the café as I kicked the empty chair at my father’s table spinning it around so that I could sit. Father was a stern former military authoritarian. He ran a tight ship and was obstinate with his opinions and views about how the world should be. He was born in South Korean and his parents had immigrated to America when he was five. His marriage to my mom had been an arranged marriage; a promise from the old country that he felt he needed to honor for his father’s sake. Even thought their marriage had been arranged, they grew to love each other and find happiness together. I knew my father still harbored such antiquated views about love and marriage but I never saw this one coming.
“Who’s this?” I asked at the photo of a very pretty Korean girl that he had lying on the table.
“Your future wife.” He plainly stated. All I could think was thank God I wasn’t drinking anything as I fell off the chair I had been leaning in after losing my balance.
“What?” I asked, standing up and up-righting my chair. I sat back in it again as the waitress brought over my order.
“She’s flying into the states in June so wrap up that little fling with that girl from this morning; and for God’s sake no accidents.”
I was too dumbfounded by his words to respond. I sat staring with a blank expression on my face. I hit the rewind button in my head; replaying over and over the words he had just spoken to me. Maybe it was his South Korean accent that he had inadvertently picked up as a result of having parents with limited English skills; but what he was saying all sounded like Pig Latin to me – it made no sense.
“Pops, what are you talking about? I can’t think about marriage now; I just turned 18 and started college. I’m nowhere near ready for marriage.” This was crazy. I had just had a discussion with Vanilla not even 24-hours ago about exclusive dating. I was still trying to wrap my head around that concept, and he wanted me to think about marriage? Shouldn’t I at least see how this exclusive dating thing works out?
“You won’t be getting married any time soon. Right now she’s only coming to America for you two to start dating, school and to announce your engagement. Later, much later maybe five or six years from now we’ll have the wedding.”
“But Pops,” I protested completely having lost my appetite for food or coffee. “Pops shouldn’t my marriage be my choice?” I asked.
My dad sneered at my words. “You’ve lived in America so long that you actually started believing in their way of doing things?”
“But Pops, I just…”
“Moui this has nothing to do with love. It’s business; always business. Do you think when I met your mom I was in love with her? It was business; a transaction that has allowed our company to penetrate new markets and dominate two continents.” He explained. I truly was at a lost. Of all the things my father could have said to me; this was too unexpected.

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