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Ghost to the Rescue (standard:Fan Fiction, 1870 words)
Author: JuggernautAdded: Jun 15 2013Views/Reads: 1348/908Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
A surgical resident at a hospital gets assistance from an unexpected source.

Click here to read the first 75 lines of the story

the hospital entrance to sell fruits and healthy snacks to people 

visiting their loved ones in the hospital receiving treatment. Adjacent 

to the hospital were several hotels and lodges to cater visitors to the 

hospital particularly those that come from far distances with the 


Nearby every hospital has a place of worship. The deity in the 

Hindu temple near the public hospital was one of the incarnations of 

God Vishnu. The temple priest performs special prayers specific to 

medical students to perform well on the tests and patients to get well. 

The students and the patients' relatives keep the temple priest busy 

conducting prayers and temple coffers full with donations. 

During monsoon season when sky is always grey though no rain in 

sight, the weather could be stuffy under hot sun even during late 

evening hours. During such an evening, a mother brought her 8 years old 

girl complaining severe pain in her right thumb to the emergency room. 

They waited for hours before they get to see a nurse. 

“where it hurts?” asked the nurse. 

“Right here,” the little girl showed her right thumb. When the 

nurse tried to hold her thumb to examine it closely, the girl cried 

with pain pulling her hand away. The nurse begged the child to allow 

her to examine promising she won't hurt her.  The girl's mother also 

begged the child to show her thumb to the nurse.  The child reluctantly 

stretched her hand showing her swollen thumb. 

“What happened to your thumb?” asked nurse feeling the thumb 


“I don' know, it was swollen and hurting badly for the last one 

week,” the girl was in tears. 

“We will take an x-ray of your thumb to see what is hurting, 

OK,” the nurse led the girl towards the X-ray room while her mother was 

waiting outside. 

The mother and the girl waited for few more hours to see the 

doctor, now it was well past midnight. The girl fell asleep on her 

mother's lap.   “The doctor will see you now,” the nurse came out to 

take mother and the girl to the small examination room. Dr. Kumar, a 

soft spoken, small statured man with curly black hair and brown skin 

was 1st year surgical resident on duty 

Dr. Kumar placed the X-ray on a brightly illuminated view box 

to examine it closely while the girl's mother was looking anxiously 

standing holding her child. 

“Are you playing with glass pieces?” asked Dr. Kumar still 

looking at the X-ray. 

“No,” replied the girl holding her mother's hand tightly. 

“Are you sure, think again, I see a very small glass piece in 

your thumb,” the doctor looked at the girl expecting an answer. 

“Well, few weeks ago I played with broken glass bangles, I did 

not felt any pain at all then, but after a week, the thumb started to 

swell and pain to get worse,” explained the girl. 

“That explains; the glass piece in your thumb has to come out; using a
little procedure I will take them out here,” Dr. Kumar 


“Is it a big operation?” the girl's mother looked anxiously. 

“No, not at all, we do all the time, I will do it right here 

once we set up what I need to proceed, OK, “Dr. Kumar looked reassuring.

The mother and the child sat quietly in the tiny room with 

curtains drawn though they can hear clearly the noises from patients 

crying with pain and conversations between the staff members outside 

the small examination room. 

Dr. Kumar asked politely the girl's mother to wait outside. “It 

won't hurt you at all, it will hurt very little when I poke with this 

tiny needle to numb your thumb, OK,” explained Dr. Kumar. 

The little girl started crying in anticipation.  After placing 

a tourniquet at the base of the thumb to prevent blood flow, doctor 

Kumar poked with the needle to numb her thumb, the girl was laying on a 

narrow bed with her hand stretched for Doctor to begin working on her 


Dr. Kumar gave a small incision to cut open at the infected 

area and with a needle explored for the glass piece at the same time 

looking often at the brightly illuminated X-ray for directions. The 

bleeding from the site of the incision making it difficult for Dr. 

Kumar to see the tiny glass piece; he struggled hard to locate the 

glass piece. Now the doctor was worried considering the time it was 

taking to locate the glass piece and the amount of blood loss in spite 

of the tourniquet.  He never removed a foreign object before though he 

observed his seniors doing it. By looking at the X-ray, he thought it 

would be a simple procedure to cut open and remove it in minutes. But 

once cut opened, the tissue saturated with blood camouflaging the glass 

piece though it appear clearly on the X-ray. While he was wondering 

whether to close it back or explore further, an old man in white coat 

entered the room suddenly and asked “Do you need help?” 

“Well, I am looking at a foreign object, a small glass piece 

clearly visible in the X-ray but I can't see or feel it to remove it,” 

replied Dr. Kumar looking confused. 

Holding his eyeglasses with one hand, the old doctor looked 

closely at the X-ray on the view box and then took the forceps from Dr. 

Kumar's hand to proceed to look at the girl's thumb bleeding 

profusely.  The old doctor plucked the glass piece like a magic and 

placed in a dish as Dr. Kumar was looking in astonishment. 

“You never ever try to remove a foreign object without using 

fluoroscopy to guide you towards the foreign object, you look at the 

screen while probing for the object; you can't  find the object looking 

directly at the site of the incision,” the old doctor quickly left the 

room the way he entered leaving Dr. Kumar baffled. 

Dr. Kumar cleaned up the site of the incision with antiseptic 

solution and closed it with bandage. Dr. Kumar came out to explain to 

the mother that everything went just fine and glass piece was 

removed. “You better be careful next time when you play with glass, 

OK,” Dr. Kumar patted on girl's shoulder affectionately. 

“We are eternally grateful to you for helping us,” the girl's 

mother expressed her gratitude before leaving the room. 

Dr. Kumar rushed outside searching for the old surgeon that 

helped him but couldn't find him anywhere, when he asked the nurses 

they just shrugged their shoulders without paying much attention to Dr. 

Kumar. Then Dr. Kumar ran outside the building searching for him only 

to see deserted area since it was well past midnight. 

Dr. Kumar decided to follow up his inquiry next day with his 

colleagues. “You know I am trying to find out who was the old doctor 

helped me last night while I was struggling to locate a foreign object 

in a little's girl thumb.” 

“What old doctor?” replied a fellow doctor. 

“A very old surgeon just appeared and left as quickly as he 

came to help me,” Dr. Kumar explained. 

“Well, let's take a walk along the corridor , there were photos 

of eminent doctors worked here in the past, may be you can identify who 

came last night to help you,”  They both walked slowly in the corridor 

looking at the large framed photos on either side of the aisle. “That's 

one,” shouted Dr. Kumar pointing his finger at a photo of man in thick 

black glasses with almost bald head, the only significant part of his 

face was his nose that projected out like a sphinx. 

“He can't be,” the fellow doctor looked at Dr. Kumar. 

“He was the one, I remember his face very well, the thick black 

rimmed glasses and the big nose, he was fair skinned and short,” Dr. 

Kumar still giving more details. 

“That was Professor Ramayya, the eminent surgeon practiced 

until early seventies and died two decades ago. Look at the bottom of 

the photo,” the fellow doctor moved close to the photo to read 

loudly “Born 1913 and died in 1993.” “What? Dr. Ramayya was dead 20
years ago, how?  he was with me 

last night  right here in the same building talking to  me?” Dr. Kumar 

was in disbelief. 

“Are you thinking what I am thinking,” asked the fellow doctor. 

“We doctors don't believe in ghosts or shall we? I am sure that 

the doctor that helped last night was the same person in the photo, if 

that was Dr. Ramayya dead two decades ago, certainly that was his ghost 

still making rounds to teach doctors in training even during late 

hours.” The two doctors in training stood still in front of Dr. Ramayya 

photo still thinking “How that possible?” 


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