March 1, 2010, 8:12 AM, Central Time Zone, GMT
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City Hospital, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
It had been five hours since the doctors had taken Yelina off life-support. The world had seemed to move in slow-motion since then. They were gathered around Yelina's bed in silent shock and grief, watching the monitors and waiting for the inevitable.
Satu had left hours earlier . . . she didn't say why. Kiko kept a desperate vigil at Yelina's side, thinking that as long as she watched the monitors, that she could somehow will the little blonde girl to stay alive. Matthew likewise sat at her side and refused even once to let go of her hand.
A million images flashed through Jack's mind of Yelina's self-destruction over the past week.
'All in a week?' he wondered. 'How could so much possibly have happened in so short a time?'
She had quit playing hockey . . . had broken up the band and restarted its remnants, still calling it Boom-Boom Kitty . . . but it was the antithesis of everything it had been, a sort of dark, Gothic image and sound that sprang from a dark place. She had reformed the band with Tina and Asta as a three-piece, playing a hard-driving brand of chaos, angst and thunder.
Kiko, meanwhile, had taken the remnants of the band, the twins, Mary and Penny, and formed her own three-piece, calling it Cham! after the three-girl-group from the Japanese anime Perfect Blue, directed by Satoshi Kon, and Jack worried and wondered about that, too.
Like Yin and Yang, the two groups sprung from the original shot off in opposite directions, Kiko taking with her all that was light, and Yelina spiralling into the abyss with all that was darkness.
Yelina's path to self-destruction seemed to have begun that fateful night in that far-off tropical paradise. Jack had seen the warning signs, but had misunderstood or underestimated them. The little blonde girl had become unusually quiet and withdrawn. Jack was too wrapped up in his brand-new relationship with Arley to notice that Yelina had withdrawn herself completely . . . had stopped communicating with everyone-
Everyone in the room gasped as something hit the hospital window with a loud bang. It was Satu, astride her vee-ped in front of the window, who gestured at them, frantically! Mike, who was closest, threw open a window.
'You must break the glass! These windows are too small! Wrap her warmly and hand her to me! Do it! We haven't much time! Kiko, get your jacket on!'
With a curt nod, Mike ordered the others to get her ready, picked up a heavy chair as though it were matchwood, and used it to smash out one of the larger panes of glass. In an instant, the unconscious Yelina was handed out the window into Satu's waiting arms. With Jack's assistance, Kiko stepped out the window and got on the machine behind her mother. And then, with a roaring whine, Satu hit the accelerator and they were off!
The doctors, nurses, orderlies and news people who burst into the room to investigate saw everything. Slowly, still gaping, they turned their attention to Matthew, Mike, Jack and Jason for explanation.
'Oh, crap,' Matthew said, for everyone's benefit.