prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница

"No!" To my utter embarrassment, my eyes get glassy with tears. "I've changed my mind. I don't want to do this anymore. None of it."looks at me for a long moment, then nods. "Let me go in and talk to the judge."she leaves, I concentrate on getting air into my lungs. There are so many things I have to work hard at now, that I used to be able to carry out instinctively—draw in oxygen, keep my silence, do the right thing. The weight of my father's eyes on me makes me turn. "Did you prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница mean it?" he asks. "About not wanting to do this anymore?"don't answer. I don't move a fraction of an inch.

"Because if you're still not sure, maybe it's not such a bad idea, having some breathing space. I mean, I've got that extra bed in my room at the station." He rubs the back of his neck. "It wouldn't be like we were moving out, or anything. Just. .." He looks at me.

"… breathing," I finish, and do just that.father stands up and holds out his hand. We walk out of prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница the Garrahy Complex, side by side. The reporters come on like wolves, but this time, their questions bounce right off me. My chest feels full of glitter and helium, the way it used to when I was little and riding my father's shoulders at twilight, when I knew that if I held up my hands and spread my fingers like a net, I could catch the coming stars.MAY BE A SPECIAL CORNER of Hell for attorneys who are shamelessly self-aggrandizing, but you can bet we all are ready for our close-ups. When I arrive at prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница the family court to find a horde of reporters on parade, I offer around sound bites as if they are candy, and make sure that the cameras are on me. I say the appropriate things about how this case is unorthodox, but ultimately painful for everyone involved. I hint that the judge's ruling may affect the rights of minors nationwide, as well as stem cell research. Then I smooth the jacket of my Armani suit, tug on Judge's leash, and explain that I really must go speak to my client., Vern Stackhouse catches my eye and gives prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница me a thumbs-up. I'd run into the deputy earlier, and very innocently asked whether his sister, a reporter for the ProJo, would be coming down today. "I can't really say anything," I hinted, "but the hearing … it's going to be pretty big."that special corner of Hell, there's probably a throne for those of us who try to capitalize off our pro bono work.later, we are in chambers. "Mr. Alexander." Judge DeSalvo lifts up the motion for a restraining order. "Would you like to tell me why you've filed this, when I prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница explicitly addressed the issue yesterday?"

"I had my initial meeting with the guardian ad litem, Judge," I reply. "While Ms. Romano was present, Sara Fitzgerald told my client the lawsuit was a misunderstanding that would work itself out." I slide my glance toward Sara, who shows no emotion but a tightening of her jaw. "This is a direct violation of your order, Your Honor. Although this court tried to fashion conditions that would keep the family together, I don't think it's going to work until Mrs. Fitzgerald finds it possible to mentally separate her role as parent from her prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница role as opposing counsel. Until then, a physical separation is necessary."DeSalvo taps his fingers on the desk. "Mrs. Fitzgerald? Did you say those things to Anna?"

"Well, of course I did!" Sara explodes. "I'm trying to get to the bottom of this!"admission is a circus tent collapsing, leaving all of us in utter silence. Julia chooses that moment to burst through the door. "Sorry I'm late," she says, breathless.

"Ms. Romano," the judge asks, "have you had a chance to speak to Anna today?"

"Yes, just now." She looks at me, and then prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница at Sara. "I think she's very confused."

"What's your opinion of the motion Mr. Alexander's filed?" She tucks an errant coil of hair behind one ear. "I don't think I have enough information to make a formal decision, but my gut feeling says it would be a mistake for Anna's mother to be removed from the house.", I tense. Reacting, the dog gets to his feet. "Judge, Mrs. Fitzgerald just admitted that she violated the court's order. At the very least she should be reported to the bar for ethical violations, and—'



"Mr. Alexander, there prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница is more to this case than the letter of the law." Judge DeSalvo turns to Sara. "Mrs. Fitzgerald, I strongly recommend you look into hiring an independent attorney to represent you and your husband in this petition. I am not going to grant the restraining order today, but I will warn you once again not to talk with your child about this case until the hearing next week. If it comes to my attention at some future date that you have ignored this directive once again, I will report you to the bar myself and personally escort you from prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница your home." He smacks the file folder shut and gets up. "Do not bother me again until Monday, Mr. Alexander."

"I need to see my client," I announce, and I hurry out to the hallway where I know Anna is waiting with her father.Fitzgerald, predictably, is right at my heels. Following her—intent on keeping the peace, no doubt—is Julia. All three of us come to an abrupt stop at the sight of Vern Stackhouse, dozing on the bench where Anna was sitting. "Vern?" I say.immediately leaps to his feet, clearing his throat defensively. "It's prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница a lumbar problem. Gotta sit down every now and then to take the pressure off."

"You know where Anna Fitzgerald went?"jerks his head toward the front door of the building. "She and her dad took off a while ago."the look on Sara's face, this is news to her, too. "Do you need a ride back to the hospital?" Julia asks.shakes her head and peers through the glass doors, where the reporters have rallied. "Is there a back way out?"my side, Judge begins to stick his muzzle into my hand. Damn.steers Sara Fitzgerald prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница toward the rear of the building. "I need to talk to you," she calls over her shoulder to me.wait for her to turn her back. Then I promptly grab Judge's harness and haul him down a corridor.

"Hey!" A moment later, Julia's heels strike the tile behind me. "I said I wanted to talk to you!"a minute I seriously consider ducking out a window. Then I stop abruptly, turn, and offer up my most engaging smile. "Technically speaking, you said you needed to talk to me. If you'd said you wanted to talk to prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница me, I might have waited around." Judge sinks his teeth into the corner of my suit, my expensive Armani suit, and tugs. "Right now, though, I have a meeting to get to."

"What the hell is wrong with you?" she says. "You told me you talked to Anna about her mother and that we were all on the same page.'

"I did, and we were—Sara was coercing her, and Anna wanted that to stop. I explained the alternatives."

"Alternatives? She's a thirteen-year-old girl. Do you know how many kids I see whose take on prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница a trial is completely different from their parents'? A mother comes in and promises that her child will testify against a child molester, because she wants the perp put away for life. But the child doesn't care what happens to the perp, as long as he never has to be in the same room as the guy again. Or he thinks that maybe the perp should get another chance, just like his parents give him when he's bad. You can't expect Anna to be like a normal adult client. She doesn't have the emotional capability to prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница make decisions independent of her home situation.”

“Well, that's the point of this whole petition," I say. "As a matter of fact, Anna told me, not a half hour ago, that she's changed her mind about this whole petition." Julia raises a brow. "Didn't know that, did you?"

"She hasn't talked to me about it."

"That's because you're talking about the wrong things. You had a conversation with her about a legal way to keep her from being pressured to call off the lawsuit. Of course she jumped all over that. But do you prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница really think she was considering what it might truly mean—that there would be one less parent home to cook or drive or help her with homework, that she wouldn't be able to kiss her mother good night, that the rest of her family would most likely be very upset with her? All she heard, when you talked, were the words no pressure. She never heard separation."begins to whine in earnest. "I have to go." She follows me. "Where?"

"I told you, I have an appointment." The corridor is lined with rooms, all locked. Finally prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница I find a knob that turns in my hand. I walk inside and bolt the door behind me. "Gentlemen," I say heartily.rattles the knob. She bangs on the smoky postage-stamp square of glass. I feel sweat break out on my forehead. "You're not getting away this time," she yells through the door at me. "I'm still waiting right here."

"I'm still busy," I yell back. When Judge pushes his snout in front of me, I sink my fingers into the thick fur at his neck. "It's okay," I tell him, and then I turn prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница around to face the empty room.NOW AND THEN I have to contradict myself and believe in God, such as at this very moment when I come home to find a bodacious babe on my doorstep, one who gets to her feet and asks me if I know Jesse Fitzgerald. "Who's asking?" I say. "Me."give her my most charming smile. "Then here I am." Let me just step back for a moment and tell you that she's older than me, but with every glance that makes less and less of a difference—she's prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница got hair I could get lost in, and a mouth so soft and full I have a hard time tearing my eyes away to check out the rest of her. I'm itching to get my hands on her skin—even the ordinary parts—just to see if it feels as smooth as it looks.

"I'm Julia Romano," she says. "I'm a guardian ad litem."the violins soaring in my veins screech to a stop. "Is that like a cop?"

"No, I'm an attorney, and I'm working with a judge to help your sister."

"You mean Kate?"in prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница her face tightens. "I mean Anna. She filed a lawsuit for medical emancipation from your parents."

"Oh, yeah. I know about that."

"Really?" This seems to surprise her, as if defiance is something Anna's cornered the market on. "Do you happen to know where she is?"glance at the house, dark and empty. "Am I my sister's keeper?" I say. Then I grin at her. "If you feel like waiting, you can come up and see my etchings."my shock, she agrees. "Actually, that's not a bad idea. I'd like to talk to prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница you."lean against the door again and cross my arms, so that my biceps flex. I give her the grin that's stopped half the female population of Roger Williams University in their tracks. "You got plans for tonight?"stares at me like I've just spoken Greek. No, damn, she'd probably understand Greek. Martian. Or freaking Vulcan. "Are you asking me out on a date?"

"I'm sure as hell trying," I say.

"You're sure as hell failing," she responds flatly. "I'm old enough to be your mother."

"You have the most fantastic eyes." By prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница eyes, I mean tits, but whatever.Romano chooses that moment to button her suit jacket, which makes me laugh out loud. "Why don't we just talk here?"

"Whatever," I say, and I lead her up to my apartment.what it usually looks like, the place isn't so bad. The dishes on the counter are only a day or two old; and spilled cereal isn't nearly as bad to come home to after a full day as spilled milk. On the middle of the floor is a bucket and rag and container of gas; I'm working prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница up some flresticks. There are clothes all over the floor, some artfully arranged to minimize the effect of a leak in my moonshine still.

"What do you think?" I smile at her. "Martha Stewart would love it, huh?"

"Martha Stewart would make you her life project," Julia murmurs. She sits down on the couch, leaps up, and removes a handful of potato chips that have, holy God, already left a grease print in the shape of a heart on her sweet ass.

"You want a drink?" Don't let it be said my mother never taught me manners prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница.glances around, then shakes her head. "I'll pass.", I pull a Labatt's out of the fridge. "So there's been a little fallout along the home front?"

"Wouldn't you know?"

"I try not to."

"How come?"

"Because it's what I do best." Grinning, I take a nice long pull of my beer. "Although this is one blowout I would've loved to see."

"Tell me about Kate and Anna."

"What am I supposed to tell you?" I swing down next to her on the couch, way too close. On purpose.

"How do you get along with them prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница?"lean forward. "Why, Ms. Romano. Are you asking me if I play nice?" When she doesn't as much as blink, I knock off the act. "They survive me," I answer. "Like everyone else."answer must interest her, because she writes something down on her little white pad. "What was it like, growing up in this family?"dozen flip responses work their way up my throat, but the one that comes out Is a totally dark horse. "When I was twelve, there was this time Kate got sick—not even big sick, just an infection, but she prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница couldn't seem to get rid of it by herself. So they took Anna in to give granulocytes—white blood cells. It wasn't like Kate planned it or anything, but it happened to be Christmas Eve. We were supposed to all go out as a family, you know, and get a tree." I pull a pack of smokes from my pocket. "You mind?" I ask, but I never give her a chance to answer before I light up. "I was shuttled over to some neighbor's house last minute, which sucked, because they were having a nice Christmas Eve with their prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница relatives and kept whispering about me like I was a charity case and deaf to boot. Anyway, that all got lame pretty fast, so I said I had to pee and I snuck out. I walked home and took one of my dad's axes and a handsaw and chopped down this little spruce in the middle of the front yard. By the time the neighbor figured out I was gone, I had the whole thing set up in our living room in the tree stand, garland, ornaments, you name it."my mind, I can still see those lights prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница—red and blue and yellow, blinking over and over on a tree as overdressed as an Eskimo in Bali. "So Christmas morning, my parents come to the neighbors to collect me. They look like hell, the both of them, but when they bring me home there are presents under the tree. I'm all excited and I find one with my name on it, and it turns out to be this little windup car—something that would have been great for a three-year-old, but not me, and that I happened to know was for sale prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница in the hospital gift shop. As was every single other present I got that year. Go freaking figure." I stab my cigarette butt out on the thigh of my jeans. "They never even said anything about the tree," I tell her. "That's what it's like growing up in this family."

"Do you think it's the same for Anna?"

"No. Anna's on their radar, because she plays into their grand plan for Kate."

"How do your parents decide when Anna will help Kate medically?" she asks.

"You make it sound like there's some process prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница involved. Like there's actually a choice."lifts her head. "Isn't there?"ignore her, because that's a rhetorical question if I've ever heard one, and stare out the window. In the front yard, you can still see the stump from that spruce. No one in this family ever covers up their mistakes.I was seven I got it in my head to dig to China. How hard could it be, I figured—a straight shot, a tunnel? I took a shovel out of the garage and I started a hole just wide enough for me to slip prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница into. Every night I would drag the old plastic sandbox cover across it, just in case of rain.four weeks I worked at this, as the rocks bit into my arms to make battle scars, and roots grabbed at my ankles.I didn't count on were the tall walls that grew around me, or the belly of the planet, hot under my sneakers. Digging straight down, I'd gotten hopelessly lost. In a tunnel, you have to light your own way, and I've never been very good at that.I yelled out, my father found me in seconds prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница, although I'm sure I waited through several lives. He crawled into the pit, torn between my hard work and my stupidity. "This could have collapsed on you!" he said, and lifted me onto solid ground.that point of view, I realized that my hole was not miles deep after all. My father, in fact, could stand on the bottom and it only reached up to his chest., you know, is relative.TAKES ANNA LESS THAN TEN MINUTES to move into my room at the station. While she puts her clothes into a drawer and sets her prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница hairbrush next to mine on the dresser, I go out to the kitchen where Paulie is chefing up dinner. The guys are all waiting for an explanation.

"She's going to stay with me here for a while," I say. "We're working some things out."looks up from a magazine. "Is she gonna ride with us?"haven't thought of this. Maybe it will take her mind off things, to feel like she's an apprentice of sorts. "You know, she just might."turns around. He's making fajitas tonight, beef. "Everything okay, Cap?"

'Yeah, Paulie, thanks for asking."

"If prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница there's anyone upsetting her," Red says, "they'll have to go through all four of us now."others nod. I wonder what they would think if I told them that the people upsetting Anna are Sara and me.leave the guys finishing up dinner preparations and go back to my room, where Anna sits on the second twin bed with her feet pretzeled beneath her. "Hey," I say, but she doesn't respond. It takes me a moment to see that she's wearing headphones, blasting God knows what into her ears.sees me and shuts off prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница the music, pulling the phones to rest on her neck like a choker. "Hey."sit down on the edge of the bed and look at her. "So. You, uh, want to do something?"

"Like what?"shrug. "I don't know. Play cards?" 'You mean like poker?"

"Poker, Go Fish. Whatever." She looks at me carefully. "Go Fish?”

“Want to braid your hair?"

"Dad," Anna asks, "are you feeling all right?"am more comfortable rushing into a building that is going to pieces around me than I am trying to make her feel at ease. "I just-l want prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница you to know you can do anything you want here."

"Is it okay to leave a box of tampons in the bathroom?" Immediately, my face goes red, and as if it's catching, so does Anna's. There is only one female firefighter, a part-timer, and the women's room is on the lower level of the station. But still.'s hair swings over her face. "I didn't mean… I can just keep them—"

"You can put them in the bathroom," I announce. Then I add with authority, "If anyone complains, we'll say they're mine prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница."

"I'm not sure they'll believe you, Dad."wrap an arm around her. "I may not do this right at first. I've never bunked with a thirteen-year-old girl."

"I don't shack up with forty-two-year-old guys too often, either."

"Good, because I'd have to kill them."smile is a stamp against my neck. Maybe this will not be as hard as I think. Maybe I can convince myself that this move will ultimately keep my family together, even though the first step involves breaking it apart. "Dad?"

"Hmm?"

"Just so you prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница know: no one plays Go Fish after they're potty-trained." She hugs me extra tight, the way she used to when she was small. I remember, in that instant, the last time I carried Anna. We were hiking across a field, the five of us—and the cattails and wild daisies were taller than her head. I swung her up into my arms, and together we parted a sea of reeds. But for the first time we both noticed how far down her legs dangled, how she was too big to sit on my hip, and before long she prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница was struggling to get down and walk on her own.get big enough only for the bowl you put them in. Bonsai trees twist in miniature. I would have given anything to keep her little. They outgrow us so much faster than we outgrow them.seems remarkable that while one of our daughters is leading us into a legal crisis, the other is in the throes of a medical one-but then again, we have known for quite some time that Kate's at the end stages of renal failure. It is Anna, this time, who's thrown us prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница for a loop. And yet-like always-you figure it out; you manage to deal with both. The human capacity for burden is like bamboo—far more flexible than you'd ever believe at first glance.Anna was packing up her things that afternoon, I went to the hospital. Kate was having her dialysis done when I came into the room. She was asleep with her CD headphones on; Sara rose from a chair with one finger pressed to her lips, a warning.led me into the hallway. "How's Kate?" I asked. "About the same," she answered prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница. "How's Anna?" We traded the status of our children like baseball cards that we'd flash for a peek, but didn't want to give up just yet. I looked at Sara, wondering how I was supposed to tell her what I'd done.

"Where did you two run off to while I was fending off the judge?" she said. Well. If you sit around and think about how hot the fire's going to be, you'll never get into the thick of it. "I took Anna to the station."

"Something going on at work?"took a deep breath prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница and leaped off the cliff that my marriage had become. "No. Anna's going to stay with me there for a few days. I think maybe she needs a little time by herself."stared at me. "But Anna's not going to be by herself. She's going to be with you."hallway seemed too bright and too wide all of a sudden. "Is that a bad thing?"

"Yes," she said. "Do you really think that buying into Anna's tantrum is going to help her any in the long run?"

"I'm not buying into her tantrum; I prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница'm giving her space to come to the right conclusions by herself. You're not the one who's been sitting outside with her while you're in the judge's chambers. I'm worried about her."

"Well, that's where we're different," Sara argued. "I'm worried about both our daughters."looked at her, and for just a splinter of a minute saw the woman she used to be—one who knew where to find her smile, instead of having to rummage for it; one who always messed up punch lines and still got a laugh; one prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница who could reel me in without even trying. I put my hands on her cheeks. Oh, there you are, I thought, and I leaned down to kiss her on the forehead. "You know where to find us," I said, and walked away.after midnight we get an ambulance call. Anna blinks from her bed as the bells go off and light automatically floods the room. "You can stay," I tell her, but she's already up and putting on her shoes.'ve given her old turnout gear from our part-time female firefighter: a pair of boots, a hard prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница hat. She shrugs into the coat and climbs into the rear of the ambulance, strapping herself to the rear-facing seat behind Red, who's driving.scream down the streets of Upper Darby to the Sunshine Gates Nursing Home, an anteroom for meeting St. Peter. Red grabs the stretcher from the ambulance while I carry in the paramedic's bag. A nurse meets us at the front doors. "She fell down and lost consciousness for a while. And she's got an altered mental state."are led to one of the rooms. Inside, an elderly woman lies on the floor prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница, tiny and fine-boned as a bird, blood oozing from the top of her head. It smells like she's lost control of her bowels. "Hi, hon," I say, leaning down immediately. I reach for her hand, the skin thin as crepe. "Can you squeeze my fingers?" And to the nurse: "What's her name?"

"Eldie Briggs. She's eighty-seven."

"Eldie, we're going to help you," I say, continuing to assess her. "She's got a lac on the occipital area. I'm going to need the backboard." While Red runs out to the prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница ambulance to get it, I take Eldie's blood pressure and pulse—irregular. "Do you have any pain in your chest?" The woman moans, but shakes her head and then winces. "I'm going to have to put you in a collar, hon, all right? It looks like you hit your head pretty hard." Red returns, bearing the board. Lifting my head, I look at the nurse again. "Do we know if her change in consciousness was the result of the fall, or did it cause the fall?"shakes her head. "No one saw it happen."

"Of course," I mutter under prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница my breath. "I need a blanket."hand that offers it is tiny and shaking. Until that moment, I've completely forgotten Anna is with us. "Thanks, baby," I say, taking the time to smile at her. 'You want to help me here? Can you get down to Mrs. Briggs's feet?"nods, white-faced, and crouches down. Red aligns the backboard. "We're going to roll you, Eldie … on three…" We count, shift, strap her on. The motion makes her scalp wound gush again.load her into the ambulance. Red hauls off to the hospital as I prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница move around the cramped quarters of the cabin, hooking up the oxygen tank, ministering. "Anna, grab me an IV start kit?" I begin to cut Eldie's clothes off her. 'You still with us, Mrs. Briggs? Little needle stick coming," I say. I position her arm and try to get a vein, but they are like the faintest tracings of pencil, blueprint shadings. Sweat beads on my forehead. "I can't get in with a twenty. Anna, can you find a twenty-two?"doesn't help that the patient is moaning, crying. That the ambulance is swaying back and forth, turning prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница corners, braking, as I try to insert the smaller needle. "Dammit," I say, throwing the second line on the floor.do a quick cardiac strip and then pick up the radio and dial into the hospital to tell them we're incoming. "Eighty-seven-year-old patient, had a fall. She's alert and answering questions, BP 136 over 83, pulse 130 and irregular. I tried to get IV access for you but haven't had a lot of luck with that. She does have a lac on the back of her head but it's pretty well controlled by now. I've prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница got her on oxygen. Any questions?"the beam of an approaching truck, I see Anna's face. The truck turns, the light falls, and I realize that my daughter is holding this stranger's hand.the emergency entrance of the hospital, we pull the stretcher out of the cabin and wheel into the automatic doors. A team of doctors and nurses is already waiting. "She's still talking to us," I say.male nurse taps her thin wrists. "Jesus."

'Yeah, that's why I couldn't get a line. I needed pedi cuffs to get her prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница pressure."I remember Anna, who's standing wide-eyed in the doorway.

"Daddy? Is that lady going to die?"

"I think she might have had a stroke… but she's going to make it. Listen, why don't you just go wait over there, in a chair? I'll be out in five minutes, tops."

"Dad?" she says, and I pause at the threshold. "Wouldn't it be cool if they were all that way?"doesn't see it the way I do—that Eldie Briggs is a paramedic's nightmare, that her veins are shot and her condition's waffling prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница and that this has not been a good call at all. What Anna means is that whatever is wrong with Eldie Briggs can be fixed.go inside and continue to feed information to the ER staff as needed. About ten minutes later, I finish up my Run Form and look for my daughter in the waiting area, but she's gone missing. I find Red smoothing fresh sheets onto the stretcher, strapping a pillow under its belt. "Where's Anna?"

"1 figured she was with you."down one hallway and then the other, all I see are weary physicians, other paramedics prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница, small scatterings of dazed people sipping coffee and hoping for the best. "I'll be right back."to the frenzy of the ER, the eighth floor is all tucked tight. The nurses all greet me by name as I head for Kate's room and gently push open the door.is too big for Sara's lap, but that's where she's sitting. She and Kate are both asleep. Over the crown of Anna's head, Sara watches me approach.kneel in front of my wife and brush Anna's hair off her temples. "Baby prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница," I whisper, "it's time to go home."sits up slowly. She lets me take her hand and draw her upright, Sara's palm trailing down her spine. "It's not home," Anna says, but she follows me out of the room all the same.midnight, I lean down beside Anna and balance my words on the edge of her ear. "Come see this," I coax. She sits up, grabs a sweatshirt, stuffs her feet into her sneakers. Together, we climb to the station's roof.night is falling down around us. Meteors rain like fireworks, quick rips in the prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница seam of the dark. "Oh!" Anna exclaims, and she lies down so that she can see better.

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Документ prose_contemporaryPicoultSister's KeeperYork Times bestselling author Jodi Picoult is widely acclaimed for her keen insights into the hearts and minds of real people. Now she tells the emotionally 11 страница