lslauri Liura Sanchez Lauri

A oneshot of how Logan could try to help in the fight against an invisible enemy. I hope it serves as a story of hope and that we realize our little can empower us to be better too! ;) Enjoy the read!

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#logan #china #wolverine #covid-19 #james-howlett #nick-fury
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I've been in this world for so long that I've internalized the 'this too shall pass' motto... I know everything passes, wars pass, horrors pass, and sometimes, even the lessons that should be learned, well... they also pass!

But never, in almost 200 years of life, have I encountered something so terrifying, both physically and mentally! What we're going through in this first half of 2020 is truly global! And to tell a bit more about this virus, from my point of view, I need to go back in time a little, you know? But not too far...

It was November 2019, and I was flying over China on the SHIELD aircraft carrier, smoking a big Cuban cigar that Nick Fury had scored for me, the day was beautiful! If there's one thing I've learned, it's that - most of the time - it's always there. We just get tangled up in other stuff and look away from the beauty... But I understand it took me a long time to figure that out and it might not be easy for someone new to simply see a rainbow behind every sh** that happens in the world!

Anyway... We were there on the deck, with Nick being as pessimistic as only he can be:

- Logan, this time I think humanity might really end... We've been through so much together, but I've never seen a virus like this. It, at the same time, doesn't have such a high infection potential, but once it settles in, it tends to quickly kill those who are more debilitated... And it's counting on your healing factor that I called you for this mission!

- Man, you say that because you haven't faced the Legacy virus... As long as a virus is 'only' killing a certain social layer, everything's fine, right? You damn human! You're more like a heartless robot, Fury! - and I blew a big puff of smoke in his face.

My interlocutor chooses not to respond, gives me a mean look, and with his hand, he waves the smoke away.

- Are you in or out?! This virus seems to have no genetic preferences...

- I'm in! And you know it! Anything my mutation can do to help, I'm in... Now, if you don't mind, I'm gonna jump right here since this conversation has already started to stink, Nick! - and without waiting for his response, I jumped to one of the buildings below us.

There must be some advantage to having adamantium bones and a healing factor, right? It's not just to show off the cracks in my claws to the ladies!

I landed on the helipad and took advantage of the speed and angle of descent to roll a bit and absorb the impact. Just because I was used to pain doesn't mean it didn't hurt, and if I can avoid it, it's always good...

I took the elevator down and hit the crowded street. China manages to have the most incredible human agglomeration capacity I've ever seen! And I've been to other planets! Some people wearing masks, which is normal to see, and many suspicious looks, whether because I'm not Chinese, because of my physical condition, because of the big cigar I was still smoking, or because of the slight crease in my clothes... The fact is, I didn't care and continued on my way. According to Nick, there was a hospital with many patients hospitalized for this new virus. People were in the ER, and a few days later, some had to go to the ICU, and few of them came out of there alive... Especially if they already had some other decompensated comorbidity: arterial hypertension, diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular diseases, and/or were over 70 years old! My locator watch starts vibrating on my wrist, and then I stop in front of the building, finishing smoking the cigar with relish before putting it out and throwing it in a nearby trash can.

Now, I would have to disguise myself as a doctor or nurse to get to the ICU. I needed to be in contact with the most severely infected. That was Nick's plan, I get infected somehow, go back to the aircraft carrier, and they take my blood and some secretions to see how my factor is dealing with it and if I can be used to produce a cure or something like that.

Nice plan! Too bad biology doesn't always cooperate with us. And if it did, I wouldn't even be here, right?!

I find a doctor coming out the front door of the hospital and start following the guy, while taking a glove with a piece of gauze soaked in a kind of chloroform out of my pants pocket. He goes to a nearby car and when he opens it, I get in with him, in the back seat; before he can start shouting for help, I say in Mandarin that I'm sorry, but I need his credentials. I hold the gauze in his airways for about two minutes, and he faints; I switch places with him and drive the car to a nearby, less crowded street.

I use a piece of duct tape on his mouth and tie his arms and legs just for the record... I didn't intend to go back and expose a professional who is bending over backward trying to deal with something he doesn't know, like this virus.

"Sleep tight, buddy..." - I grab his entry badge, and with the hospital layout memorized beforehand, I take the stairs to the floor I'm interested in. There, I put on the doctor's coat and notice that the support staff is all geared up: mask, gloves, face shield, disposable suit, and shoe covers. As soon as I step onto that floor, a flood of people comes toward me, saying I shouldn't be there!

"How did you get here? It's dangerous without the gear! Go back, go back!" demanded one, who, by the difference in the color of the suit, must have been the head nurse.

"I can't! I'm here to go into one of these rooms! I know it sounds strange, but I'm here to help..." - and as I shake her off, I knew there was no security personnel on that floor, as they too would have to spend some time gearing up before entering!

Everyone was "frozen" by my response, and taking advantage of that, I start wandering down the main hallway.

I could smell fear on the people, not because of what I was about to do, but even before I arrived. That whole place, doctors, nurses, and patients were all very afraid... The others didn't make much effort to stop me from entering. They didn't want to risk having a piece of their clothing destroyed and possibly come into contact with the virus. Although they weren't as geared up as during the Ebola outbreak, they didn't really know what they were dealing with, and that was the problem!

I didn't know either, but for someone who had gone through the Legacy virus, I was feeling a bit too confident in the possibility of at least donating plasma with antibodies to a few hundred people!

I walk down the hallway, and unfortunately, in the first two rooms, it's not even worth entering because the smell of death, so evident to me, will still be demonstrated by the equipment connected to the bodies. They were two elderly men... Their gazes no longer even attempted to understand what was different in the corridor; their vital signs still insisted, but they had already left this world...

Just because I've lived so long and killed so much doesn't trivialize death... When it comes at the age of these people, it should be very welcome! But here, the people were alone... They didn't have the company of relatives or anyone who cared about them. It was a very sad situation... I start to think that when my time comes, I want to be as decrepit as these two! If I ever age at all... Who knows, maybe it's my genetics, and so far, they haven't backed down much against time...

In the other rooms, there were people in their 60s, men and women, and further ahead, there was even a teenager. These seemed to respond better to treatment, which, in my short time there, was nonspecific. Everyone had a heart monitor, and that's it!

In one of the rooms, a lady was crying. This was the perfect place for me, since I could even use her tears to try to infect myself, right?

"Good afternoon, ma'am. May I come in?" - I lean against the door, respectfully. Beside her was a man sleeping, who didn't wake up with my words.

She startled and hastily wiped her tears before turning to me, and upon seeing me, her face showed even more surprise!

"What are you doing here like this? Are you crazy, doctor?" - sitting on the gurney.

I found the doctor's name strange, but then I remembered I was wearing a coat and approached her, unceremoniously:

"Maybe... I'm trying a new approach to this disease, ma'am..."

"Just Mei, please... No need for 'ma'am'... To me, it's a relief to see a doctor dressed normally, it actually made me feel calmer, doctor..."

"Logan, you can call me Logan. Mei, you were crying just now, why? Can I help you in any way?" - since I was going to "use" her to infect myself, it was the least I could do...

She found that conversation strange, since when does a doctor care about the personal problems of their patients, right? She squints at me, and after another longer pause, she doesn't prevent two tears from falling again.

I take advantage of her silence and wipe her tears with my thumb, startling her with this gesture.

"Don't worry, Mei. You'll get through this!" - and it wasn't demagoguery! Despite the smell indicating that she and her roommate were still infected, I could somehow perceive in a way I can't explain in words that they would get through this! As I said this, I rubbed her tears between my fingers and then scratched my eye. This could be a transmission route, right?

Upon hearing that she would get out of this situation, she dared to smile.

"Mr. Logan, I need to get out of here because I have a big family to raise, you know? And it's the lack of contact with them that made me cry. But I think your optimistic words have already helped me. I need to be well for them!"

"That's the spirit, Mei! And I think you already realized that I'm not a doctor, right? Now, in order for us to help many more people, I need to ask you something: how do you think you got infected?" - and as I spoke sincerely, she became more attentive. She smiled, pushed her hair behind her ear, and commented:

"Ever since I saw you come in without protective gear! Then, feeling your rough hands against my face, I was sure medicine wasn't your business. I thought you had come to kill me... But your speech about helping others made me rethink that idea. Now, I don't know where you fit in, but I understand that I have no right to question that..." - and she was about to catch her breath to answer my question when I said:

"If you want, I can tell you who I am. But I don't know if you'd believe me..." - and I shook my head, widening my eyes and shrugging.

"Surprise me, stranger." - she commented, without making me feel diminished by the title; I really wasn't Chinese...

"I'm here at the request of a secret organization to infect myself with this virus, and since I heal from almost every disease in the world, they'll be able to extract the bastard from me and study a way to fight it. That's why I asked you that question, understand?" - her facial expressions changed as she laughed! Laughed in my face, boldly! My inner beast wanted to show her how serious it was, but I took a deep breath and tried to put into practice what Chuck had tried to teach me: empathy. "Put yourself, Logan, in others' shoes and shift your anger to turn that energy into positive actions." It wasn't easy! If God exists, He's the guy who knows that! He and I! Because it's much easier to do whatever we want without worrying about who's in front of us! But, most of the time, what's easiest isn't the best, and most of the time, it doesn't end well for us either... For example, I could smell several people in the hallway, waiting, trying to listen to our conversation; several accelerated heartbeats, the smell of sweat and pheromones, all of this tended to make my body respond in the same way: fight or flight! But behind that biochemistry was my mind, that is, myself! The guy who decides what he wants to do with his body! And I decide I don't want to fight and, to the madness of my body, not even to flee! I want to stay and control this anger. I think this pandemic has made me think about things I rarely thought about in life. This way, I'll end up becoming a philosopher! Ugh!

I must have taken a while to calm down, the fact is that I came back to myself with the warmth of her skin touching my hands, and from the shock that gave me, I quickly moved away from Mei.

"Mr. Logan, then it's true? I apologize for laughing at you... I thought you were trying to make me laugh since patients who maintain good humor recover faster. My sincere apologies!..."

"How did you know I was telling the truth?"

"When I paid attention to your silence, I could see a vein in your temple and also perceived the emanation of your Ki. Thank you for not letting yourself be defeated by yourself..."

"How is that possible? Do you also fight?"

"I am responsible for carrying on my father's dojang. He was the master, I am a humble continuator of his art, haidong gumdo... But I know I won't be able to reach his level. These were also the thoughts that brought me to tears..."

This Korean sword art was not widely known, but I had seen great masters of it during my long life. She was a kind of modern samurai, with the same morality as them. I looked puzzled, and she continued to open up:

"I think I contracted the disease in the hospital, Mr. Logan. I am being treated for an aggressive stomach cancer - and she forced herself to pause - and 15 days ago I was in this same place to receive my dose of chemotherapy. Some people were hospitalized with suspicion of a new flu, and many of them were coughing and sneezing in the same place I was. I think the infection is airborne..."

Listening to such a woman, of such strong appearance, describe something like that was a blow. I always wondered why I had that mutation, while people who seemed so right and just had to get sick and die? I listened carefully to her description, I approached the gurney, and then I threw:

"Look, it may sound crazy, but I understand you better than you think. I'm a ronin, and I've been one for a long time. I think the association that sent me here could help you with these health problems... But for that, you'd have to agree to leave this hospital and come up with me to the helipad. They're waiting for a sign from me to pick me up there..."

"It's madness! Sorry, but I'm not going to risk leaving this hospital. I know they are facing something they don't know, but they are doing their best. And as for cancer, if this possible treatment doesn't exist for the masses, I'm no different from anyone else to deserve more than others have... You understand, don't you?"

Unfortunately, I did understand! If they managed to operate on the cancer and make sure the altered cells wouldn't appear anymore, how would she face the others who will undergo the same treatments as her? How would she know she was privileged? My face showed the tranquility of someone who understands and agrees with her choice:

"Your father would be proud, Mei... And I hope our conversation has been able to infect me. I promise you that this hospital will be the first to reap the rewards of what they find. Even if I have to bring it personally, you know?"

She smiled, nodded, and once again took my hands. I wondered how long she had been without any human contact, and I let my gaze fall lovingly on her. I stroked back, and then she surprised me by bringing her face closer to me, saying:

"We, the sick, don't want you to make the trip for nothing!" - and she gave me a very wet kiss that, after the surprise, I made a point of returning.

She didn't want to talk anymore after that. But I sensed an urgency in that gesture, probably mixed with the loneliness that cancer had brought to her. We knew nothing about each other, and as much as I wanted to help, I knew she would face life as she had done so far: with total dedication. Our hands were still intertwined and remained so for a few minutes until I verbally thanked her and left without looking back. The hallway was crowded with people, some with understanding looks, others with apprehension. No one understood what I was doing there... I didn't give explanations or show aggressive movements, I just walked until I found the fire escape. I climbed up to the helipad and sent a signal through the watch to notify that my mission was accomplished. They sent a guided jet propulsion unit that I wore and used to ascend.

Nick was waiting for me on the deck, dressed in an "astronaut" suit, with a silly smile on his face.

- Now you've outdone yourself, Logan! Taking advantage of a sick woman?

- Are you crazy? She kissed me! And it was purely technical. She wanted to make sure I would get infected, to be able to help people... I mean!

He shook his head negatively and took a few steps back, and the medical team came to isolate me so that I wouldn't infect the entire aircraft carrier.

I spent a few hours in a hospital-like room, with the difference that I was isolated from the rest and waiting for any symptoms to appear. We were working with the time Mei gave us: she had been in the hospital for a week and had gone for chemotherapy 15 days ago, so we counted on a week to incubate and multiply. But my body doesn't like to wait so long with deadly viruses inside! And since it's a bit accelerated, within 4 days I started to sneeze and feel some secretion in my nose. The SHIELD technicians were collecting samples of my blood every day, three times a day. The day before my symptoms appeared, they had already informed me that the virus had been isolated and that it was a coronavirus. They continued to draw blood, in greater quantity, after this verification, and I was almost literally eating a whole cow a day to keep my healing factor at 100%! I heard Nick commenting that they had obtained plasma with antibodies and that they could test it at the hospital where I had been. I was very interested in participating, but he wanted me as a donor, not as a participant.

- You can't leave there, Logan! You're a ticking time bomb, releasing viruses through all your secretions! You'll do more harm than good. Stay here! Rest, eat, read, watch a movie...

- You're right about that, Nick! I don't want to infect other people... But you must imagine that I can't stand being here anymore, doing nothing, right?... Give me a screen so I can follow your intervention at the hospital, will you?

- I can get that for you; hold on. - and he shouted at some subordinates what he wanted. I could hear, as he walked away, the name Mei in his sentences. I hope he's trying with her a better way for her to get out of that ICU!

It took about 20 minutes, and a low-ranking soldier brought me a plasma screen with the action already underway. The screen also had a camera. But I don't know if it was sending mine. What matters is that I saw the SHIELD agents with badges, speaking in Chinese and explaining that that hospital was being chosen as a model in curing the new virus. They wanted a meeting with the doctors in charge of the ICU because they were going to share what they had discovered with them. In addition to informing about the use of hyperimmune plasma.

The meeting went well. The doctors felt, by the tones of the voices, that the authority was only transmitting what they would do from then on. I felt, by the looks of some, that those measures would have been better accepted if the agents had gone with more humility. But... Extreme actions were necessary at such times.

They suited up, went up to the ICU, and explained the procedure to the head nurse, asking where the patient named Mei was; she was indeed the patient chosen to receive the first dose. As far as I knew, having blood type O and Rh-negative factor could not harm her. But, it seems that in the case of plasma, that doesn't even matter! The chance of harming another person is even smaller, no matter what blood type and Rh factor she has. I was relieved... But when they injected it, I felt an adrenaline rush. I wanted to be there, holding her hand...

A technician came to take more blood from me, we chatted about trivialities, and then I returned to the video. They were already in other rooms, administering the plasma. They would wait a few hours to check the results. But from their conversation, everything seemed to be okay.

And when they came to bring me food, the fully suited girl looked at me differently.

- Is everything okay, girl? Do you want to say something?

- Thank you, Mr. Howlett! I've always admired heroes, but I wondered if it was only for the applause. Today, I know it's not quite like that...

I couldn't help but laugh! Me, the guy the X-Men sent on missions when they wanted to erase someone without guilt, was receiving thanks for something I didn't even have to sweat to do?

- Don't exaggerate, girl! And don't spread it around... - she was leaving - Oh! I heard Iron Man is more for the applause, indeed!

And she left laughing, while I laughed at my lame joke too.

The doctor on duty came to see me and said that in two days I would be discharged. Because the viral units were decreasing considerably.

- It was expected, Mr. Logan. Due to your accelerated healing factor.

I thanked him and returned to the video. They had passed through some patients, none of them had worsened, and, on the contrary, they had significant improvement. They talked to the doctors, and the deadline was another 10 days in the ICU, but based on the new data presented, it was expected to be reduced to three days!

It would be necessary to administer a dose every 36 hours for three days, but this protocol could be altered later. They gave a "fake" card to the doctors, where they could call and get more plasma, although that amount was exact for the ICU patients. They also went to the hospital's common area and managed to administer it to half of the patients with suspected coronavirus. Hoping that none of them would go up to the ICU. This was a pioneering study!

After two days, I got my "safe conduct" and informed Fury that I was going to see Mei.

- Why, Logan? Let the peasant live her life... Having relied on you could be dangerous, man!

I didn't even respond... I had already made it clear that it was just to inform! I got another jet propulsion unit and descended, going straight to the ICU and being received, by the very positive results of these last two days, by the same nurse, still suited up, but with a smile in her eyes.

"I don't know how you did it, but I thank you on behalf of the team! They are much better, thanks to your intervention. Thank you!"

"Imagine, be sure that I did the least part. You guys are the real heroes! And, for sure, we owe a lot to you." - and I headed towards Mei's room, but I couldn't smell her until the nurse told me:

"Mei was discharged early this morning... She left a note for you..." - I stopped in my tracks and turned around, following her to the ICU counter.

She handed me a piece of paper folded into quarters. On top was "洛根" (Luò gēn), and before I took the sheet, her scent hit me hard in the nose.

The ideograms expressed her gratitude for successfully completing the mission and how happy she was that they had managed to find something to help those who were suffering and how much this action had given her hope. With that, a side of her that she believed was dead came back, and she thanked me. She ended by saying that, from one samurai to another ("because every samurai has a master! And, in your case, it's Life!"), she hoped I would understand what was to come and that the kiss had been more than just an obligation. I spent a short time not understanding what "was to come" meant, as a man approached to inquire about sending more plasma.

"But what we left with you was enough for another day, right, doctor?"

I noticed he became uncomfortable, but I ended up pressing with a more incisive "isn't it?" He sweated, his heart raced, and after a clearing of his throat, he said:

"We don't know what happened to the bags, but we believe they were stolen!"

- What the hell!

"Was there something wrong, sir?" asked the doctor, not understanding.

"I want Mei's address, I think I have an idea of where the bags went..." - unable to breathe properly or contain my anger.

Wide-eyed, the doctor went to the head nurse and asked for all the patient's data, handing me a copy.

I thanked him and went up to the helipad, informing Fury about what had happened and where I was going.

"You don't need to, Logan! We managed to clone the antibodies, there's enough here for the whole hospital!..."

"I can't just let it go, Nicholas! What if she sells it on the black market! This is a part of me... I can't let it go like this!"

"Ah! So it's something personal? I'll warn you that SHIELD is completely out of this. You're on your own!"

"Backing off, huh? As always! What matters is to keep taking care of these people, go! I'll do what I do best!" - and I ripped off the locator from my wrist as I stomped on it.

I had already seen on the locator's map where Mei's address was, and I flew there, skimming the tops of buildings. It wasn't far, and that's why it felt cold!

I hid the jet very well, maybe it could be useful, and started exploring on foot. She had some connection to that area, or else she wouldn't have ended up in that hospital. I just needed to be patient and I would find her scent! I walked a little further inland and noticed the difference in socio-sanitary conditions; like in many countries around the world, social differences were striking...

People slept on the streets and spent the day looking for a specific scent. After three days, passing through a neighborhood street, just as the scent hit me, the name "Dojang Shung-Mei" on the building left little doubt: this was where I would find the petty thief!

I hid in the street in front to observe the movement in the place, and I was surprised by the coming and going of different people, more like ordinary people than fighters or practitioners of any martial art.

I felt that my prejudices didn't seem to match reality, and, unable to wait any longer, I entered the dojang, witnessing an embarrassing scene: several shikifutons spread out on the floor, serving as makeshift stretchers for two dozen people! At a certain distance from them, people were fervently praying; women, children, teenagers, and men. All united by the desire for a higher power to be able to neutralize that evil.

"Do you understand why I did what I did?" - her voice hit my right ear - "They are infected and wouldn't have the conditions for treatment in that hospital... But, thanks to us, they might have a chance, Logan!"

I turned quickly, faster than she could react, and grabbed her by the shoulders. My body trembled, urging me to give a physical response to that affront! She had stolen something biologically yours! How could she?!

"Look, Mei, I'm so pissed off right now that all I can think of is one phrase: 'opportunity shows the thief'! You had no right to steal! Even if it was for that..."

Caught off guard, she struggles to break free, but realizing the impossibility, she just taunts:

"Can't you say 'save these lives'?" - I let her go, she wouldn't leave her patients and run away - "You don't know the system, Logan... Some people are more equal than others... And I couldn't leave them to fend for themselves. If you want to call me a thief for that, I won't ask for a duel to clear my name, I accept. I accept because any title given by someone who doesn't know me means nothing to me! I know myself and my reasons! I don't expect sympathy... Now, if you'll excuse me, it's time for the new dose..."

I stood there, staring at that warrior who briefly strayed from the path, believing that the ends justified the means. But it wasn't time for me to preach. She already had too many problems to deal with, and upon thinking more clearly, I managed to string the ideas together:

"There are many more people here than in the hospital, Mei, and you only have part of the treatment. How do you expect this treatment to take effect?"

"I was the first guinea pig. I felt it in me when the results came, and I say they're using too much of your plasma and with too many repetitions. It's not necessary! I felt in my Ki that I was cured after 24 hours of the first dose! With this, if there are no more infected people in the neighborhood, we can contain the problem."

"Do you know who patient zero was here?"

She didn't answer me anything, just lowered her head, and then I understood how responsible she felt for these people.

"How can I help?"

She once again didn't articulate any words, but looked at the families who were praying for their loved ones. I understood that, at that moment, I was supposed to be the "party pooper" for the crowd.

I asked for their attention, explained that I came from the city hospital and that I was responsible for that treatment, and for it to take effect, people should isolate themselves for two days. I said that was the first request, the polite one, and that the next one wouldn't be so polite...

Those who thought about retorting received a glimpse of my deepest hatred and gave up. Smart people! They gradually left, until I finally closed the doors of the dojang.

"At last, alone!..."

"Thank the Gods! I've explained, talked, asked, and nothing! I even threatened!"

"Intimacy is crap, Mei... They knew you were too good to be cruel to them... In fact, what you're doing here showed them that you're anything but cruel!"

We started taking care of the patients, some presented with a fever, others with coughing, runny nose, delirium... Most were just too weak to move properly. The men were happy to have another man to take them to the bathroom, and with that, we spent the day. We exchanged some words, Mei always justifying the theft she had committed. But I stopped caring about that. I realized that I really didn't know her. She wasn't at risk of switching sides because she had solid foundations for her actions, and I could only see kindness guiding her steps and emanating from her Ki.

Her self-observations were correct. It was possible to treat people with half the dose and in half the time! Two days later, only one elderly man remained there. With a condition worsening into pneumonia.

"He needs a hospital, Mei! We don't have the equipment to comfort him here, and honestly, he doesn't deserve to suffer like this..."

"Why didn't your plasma work on him, Logan?!"

And the gentleman, hearing us whispering about it, decided to interfere:

"Because I no longer have the energy to sustain myself in this life, my friends... Dear Mei! I thank you for all your effort, but when the amphora is cracked, it's no use filling it with the purest wine... I believe this liquid has extended my lifespan, but it's not capable of creating vital energy where there is no more material!" - these words were spoken amidst a lot of shortness of breath, but with a voice and gaze so serene that there was no denying how ready he was for this.

"No! Pang! You taught me so much of what I know, I won't accept this answer, this... This surrender!" - and she knelt close to him, kissing his hands.

I had nothing to do there. I was tired from sleepless nights, so I went to a secluded part of the building, where there was a pond with carp and some bamboo. I sat in a meditative position and joined with the Nature around me. My already heightened senses were capable of feeling even more, and after almost half an hour like that, I stopped hearing two hearts beating near me to hear Mei's crying. A part of me was happy, he wasn't suffering anymore... Another part, the ego, wanted him to stay with the girl for much longer, until he couldn't even remember his own name anymore! What kind of life do we wish for others whom we say we love, huh?

It took her another half an hour to say everything she wanted to the old man. She entrusted his soul to the Gods and said she would ensure that his granddaughter lacked nothing. That she would adopt her as her daughter and teach her the way of the sword, without the sword. Silence, his heart returns to the expected beats, a deep sigh, and she begins to move in my direction, searching for me. I remained seated, meditating. I realized that the path from where she was to me was accurate:

"He's gone, Logan... A part of me died today..."

I said nothing, just nodded. I'm not very good with words in my native language, imagine how they would come out in Chinese?! But I knew that the people we love and who die don't take a part of us. They add a part of themselves to us...

I got up, hugged her, pulling all that sadness into me, in the form of copious tears that, hot, burst in my chest. I knew that mourning is a necessary part of loss. And she had surrounded herself with so much kindness to go through this moment alone. I might not be ideal, but I was what her Gods had chosen for her. I would do my best!

She fell asleep standing up, embraced in me. I took her to the bedroom, and the moment I laid her on the mattress, she tightly grabbed one of my hands. I understood the sign as a request not to spend the night alone and nestled, sitting, beside her. Holding the hand that then moved down and held my ankle.

It didn't take long for me to fall asleep too. I can't say I have a heavy sleep, but naps help my body regenerate and the little REM sleep helps my brain, although sometimes, this mutation causes it to erase scenes that I don't want to relive, but I'm sure they're saved somewhere, and sooner or later, I'll have access to all of them. Even if it's in the moment before my death, as many people say, I hope to "see life pass before my eyes." With everything that life has: joys, sorrows, and – the rest of the time – something between those two worlds.

Before the Sun could be felt, its brightness already invaded the environment, birds sang, and several of them frequented the small internal garden of the dojang. Mei still breathed deeply, lost in the world of sleep, totally relaxed for having done what she thought was right.

After she woke up, she prepared breakfast for us and asked me to go with her to Mr. Pang's house. She wanted to break the news of his death to the family, which, from what I understood, was just a granddaughter, still a child.

I followed everything from a distance, respectfully. I was pensive... Like her, how many "Homo sapiens sapiens" are performing tasks that exceed their capabilities, every day? Doing for others what they can't even do for themselves? Without an international support team, or mutant friends to turn to... Who are the true heroes? I have no doubt!... Her life would never return to normal. The people of the village would never see her with the same eyes again, and her new goddaughter would have a unique opportunity to learn the way of the sword from someone who really lives it, intensely. You know you're on the right path when you need to draw your sword less! And that girl knows what she's doing!

When we arrived at Mei's house, I realized that that was no longer my world. She put the girl to sleep, and the two of us went to the internal garden to say goodbye...

"You know you don't have to go, Mr. Logan..."

"I would just be left hanging around here, you know? You have everything under control and you're on the right path, Mei! I was just a supporting character in your incredible adventure! And I thank you for making me feel like part of it..."

We hugged, I made my memory record that smell that was only hers as I stroked her dark hair. I ended up pulling a card from the Xavier Institute out of one of my pockets. I handed it to her, saying she could call me whenever she felt the need for a helping hand. Whether to talk or to act on some need of the village.

"I have a bad feeling about this disease, my friend! I don't think your plasma will work forever, and I don't believe it will end now... Did you feel something when the virus infected you?"

"I'm with you... The technicians talked about high mutation capacity. That way, it'll spread easily and we won't be able to contain it... I felt like every half-day it wanted to hit me in a different organ, you know? I felt it testing my weaknesses... Stalking me, like a good hunter!"

"Yes... It's an invisible hunter, and that makes us easy prey!"

"Don't worry! Live life and continue on your journey. Everything passes, girl! I've been through so much and I can affirm that, you know? We just have to do our best for ourselves and for those around us." I walked back to the city, sleeping along the way, and I noticed that the virus was spreading in that region. I heard several people talking about the success case of that hospital where SHIELD acted. That was very good, but I didn't know why they had stopped the intervention. I went to the address of the Landau, Luckman, and Lake (LLL) branch to get some money and a way to communicate with Nick.

He explained to me that the plasma stopped working due to a virus mutation, and if it was necessary to infect myself every week to get hyperimmune plasma, then it wasn't worth it. They were going to work with what they had, but he was very pessimistic about the behavior of this microorganism.

And that's how the months passed. A little panic, a little reality. People believe in who they can. Locked in their homes, they rely only on parts of the truth spoken by different people. Everyone tries to put together a patchwork blanket!...

I know some theories, but they wouldn't bring people back, so there's no reason to spread more doubt. My advice to everyone is the same as I gave to Mei. Take care of yourselves while living your lives, and above all, keep your minds optimistic. Everything will pass... And if we won't be able to laugh about it in the future because of the lives that were lost, we will be able to, at least, understand the message and live differently from what brought us to the present...

From the balcony of my room in Westchester, I watch another sunset; I light a cigar while the clouds seem to dance over me, making the landscape even better. I wonder how much Ororo has to do with this and smile, seeing several teenagers in the external areas of the School, enjoying their free time.

25 Avril 2024 22:10 0 Rapport Incorporer Suivre l’histoire
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A propos de l’auteur

Liura Sanchez Lauri Gosto do universo dos quadrinhos. Em especial aquele onde está inserido o Wolverine. Apesar de ter gostado de alguns filmes, os quadrinhos são mais ;)

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