"Oooohhhhhhmmmm." Beck groaned, and swayed where she stood. "I'm queasy."|
"I haven't even gotten out the needle yet," the nurse protested.
"Uuuunnnhhh. Don't say needle!"
"Oh, for goodness sakes. Just sit down here and close your eyes." The nurse pushed on Beck's shoulders and the Deb went into the seat with a ker-plump. "I never saw anybody so squeamish in all my life. Relax now, I'm a professional."
"She sure is," said the doctor, slapping her rump as he passed by. The nurse whooped and swatted him playfully on the arm.
"Seriously. I beat out a good 50 applicants to get this job. She's one of 'em." She pointed with her gloved thumb toward the woman wielding the whip on axman, who was still gleefully taking his punishment. "Honestly, I don't know where these people come from."
Beck, watching the whipping with a mixture of horror and awe, was distracted just long enough for the one-second poke it took to get the IV into her arm. "Ow. Oh, is it over? That wasn't so bad."
"The needle's in, but it's not over." The doctor winked at her and spun the dial on the IV tube, letting the fluid rush down it and into Beck's veins. She felt the relative cold of the lethal juice, and then looked up as her vision began to fade. Things were fuzzy around the edges; light places were more bright, and shadows were much deeper. She could see the white masked faces studying her intently. They nodded in approval as they faded completely out of sight.
And that's how Beck lost her life this year.