SECOND OPINION • by Lee Beavington

“You got a lot of cholesterol in here. No more transfats for my sweetie.”

Angela grinned at him mockingly. “You made your way into my heart, and that’s all you have to say?”

Tony shifted the controls so the nanocam exited her right ventricle. On the screen in front of them they could now see the inside of Angela’s pulmonary artery.

“This is creepy. What if you find something weird growing in me?”

“I’ll equip the nanocam with a laser,” he joked.

Tony couldn’t help showing off the latest technology to his new wife. She was half his age, blonde, vivacious and made coming home from work an adventure in ecstasy. He had also poked inside her younger sister, Tamara, with more than a nanocam. One of the perks of being a wealthy doctor.

“Why’d you make me put on this godawful hospital gown?”

“I wanted to see you get changed.”

She smiled invitingly, breasts pointing up even though she was lying down. It seemed push-up bras had made a technological leap as well.

“We’re making our way towards the respiratory system…” The nanocam suddenly parted company with the blood cells and disappeared into the tiny air sacs of the alveoli.

“It’s inside your lungs! Quick, breathe in.”

Angela sucked in air. The nanocam crossed back over the alveolar membrane.

“All right. Let’s go back to the heart, and make our way down. Here we go… through the aorta… we’ll bypass the kidney, no need for us to be filtered… and leave the systemic circuit expressway. Now entering the reproductive system.”

“Hey! Stay away from my ovaries!”

“Your eggs are in good hands. We’re moving through the layered muscle of your uterus. During labour it’s the strongest organ in the human body.”

“How do you know so much about women’s privates?”

“The female reproductive tract has always fascinated me.”

“Enough poking around there.” Angela seemed genuinely annoyed. “Go someplace else.”

“Already arrived. It looks like you had spaghetti and meatballs for lunch.”

“I feel nauseous just knowing that thing is inside my stomach.”

“Let’s see… we’ve visited all the major systems but one: the nervous system.”

“Now you’re making me nervous.”

“Don’t worry. It’s perfectly safe.”

Tony guided the nanocam through the vertebrae, up the spinal cord and into a fluid-filled cavity inside the brain. On one side of the tissue was an unmistakable dark mass.

“What is that?” she said, trying to sound surprised.

Angela already knew the answer. A malignant brain tumour. You’ll likely be dead before you turn twenty-five.

“That’s… your pituitary gland.” Tony was suddenly overcome with emotion. “Angela…”


“I love you.”

“Liar. The pituitary gland is part of the endocrine system.” Tony stared at her. “You thought I didn’t know?”

“What are we talking about?”

“My sister and your money. Just so you know, Tamara’s getting my half. Then she’ll be settling somewhere in the Caribbean. Without you, I might add.” She glowered at him from the exam table. “Give me a second opinion. How long do I have?”

Tony’s hands were shaking. “Maybe a year.”

Angela pulled a set of papers from her handbag. She handed them to Tony.

“Long enough for the divorce to go through.”

Lee Beavington is a biology lab instructor and award-winning author. He is also a certified chocoholic and nature nut. In his spare time, he enjoys venturing around our big blue ball. In his creative time, he enjoys venturing well beyond the reaches of the known universe. He can’t seem to settle on any single genre, though he has had the most success with science fiction and memoir. Read his weekly bioflashes (100 word flash!) at

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