2 The Donor (Part 2)

Over a month passed. Milena was aggrieved because she was unable to contact Andrew. She couldn't believe the man just left after sleeping with her and didn't give her a word.

There must be a reason...

Andy definitely isn't that kind of person... she bitterly thought.

***

In a beautiful house in a rural area in Surrey, a young man was reading in his begonia-adorned garden. A nurse came and prepared his food and medicines on a tray and put them on the table next to the young man.

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"Mr. Linden has arrived. He is waiting for you in the living room, Sir," the nurse informed him after she finished arranging the tray.

Andrew looked up from his book and frowned, "Who's Mr. Linden?"

"He is your best friend, Sir."

"Oh..." Andrew nodded. He knew that his illness was already at the most advanced stage, and it was only a matter of time until he forgot everyone. He took his medicines and walked into the living room.

There, a man in a neat suit was sitting on the sofa. He seemed to be in his late twenties.

"Hey, Tony... How are you?" Andrew greeted his best friend.

"Fine. I want to inform you that Milena has arrived in England. She thought she got a scholarship for art school in London sponsored by a company. I've arranged a trust fund for her education until she graduates. She'll never know that these are all from you."

"Milena? Who's Milena?" Andrew asked in puzzlement.

Tony wryly smiled. This was the third time he and Andrew had talked about the girl he loved and Andrew didn't remember her. As usual, he pulled out his cellphone and showed Milena's photos and videos.

Andrew looked at the cellphone that showed the face of the most beautiful girl he had ever seen, and instantly, tears ran down his cheeks.

He remembered now.

"Oh... Thank you, Tony. It would be easier to carry out the transplant procedure in England, so we need to find an excuse to bring her to London." Andrew nodded.

"But she keeps trying to find you, Andy. She often calls the company to ask about you. I just told her we don't know the person named Andrew Miller there."

"Good. I don't want Milena to know..."

"Hmm..." Tony looked upset. "I think she should know the truth someday. It's not fair for her if we keep hiding the truth... That you didn't leave her, that you gave her a new life by donating your heart, liver, and kidneys."

Andrew thought for a moment before slowly nodding, "You can give a letter from me to Milena three years after the transplant, and once she has lived happily, I'll explain everything."

Tony seemed relieved to hear that.

He wouldn't be able to accept it if Milena hated Andrew and thought of him as a jerk who just left her after bedding her, even though Andrew had sacrificed so much for her.

***

Andrew died a week later, and his organs were immediately donated to patients in need. Milena was surprised and grateful because as soon as she arrived in England, she immediately got the priority to get a transplant of three organs at once.

After the transplant operation took place, Milena took several months to recover and made sure her body didn't reject the new organs.

After Milena completely recovered, she resumed her studies at her art school in London, with the scholarship she thought she got from a company.

She still missed Andrew and kept trying to find him. After her health recovered, she was confident she could love the young man.

But unfortunately, Andrew vanished into thin air. She couldn't find any trace of him. It was as if the man never existed.

Milena could only keep her longing in her heart and forced herself to focus on her studies. As a scholarship student, she mustn't disappoint her sponsor.

***

THREE YEARS LATER

As a young painter who was considered a genius, the exhibition of Milena's works in Jakarta attracted a lot of attention from art enthusiasts. This was her second exhibition after her previous one in London.

On the opening night, the gallery in Central Jakarta was packed with hundreds of people, making Milena feel moved. She didn't think that there were so many art lovers in Indonesia who appreciated her works.

"Good evening, Miss Milena. The exhibition is quite interesting," a young man approached her with a warm smile. He spoke in English with a London accent. Ah... maybe this person is from England?

"Thank you," Milena nodded humbly.

"Hm... I have a gift for you." The man pulled out an envelope from his shirt pocket and handed it to Milena. She didn't think she knew this man to receive such a gift from him. The man quickly excused himself with a smile.

"Eh... What's this?" Puzzled, Milena opened the envelope and took out what was inside. It was a letter. Reading the first few sentences, her body immediately trembled.

She had to hold onto a wall so she didn't fall. Mustering her strength, she walked to the nearest chair and sat down, calming her palpitating heart.

She then reread the contents of the letter.

"Dear Milena,

How are you? If you're reading this letter, it means I'm already gone. Our encounter in Bandung three years ago wasn't a coincidence. I've been diagnosed with an incurable, late-stage brain tumor. Therefore, I wanted to at least be useful for others who are more worthy of life than I am.

I know that you're the only patient who matches with three of my organs, and you've been in and out of the hospital since you were a child. I can't imagine how it's like to live for decades with an illness like what you experienced. So I was curious. I wanted to know what the girl who would accept my organs was like… Whether she was worthy... If my sacrifice would mean anything. That's why I came to Bandung and pretended to be in need of an interpreter to explore the city.

When I got to know you, I discovered that you were really, truly worthy of life, Milena. I was amazed to see the joy and zest you showed every day. Despite all your limitations, sufferings, and illness, you never gave up. You still lived your life wholeheartedly. Every. Single. Day.

For you, carpe diem isn't a mere slogan. It's what you live! I was embarrassed because I used to blame the universe for my illness and gave up so easily once I knew I only had six months to live.

I then fell in love with you, really deeply... and I knew for myself, that I couldn't possibly have you because I wouldn't live for long.

But I'm still really happy, because even after I die, I can still be with you as part of you.

During these three years, I've been waking up with you every morning, sleeping with you every night, taking all your exams with you, accompanying you during your projects and exhibitions, crying whenever you cried, and laughing whenever you laughed.

I want you to be happy.

I hope you won't be sad when you find out the truth. I'm really happy to have met you. Keep your spirits up and stay amazing, okay?

Remember our conversation at that time?

Ten years from when we last met, I'll be in New York, Paris, and London seeing your painting exhibition. I'll travel the world with you and see the places you visit and write in your books. I'll often be in your studio and see you paint whenever I want.

I love you, Milena.

Andrew."

Milena couldn't hold back her streaming tears as she hugged the letter on her chest.

- End -

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