Her limp was much less pronounced than it had been, but she’d had years of physiotherapy and learning to live with it to thank for that. Even still, a keen observer would be able the detect the slight dip in her hips whenever she took a step, and the way she favored her left leg whenever standing at rest.
The accident had shattered her pelvis, though describing it like that made it seem as though it had broken into a million pieces, like a ceramic plate tossed onto the kitchen floor in the heat of an argument. The bone had cracked and separated in three places, and the pain had been excruciating. Paralysing. Once her rescuers had peeled the remains of her subcompact car apart with their pneumatic jaws of life, she’d been removed from the wreck with as much care as humanly possible and strapped to an orange plastic backboard, the kind with fist-sized holes along its edges to allow for easy carrying. Rendered immobile, her lower body a universe of screaming pain, she’d been further strapped to a helicopter and airlifted to George Aphonse Memorial Hospital, where the finest bone surgeons in the state had attended to her horrific injuries. It had been the professional opinion of three of the four specialists who’d overseen her admission that she’d never walk again. It was the fourth doctor, Emil Merin, who’d rejected those opinions and recommended her for a controversial and experimental procedure that took advantage of the latest advancements in nanotechonolgy.
Tiny robots had been injected into her bloodstream, their preprogrammed routines propelling them to their destinations along the ragged edges of her destroyed pelvis, where they anchored themselves and began manufacturing the tools they’d need to re-knit her. The greatest objection raised had stemmed from a fear of a failure to contain the machines, both during their operation and after. Emil assured the family and insuring agents that the robots were only good for one thing, and that was the task they’d been assigned, and after they completed their work they became biologically inert and passed through the body like any other waste product.
Emil was a fantastic salesperson, and that made him an excellent liar.