A Taste Of His Own Medicine

“Well, you look awful, “ I heard Libby say from the supply room.

“And a gracious good morning to you, my dear,” came the dulcet tones of Dr. Worth Burns. But they weren’t quite so dulcet this morning. In fact, he sounded a bit raspy. I walked into the storage room.

Before I go further, let me set the stage — I was a nurse practitioner in charge of the infirmary for a small, co-ed liberal arts college in the Carolinas. The infirmary building itself was an old house which had been divided. The first floor contained the reception area, a large examining area (we partitioned it with curtains into 4 smaller areas, but there was little privacy) connected to a bathroom, the kitchen and the supply room. The second floor consisted of 4 sleeping rooms each holding 4 students, two full baths, and a small office for me (closet is closer to the truth). The top level was what we euphemistically referred to as “the Penthouse.” It was actually just a small attic room with a bed, a window, a bathroom and the only privacy offered in the entire place. Try as we might, we could never get additional funding from the board to expand or renovate the infirmary. Instead we made do with curtained panels for any “private” procedures.

A doctor usually came in three days a week to see whatever students needed to be seen, but this doctor was fairly new. Young Dr. Burns had replaced old Dr. Postler about two months before when Dr. Postler retired. We thought it was wonderful — new doctor, new policies, a little more compassion for sick and scared children, many of whom were away from home for the first time. Unfortunately Dr. Burns had yet to develop compassion for the students. And there was one policy he should have changed that he didn’t — Dr. Postler’s policy on temperatures. “Rectal temps are the only way — they’re accurate and they don’t hurt a thing.” Of course, try telling that to a 18 or 19 year old who hasn’t had a rectal temp done on them since they were 5. We had outright violence break out in a few examining rooms because of that policy. BUT dear Dr. Burns was getting ready to be caught in his own policy. You see, we were in the middle of a German measles epidemic.

Worth Burns was actually a nice man. He stood about 5’ 8” and had a very lean look about him. He was in his early 30s, single, with black hair and ice blue eyes. Very striking. The female students just loved him and Libby, one of the nurses, had a tremendous crush on him. But back to the story.

When I saw Dr. Burns standing in the storage room, I did a double take. He looked unkempt (totally unlike him), tired and he had what looked like a bad sunburn on his face. Typical symptoms of German measles. “Lib, go make sure the penthouse has clean sheets on the bed, please,” I ordered. “Dr. Burns, you’ll come with me.” I lead him into the examining room. Fortunately we hadn’t started clinic yet, so it was empty.

“How many do we have scheduled today, Mel?” he asked.

“Six, but you’re not seeing anyone. You’re probably contagious.”

“What? Of course I’m going to see my patients.”

“Did you look in the mirror this morning, Worth? You are one sick boy and you’re feeling it. I can tell. Now, Libby and I will take care of clinic — we do on Tuesdays and Thursdays anyway — but first, I’m going to take a look at you. Now, I’ll give you the same choice I give the students — do you want to lie on the table or do you want to just lean on it while I take your temperature?”

“Mel, really. This isn’t necessary. If you insist, I’ll go home.”

“No, sweetie. You’re not going anywhere. You have Rubella and you’ll just stay here where someone can look after you.”

“Really, I’ll be fine at home. I’ll just go now.”

“Worth,” I said in my no nonsense voice that made even the biggest football players obey, “lie down on the table. On your tummy, like a good boy. You’re not going anywhere, at least not until we get a firm diagnosis.”

He undid his, belt pants and zipper, and lay on the table. I slid his pants and underwear down to mid-thigh. His skin was very hot, very blotchy and very dry. I reached for the thermometer, shook it down and lubricated it. He turned his head and watched me approach.

“Why do I think I’m not going to like this, “ Dr Burns began.

“Tell me this — when was the last time someone took your temperature rectally?” I asked as I spread his cheeks and placed the tip against his anus. About that time, Libby popped her head in the exam room.

“Oops, sorry. Did I interrupt something?” Libby looked pointedly at my hands on the good doctor’s backside.

“No, dear. You didn’t. I’m just examining Dr. Burns. What’s up?” I asked.

“You get to have all the fun,” Libby sighed. “Anyway, the penthouse is clean and ready, madam. Do we have an occupant?”

“Yes,” I said. “Dr. Burns.”

“WHAT?” the man in question bellowed, rearing up. Of course, that wasn’t such a smart move as it very effectively pushed the thermometer, that had just been sitting at the opening, deep into his rectum. He groaned and sank back on the table. “Oh, God.”

I quickly slid it back out, checking to make sure it was in one piece. “Are you all right? Do you feel any pain?”

“That thing just went half way to China into me and you want to know if I feel any pain? Yes, I feel pain.”

I removed his shoes and socks, slid his pants and underwear off (“What are you doing?”) and grabbed a pair of gloves and the lubricant. “Libby, pull on a pair of gloves, get me the small rectal speculum and come over here. Worth, honey, get up on your knees. I want to do an exam to make sure there’s no damage.”

Libby said, “Oh goody, I get to play, too, “ as Worth obediently got into position, placing his backside high in the air and his head and shoulders on the table. I think he realized at that point the seriousness of what had just happened. I put the gloves on, Libby lubricated my fingers and I just rubbed the rim of his anus until he started to relax. I slid one finger into his rectum, moving it in and out and around until the sphincter began to loosen a bit. I pushed it in as deeply as I could, despite the groan I heard, then slowly withdrew it. I had felt no tears, but there was a little blood and a visual examination would be better. Libby put more lubricant on my fingers, then I gently slid two fingers into him, to the sound of his “Oh, shit.”

“I certainly hope not.” I said to the accompaniment of Libby’s giggle. I moved those fingers in and out and around until his anus relaxed a bit more. Then I slowly withdrew them and turned to Libby. She handed me the speculum … lucky man, she’d warmed it while I warmed him. I held the speculum out for lubricant. “Are you ready for this?”

“Would it matter if I said ‘No’?”

“Not really. Ok, deep breaths and bear down a little. That’s it.” The speculum slid in with little trouble, despite his protests. I adjusted it, then opened it. “Worth, you can stop bearing down now. Let me just take a quick look. Libby, honey, hand me the flashlight.” I shined the light into the opening — no major damage, just a deep scratch, but any open cut in that area was subject to infection.

I looked at Libby, “I’ll need a Betadine swab and another with Neosporin.” Libby handed me a swab from the cabinet. I reached with the swab through the speculum and applied the iodine based antiseptic to the scratch. I withdrew that swab then reached through with another to place the ointment on the scratch. I motioned to Libby – “Look at this and note the location, Lib. We’ll need to put more ointment on it later.” I withdrew the swab, closed the speculum and withdrew it onto the pad that Libby held out for me. Worth let out a sigh and sank back on the table.

“No major damage, but there is a break in the mucosa which means we’ll need to keep that area clean for a while.” The good doctor had no idea to what I referred when I said “clean.” But I’m sure you, my good readers, know exactly what I was talking about.

Apparently Dr. Burns had decided that he’d had enough excitement for the day and started to remove himself from the table, being careful to keep his front side carefully hidden, as we’d already seen his backside. I began to hear students coming in the front. “Lib, go take care of them while I finish up here. Dr. Burns, where do you think you’re going?”

“Ahh, home. I’ll just go home and crawl in bed. If you like you can check on me later.”

“Worth, I have an infirmary full of students with German measles. You have been injured, however slightly, and require treatment. Now, we can get through this. Get back on the table and let me finish taking your temperature. And stay still this time.”

He crawled up on the table, giving me the ‘evil eye’ the entire time. He was already well lubricated, so I just lubed the thermometer a bit and inserted it. Not deeply, since I didn’t want it to hit the scratch, just barely deep enough to register. And I kept my hand on it to make sure.

“Mel, would you mind moving your hand, or rather removing it.”

“Yes, I would. Since I can’t insert this any deeper without hurting you, I really can’t remove my hand without you expelling the thermometer. You’ll just have to get used to it.” He sighed. The time passed very slowly, but finally it registered and I removed it. Oooh, 102.4 — he was one sick puppy. “Go ahead and put your pants back on. I want to look at your throat. It sounds as if it’s sore. Is it?”

“Yeah.” He got up, wrinkling his nose at the feeling between his cheeks. I handed him some tissues and removed my gloves. He replaced his pants as I washed my hands and came back with a tongue depressor and my trusty flashlight. I examined his throat. “Well?”

“Red, irritated, swollen … need I go on. You, sir, have German measles.”

“On what do you base your diagnosis, Mel?”

“Oh, it’s a test, is it …” And I explained.

He sighed again. “Ok, coach. Sign me up for the duration. The penthouse is it?”

I heard Libby yell. “Mel … you better get out here.”

I swiftly found my way into the reception area. “Oh no. We don’t need this.”

“What is it?” Worth asked as he stuck his head out the door.

“Chicken pox. Just what we really need. I have 8 girls and 7 boys, not including you, Doctor, in here already with measles. I only have two more beds. Worth, I’m afraid you just lost your private room. Libby, this one goes up to the penthouse. Get her settled in.”

“I’ll just go home.” The doctor said, backing toward the door.

“Worth, do I have to hog-tie you? Take yourself up to room 4. I’ll be in to settle you in a few minutes.”

I got the students that were there filling out the paperwork (we were down to 3) and started up the stairs. I paused at the closet at the top of the stairs to remove 2 “new patient” kits which consisted of a 2 hospital gowns, toothbrush and toothpaste, a thermometer kit and a shaving/hygiene kit. I called to Libby to come get one and took the other into room 4. The good doctor was perched on the edge of the bed, looking as if the world were about to end. The three students already camped in that room looked at him curiously. I pulled the curtain around his bed and handed Worth the gown. “Make this easy on me, please. Change into the gown and don’t make me wrestle you into it. You’d lose. I’ll be back in a few minutes.” I walked up to the Penthouse to check on Libby’s progress and listened as she explained the house rules to that particular patient. Then I went back to mine.

Dr. Burns was in the bed when I came in, with the curtains still pulled around the bed. I stepped inside and sat on the edge of the bed. “I’m going to explain the house rules to you as if you were a student. I’m sure you know what they are, but since this is your first stay with us, I think a refresher is in order. Since we’re under quarantine, there are no visiting hours. All your meals will be served in your room – breakfast at 8 a.m., lunch at 1 p.m., dinner at 6 p.m. and you’ll get a bed time snack. You can also have juice or a softdrink at any time, if you ask. Lights out is at 10:00 p.m. Temperatures are taken every four hours, more often if your temp is way up, as yours is. And all temperatures are taken rectally. No exceptions. Any questions? No? We’ll take good care of you, Worth. Just rest and relax. You’ll be fine.”

I stood to leave and then stopped. I thought it might be a good idea to warn him of what was to come due to his injury. I sat back down and took his hand. “Worth, you do know that with the injury you sustained, you could do additional damage by, ummmm, straining?” He nodded. “So you also know that the best way to keep you from doing that would be to keep you cleaned out?” He winced and nodded again. “Good. I’ll send Libby up after clinic to give you an enema.”

“Melli, if you don’t mind, I’d rather you did it. The enema, the temps, the ointment, everything.”

“Gee, Doctor. I’m flattered. You have a deal on everything except the temps. I’m not here 24 hours a day, you know. And when I’m not, you’ll have to make do with whoever is here.”

“Who’s on night duty?”

“Mrs. MacIntyre.” He groaned. Mrs. MacIntyre was a very nice person, a very competent nurse, but not a very gentle one. “However, with a full house around here, I may have to see about a second night nurse for a few nights.” I squeezed his hand as I stood to leave. “Go to sleep, Worth. I’ll be in to check on you later.”

I squeezed his hand as I stood to leave. “Go to sleep, Worth. I’ll be in to check on you later.”

The clinic was fairly uneventful. No more measles or chicken pox. Just a rash, an allergy shot, a follow up on a bladder infection, and a few sprains and strains. I glanced at my watch and was just about to go up to check temperatures on those patients running a high fever — every 2 hours for them — when an emergency came in … a soccer player who took a high kick to the collar bone. I sent Libby upstairs to do that while I dealt with our emergency. Since we were not equipped to set broken bones, and that was what we had, I notified the hospital that a student was on his way and sent him with our receptionist for x-rays and a cast. Then I checked the charts.

“Libby! You didn’t record Dr. Burns’ temp. What was it?”

“How should I know? He wouldn’t let me check. Said you’d promised you’d ‘attend to it’ while you were here.”

“Damn. I forgot about that. His temp will have to wait until we check at lunchtime. Another thing I have to ‘attend to’ is his enema. I promised I’d take care of that, as well.”

“Geez, Mel. You get to do all the fun things,” Libby sighed.

I gave her an evil grin. “Oh, don’t worry, Lib. You’ll get to have fun. You know we’ve been trying to change the ‘Postler Policy” and it looks like dear, sweet Dr. Burns will be instrumental in getting that taken care of for us. I’ll allow him his privacy for procedures, like his upcoming enema, but that little curtain will be non-existent during temperature checks.”

Libby smiled. “And of course you’ll have to sit right next to him and hold the thermometer in, since the poor baby hurt himself. God, Melli, why don’t you just put him over your lap? I think you’d both enjoy it immensely.”

“Lib, the point is not to make him enjoy it. The point is to make him experience the embarassment the kids do when we abide by the Postler Policy and take rectal temps. So, Libby - - why don’t you go prepare for the good doctor’s enema while I finish up the paperwork.”

“Ooooh, can I use the pumpkin and can I carry the supplies in? I want to see his face when he sees it.”

“Yes and yes. Nothing in the water except salt and make sure you sit with him until I get up there. Give me about ten minutes. And, Libby – don’t start without me.”

“Aye aye sir!” Libby saluted and ran up the stairs.

I chuckled to myself and finished the paperwork required to transfer our soccer player to the hospital. It took almost the entire ten minutes. Then I quietly climbed the stairs to check on Libby and our patient. I stepped through the doorway with my finger to my lips. The boys looked at me with huge grins on their faces. I had forgotten that the doctor had the far bed — the one closest to the window and farthest from the door – so I’m sure the boys had a good look at the supply cart as it made its way to his bed. Then I heard Worth’s voice from within the privacy curtain …

“No, Libby!!”

“Oh, come on Dr. Burns. I’ll be very gentle with you … “

“I’ll wait for your supervisor, thank you very much.”

“Oh, but you won’t enjoy it half as much with Melli giving it. And Mel wouldn’t enjoy it half as much as I would.”

Stifling a giggle, I stepped inside the curtain. “That’s enough, Elizabeth. Thank you. I’ll take it from here.” I said in my most professional nurse’s voice.

“You’re welcome, Mrs. Jacobs. Are you sure you don’t need me to assist you?”

“Thank you, Libby. I’ll try it by myself first, but if I have trouble with our patient I’ll let you know.”

“Ok, Mel. But if you need me, just whistle …”

I could hear Libby and the boys finishing that little quote in unison as she left the room … “You know how to whistle, don’t you? You just put your lips together …. “ I gave in to my giggle and turned back to the doctor. He was staring in horror at the big blue pumpkin hanging from the pole, full to overflowing. I wasn’t planning to use that much water, but I’m sure Libby filled it for effect. I looked at the supplies she had put together … gloves, two disposable rectal tubes with a third one connected to the tubing running from the enema bag, a pitcher, a small rectal speculum, two swabs, a stack of gauze pads, a tube of ointment and a large tube of KY jelly sitting in a pan of warm water. I reached for the tubing and bled the air out of it into the pitcher. That got the attention of Dr. Burns.

“Worth, are you ready?” I heard him swallow, but he didn’t answer. “Worth? Honey, have you ever had an enema?”

He nodded and swallowed again. “Not more than once, I’d guess.” He shook his head, still not saying anything.

“Ok, sweetheart, I’ll explain everything as I go along and we’ll take it slow and easy. I need you to take off your briefs, okay? Good. First I’m going to flatten out your bed and I want you to lay on your left side. No, Worth, your other left. That’s good. Now pull your top leg up to your chest. That’s right. Feeling a little wobbly? Turn partly onto your chest. Yes, just like that. Ok, honey, you’re set.”

I untied the bottom two ties on his gown and folded the flaps back. As I pulled on my gloves I admired his backside. I didn’t notice before, but the man had a great ass. Slim and firm, with those little dimples in the muscles that I’d always admired but never had, and just slightly furred, so that you knew if you touched it, it would be soft, like velvet on steel. I put some KY on my finger. “Ok, Worth, I’m going to lubricate you like I did earlier. Ready?” He just shuddered. I placed the tip of my finger at his anus and massaged it a bit. “Darlin’, I’ll try not to hurt you, but you’re gonna break my finger if you don’t relax a little bit. Thaaat’s better.”

I slipped my finger into him and moved it around, slid it partly out so that I could apply a little more lubricant, then slid it back in to lubricate every nook and cranny. He groaned. I didn’t ask if I was hurting him. I could see from the way his sac had drawn up with that little ridge behind it that he was becoming aroused from the attention. I ignored it and withdrew my finger.

“Now the tube,” I said as I lubricated the rectal tube. I once again bled the air and cooling water from it and placed it at the entrance. “Ok, Worth, take a deep breath aaand it’s in. I’m going to start the water flowing.” I unclamped the tubing and watched as Worth first jumped, then clamped his legs together as much as one could in that position. I had gauged the initial insertion so that the tube was just past the internal sphincter as I didn’t want to scrape the spot we were trying to heal with the rectal tube. But, with the water flowing, it would keep the colon wall away from the end of the tube enough so I could advance it without fear. Which I did, until there was about 10 inches of tubing in him.

“For the love of God, Mel. What are you doing?”

“It speaks!! Remember your anatomy? I just advanced tube further into the colon. It makes the enema a little easier to take, sweetheart. Less pressure on the rectum which will help keep the urge to evacuate at bay.”

“Jesus, I don’t feel as if I have to evacuate. I feel … oh God … it feels …”

“Sshhh, Worth. It’s okay. Just relax. You’re doing fine.” I looked up at the bag. Less than a quarter of it gone. “If you start to feel full or cramp, just say. Ok?” I rubbed his hip and the small of his back. And he calmed down. More minutes passed.

“Mel? I’m feeling full.”

I clamped the tube and looked at the bag again. About a third gone. “Roll back on your back, sweetie.” He did and I massaged his abdomen. “Better?” He nodded. “Ok, roll back over. Just a little more and you’re done.” I unclamped the tube again and restarted the flow. When he’d taken a little more than half the bag, I clamped the tube. “Worth, I’m gonna remove the tube. When you feel the urge, get up and go. Don’t push, though. Let it come naturally. When the stuff wants to come out, let it out. Ok?” I withdrew the tube onto a Kleenex and deposited into the waste basket. Then I stepped back as Worth stampeded into the bathroom.

He came out about 10 minutes later. I was waiting at his bed. He smiled and climbed back into bed.

I shook my head. “Worth? One more thing before you settle in for a nap …” He looked at me. I thought he was going to cry. “Come on, up on your knees. I’ll do this as quickly as I can without hurting you.” He assumed the position. While he had been in the bathroom, I had headed back downstairs for a tube of Preparation H, and I lubricated the speculum with it. Good thing, too. He was sore. I lubricated his bottom and slid the speculum in, applied the ointment to the scratch and slid the speculum back out. “All done,” I said as I removed my gloves. He lay face down on the bed for a few minutes, then reached for his briefs.

I glanced at my watch. “You may as well leave those off, dear. Lunch is in an hour and a half. We’ll be taking your temperature shortly before that. “

He looked at me and closed his eyes. Then he crawled under the covers and pulled them up over his head. I reached for them and folded them back under his chin. Then I smoothed his hair out of his eyes and smiled at him. “You’ll be okay, Worth. I’ll let you out in 3 days. You’ll endure until then. Now go to sleep.”

Moving to my office, I contacted the school’s budget office to see if I could get approval for temporary nursing staff for the next few nights. They approved one additional staff member for 3 nights. It would have to do. I contacted a local medical temporary staffing agency who found me an LPN to work 8pm to 4am. Great … nights were rather quiet, even with a full house .

I had begun work on the massive amount of paperwork the college requires for any temporary hire when the phone rang. It was Mrs. MacIntyre. Her daughter had been in an accident in a neighboring town and Mrs. Mac was needed to go stay with the children for several days. I couldn’t say no to that, so I said “No problem.”

I called the budget office again and explained the situation … but no go. This required some thinking. I called Libby up from restocking the exam rooms and explained the situation. Then I picked up the phone and called Rita, our afternoon nurse. (Mrs. Mac worked midnight to 8:30, Libby worked 7:30 to 4, Rita from 3:30 to midnight, me from 9:30am to 6:30pm.) While Mrs Mac was out, we would have to alternate double shifts. I agreed to take that night, Rita would take the next and Libby would take the third. With that settled, I glanced again at my watch. Lunch would arrive in 15 minutes. Time to take temperatures. “Libby, take rooms 1 & 2. I’ve got 3 and 4.” That gave each of us one room full of boys and one of girls. I hit the girls’ room first.

“Ok, ladies. It’s time.” I announced as I stepped into the room. To the accompaniment of groans, each of the girls rolled onto her tummy. I quickly went around the room, removing panties to mid thigh, lubricating and inserting thermometers into not-so-willing bottoms, talking to the girls and asking if anyone was having any particular problems. (“I don’t know, Mrs. J. Can you make my boyfriend call here?”) One admitted to being a little “stopped up.”

“Head or tail, Jen?”

Jennifer, a pretty, dark-haired, dark eyed junior, blushed. “Tail, Mrs. J. Can you help?”

“Of course, sweetie. I’ll come talk to you after lunch and give you your options. Ok?”

“Thanks, Mrs. J.”

I removed the thermometers, recorded the readings and cleaned everything (and everyone) up for the next round. Then moved on to the next room.

“Bottoms up, boys!” The same groans accompanied my stepping into the room, as well as a shocked gasp as I opened the privacy curtain from around the Dr. Burns’ bed. Once again, the students knew the routine and rolled over. The good doctor stayed on his back. Two of the more enterprising students had already moved their underwear down to mid-thigh so I didn’t have to do it. I lubricated the thermometers and smoothly slid them in. The third student played a sort of game. You see, he was rather well endowed and he like to see if the nurses could get his underwear down without catching anything. He was also one that got aroused about the time one of the nurses walked through the door when it was temperature time. Me, not being shy at all, told him to pick up his hips, slipped my hand into the front of his briefs, pinning his erect cock to his belly, and slid his underwear down.

“Oh, Mrs. J, you do that so good.” he said as I lubricated him and slid the thermometer in.

“Thank you, Ramon. Now quit wiggling or it won’t register correctly.

“Then you’ll do it again?”

“Not me. I’ll send in Libby “

He grimaced, then grinned and stopped squirming on the bed. I moved to the doctor’s bed. He was still lying on his back, looking with horror over the scene in the room. “Worth, either turn up on your side, or roll over on your tummy so I can take your temperature.”

“Mel, could you pull the curtain? Please?” He asked as he rolled to his stomach. As I had advised, he hadn’t replaced his underwear.

“Normally, since you asked so nicely, I’d do as you requested,” I said as I lubricated first his rectum (he drew in his breath as I did), then the thermometer. “But I want you to have the full experience from the student’s point of view.”

I spread his cheeks with my left hand and deftly inserted the thermometer, but not deeply, with my right. “Besides a rectal temp never hurt anyone and what’s a little embarrassment between friends.” I parked next to him on the bed and kept my hand on his backside with the thermometer protruding from between two fingers. I chatted with the boys, once again asking about problems (“No, Ramon. I won’t take care of your problem. Don’t ask again.”) but no takers. When time was up, I withdrew the thermometer from Worth’s rectum, eliciting another deep indrawing of breath, patted his bottom and handed him his briefs and a few tissues, then turned to the boys.

I withdrew the thermometer from the two well-behaved students and recorded the results. Ramon I left for last. As I extracted the thermometer, Ramon squirmed back and forth on the bed, then jumped up and headed for the bathroom. Since this was his usual routine, I didn’t pay any attention even when I heard the rhythmic grunting coming from the bathroom. I just shook my head, recorded the temps — Dr. Burns was still running a high fever — and left the room.

“Lunch is served.” Libby announced as she started bringing trays in. I gave her a hand, then called the hospital to check on our soccer player — he’d be out for the season. After the lunch trays were cleared, I went upstairs to talk to Jennifer.

I pulled the curtains around the bed when I went in. It wasn’t sound proof, but it did give the illusion of privacy. I had her lay flat on her back and palpated her abdomen. Sure enough. I could feel a series of little lumps that shouldn’t have been there. Jennifer was due to be let out of the infirmary the next day, so when I laid out the options for “unstopping” her, I made a few recommendations. “Ok, sweetie, here’s what we can do. I can give you a laxative. The good part of that is it’s oral. You can take it now with water or juice. The bad part is it’s unpredictable. It may work today, which is fine since you’re within 5 steps of the bathroom. Or it may work tomorrow, which means you better stick close to your room, just in case.”

“I don’t think I’d like that, Mrs. J. What else?”

“Suppository? It’s like a pill, only …”

“I know what a suppository is, Mrs. J,” Jennifer said, blushing. “I tried one the last time I was stopped up. It didn’t work.”

“What worked the last time you were stopped up?”

Jennifer blushed again. “Well, my mother was here visiting and she gave me an enema. It worked.”

“A Fleet or something else?”

“She used her douche syringe.”

“Good. Well, an enema was your third option. I think I know what your choice will be.” Jennifer nodded. “I’ll go prepare one and be back up in five minutes. In the meantime, get out of your panties. Ok?”

I went downstairs and, for the second time that day, went into the enema supplies. Libby came and looked over my shoulder. “Looking for anything in particular, or just shopping?” she quipped as I stood there examining the equipment indecisively.

“Jennifer needs an enema. I’m just trying to decide what to use.”

“Oooh, let me pick,” Libby cooed, reaching into the supplies. “Jennifer seems to need an enema every time she stays with us, so try this.” Libby handed me an open-top 2 quart bag, a length of natural rubber tubing and an olive-shaped nozzle, as well as placing a large dollop of Vaseline in a disposable plastic cup. “That should do it.”

“I bow to your greater knowledge, Lib.” She was the one that stocked the enema supplies. “Do you want to do this? You seem to enjoy it so much.”

“No, no. You go ahead. Unless, of course, Ramon needs an enema or perhaps Dr. Buns?”

“Libby!! You mean Dr. Burns.”

“I said what I meant and I meant what I said. That’s what the boys are now calling him.”

I giggled. “God. He’ll never forgive me. He was so embarrassed. And now this.”

“Well, maybe, now that he knows how humiliating it can be, unless you’re Ramon, he’ll change that policy.”

“In the meantime, he’s going to get a taste of his own medicine. But maybe I’ll pull the curtain from now on.”

“Oh, darn. And I was so hoping to get to see the show.”

I laughed at Libby and proceeded to fill a large pitcher with warm water and salt. I didn’t use soap or any other irritant, because I really didn’t believe that Jennifer needed it, just the addition of water to soften things up and get them moving. I put the pitcher, and everything else Libby had handed me, on a tray, after connecting the bag to the nozzle via the tubing, and took it up the stairs. I could hear Libby teasing the boys in Room 2 as I set the tray on Jen’s bedside table. “Ok, sweetheart, on your hands and knees, please.” I said to Jennifer.

Jennifer looked with wide eyes at the equipment assembled on the tray. “You’re going to put all of that in me?” Notice she said nothing about the odd nozzle, just the quantity of water in the pitcher.

“Probably not, Jen. Just what you can comfortably take. Oh, rats. I forgot the stand. Relax for a minute.” I walked into Room 4 to get the stand. I noticed the boys napping or reading and the doctor sound asleep in his bed. I snagged the stand and quietly drew the curtain around his bed.

“Mrs. J. Is the doctor really sick?” asked one of the students, as I was leaving the room. I nodded and put my fingers to my lips. “Ok, we’ll be quiet and let him sleep.”

I wheeled the stand back into Room 3. Jennifer was sitting on the edge of the bed. “Are you ready, Jen? You only need to be on your hands and knees while I insert the nozzle, then you can lay on your side if you like.” I hung the bag on the stand, adjusting the height, and filled it, bleeding the air and a little water back into the pitcher when I was done. Jennifer got up on her hands and knees. “Rest your head and chest on the bed, baby. That’s it.” I slipped on my gloves and dipped a finger into the Vaseline. “Ok, sweetheart, I’m going to lubricate you so everything will go in easier.”

Jennifer giggled, “I thought you were doing this so everything will come out easier.”

“That, too. Now, this will feel a little funny.” I said, as I placed my finger against her exposed anus. Jennifer shivered a little as I circled her anus with the greased finger, pressing in a little with each circle. I put more Vaseline on my finger and slid it full length into her. She squeeked a little as I did it, but it didn’t sound as if she was hurt. I moved the finger around, careful to lubricate every crease and crevasse.

“Ok, now the tip. I need you to bear down a little. Ready?” I placed the olive-shaped nozzle at her entrance and began to press it in. Her anus resisted for just a moment and then, to my surprise, it slipped in. “Are you okay?” She nodded and sighed. “Do you want to move to your side? Ok, let me help.” I arranged Jennifer on her side with her top leg drawn up to her chest. “Are you comfortable that way? Why don’t you move more onto your stomach, honey?” She did. “Ok, I’m starting the water. Let me know when you start to feel full or uncomfortable.” I undid the clamp and started the water flowing.

I pulled her gown over her backside, but kept a hand resting on her hip. I expected Jennifer to say something to me well before the first quart went in. She didn’t. I could tell when a cramp hit her because she would stiffen first, then move her hips against the bed. With half gone, Jennifer spoke up.

“Can we stop for a minute.”

“Sure thing, honey.” I clamped the bag and reached over to massage her stomach for a minute or two. “Better? Good. Shall I restart the water?” At Jennifer’s nod, I unclamped the bag. The rest went in with not a peep out of my patient. “All done, sweetheart. I’m going to remove the tube. You need to hold this as long as you can. Then hit the bathroom.”

“Yes, Mrs. J. And thank you.”

“You’re welcome, Jen.” I removed the nozzle, took off my gloves, and packed up my supplies, replacing them on the tray. I took the tray downstairs, washed up, then came back up to move the stand back into Room 4. As I placed the stand outside the curtained off portion of the room, I heard Ramon snicker. I walked over to his bed and put on my stern nurse’s face. “And when was the last time you had a BM, Ramon?” His grin froze and he mumbled something I couldn’t hear. “Then maybe I should send Libby up to give you an enema, as well?”

“No ma’am. I don’t need one.”

“Then behave yourself. I don’t want to hear any more snickers from you. Got it?”

“Yes, ma’am.”

I peeked into the curtained off sleeping area. Dr. “Buns” was still asleep, this time on his stomach. The covers had been pushed down to the bottom of the bed and his gown was open in the back, exposing his briefs stretched tight over his firm backside. One hand was tucked into the top of his briefs and, for some reason, it reminded me of my son. Perhaps it was the boyish looking face in repose, or the bare legs. But I stepped inside, pulled the covers up and kissed his forehead as he slept. He stirred a little then slipped deeper into sleep. He was still tremendously hot, but the sleep was more important now. I’d let him sleep another hour before I checked his temp again.

I peeked into the curtained off sleeping area. Dr. “Buns” was still asleep, this time on his stomach. The covers had been pushed down to the bottom of the bed and his gown was open in the back, exposing his briefs stretched tight over his firm backside. One hand was tucked into the top of his briefs and, for some reason, it reminded me of my son. Perhaps it was the boyish looking face in repose, or the bare legs. But I stepped inside, pulled the covers up and kissed his forehead as he slept. He stirred a little then slipped deeper into sleep. He was still tremendously hot, but sleep was more important now. I’d let him sleep another hour before I checked his temp again.

The hour passed quickly, with supply orders, paperwork and more paperwork. Libby stuck her head in the door to let me know she was going to check on “the Chicken Pox” (medical personnel have a horrible habit of referring to patients by their diagnosis, rather than their name) and was there anything else I needed her to do. I thanked her for reminding me of the time and headed to check on the good doctor.

I could tell Dr. Burns was still asleep before I stepped into the curtained area. His snoring could be heard from the hallway. During the hour since I’d left him, he’d rolled up on his side and curled up into a little ball. Not a bad position for my convenience, as it left his backside accessible and I didn’t want to wake him, but there would be less chance of him rolling back on me if I rolled him to his tummy. Before trying to move the man, I gently slid his briefs off his backside and down his legs — not an easy maneuver but I managed. When I had his briefs almost off, he stirred, turning himself onto his stomach in a sprawl, which exposed his anus quite nicely.

I smiled to myself — he was making this very easy for me — as I slid his briefs off. I gently lubricated his rectum and heard him whimper in his sleep. A small frown formed between the doctor’s brows, but he was still asleep. As I lubricated the thermometer, I sat on the edge of the bed even with his hips. As gently as I possibly could, I slipped the thermometer into his rectum. The sensation apparently disturbed him, as he began to stir. Keeping my right hand on his bottom with the thermometer between my fingers, I reached up and massaged the back of his neck with my left. “Sshhh. Hush, darlin’. Go back to sleep.”

“Mel?” he queried, sleepily.

“Yes, Worth. It’s me.”

“Oh God. What are you doing to me?”

“Hush, honey. I’m just taking your temperature.”

“Rectally again?”

“It’s your policy.”

He was quiet as I continued to massage his neck and hold the thermometer in place.

“You pulled the curtain.”

“I thought you deserved a little privacy.”

“You figured once was enough.”

“I figured you’re an educated man and I didn’t need to rub your nose in it.”

“Or any other part of my anatomy? You think I should change the policy.” Since it wasn’t a question I didn’t bother to answer and he went on. “But rectal temps are the most accurate. Surely you know that.”

“Rectal temps have their place. But not all the time, every time.”

“So how would you change the policy? Don’t stop. That feels good.”

I had stopped massaging his neck. Since time was up, I withdrew the thermometer and patted his bottom as I did. I read it — still over 102 — cleaned it and put it away. Worth was still sprawled on his stomach. I pulled the covers up to his waist and reached for the hand lotion on the bedside table. I untied his gown and separated the back, put lotion on my hands and rubbed them together to warm it, and started rubbing his back.

“First, Worth, oral temps at clinic, unless the student can’t breath or is vomiting or coughing up a lung . If the oral temp indicates a temp over 101, we’d confirm it with a rectal temp at the discretion of the nurse. Second, inmates in the infirmary would only have rectal temps if they’re running a high fever — like you — and we’d check it at least every 2 hours as we do now, rectally until the fever comes down. “

“You think that’s the best policy?”

“It’s my best. It’ll save the students some embarrassment and it might even save the school a workman’s compensation suit. If I get knocked over by one more football player running for the door when he finds out he has to take his pants down … “

Worth laughed. “Ok, so the policy is changed effective immediately. “

“Actually it’ll have to wait until we purchase some oral thermometers. Or at least clean and sterilize some of the ones we have. You need to go back to sleep.”

“Yeah,” he mumbled drowsily. “How much time do I have?”

“Two hours before I’m back with the thermometer again.”

“Ok, I’ll see you then …” and with that, he was asleep.

I sent our receptionist out to the local drug store to pick up a twenty oral thermometers and paid for them out of my own pocket, as well as changing my supply order to include oral thermometers. Dr. Burns stayed with us for two more days and his fever didn’t abate until 10 o’clock the next morning, which of course meant he submitted to the rectal thermometer about 9 more times. Oh, and he got another enema before we turned him loose — Libby finally got her hands on the doctor’s bottom — with a bulb syringe over Libby’s lap.

But that’s another story …