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Bay-Maxed

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“I finally finished it!” Hiro Hamada exclaimed to his robotic personal healthcare companion. He quickly hit the print button on his computer and grinned broadly as the pages of his final report began to spit out of the printer in his bedroom.

Baymax winked one beady eye and then another. “One should always finish what one starts,” he agreed approvingly. “I give you an A+ for effort.”

“Thanks, Baymax,” he returned appreciatively, “but I’m more anxious to see what Granville thinks.”

Baymax’s stomach displayed a few interesting charts. “Anxiety is detrimental and can in fact lead to several serious health problems.”

Hiro laughed. “It’s just an expression,” he explained as he hastily grabbed the stack of papers from his printer tray and rooted around in his desk drawers to find a suitable folder for his project.

“Fast movements can result in injury,” Baymax warned as office supplies rained down on him. “Might I suggest you slow down?”

Hiro rolled his eyes as he opened a three-ringed binder and set it on his desk. “I fight supervillains all the time without getting hurt. I think I can navigate my own bedroom with impunity.”

“Suit yourself,” the robot droned. He watched curiously as Hiro wedged the stack of papers in his hole punch and pressed down on the lever.

“If I get the funding for this proposal,” Hiro prattled with a gleam in his large brown eyes, “it could be the start of a whole new life for Big Hero Six. This new psychoanalyst robot will help us to accurately predict the movements of criminals. Do you know how much time that will s-owwww!”

Baymax waddled over to Hiro in concern. “You are hurt,” he stated.

Hiro frantically pushed at the lever to release the binder. With a satisfying click, it finally gave and released his thumb. “I think I broke it,” he whined, cradling the sore finger in his other hand.

“On a scale of 1-10, how do you rate your pain?”

“10!” screamed Hiro somewhat melodramatically. “Definitely 10!”

“You will need to uncover the wound if you wish me to assess its severity.”

Hiro narrowed his eyes and looked first at his closed fist and then his eager nurse. “Oh, alright,” he said as he reluctantly opened his left hand, exposing the swollen digit.

Baymax scanned it with his eyes and a high-definition x-ray appeared on his chest. “I detect a hairline fracture.”

“Great,” muttered Hiro, slapping his forehead with his uninjured hand.

“I suggest a spica cast and four-to-six weeks of rest,” Baymax continued, retrieving the required materials.

“Can’t you just put it in a splint?” Hiro argued, his eyes pleading. “I can’t be wearing a bulky cast for the next month! How will that work with my suit?”

Baymax scratched his round head with a squeaking sound. “Alright,” he conceded, “although that is not the recommended treatment.” He grabbed a roll of medical tape, some gauze, and a padded metal tube and began to wrap the thumb with great relish. When he was finished, Hiro’s thumb was four times its normal size and attached securely to the rest of his hand. “There,” he said sweetly. “Would you like a lollipop?”

Hiro gasped when he saw the gigantic white lump of gauze where his thumb used to be. “What am I supposed to do with this?” he demanded in exasperation.

“Wait for the body to heal itself,” his robot replied serenely.

“But I can’t move my hand at all,” Hiro protested, raking a hand through his messy black hair.

“That is the idea. Are you satisfied with your care?”

“Do I look satisfied?” Hiro said through gritted teeth.

Baymax surveyed his flustered patient for a moment. “No, you do not,” he admitted sadly. “How can I help you?”

Hiro gazed balefully at the bandaged finger, tears threatening to spill from his liquid brown eyes. He was a teenager now, for Pete’s sake. He should be able to pull himself together. Perhaps it was the added stress of having stayed awake the previous night to finish this project. Perhaps it was the fact that it was coming up on the first anniversary of Tadashi’s death. Whatever the reason, he just couldn’t help feeling sorry for himself. If he had only listened to Baymax and slowed down, this never would’ve happened.

Suddenly, his companion knew exactly what he needed. He leaned over and enveloped him in a soft, squishy hug. “Better?” he asked hopefully.

For a moment, Hiro could almost imagine that it was Tadashi himself comforting him instead of the bulky inflatable creature his elder brother had invented. Despite his physical and emotional pain, he couldn’t help a small smile. “Thanks, Baymax,” he whispered.

“You are most welcome.” He continued to look earnestly at Hiro, much to the young student’s confusion.

Finally, Hiro remembered what he was supposed to say. “I am satisfied with my care.”

Baymax seemed to nod as he returned to the corner of the room where he had been stationed previously. “Do not forget to pack your binder,” he reminded Hiro as he made his nightly preparations for bed.

“What would I do without you?” Hiro said fondly as he stashed the report in his bag for tomorrow.

“I do not know,” Baymax admitted, and Hiro laughed, happy to know that his brother would always be with him as long as he still had his last great invention to take care of him.