Chapter 55 Limited Modality
I really should start a disclaimer that will explain some odd non-consequential fact about the chapter title or some interesting theme I'm going to write about in this chapter. Or I could go for the humor effect find something I find funny expand on it until it becomes imbecilic beyond measure then claim some common Venereal Disease as its cause. Of course I could always point you to a prior chapter because there is no doubt at some other time I was more creative or thoughtful about the disclaimer. I guess I'll go with the odd non-consequential title. The word modality has many meanings depending on the field or discipline it is being used to describe. But for Sheldon Cooper and Leonard Hoftstader it's about logic so here is Sheldon's definition of Logical Modality: The classification of propositions on the basis of whether they assert or deny the possibility, impossibility, contingency, or necessity of their content. Now you should think about it for a bit and hold onto it throughout the chapter tonight. In the end it will all become clear and there will be a quiz at the reunion.
Non Logical Equations
Sheldon stared at his electronic white board knowing Raj was looking at the same thing in his office. The two boards were slaved together via high speed networking. There was another large LCD monitor showing Raj staring at his board so they could converse. Neither had actually said anything in over 20 minutes but did make minute adjustments to the board.
Leonard walked into Sheldon's office unacknowledged by either of them. Finally Sheldon looked over at him. "Isn't this technology wonderful what did we ever do without it." Leonard just shook his head, "We stood in the same room and looked at a regular white board of course." Leonard looked over at the Raj display, "Hey Raj can you come in here for a minute?"
Raj came in through a side door from his adjoining office. Leonard walked to the white board, "Obviously Jean Luke Picard against the Borg was good but the Wrath of Kahn is still the classic." He took the red marker and circled that title. "How long have you two been at this?"
Raj blushed, "We're just checking out the equipment really, less than an hour I would think."
Leonard smiled and shook his head again. He understood down time for theorists it was as important as in your head time. It could trigger bigger things. "I got you 10 more hours a week of super computer time. Try not to use it playing 3 dimensional chess again and Kripke won't have a fit."
Leonard could have sent this news in an email, he was really there to observe Sheldon for a minute and talk to Raj in private. "Raj I have some paper work I need you to sign in my office it certainly appears you have time."
Raj nodded his head and followed Leonard out.
Once inside his office Leonard pointed Raj to a seat at the conference table and closed the door. He took a chair across from him and looked at the Indian astrophysicist.
"Raj did you notice Sheldon's hand shaking at lunch yesterday?"
"Once you pointed it out, why do you ask?"
"I don't know yet but it was odd, I lived with Sheldon for a lot of years. He had lots of little tics and odd mannerisms especially when he was upset or hiding something but he never shook like that. I'm worried that tremor yesterday may be the sign of something larger"
Raj got it immediately, "Parkinson's?"
Leonard nodded his head, "You know how he gets about medical issues. It may have been nothing but you spend the most time with him now. I want you to observe him closely, look for another tremor. See if he rolls his thumb and index finger together without knowing it. Any balance issues or freezing up when he moves. Look for all the classic signs I'll send you an email with a link to the Mayo Clinic site."
Raj sat very still. Leonard could see he was getting emotional. "Hey it may be nothing and we keep this between us. Nobody else unless we see something then we'll go to Amy."
Raj nodded, "Cow I hope it's not Parkinson's, or early onset dementia. I'll keep a close watch on him."
"Well not too close when you're together just be observant, it could be a lot of things at this point."
Leonard held his hand out and Raj shook it.
Raj got up and headed for the door, "I'll look for your email."
Leonard sat back down as Raj closed the door and stared at the group photo of them all on the far wall. He did something he rarely did. He slammed his fist on the table in frustration. If it was anybody else but Sheldon he'd just have a talk with them. Advise them to see their physician and get it checked out.
Mrs. Perry stuck here head in the door, "Is everything alright Dr. Hoftstader?"
Leonard recovered quickly, "I just slipped and hit the table Phyllis. Could you please bring me a cup of tea?"
A hot beverage was definitely called for.
Blankets and Bottles
Penny sat on the couch by the fireplace with Matisse in the small slowly swinging bassinette on coffee table in front of her. Her breasts finally didn't feel swollen after feeding the baby then using the breast pump. She had 3 bottles of breast milk in the refrigerator and felt pretty happy about that.
Chelsea had just left to do her errands for the day and for the first time today she was alone with the baby. She smiled over at her and felt that warm glow she had always felt around Leonard and Lisel. That warm connection you have to someone that filled you with warmth and contentment. She was a mommy at heart she now knew. She probably always had been. The feeling that you had to care for the people around you ran very deep. She thought of Sheldon and choked up. My Moonpie can't be sick, at least not with anything Soft Kitty couldn't fix. The baby moved and distracted her. She picked Matisse up and held her making small cooing noises and rocking her back and forth. Her phone on the table buzzed with a text. It was from Leonard and only said two words, "Coming Home".
Penny knew Leonard was home when the dogs jumped up and rocketed toward the utility room to the garage. Penny got up and met him in the kitchen with the baby in her arms. She could tell he was upset. His body language showed anxiety and pain. Penny held her free hand out to him.
He took it and she pulled him into a hug kissing his neck as she held the baby beside them. He just held her for what seemed like minutes. He finally pulled back and gave her a weak smile. "That's what I needed that's why I came home."
"What happened, did Sheldon have another tremor?"
Leonard still had hold of her hand and led her to the kitchen counter where they both sat down. He touched the baby's head and smiled softly at her. "I've got Raj keeping an eye on him looking for any symptoms. Then I made a phone call to Mary and asked her if anyone else in the family has ever had Parkinson's. She broke down on the phone and you know how tough a lady she is. Her brother had it and a cousin on her side. It doesn't change the numbers much 4 to 6 percent more of a chance of getting it. It's still way under a 10 percent that it's Parkinson's. After talking to and calming down Mary I told her I'd watch him and let her know. I was just too emotional to stay there I needed you. I needed to come home and be with you for a while.
Penny felt tears spring to her eyes. She should already know these things but Leonard never put it in those terms. She was his safe harbor as well as he was hers. For about the thousandth time she was thankful for having this man back in her life. Oh my, she thought Leonard and the girls are my life now. She leaned over and hugged Leonard harder with her free hand. She pulled back and kissed him sweetly finishing by rubbing her nose to his. Leonard looked in her face he seemed more relaxed now. "Thank You Leonard, thank you so much."
Tears did start to fall this time as she gave him another long hug. When she let him go she leaned back switched the baby to her left arm. Leonard had a quizzical look on his face not exactly sure what just happened. Penny wiped the tears from her cheeks and got up to put the baby in the day crib next to the changing table and play pen. She was smiling now and laughing at the look on his face. "I'm sorry honey you being sad and worried didn't make me happy, but being needed by you in that way made some part of me just light up. I've never felt that way with anybody before. You know me I was always the den mother to you and the gang but not like this." She made sure the blanket was nowhere near the babies face or hands and came back and pulled Leonard by the arm over to the TV couches. She had him sit down and then set next to him and put both arms around his neck and kissed him again.
"I'm the one you come to when you're upset again, just like all the years ago and I love that. All these years a man that was too needy was always a turn off for me. Now I know why. You're the only man I've ever wanted to rely on me for his emotional needs." Tears were in Penny's eyes again she laughed, "And you thought the hormone issues ended with giving birth."
Leonard held her close again lightly kissing her ear and neck. His mind was suddenly free of the problems he couldn't solve and the frustration eased out of him. Leonard thought about what she had just said. Penny had never had that someone again in her life after him that was her soul mate. It had taken him years to find Liisa and then was lost without her for so long even before she passed away.
"I do know how hard it was all those years not having you there Penny. There were so many times when I needed my best friend and she weren't there. In the end it was Horst and Lena that filled the void, then Liisa. But when Liisa was gone the void was bigger than ever. Horst and Lena couldn't really help there. They had their own grief to deal with."
Penny shifted into her normal spot her head on his arm and snuggling very close.
"So once I got off the phone with Mary today I tried to put my clinical scientific observer mode back on and keep my emotions in check. I didn't work I just kept going back to what ifs and over thinking it. I knew I needed you and to be home to put it all back into some kind of perspective and you certainly did."
Penny turned her head toward him, "How? How did I put it in perspective?"
Leonard squeezed her to him for a moment. "By being here and reminding me no matter what that I have you, that the problems I face in life I don't face alone. That is a comfort and eased the burden."
Penny thought about those words. She had lived 12 years without her best friend to go to with her problems. She had substituted her therapist and staff she had befriended for that role in her life. She also realized that she really hadn't taken a lot of chances on people or got too emotionally attached to anyone but her animals in that time. Now she was about as emotionally attached to three people as anyone could be. She knew why Leonard thought through to a future when he might not be there. She thought about going through this all with him but maybe some other time. She leaned up and kissed his cheek, "Right back at you honey, together against the world."
Sheldon sat at his desk his stomach was bothering him after lunch. He took one of the anti-nausea pills from his desk. The calculation he was working on in his essay book was not fitting together. He worked it again from several different perspectives. The quantum part of the equation was sufficient but the calculus was off. He stared at the pad that sat between his hands when he noticed his left hand start to shake.
Sheldon just watched the tremor with wonder and waited for it to subside. It didn't until he finally moved his right hand over and stopped it. What had caused that, he was stunned for a moment and then fear clutched at him. He immediately moved to his computer and started doing internet searches. He had his answer in a few moments time. Sheldon sat back in his chair and saw it was time to go down and meet Amy for his ride home. He carefully packed his shoulder bag and went down stairs wanting to see his wife, Tyler and Maria very badly.
Penny was back into her normal pajamas. Tonight is was the soft short pink bottoms and a matching camisole top. Though she certainly filled the top out rather fully, Leonard didn't seem to mind. Sex was still out for 4 or 5 more weeks so she'd have to satisfy him some other way. She got a slightly wicked look on her face and walked back over to the bedroom. Leonard was just getting Matisse down. He had on his black robe and was ready for bed also.
Penny closed the bedroom door after patting the dogs on the head. "Tish are we all locked up everyone where they should be?"
"Yes Penny. Will you being going to sleep soon?"
She looked over at Leonard who nodded at her. "Yes Tish we are thank you"
"Goodnight Leonard and Penny, I'm preparing the house for the overnight now."
Penny knew Tish was turning off the lights, heat, air, and water heaters in the different sections of the house. She also knew Tish had magnetically locked all the outside doors and that house inside and out was under her watchful eye. It was very comforting to have you house protect you and itself.
Penny got into bed and slid under the covers and waited for Leonard. He got in and turned off the bedside light. Penny slid into her usual spot on his left arm and shoulder. She got up on her arm and started to kiss him passionately. His right hand caressed her lower back and bottom. She took his hand with hers and moved it under the camisole to her breasts. "Massage these for me honey they pretty swollen right now." Leonard seemed a little hesitant but as her hand slide down his chest to his boxers he got the idea she saw.
She kissed him again now hovering half over him, "You've heard of Texas Holdem honey let me teach you how we play Nebraska Holdem.
Still thinking about the disclaimer? I hope not I forgot it almost as soon as I wrote it. The answer to the question is 27. I probably should have phrased it better, my bad.
Reviews would be really nice if you're so inclined.