Story of Hugh Franciscus Hugh Franciscus skills as a doctor are remarkable in the story of Imelda. Dr. Franciscus works as a Chief of Plastic Surgery and knows exactly what he is doing. A man dedicated to his work as a doctor. Franciscus demands exact answers to his questions. He works hard to make his patients healthier. "He seemed to me a man of immense strength and ability. . ." (p140). Until the devastating incident with Imelda, Dr. Franciscus had never been emotionally involved with his patients.
Hugh Franciscus does not have a intimate relationship with his patients, with the exception of Imelda. Hugh does not pause with his patients to talk about personal issues, but gets straight to what purpose they are there for and what he is going to have to do. Franciscus walks in, asks the patients about the problem, does something about it and leaves. When Imelda refuses to show Dr.
Franciscus her wound she is very ashamed. Franciscus feels a little sympathy a promises to fix the lip for Imelda. He tells her "Tomorrow, I will fix your lip. Manana." (p143). She dies because of a bad reaction with the anesthetic medicine, Dr. Franciscus' feels miserable. He cannot accept the fact that she died after he had a chance to fix what was wrong.
Dr. Franciscus likes to get his work done correctly and quickly with the absence of any bond with his patients. He moves from patient to patient " . . . without affection for the patients. He does not want to be touched by them." (p140). He would continue in his work in a steady fashion if not for Imelda. Hugh " . . . must have been awed by the sight of this girl." (p143). With the small act of concealment, he was determined to fix her lip. He already had developed a mental relationship with Imelda. He told himself that he would fix this girls lip. When she dies, to show respect he still fixes the lip. This characterizes an attempt to hide the fact that she dies before he beings the operation. Hugh acts this way out of respect, to make the mother and daughter as happy as possible even though Imelda dies.
Before Imelda had showed up at the hospital in Honduras, Hugh Franciscus had been a doctor with a fixed schedule where everything went exactly as planned. When he encounters Imelda, the unexpected death catches him off guard. It sent him thinking about his job as a doctor. "He would not accept that Imelda had dies before he could repair the lip." (p148) Hugh Franciscus lives in isolation, his limited interactions with people from the outside makes accepting Imelda's death hard.
In the world of medical care, people usually always walk out healthier. When Hugh Franciscus' patient Imelda does come out of the operation at all, but instead dies, something inside him changes. Hugh becomes a different doctor. "After such an event, a doctor is not the same as he was before." (p147). In this case, Hugh Franciscus becomes confused after this occurrence. He fixes the lip after she dies just so he could say he fixed it. He does not give up.