The body is running on reserves. The breathing happens in fits and starts, but it is strong when it happens. There is a determined rising of the chest. There is no struggle. There has been very little movement in the rest of the body for some time, but his right foot moved when I was least expecting it. I keep a steady eye on him. I believe he is listening when I speak.
I ask him to move his foot if he can hear me, and there is a clear movement of the foot. As I am departing I wish him my final goodbye. I tell him that all is good and that there is no need to worry. He has our best wishes for the rest of his trip. He is more than half way there at this point. I see see his face crinkle up for an instant. I am pretty sure I did not imagine it. It must have taken a lot of effort. He must have heard me.