by H.E. Taylor
|Chapter 93||Table of Contents||Chapter 95|
Andrew, September 21, 2060
Edie woke me from a deep sleep.
“Luc. It’s time.”
It was 2:45 in the morning.
We had planned for several possibilities. I called a cab, then I called our next door neighbour, Bessie Waters, to watch over Anna.
We were just getting in the cab when Bessie came around the corner of the house. She stood by the foot of the back stairs and waved goodbye as the cab pulled out.
“Did you leave the back door open?” asked Edie.
“She has a key.”
Until this point, I had been going according to plan, but suddenly I realized I had run out of plan. I sat back in the seat and looked around. Everything seemed unusually bright and intense. Edie was breathing deeply. The cabbie was watching her in the rear view mirror. I reached over and took Edie’s hand.
When the cab pulled up to Admitting, Edie just got out and trundled up the walkway.
The cabbie refused payment. “That’s all right, Doc. The heaven express runs free. I’m just glad she didn’t pop in the back seat.”
I thanked him and ran after Edie. I couldn’t see her. The lights in Admitting were dimmed and nobody was there. I pushed through swinging doors to the lit corridor beyond and still didn’t see Edie. A nurse sat at a station about 10 meters away.
“Where did Edie go?” I asked.
“The pregnant woman.”
She waved me down the hall. “Keep going.”
I pushed through another set of swinging doors just as Edie was sitting down on a lowered gurney.
“Luc,” she held out her hand.
Amy Johnson, an older nurse I knew from prenatal classes, smiled at me and said, “You’d better get changed.” The deal was that fathers could be present in the delivery room, but they had to wash up and wear whites.
I hurried to the change room and got ready. As I was approaching the delivery room all done up in my gown, I heard a baby cry. When I entered the room, Edie’s face was radiant. Andrew was on her tummy.
“He just squirted out!” said a nurse I didn’t know.
Edie was not phased in the least.
“Andrew.” She took my hand. “Oh my darling Andrew.”
Excerpted from _The Bottleneck Years_ by H.E. Taylor
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Last modified May 27, 2014