Friday, 2 September 2011
Nineteenth Friday Flash: The Other Side
Melvin pulled into the 24hr clinic. His hands were trembling and his chest tight. Gertrude would have taken him, but he had lost her a few years ago. He pushed the thought from his mind, thinking about his dear departed wife never made things easier. Melvin contemplated honking his horn to see if anyone would come out to help him, but they would most probably set security on him if he did. Taking a few deep breathes his fortified himself before extracting himself from the car.
The well-lit entrance was just a few dozen paces away. He wobbled his way through the parking lot, bumping into a few cars along the way. He passed two smoking security guards who just stared at him as he went by. Melvin would have refused their help even if they did offer. He hated smoke.
Shuffling along at his sedate pace he eventually made it to the reception area. It was so bright inside he had to cover his eyes. He must have looked quite a sight in his night gown and wellington boots.
“Sir, sir can I help you?”
Melvin blinked and pulled away his hand. A tall and thin middle aged nurse stood before him with her hands on her hips and a stern look on her face. Gertrude would most probably have called her a cow the instant she saw her. Melvin on the other hand liked to give people a chance.
“My chest, I think I’m going to have a heart attack.”
“Hmmpf, are you sure it’s not gas or something?”
Melvin laughed. “I’m 83 years old, I think I know the difference.”
“Right, take a seat and the doctor will see you when he can.”
More pain coursed through his chest. He clutched his chest for emphasis. “I can’t wait.”
The nurse shrugged. “The doctor is dealing with a hit and run drunk driver, who was beaten up by friends of the victim.”
Mevlin shook his head in disgust and fell into the nearest seat. He tried to calm down, but it seemed like his heart had lost its brakes. Giving into it, an intense calm feeling fell over him, it seemed like all his worries had flown away. The doctor could take his time if he wanted. A few more minutes wouldn’t kill him would it?
Then the strangest thing happened. Someone suddenly appeared behind the upstart nurse. This person was oddly see-through, as if they weren’t really there. The young lady proceeded to pull faces at the nurse. Melvin chuckled.
The apparition turned to Melvin, he couldn’t believe his eyes, it was Gertrude, a young and vibrant Gertrude.
As perfect as the day he met her.
Melvin wondered if he had lost his mind.
Gertrude walked through the counter and smiled that dazzling smile he so fondly remembered.
“You’ve most probably wondering if you’ve gone crazy?”
She pulled him to his feet. Her hand feeling warm and soft. “Look.”
Melvin looked. It was himself slumped in his chair as if asleep.
“Am I dreaming?”
She pulled him closer and kissed him. “Dead, I’m afraid.”
“Yes, and about time too, I missed you.”
“I missed you too.” It felt so unreal. “What do we do now?’
“We go home.”
Gertrude laughed that tinkling laugh of hers he had missed so much. “No, don’t be silly.”
“Don’t worry, I will be with you every step of the way.”
They both vanished.
Melvin’s body toppled off his chair. The highly strung housewife of the drunk driver, who had been sitting a row behind Melvin screamed…