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I have never driven with such urgency like I did on my way to the hospital. I tried not thinking about the worst scenario but I was scared. The thoughts of what might have happened to him made me quiver behind the wheels. Keji didn’t help matters. She wouldn’t stop panicking. She prayed,
“Lord please don’t let anything happen to my son. Please.”
In that moment I sympathized with her. Irrespective of the delay in proposing to marry her, she still cared for him like he was her son. She would look at me at intervals with tears streaming down her eyes and persuade me,
“Kunle, please drive faster.” For every time she said it I tapped the throttle with more energy but somehow, the hospital appeared farther than it used to be, I guess I was losing it as well. With each swerve came different thoughts, the next more grim than the one before. Deadliest of them was how miserable my life would be if Funto’s injury was life threatening. I mean, what would I say to Mrs. Ogunmola?
We drove into traffic and that made me curse my luck. Only then did it cross my mind to call Lizzy. He was rushed to a different hospital from where she worked, but they were closer to each other.
“Keji can you please call Lizzy, tell her what has happened and to go straight to Banby hospital”
Keji made the call and reverted to me,
“She said she is on her way there”
“Okay.” I saw an illegal opportunity to bypass the traffic and I took it. I drifted into the pedestrian road and kept honking as I sped through. I knew I was breaking the law but it didn’t really matter, not at that moment at least. We finally arrived at the hospital after about five minutes of cutting corners and bumping into potholes. Keji jumped down and made way for the children’s ward before I even got a chance to turn off the ignition. I rushed into the ward to find her talking to Lizzy.
“What happened to him?” I directed my question at Lizzy.
“He is in surgery. As soon as he is out I will arrange for him to be moved to the University College Hospital. That way I will be able to monitor his progress.” She explained, without giving an answer to my question.
“Fine. No wahala. But what happened to him?” She could sense the desperation in my voice. She grabbed my shoulder and ordered me,
“Kunle calm down. His teacher said he mistakenly slit his wrist with a blade.” Keji grabbed her head with both hands and screamed,
“Jesus. Wrist? That school will burn for this. How did he get a blade? Where was the foolish teacher when it happened?”
A nurse came to hush her before I could do so. At that point, she was drowned in tears. Lizzy walked over to her and reassured her that he will be fine. That helped calm her nerves but not enough to stop her whimpers and sniffles.
“I think we should be thankful they were able to find his blood match in the blood bank. Else, a delay in transfusion could have caused him further complications. Kids of his age who experience such ordeals would normally convulse and die. He is a lucky kid.”
“Will he survive?” Keji asked.
“Yes he will. We just have to support the doctors with prayers.” Lizzy held our hands and led us in prayer, silently.
The surgeon returned with news to calm our fears. Funto was stable and resting.
“Can we see him?” Lizzy asked,
“Not yet. Meanwhile, someone get these drugs. The hospital pharmacy is just across the street.” He pointed the prescription towards me and Keji stepped forward to collect it before I could.
“Please be fast about it. One of those need to be added to his drip within the hour,” he emphasized. Keji rushed outside immediately. Lizzy went ahead to arrange Funto’s transfer to UCH. I lurked in a corner and folded my hands as I awaited the return of either lady.
Lizzy rushed out few minutes later and inquired about Keji. She had been gone for twenty minutes. Perhaps there is a queue at the pharmacy I thought within me.
“She isn’t back.” I informed Lizzy.
“Please go and fetch her, we need the injection now! Funto is convulsing.” She rushed back into the ward and I ran outside.
I arrived at the pharmacy and she wasn’t there. The place was scanty. People gathered on a side of the road. In that instant, whatever it is that brought such a crowd together didn’t matter. My phone rang, it was Keji calling.
“Keji where are you?” I answered, “The doctor needs the injection now. Funto is convulsing.”
“This is not a Keji o. Are you the husband? Keji have get accident. Car hit and run. Front of Banby hospital. Dey come o.” Cold blood rushed through my veins. My phone dropped from my trembling hand. I was dumbfounded. I began to approach the crowd by default. I already felt a groan building up within me, the feeling of dread almost palpable. I forced my way through and caught sight of Keji unconscious in a pool of her blood.
People could be subconsciously naive and lackadaisical in the process. How can you stand by and watch a dying woman struggle with pain in front of a hospital? God is unfair too. How can he fold his hands and watch life slip away from my two favourite people. I found my voice,
“I am her husband.” I cried out bitterly.
I picked Keji up and ran to the hospital’s emergency unit.
With heavy sighs I prayed as I took giant strides,
“God please don’t let them die. Please.”
She was rushed into surgery. I looked down and saw a bit of blood on my shirt where her head had rested, she must have hit it on her fall. It was as if my past was creeping in on me. I would have argued that I had experienced the last of my misfortunes but unfolding events were dispelling that premature thought. With utmost humility I vowed,
“God please spare their lives and I promise to live my life at your disposal.”
I wanted to call Lizzy and that was when I realized I didn’t pick up my phone when it dropped. I stayed put. There was nothing to do but hope that Lizzy will handle Funto while I waited for the doctor’s report on Keji.
The doctor finally stepped out after an hour. He invited me into his office and gave me the scariest report of my life,
“Mr. Kunle your wife isn’t in a great shape. I am afraid I have some bad news.”
Yes, he said some. I braced myself and he began,
“From obvious indications the car ran over her. We are being hopeful about her chances of walking again, but there has been a shift in her spinal cord.” Those words nearly unmanned me,
“Jesus Christ. But why me?” I beat myself. He continued, doctors, as blunt as ever,
“Her womb was also affected; she would never be able to give birth again. I am sorry.”
I stood up and dragged my feet as I walked over to the ICU where she laid helplessly. I watched her glumly from the door. I was about to edge closer when I felt a pat on my back. It was Lizzy.
“I called your phone and the stranger who picked explained what happened. Would have been here earlier but I had to be with Funto and wait for the stranger to return your phone. How is she?” Lizzy inquired. She gasped as she spoke.
“It is very bad Lizzy, very bad.” I stressed.
“How is Funto?”
Lizzy looked at me, with tears rolling from her eyes she stammered,
“I am so-rr-y Kunle. Fun-to is, he-he is…”
“He is what?” I yelled for an answer.
JOURNEY TO THE FUTURE (SEASON 3) RETURNS IN JULY.
Written by Femi Fragile (Twitter: @fragiletimbzz | IG: femifragile)
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