… “Sir?” Pereyi swiveled instinctively in his chair to face the owner of the voice. He was the total opposite of Pereyi. Although pretty much the same age as Pereyi, he was neater, more suave, looked richer and better put together. His grey hairs were silky smooth, unlike Pereyi’s which were matted and rough looking, even though low. “Mr. MD, sir.” Pereyi said, he was on his feet now.
“This is the fifth squabble I have had to wade in between you and my patients in a month, and indeed my patience is wearing thin. What excuse do you have this time for your insolence?” The MD asked.
“Sir, it is…”
“And do not give me that crap about your family. I mean, you aren’t paying tuition fees any longer, all your children are grown and out of school. Your wife from what I hear is a hard working woman, her market stall is proof enough, or so my wife says, so what really is the problem?” Pereyi opened his mouth to reply, but the MD wasn’t quite done yet. “I give you one last chance, just one. If you as much as make a clapping sound when killing a mosquito, you are out of here for good, do you get that?” Pereyi stayed silent. His phone vibrated in his pocket, by a stroke of luck, the device was on silent. “Are you deaf?” The MD asked angrily.
“But sir, you said I shouldn’t make a sound.” Pereyi replied.
“Don’t test me.” The MD said and walked away.
The reception phone rang and he picked, it was a request for an ambulance to be dispatched to an accident site. He contacted the A&E immediately.
The phone in his pocket continued to vibrate. He reached into his pocket and fetched his phone, it was Bio. Torn between answering the call and not answering the call, the father in him (actually, the thought of his wife nagging him) won the battle and he pressed the answer button. The conversation that ensued hit him with the force of a freight train.
“Good evening, sir.” A voice spoke frantically from the other end.
“Yes? Who is this?”
“My name is Jerry, sir. Please I don’t know who you are or who the owner of this phone is to you, but you were the only person I could call because your number was the latest on her call list.”
“What are you talking about?” Pereyi asked, his mouth had gone dry in a little over three seconds.
“This lady, whoever she is to you, was run over by a vehicle, sir. I’ve called the emergency number and they say there’s a hospital about twenty minutes from where I am and that they have dispatched an ambulance.” Jerry said.
“What? Where are you?” Pereyi yelled.
“I’m on the northern bye pass, the lonely hilly route that leads to Hill Nadir Hospital.”
Pereyi ended the call and shot up to his feet with urgency, he ran past Rosemary and the insolent young man; Enyinnaya or something of the sort, down the hall towards the admin area and entered it and went straight to where he kept his belongings. Without wasting time, he jumped out of his uniform and into his regular outfit. Grabbing the nearest phone, he contacted A&E to find out if the ambulance had gone, it was about to leave, he pleaded with A&E to hold the vehicle for a minute so he could come along with it. He explained his fears and A&E agreed to hold the ambulance for a minute and nothing more.
Pereyi ran through the reception again, past Rosemary and Enyinnaya, and out into the driveway to meet the ambulance.
The twenty minutes drive to the spot where the accident had occurred felt like forty years to Pereyi, he prayed fervently that Bio wasn’t the victim and that someone else had stolen her phone or something. When they arrived, his greatest fears were realized, it was Bio alright, with bloodstains all over her body. Pereyi went into a frenzy, helping and getting in the way of the paramedics and nurse who had followed. When they lifted Bio onto the gurney, the nurse held her lower limbs and gasped, the paramedic who lifted her torso also gasped. Pereyi looked from one to the other but no one spoke to him. They kept him from entering the back of the ambulance.
All the way back to the hospital, with sirens blaring, Pereyi was in a trance-like state. The moment they got to the hospital, the nurse jumped out of the van, her gloved hands totally stained with blood.
“Doctor, come quick, it’s an emergency.” Pereyi heard her scream as she dashed into the ICU corridor. A few seconds later, the nurse and doctor dashed through the swinging door, Pereyi caught a glimpse of Enyinnaya, he looked devastated.
Bio was rolled into several radiography rooms, and in a little over thirty minutes, her reports were out.
“Oga Pereyi,” the doctor began, “I hate being the one to reel all of this out to you, but it is necessary you know. The radiography and radiology results are out.” He breathed deeply and continued, “She was run over by a vehicle and trampled upon by what we believe to be the same vehicle as her skin and clothes still bear tire track marks, I guess the person must have rolled over her and in a bid to escape, rolled over her again. Her right knee is busted, the anterior cruciate ligaments are torn and almost severed, and she had a few broken ribs but luckily no punctured lungs. A few minor injuries on her body, and there’s also internal bleeding, we fear her spleen may have ruptured,” he flipped a page in the folder and continued, “and unfortunately, oga, she lost her baby, we have to evacuate the embryo soonest. Bose,” he said to the nurse with the bloodied gloves, “prepare the paperwork.”
Pereyi was jolted. “Baby? What baby?”
“Oga, your daughter was pregnant.” The doctor said slowly, “Didn’t you know?”
Pereyi’s world was set on pause.