The reception of the Silver Cross hospital was crowded. Pregnant women, squalling babies, sad-looking teenagers and everywhere, the acrid smell of sickness and hospital disinfectant. Sharon pushed through the doors and rushed straight to the receptionist desk. The matron on duty looked at her sullenly. “Yes?”
“I was called about an emergency…Dr Akpan..there was an accident..” Sharon gushed out in one breath.
The matron didn’t look fazed. She saw this kind of reaction everyday of the week, every week, even when she pulled morning duty. Lazily leafing through her duty roster, she found Dr Akpan’s name. “He’s in block C, take your left and climb the stairs.”
Mumbling thanks over her shoulder, Sharon took the corridor on the left side of the receptionist desk. Dashing past harried nurses and doctors in various stages of tiredness, she searched frenziedly for the staircase, her mind in constant turmoil.
They had not talked in almost a year. A year! The doctor had mentioned something about stable, but that’s what they say in movies and stories and then the person ends up dumb or blind or crippled! She remembered the last time she saw him, last month, in front of Eko hotels, with some big-assed girl. They had not said a single word to each other, not even a nod. He had looked fit that day.
To think that he would list her as his emergency contact. Why? Did he really believe she would run to his aid when he was in trouble? Or was his hope to die and ensure she be the first person notified, so it would hurt her.
A flash of anger passed through her and she nearly turned back. Gritting her teeth, she climbed the first stair and decided to take a look, offer her apologies and then go. It was the most she could do. She took the next step.
The line kept ringing but no one picked. It was the third call now. Where is this girl? Tony thought. He didn’t panic though. If there was anybody who could take care of herself in a lion’s den surrounded by hungry animals and fierce gladiators, it was Shae, and he was not bothered. It would have been nice to talk to her before he went on stage though.
Tony turned and looked back at the crowd gathered in the hall for the ‘Talent Nite Show’. He could swear there were already about 3,000 people and many more were still pouring in. Already people were standing in the back. A microphone whined and the noise in the hall reduced half aa decibel.
“Welcome to the Talent Nite Show, and I would be your host for tonight,” drawled the MC in a singsong voice. The DJ played a quick tune and Tony thought about what he was about to do.
She was pregnant. The strip test had confirmed it. Stranglely though, all she felt was calm. Now that the cat was out the bag, all that was left was to bell it and she knew exactly who to.
She had known that night would change her life. Dinner at Eko hotel and suites, Basketmouth’s comedy show after, and then the wonderful, wonderful time they had spent conceiving this baby. And to think she had been sad. Rebecca touched her flat tummy lovingly. A baby was growing in there. His baby. Her hands slid down her flat stomach and across her naked abdomen to cradle herself. She tossed her head back on the pillows and stared at the ceiling. She was naked and slowly getting wet. She could remember how he looked that day, with his bald head all sweaty. She had gripped him tight, he nails digging into his muscular back. She had never met anybody more powerful. Her fingers slipped inside. But wait! She had to call him first. Oh, how happy he’ll be. She reached for her phone.
The shapes moved in and out of the light; silent figures flitting back and forth through his subconcious. Paul groaned. The car lost control as he skidded past the pothole and hit the cement truck, turning and turning till he smashed into the wall. He groaned again. He was going to die on this bed. Alone. “Is he going to be okay?”
The voice cut through his subconcious and for a second Paul was reminded of a time when all his thoughts were sweet and his life was magical. It could not be her! He wished, but it would not be her! Why would she come now?
He was dying and his life flashing before him was giving him strange thought. He groaned and tried to slip into the light.
“..as I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, gotta lamp in my hand,
It’s the truth, gotta justice that I had from my birth,
Got this mike, spread the word, make a way for this lad..”
The short, black boy dropped the mike and walked off stage to the roar of applause from the crowd.
Running onto the stage, almost panting, the MC picked the mike. “And that was Bishop, all the way from Edo state. Give him another round of applause. Bini people rep your own!”
Tony’s heart leapt for a second, and he adjusted the cap on his head. He was next.
“Hailing from the city of Lagos, town of hustlers, and the birthplace of rap music in this country, is another brilliant, young act, you’ve heard him at the OBS, and he’s here to showcase on stage! Ladies and gentlemen, make welcome, T-lion!!”
Tony jogged up stage to the sound of applause. This amateur rap thing is gonna get me slaughtered. He grabbed the mike. “Thank you, MC..*the microphone whined*..”
The beat started.
To be continued next week..
*T-lion would never have been my first choice of name, but Snoop…
*Lyrics supplied exclusively by moi, yes! If writing does not pay, the plan is to become the next Sina Rambo
*Uhm..like Jeannie would say, “All typographical ‘errors’ are purely ‘intentional’