Writing Practice 10/29/18
Jacob watched the glowing screen in the waiting room hardly blinking. The line he watched read ‘Gra, L’ followed by ‘in OR’ with a time stamp that was nearly five hours old now. Weariness was beginning to take its toll on him as he sat there watching patients and visitors mull past him in succession with smiles and laughter. His laughter had been stripped of him well before he arrived at the hospital.
His mind wandered, half dreaming, through the events of the night before. The argument he had with his father, then the slamming of the door behind him as he went for a walk. He couldn’t remember anymore what they had been fighting about, but he did remember the last words he had screamed at his father.
I hope you die! He had screamed as the glass rattled in the window of the door.
He had trudged off into the woods around the house, chain-smoking cigarettes and fuming for over an hour before he came back to find his father lying on the floor with a broken plate.
He had dialed 9-1-1 almost as if he had summoned the phone. His father wasn’t breathing as he slid to his side, cutting his knees on the plate. The dispatcher had walked him through what he needed to do on speaker while he waited twenty minutes for the ambulance to arrive.
A tear spilled out of him, and he wept, sitting there in the waiting room.
“Mr. Loranger?” a doctor in scrubs said, looking worn out.
“Yes.” Jacob stood, looking hopeful while the guilt racked him. “Is he okay?”
“It’s amazing that he survived if I’m honest. It was a rough surgery, but he is in recovery now,” the doctor said. “Your father is quite the fighter.”
“He sure is,” Jacob replied, feeling a new wave of guilt alongside the river of relief.
“Would you like to go see him?”
“I don’t know that that’s the best idea,” he admitted, “I think it was our last argument that caused this. I don’t want to upset him…”
“I’ll go talk to him and let you know,” the doctor replied, nodding.
“Thank you,” Jacob said, almost forgetting, “for saving his life.”
“It wasn’t me,” the doctor replied, looking over his shoulder, “it was you that did the saving.”
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