Wednesday, 28 September 2016

LONG DISTANCE 3

Don't know where the story started from, catch up here

Picture: Tarringo T. Vaughan 

Adon Kato was beginning to get really angry. For the past two weeks, she had been caring for her boyfriend - Jason Ogbeche - and she didn’t need any heightened sense of perception to know that Jason wasn’t connecting with her. He always seemed to be brooding and if Adon didn’t know better, she could have sworn he was angry at her.

He had to have two other surgeries when his kidney became infected and they had almost lost him. The injured kidney was finally removed and he was doing better now. Adon stayed at his side all through. Dr. Anwar had to send her home many times to shower and eat. She took her bath in the hospital and ate hospital meals to get the doctors off her back. As soon as she was done with basic necessities, she would rush back to Jason’s bed side.

Jason said very little to her. He only spoke when he needed his pain medications or was hungry. Adon would have understood if he was that way with everyone. He spoke to his parents about how he was really feeling and even laughed with them. What was more was that whenever Doctor Amara came into the room, he lit up and became a chatterbox. Adon watched the development and gradually grew depressed.

She wanted to start a conversation (again) when Drs. Anwar and Amara, Jason’s parents and two nurses came in. Adon felt her chest constrict and deep down, she knew it was more from jealousy than worry at what the doctors had to say.
Doctor Anwar started speaking.

‘I wanted to talk to all of you at the same time. Jason, how are you feeling?’

‘I feel horrible’ Jason said as he laughed.

‘Well…I am glad you can laugh about this. You are doing better and if not for that relapse last week, you could be on your way home this week. Your ribs are healing nicely and for now, your body is adjusting to having one kidney. Most of the other injuries have healed well and there is no more internal bleeding. On paper, you look good. But the human body acts as it wants for each individual. If you continue at this rate, we could have you home by the end of next week, with scheduled weekly checkup until the pins in your ribs are removed. That been said, I want to suggest that you see a psychologist and just talk. When you have near-fatal accidents like this, you could have post-traumatic stress disorder, leading to a warped perception of reality. One of it may be a heighten fear of driving and another may be attachment to certain individuals…’

Adon was piqued. Did the doctor notice what was happening? Was he trying to tell her something? Her eyes darted to Dr. Amara and to Jason and she saw them share a look.

‘….so, he should be home next week if everything goes well. I have drawn up a regimen to help you help him and you need to follow it to the latter. You can rotate between three of you so it is not…’

Jason’s mum interrupted. ‘I accepted to allow her stay here because you demanded that. But she will no longer be required when he comes home. We can take care of him ourselves. She is not welcome in our home.’ She punctuated her bile with the most vicious look.

Adon looked at Mrs. Ogbeche and turned to look at Jason. He didn’t say anything. Adon open her mouth, but the words didn’t come. Jason looked away.

‘Jason, do you want me to stay or is your mother speaking for you?’ Adon asked huskily. The tears were threatening to fall.

Jason said nothing.

Dr. Amara started talking. ‘I don’t think this is the time or place…’

‘Shut up! Just shut up!’ Adon exploded.

‘Don’t speak to her that way!’ Jason shouted right back at Adon.

The silence in the room was deafening. Adon’s embarrassment was palpable. Adon looked at Jason, got up from the chair, gathered her things and walked out of the room.

‘Adon…wait..’

‘Let her go Jason. She is bad news’ Mrs. Ogbeche said.

***

Adon sat in her car, crying her soul out. All the frustration that came from her inability to contact Jason that sorry day he left, to being in the hospital and the immense betrayal completely broke her spirit. She wanted to die; such was the pain in her chest.

As the tears gradually piped down, it finally dawned on her that a figure had been by her window almost as long as she had been crying. She looked up from the blue scrubs to the gentle face of Dr. Anwar. She wound down her windshield.

‘I…I..am..s..ss…o..sorry Dr. A.nwa…r. I di…dn’t see you there’ Adon said as she tried to control the spasms running through her body.

‘Don’t ever be sorry for being in pain. Now, scoot over. I will drive you to your hotel.’
‘I..I..do..n’t…have…o..one.’

It dawned on Dr. Anwar just how much she had sacrificed for the man she loved.
‘I will take you to one. You are in no state to drive now. Don’t worry, it will be fine.’

***

‘So you mean there is nothing I can do?’ Adon asked resignedly.

‘No, there isn’t. Sometimes, these things last for a week and sometimes, it lasts forever. The only thing that can change it is if his brain rewires itself. We cannot force the brain to do that.’

Adon started pacing as she contemplated what she had just heard.

The doctor had noticed the fixation of Jason on Dr. Amara and questioned him about his accident.

He told her earlier on. ‘The accident was near fatal. If the ambulance had been as much as an hour (or even 30 minutes) late, he would have died. She was the last face he saw before he passed out and in his brain, she saved his life. It is called Trauma Transference Syndrome. It is a form of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD that helps the patient cope with what was a life threatening situation.

 ‘But shouldn’t she be sued for encouraging him?’ Adon shouted.

Dr. Anwar held her and gently led her back to the bed. He sat with her and held her hands. ‘Calm down Adon. So far, Dr. Amara has not done anything unprofessional. She is just doing her job. It all boils back down to Jason’s mind. So keep hoping that everything gets better. My worry is that his family seem bent on cutting you out. Which means that he may not see you enough to help him recover. I want you to keep calling him so you can remind him why he fell in love with you. You will be fine.’

Adon looked into Dr. Anwar’s face for the longest minute….then leaned in for the kiss that seemed inevitable.

Dr. Anwar held her in place; away from his lips. His voice was husky when he spoke.
‘You don’t really want to do this Adon. You are overwrought at the moment and you are trying to dull the pain. This is also a form of PTSD. If we go down this road, you will wake up regretting this and worse, hating yourself and me. And…I am married. I won’t lie by saying I am not attracted to you right now….heck, you are a beautiful woman…but I am a stickler for doing the right thing and in this case, I will not change. I won’t take advantage of your pain because you deserve better than that.’

With that, he got off the bed.

‘I will check on you tomorrow. Rest up.’

And he left.

Adon opened her email and started crying again. Her body was wracked with sobs as she buried her face in her pillow.

On her phone was the letter of termination from her office for taking jetting off without notice. She received it a week ago.

***

It had been three months since she last saw him. She was sure he was fully recovered now. His face stayed with her; every line, every crevice, every chiseled feature. She thought of his sinewy arms and his thick thighs and calf. She played his deeply baritone voice over and over in her head and wished he would call her and just say ‘hi’.

There were many nights she couldn’t sleep because she was thinking of him. She thought about reaching out but always stopped just before dialing his number. And when she was awake, his memory stayed with her. Why couldn’t she get over him?

Her doorbell chimed.

She got up from her comfortable place in front of her television and walked to the door. She wondered who would be calling this early on a Saturday morning.

She ran her hands through her hair as she opened the door….and stopped in her tracks.

There he was, standing all 6ft 2in with a box of chocolates and an uncertain smile on his face. He had come back! For her! Her heart jumped in ecstasy.

‘Hi Jason.’

‘Hello Dr. Amara.’

Somehow, he just knew he could lean in and kiss her. So…he did.

***

Amara was so glad there were no kids in her block because it got loud; really loud.

***

As Jason cuddled Amara in his arm, he knew he had come home. Amara was the woman he truly loved and he had to nearly die to find that out. Like he told his best friend - Isaac Okiemute - she had saved his life.

He had been dying; he knew it. He felt his life seeping out and he didn’t want to die! He told his mind to wake up several times and it didn’t. He felt that for sure, he was going to die. Then he heard, ‘Do not pull him like that! You will kill him.’ He told his mind to focus everything it had on that voice. As long as he channeled his energy on that voice, he knew he wasn’t going to die. Then he lost that focus and slipped in to unconsciousness again after seeing the stake that pinioned him to the car seat. When he came to again, he saw that the voice had a face and he swore that he would not lose focus again. He held her hand with all the strength he could muster and even though Isaac didn’t believe him, he was very sure that if he had stopped holding her hand at any point, he would have been dead now. She was the reason he was alive and he was so in love with her.

She stirred a bit and turned slightly in her sleep. He looked at her beautiful face and thought of how long he had waited to see it. Three whole months away from her had been hell for him. He tried to get her number but Isaac wouldn’t help. And he couldn’t ask his parents for it. He hadn’t known her last name so he couldn’t stalk her social media platform to find out about her.

So instead, he channeled his energy on getting better so he could find her. He ate the diet suggested by the hospital, exercised and did his weekly physiotherapy sessions. In quick time, he was better and was able to set out and find his love.

There had been many name-calling fights with Isaac; chief because he refused to pick Adon’s calls or go to her. This caused a major fight that led to the end of his friendship with Isaac. While it made his mother happy, he couldn’t care less. Amara was the only one on his mind.

As her eyes fluttered open, Jason knew it had been all been worth it.

***

Jason woke up with a start. He was sweating all over and his heart was racing.

It was two weeks to Jason’s wedding and there had been so much activity around the preparation. Amara was not the bridezilla he expected. She allowed the wedding planner do all the thinking so she didn’t have to worry much.

They dated for eight months before he popped the question. He wanted to marry her quickly so their engagement was just a little over three months. Their wedding day was set at exactly fifteen months after he met her. They were so happy together.

Why then did he just wake up with a start?

The answer shocked him as the memories came crashing in.

Adon.

He dreamed of the day he left her in Gombe. No, he had not dreamed. He re-lived that day; from the night spent cuddling, to the moment at the park when she looked all broken, to the messages they shared, to the accident. He woke up to from his ‘dream’ at the exact point the corroded iron pierced his side.

His emotion flooded back in, threatening to burst the bubble of his present reality. He tossed and turned on the bed, trying to fight them off…and failing desperately.

The flitting images stopped, the headache subdued and he stopped sweating.

He got up from his bed and ran to the shower.

He knew what he had to do.

***

It took him a week to find her. He had to beg and bribe old friends and colleagues to know her whereabouts. Turns out she had been out of the country for the last year doing her masters and only returned about a week ago; almost about the same time he had his epiphany. One could say it was destiny but he didn’t believe in that.

As he stood pressing her door bell, he tried to imagine every emotion she could possibly go through. His one prayer though was that she didn’t slam the door in his face.

He heard her voice laugh at something and could hear feet shuffling to the door. He stiffened and braced himself for….he didn’t even know what.

The door opened and there she was; beautiful, glowing, glorious in an afghan and very (VERY) pregnant! He looked in shock from her large belly to her face and saw that the smiling face had morphed into one of horror.

‘Darling, who is at the door?’ a male voice asked as his feet came towards them.

Jason KNEW that voice! He looked behind Adon and as if his luck got any more worse, he would have a coronary. The person walking towards them was none other than his best – FORMER best – friend, Isaac Okiemute.

Adon swooned.





….yes! I know I am a meanie but…..TO BE CONTINUED. Don’t worry, the next one is the last installation in the story. What do you think is happening? Is there still ANY hope for Jason and Adon?

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