Afraid - The Call That Shouldn't Come
I found myself staring blankly at the phone's display. It was her number all right but it shouldn't be. Not after I saw the life leave her body, back at the hospital.
Six hours ago, we were supposed to crash on our beds after a long day at work. And crash we did. I recall the blinding headlamps of a vehicle coming straight at us. In my attempt to avoid the rogue driver, I drove off the road and totalled my car with a nearby tree.
That was when the lights brightened, as the horrified screams from the back seat turned incomprehensible to my dying senses.
My mind felt as if it was succumbing to the pain, rewinding my memories as it prepared for my death. The celebrations from a few hours prior, my wedding, the college graduation, my first car...
There was another scream, calling my name, calling for help. In that moment, I found enough strength to open my eyes as I saw my wife's face and throat impaled by the shards from the smashed windshield. I tried to reach for her hand, but my body gave in to the pain as I collapsed for the second time.
When I opened my eyes again, I was at the hospital, my head and arm heavily bandaged. I felt normal except for a sharp pain in my upper arm as I tried to get up.
"How is my wife?", I asked the nurse who helped me up. She looked down, silent. "I have to see her now."
By the time we reached her room, the doctor had already informed me of her injuries. The excessive loss of blood and internal damage meant less chances of survival and they were not expecting her to live. I didn't react, I didn't know how to.
My condition was similar when I entered the room. I was staring at her motionless body, with her hand in mine. In the silence of the room, I could hear her heart beating, but her comatose body was unaware of my presence.
"You and I were supposed to grow old together.", I muttered, "We promised to die together". This was all I could say.
Our bodies were still for the entirety of the next hour and by the end of it, only one of the hearts were beating. The doctor confirmed the time of her death: 3:46 AM.
"Hello?", I received the call.
"Hello." IT WAS her voice. I lost all sense of comprehension at that moment. I could hear her breathing on the other end but I was unable to find my voice. I kept searching for words, but my vocabulary had abandoned me.
Eventually, it was her who broke the silence. "We promised to die together."