JOLT — #4
Episode 4 — Can I see her?
Previously on JOLT: After asking his remaining friends to leave him alone and go back home, he thinks about the time when they returned from a week long trip to Andaman and each of them dropping bombs on Rahamat saying they are leaving him back home to resume their lives. Meanwhile, receives a mysterious phone call.
I said, ‘Hello? I can hear you. Could you speak up please?’
A voice from the other end,
I replied with extortion, ‘Yes! I can. Who is this?’
“Hi! It’s Doctor Lathika again. I wanted to speak earlier but was running late and told you that I’d be calling you. So, here I am.”
‘Tell me doctor!’
Cleared her throat to continue, “I have been seeing you guys since you came to me for hearing the good news. Ultimately, you were the best I’ve seen.”
‘Doctor Lathika! What are you trying to say? Are you trying to convince going to another doctor? It’s almost 3months since she’s pregnant and a long way to go?’ I asked.
She exhaled heavily through the mic, “Yeah, about that! Remember the scan we took 2 days before when she experienced pains ?”
Me — ‘Yeah! And we were supposed to visit you tomorrow. And now she is…Sorry, please continue’
Doctor Lathika — “I know. Umm! The reports are ready for which I want you to come immediately and get them.”
Me — ‘Fine! I’ll take a cab. Be there in 40mins.’
At the Hospital waiting room
His token number was displayed on the display monitor. He walked across the corridor and at the end of it was Lathika’s consultation room.
A message tone beeped on his phone from his brother,
Stood for a while and processed the thought, then replied.
Opening the door with a broad smile I said, ‘Hello doctor Lathika!’
Dr. Lathika — “Hello Rahamat! Here, I have the report ready. Please take a seat.”
Me — ‘Thank you! I’m sorry she couldn’t…’
Dr. Lathika — “Please! I know.”
And I was surprised by her statement. No other person could’ve informed her, did Pooja get in touch with her without anyone’s knowledge. And a million thoughts converged.
Me — ‘I actually do not understand what you’re talking about.’
Dr. Lathika — “See! I know it’s been a hardtime for you guys. With her complication going on, you have stayed safe and taken care of her so much. You have the greatest light in you so you gotta promise me one more thing.”
With a questionable smiling face I got the file from her. Opened it and saw some red and green underlines at the counts. Turned the pages and briefly surfed the entire report.
Me — ‘Well, I am gonna pretend I understood every word of it and still ask you what’s going on. So, what’s going on doctor?’
Dr. Lathika — “The baby was potentially a bit smaller than it should be at this stage. So, I had to carry out some tests and found out there’s a much more critical condition called FGR or Fetal Growth Restriction. The problem is, we wouldn’t know the condition of the foetus.”
Me — ‘Use simple terms please, will you? You’re kinda scaring me a bit.’
Dr. Lathika — “Okay! I cannot sugarcoat this anymore for you” and she joined her hands together. And she continued, “I had to go through all the reports and found out that it’s Antepartum Stillbirth or in simple terms, she suffers Miscarriage.”
My heart raced. It felt warm in a cold consultation room. Breath was getting thinner and felt suffocated. I kept staring at Lathika while trying to process what she said and suddenly stood up. Tears began to pool near my eyes.
Me — ‘Doctor?’
Dr. Lathika — “Sangeet! I am very sorry but, please don’t lose hope. I know you both have the strength to get through this together. Give hope for each other. I believe in Hope like my life depended on it. You should move forward. To not make things complicated, Pooja should be admitted today evening and she needs to undergo procedure before tomorrow.”
Tear rolled over my cheeks and words struggled to run through my mouth.
Me — ‘But she’s not…She’s…’
Dr. Lathika — “Safe! Don’t worry. I know. She was worried that you might breakdown instantly. She’s a strong woman.”
Emotions poured over me, ‘And she didn’t want me to get caught in the middle and doing this to herself. Can I see her?’
Dr. Lathika — “Yeah about that! Take it slow. If you go out and take the third door to the left, you can see her.”
Kept the reports back in her table and moved towards the door. My foot dragged through the floor. Unable to contain myself, I asked if the doctor could accompany me. She never resisted the idea.
Walked the short corridor that felt longer than ever walked. Millions of memories and thoughts populated in front of my eyes. Stood in front of the door while Lathika peeked and opened the door for me.
With a heavy heart and tearful eyes, I walked in.
1.5 hours Later at home
Opened the door to see Sangeet reading a book sitting on the sofa with a tea smoking in front of him on the table.
Without showing anything I called him out, ‘Hey bro! What’s the hurry?’
Sangeet — “Kiran called me and said everything. Why would you be so hard on them. They’re just trynna help you Ray!”
Suspected by the way he spoke I asked, ‘Sangeet! Can you tell me why you are here really?’
Sangeet — “Do you remember what happened in your life?”
Me — ‘If you’re talking about my life sentence, yes I do remember! I lived my life 786 times over and over until I was forgiven and all of a sudden life’s nothing like those in this real one. How can Iever forget that? I am suffering, Sangeet! Is that what yo… Wait! I never knew what the mistake was.’
Smiling and nodding he replied,
“My little brother. You were given this punishment by some higher power that even I don’t understand very much. But I deduced who’s behind all of this. They are not ordinary.”
Sniffs and then chuckled.
Me — ‘It seems it is someone very familiar to us. See, I heard the most devastating news I never ever wanted to hear. Please don’t give any surprises.’
Sangeet — “I know your biggest mistake. It’s a betrayal. You abandoned your friends in a situation when they’re supposed to save you or help you. You literally ignored them and since that happened, you were living your life 786 times over and over without doing it. And until I am informed, your life-sentence started when you commited the mistake. Now you’re re-living that particular life again and you’re thrown with the same task of dealing with your error. You gotta deal with this on your own. Make it count, little brother. You’re stronger than you think and I promise to help you with it if you’re stuck. And overlooking on your elevated behaviour; your meeting with Pooja was not exactly fruitful, I suppose?”
Immediately tears flowed like a tap water and explained everything. He promised to be with me until the ruckus ends and invited himself to go to the hospital with me.
While on our way to hospital, Sangeet drive the car as I felt more exhausted and elevated. He encouraged to call my friends and speak everything. Insisted on informing them about all this. Convinced me that friends and family are the people who should be right now.
Out of sudden curiosity I heckled, ‘Wait! You said you found who caused my life to go like a spring. Who’re they?’
At the Hospital
Sangeet came back after visiting Pooja in her ward, “Ray! So I spoke to her. She’s gonna be fine. You’re gonna be fine. Okay? Promise me that you won’t lose hope and make sure she doesn’t. I know you both have the strength to get through this together. But I have to ask you this. May I?”
Shook my head and he asked,
“Previously, when you met her this morning. What did you tell her?”
~to be continued~