He closed his eyes as the loud music washed over his soul. He thought that if he shut them tight enough, concentrated hard enough, liquid poison would begin to work as liquid courage to give him the strength to indulge in the beauty that the world had offered to him.

He was wrong.

When he finally opened his eyes, a thick-set nurse was standing by his side, brusquely attaching an IV to his left arm. He tried to shout in objection, cry out in pain, but all that came out of his mouth was an exasperated sigh, and so he closed his eyes once more, hoping this time that he would instead wake up in his ten by fifteen room, his housemate’s lack-lustre rap music blasting from afar.

She opened her eyes and stared at the flaking ceiling. She regretted-for the umpteenth time- breaking up with her long-time boyfriend four months ago. Yes, he was abusive; yes, he was extremely disrespectful; yes, he would insult her friends and family; embarrass her in public by getting into ridiculous fights with her and any man that would stare at her in a suggestive manner BUT, he would have fixed the ceiling real good for her.

She got out of bed and got ready for another day at work at the local hospital. Before she left, she took one last look at the flaking ceiling of her studio apartment and cursed herself for having the sense to break up with that bastard.

It’s strange, you see, how these two lives crossed- the young party goer and the underpaid nurse. Today, more than ever, it’s important for them to follow respective protocol in this situation. For him- to stay calm and breathe as the doctors carry out their various tests and as the nurses administer the treatments. For her- to not let her self-critical thoughts affect her work, and not to take  out her frustration on the patient.

“What is wrong with some people? Why on earth would you go out drinking when you know you’re on some serious medication? He’s just like Jim, no regard for rules, no regard for self, no regard for any damn thing” she thought to herself as she prepared the IV for the young man. With each passing minute she got angrier and angrier at the barely conscious man. He looked so much like Jim- strong jaw, broad shoulders, clean-cut beard and a perfectly shaped head with no sense in it.

She stuck the needle in before making sure she’d chosen the right vein. His mouth opened slightly and he seemed to be mumbling something, but she didn’t care. It wasn’t her fault that he had made bad decisions that landed him in there. It wasn’t her fault that he had been dumped at the front of the hospital, no I.D, no friends or family. And it most certainly was not her fault that he was being uncooperative by clenching his muscles every few seconds.

Unpredictability is reaching this point in the story only to find out that it is over; in the sense that I can write no more about it as it is still unfolding. Patient X is currently undergoing treatment at a local hospital for alcohol poisoning and Nurse Y periodically subjects him to unnecessarily gruff treatment due to his uncanny resemblance to her abusive former partner.

Unpredictability is whether or not Patient X will go back to his drinking habits or finally trade in his current lifestyle for a new, more wholesome one. It’s whether or not Nurse Y will reconnect with Jim just to get her flaky ceiling fixed for free.

What I can tell you for sure right now, is that the writing has now come to a definite end.


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