Saturday, 18 October 2014
Chapter 1 – At her mercy
Matt sighed and moved his eyes around the room. She'd be here soon. He knew from the way the light streamed through the gap in the curtains and the sounds of life outside that soon, she'd be here.
He moaned inwardly and let the machine sustain him as it pumped oxygen through his body, rhythmically, steadily filling his lungs and fuelling his body with energy and….life.
As if on cue, he heard the familiar rattle of keys and thud which signalled the opening of the front door and the predictable, ‘Yoo hoo, I’m here.’
She threw her keys on the table and he counted to six and sure enough she appeared in front of him. Reeking of cigarette smoke and mixed with a faint hint of perfume, she pulled the covers away and exposed his body to the morning air.
‘Well,’ she exclaimed, ‘What have we here.’ She slowly moved her hand down his chest, across the tubes, fumbling as she searched for the gap in his pyjamas and slid her hand inside.
He violently coughed, disturbing the tube connected to the ventilator. As it loosened, his breathing laboured and she watched. As a blue tinge appeared around his mouth, it was only then she reached over re-attaching the tube and his breathing regulated.
He hated himself but all he could do was acknowledge her….and be grateful…..for this........?
He turned away. She got up and busied herself, measuring out his medication and calling, ‘Ok Matt, off to prepare lunch. I’ll back to feed you and there'll be time for a bed…..bath.'
He squeezed his eyes shut and a tear rolled down his face. He moved, wiping it against the pillow.
He cried invisible tears. At only 32 years of age, his purpose had been reduced to…..this…...
He sobbed so fiercely, he felt if he continued the tube would again dislodge but his time he’d……suffocate.
But surely such a fate would be….be better than this and then it struck him. He knew he wanted to Live, was desperate for Life…just not like this.
As this gripped him, he knew he’d need to dig deep to overcome the challenges ahead which he faced…with…her.
He could hear her singing and banging saucepans in the kitchen as she prepared lunch. He wondered how he could…annoy her.
She entered the room sipping her cup of coffee and carrying a plastic bowl filled with a brown substance. This was his lunch. She sat on the bed and rested her coffee on the bedside table.
‘Ok Matt, here you go.’ She scooped up a spoonful and prodded his lips which were pressed firmly together.
Not budging, she menacingly coaxed, ‘Matt come on, I've only got 30 minutes to go. A few spoonfuls and then I’m done.'
She took a few sips of coffee and said, ‘I’ve gotta fill my quota, so you’re gonna open your mouth and swallow.’
She pressed the spoon more firmly squashing the brown substance over his prised lips. He shook his head and the blob rolled off his face and dropped onto the bed covers.
Frustrated, she slammed the bowl on the bedside table, sending the spoon flying.
Leeringly, she reefed the bed covers away, whispering ‘Right, Matt, you’re gonna get a bed bath.’
She grabbed her coffee and drained it. Wiping the remaining liquid from her lips with the back of her hand, she hissed, ‘No lunch, a bloody bed bath instead…’
She flung the cup across the carpet and stormed into the bathroom.
Matt could hear running tap water……
The house was silent now she was gone. He relaxed, relieved he was rid of her for 24 hours, and he shut his eyes.