Dart Valley Writers U3A




Lindsay Ellwood


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Today's the Day



Frances called in at the hospital shop to buy magazines, a puzzle book and a packet of biscuits to keep her going through the day. She took the lift to the third floor, and followed the familiar route to Peter's ward.

The nurse was with him, when she arrived, changing drainage tubes and drips.

"I won't be a minute," she smiled, "then I'll leave you in peace."

The nurses were all so kind and friendly - it amazed Shauna that they could keep so cheerful, doing this job.

Once Nurse Johnson had finished, Frances went to Peter's bedside.

"Hello my Darling, how are you today? I've brought some flowers from the garden - chrysanthemums - I know you love them. They'll brighten your room up a bit; it's good that they allow them here - some hospital wards don't, you know...I'll get a nurse to get a vase for you." Shauna knew she was burbling nervously.

Shauna bent down to kiss Peter's cheek, and then she settled into the chair next to his bed, to do her puzzles.

When the doctor came on his rounds, Shauna said calmly, "I need to talk to you, Doctor."

They went into the corridor - some strange sense of decorum dictated it.

"Today's the day - I've made my decision."

They discussed the details, and the forms to be filled in. How many forms had she completed since Peter's accident?

That same afternoon, the Doctor returned.

Shauna held her husband's hand, brushed the hair from his face, and kissed him one last time.

'It's time, my Darling. I love you....forgive me.' Her voice broke with emotion and she nodded to the doctor.

The familiar background noises of the machine ceased, and were replaced by an eerie silence.