"Allan...", he called me five minutes after just stating my name.
I sheepishly replied, "Sir, it’s Drei..." with a voice full of warmth and a reassuring face just like any nurse would give. I hurriedly changed his soiled linens and proceeded to bath my patient and dress him afterwards to give him the comfort he needs most right now.
The room was empty with only me and my patient. It smelled of alcohol and dried blood like any hospital would. There was stillness in the room, the kind of stillness that you would not aspire for. For room was silent with only the sound of the television and the buzzing of the air condition. And it has always been like that. No calls and messages from relatives, no notifications nor visits whatsoever. A deafening silence hit the room once more that kept me uneasy. “Say something!”, I said to myself.
"It’s time for your morphine… feel any pain?"
“A little…”, he said
“No, it’s okay… I can tolerate it…”
“Okay sir, I’ll just get back to you later…”
Archie.. Archie.. Now where did he get that name? Surely, my nameplate doesn’t say Archie or anything close to that. I replied with the same affect the first time he got my name wrong by replying, “It’s Drei…”I proceeded with my work, hiding my uneasiness.
I checked the flow rate and the patency of the IV fluid line, and got fixed on its drops that seemed like particles of sand trickling in an hourglass on a countdown to my patients expiration. He is suffering from leukemia, the kind that spreads to the bones causing pain that can only be alleviated by drug therapy. The doctors said he won’t live long, maximum of three months say without the complications. All the while, he has been in this ward for about two weeks, all I can say is that he has been deteriorating day by day with the his solitude while his life being sucked slowly out of his flesh, coming closer and closer to playing with death.
That night, while giving his pain killer drug, he asked me if he could call me “Archie”. I gave in to his requests if he wants me to be called that way. He wont live long, I thought.
The next day, he went to a state of comatose. He was brain dead with only the machine supporting his heart beat and breathing. It was a moment of useless strife and of efforts wasted. We all know where it ends. It was a moment I still wasn’t prepared to face. Feelings of melancholy and of urge of pursuit to let one man live pervaded the room. But still, the kind of silence that once pervaded the room never seemed to disappear. It was a silence of peace.
A creaking sound came from the door, two figures of guys, dressed in white came in through the door.“Who are they?”, I asked the doctor who was on the sala of the room while I’m busy preparing the lifeless body for the morgue.
The doctor replied, “His children, Archie and Allan are here…”
And it all came to me in an instant…they came back.