Monday, July 16, 2012

Here I go. . .

After asking you, my readers, if you would like me to start posting my novel-in-progress on this blog I got only a few responses.  Those responses were unanimous, though:  Post it!

So this is my kick-off post.  While 500 words is a reasonable length for a blog post, I found that it seems to fall a bit short for my purposes.  I am going to stick to it as best I can, though.  However, because the small word count will leave readers hanging on for the next entry--definitely a good thing--and cuts the story in inconvenient places, I am going to post more than twice weekly.  If I don't, you'll have to go back to the previous post to refresh your memory about where it left off.  Looking at it this way, I will try to get three post out every week:  Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

This first one will begin with what you've already read with a bit added at the end.  So here it is. . .

Church Hill

Chapter 1

I received the call around eleven o’clock that Sunday morning.  I had to work that day because we were implementing a new program into the computer system at the bank I worked for.  The caller-ID read Church Hill Hosp and the phone number listed below.  I gave a questioning look to the small team working with me before answering.

“Hello.  Church Hill Bank and Trust, how may I help you?”

A man’s soothing voice came through the line.  “May I speak with Mrs. Boothe, please?”

“This is she,” I said as I gave another questioning look to my team.

“Mrs. Boothe, I’m Dr. Sanchez at Church Hill Hospital.  I’m afraid your husband and daughter have been in an auto accident.  I’ll need you come to the hospital.”

I collapsed into a chair, the telephone receiver I held in my hand started to slide from my grip.  I tried to ask the doctor how bad they were, but I couldn’t speak.  My jaw moved up and down, but my lips and tongue were immobile and my throat made no sound.  

Cassie, my assistant, took the phone from my hand.  “Hello?”

“Mrs. Boothe?”

“This is her assistant.  May I help you?”

“This is Dr. Sanchez at Church Hill Hospital.  I need Mrs. Boothe to come to the hospital right away.  Her family has been in an accident.”

“Oh my God.”  Cassie fumbled a bit, but quickly became the strong and steady assistant I needed her to be.  “Where do I bring her?”

“The ER.  I’ll be waiting.  Just tell the nurse at the desk you’re there to see me.  They will know the situation.”

“We’ll be there in ten minutes.”  Cassie hung up the phone and grabbed her coat.  Then she helped me to my feet and held my coat so I could just slip it on.

I don’t remember the ride to the hospital.  It seemed like hours, though it couldn’t have been more than ten minutes.  Cassie kept reassuring me that everything was going to be OK, but I don’t think I believed her.  How could I?  The doctor hadn’t said they were alright.  He just said to come right away.  And I had a terrible feeling that I was losing one or both of them.

Cassie threw her keys to the valet at the ER entrance and pulled me through the automatic doors.  We approached the front desk where an overweight nurse sat filling out paper-work.  She looked up at us.

“Can I help you?”  Her tone was a little irritated, as if she was tired of dealing with people’s “emergencies.”

“We’re here to see Dr. Sanchez,” Cassie demanded.  “He’s expecting us.  Last name’s Boothe.”

The nurse seemed to understand the urgency.  She stood and came around the desk.  “Of course.  Follow me.”  She swiped her ID card and the doors opened to admit us into the ER.

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