“Jessica…”Andy breathed shakily as he moved to Jessica more closely. “Jess, sweetheart, Oh my God” He chokes on his words as he traces Jessica’s face shakily. “Doctor” He called sharply but the doctor was already at the bed, removing the oxygen from Jessica’s nose.
Jessica’s face registered her confusion as she stared at the sparkling white surroundings she was in. Her focus was however fixed on Andy. She had never seen him look so terrified and worried; she had also glimpsed tears in his eyes. What was the matter? And why was she feeling pains all over her body? She could not move anything, in fact, she felt glued to the bed. How long had she been there? One look at the man that loomed over her next told her that she was in a hospital; she turned her head and looked around, seeing various gadgets for the first time.
“Be calm Mrs. Williams. My name is Doctor Bright. Can you hear me?”
Jessica swallowed, feeling thirsty because her throat was incredibly dry and bitter. She nodded.
“How are you feeling?” The doctor asked as he checked her pulse and looked at his watch.
She tried to open her mouth and was happy that it responded. “Tired” she croaked. “Weak” she corrected. “I can’t move my arms; they are heavy and feel like they are tied down”
The doctor nodded and smiled gently. “That is to be expected. You need to rest now so that you can get your strength back”
She did not like the sound that. She had sedated a lot of people while she was still working as a doctor but she had never been sedated but the thought of sleeping unnaturally did not sound appealing to her. She just wanted to talk with Andy. Andy came to her immediately the doctor finished asking questions. He looked very tired. Taking a proper look at him, Jessica swallowed. His shirt was slightly open at the neckline. His tie was hanging loosely and awkwardly at an equally awkward angle. Andy’s worry was so evident on his face, couples with a measured level of relief.
Andy brushed strands of hair out of Jessica’s face and gazed straight into her eyes. “You sleep now, Ok” It was both a request and a command but Andy’s eyes were tender.
The accident came slowly to her mind and she recalled how that car had appeared out of nowhere and collided forcefully with her. She grimaced, thinking of how worried Andy must have been. “How long have I been on this bed?” she asked, already feeling drowsy.
“A couple of hours” Andy said quietly, happy to answer all her questions. He was not about to admit that she had spent so many hours on the bed that he had been afraid that she might not wake up.
Jessica swallowed. “I feel like I have been on this bed for more than a year”, Jessica breathed almost inaudibly as she gave in to the drugs. “Do I have to sleep again?”
Andy smiled. “I don’t think you have a choice honey” Jessica’s eyes were already shot. He bent his head and kissed her forehead. “Sleep, my love” he breathed. “Sleep”
Andy stared at Jessica minutes after she slept, stroking her hair. He looked at the doctor who was just finishing what he had been doing. “How is my wife doctor? Is she completely out of danger?”
Doctor Bright smiled. “I believe so sir, with enough rest, she would be fine. She still has to stay here for a few days so that we can monitor her wounds and ensure that the wounds heal properly.”
Andy sighed, greatly relieved, and then frowned. “She complained of her inability to move, I hope…”
“There is no problem sir; all her organs are functioning properly. With enough rest, she would be fine. You have nothing to worry about”
Andy sighed. His relief was immeasurable.
“Why don’t you take some rest sir, it is almost morning and you have not slept at all” Doctor Bright said with concern.
Andy was stunned and looked at his wristwatch. It was some minutes past five! He never knew! Sleep hadn’t occurred to him once, all he knew was that he had to watch Jessica so that nothing would go unnoticed. “I am fine doctor, and please, call me Andy or Williams”
Doctor Bright smiled, not sure if he would be able to comply with the request even though he was clearly older than Andy. “If you don’t want to sleep, why don’t you just take a walk? I am sure your family wants to know what is happening”
Andy had to admit that the doctor had a point. He looked at Jessica who was sleeping soundly. “I’ll be back baby” He squeezed her hand and slowly walked out with the doctor following closely behind.
Andy returned to Jessica’s room feeling happy. The joy of everyone had been so palpable and it had rubbed off on him, taking away the remnants of fear left in him. On entering the room, he noticed that Jessica was not there. He had instant headache as he looked round the room. He rushed out of the room and looked at the door to be sure he had entered the right room but it was the correct one. He entered again but did not see Jessica.
“Doctor” He roared and some nurses who were obviously attending to patients came out of some rooms and stared at him in confusion.
“Sir, please, some patients are-”
“Where is my wife” He roared. “I left my wife here some minutes ago and now, she is not there”. Andy felt shaken to the roots.
Andy turned when he heard the doctor’s voice. “What have you done to my wife? You asked me to go for a walk. I did not want to leave her for a second but now that I have… if anything happens to Jessica”
“Calm down sir, your wife is fine. We only moved her to another room where she can be more comfortable. I went to the waiting room to inform you but you had already left for this place. I am sorry if we scared you in any way”
Andy swallowed, trying to control his skipping heart. “I need to see her right now”
Doctor Bright nodded. “Please, come with me sir”
Andy heaved a huge sigh of relief as he entered the room and saw Jessica. He quickly went to the bedside and checked her breathing. He sighed again and sat down, noticing that the room was definitely cozier that the former, with less machines hanging around.
“I am sorry for the inconvenience sir” Doctor Bright said.
Andy looked up. “I am sorry I shouted doctor, this room is definitely much better”
The doctor smiled and left. Andy could not sleep again even though he had been drowsy. He opened his eyes and watched Jessica, not wanting her to vanish but after some time, the fatigue and tension he had been through set in and he felt bone tired. He could not keep his eyes open any longer, so he put his head on the bed beside Jessica and dozed off.
Jessica woke up almost an hour later, feeling better than she had felt the other time she opened her eyes. The room looked different and smelt better than the she remembered; also looked bigger. Or was her calculation correct the previous time? The room still smelt like hospital though. She turned her head and saw Andy sleeping with his head beside her. He looked so handsome but on his forehead, she could see some worry lines. She wanted him to sleep because she had a feeling that he really needed it. She raised her hand, happy that it was responding now, even though it hurt slightly. She placed her palm slightly on Andy’s head gently, not wanting to wake him. She played with his hair, stroking him slightly. Andy sighed sleepily and his shoulders seemed to relax. Jessica smiled and stroked his hair, loving the feel of the tiny strands. Andy’s eyes opened gently and Jessica wished she hadn’t touched him. He smiled lazily, drawing a smile from her.
“Hey beautiful” He murmured, capturing her hand and kissing her knuckles. He raised his head to look at her. “How are you feeling sweetheart”
She tried to speak and could not until she cleared her throat. “I am better” she reassured him, smiling, then frowned. “But I need to sit down”
He frowned. “Don’t move” he warned and pressed the button beside the bed. “I need to be sure that it is Ok for you to do so. Wait for the doctor”
Her frown deepened. “It is not as worse as that Andy, I am fine”
“I am not taking any chances Jess, please stay still”, he pleaded. Jessica did not want to give Andy anything to worry about so she stayed where she was. Andy relaxed and kissed her cheek. “Oh Jess, you don’t know just how worried I have been.”
Jessica put her hand against his cheek. “I can’t leave you husband, can’t give the other women the chance they have been praying for, to take you away”
Andy grinned. “Oh, no one is taking me from you wifey, if she is not Jessica, she cannot be like Jessica”
Jessica chuckled then remembered something. “How come Kanu was your idol?”
Andy’s eyes widened as he stared at her, completely awestruck. “You heard?”
Before she could respond, the door opened and Doctor Bright entered. He smiled brightly at Jessica and she smiled back. “Mrs. Williams” he greeted. “How are you feeling now?”
“Better. Thank you doctor… I would like to sit down but my overcautious husband would not let me. I am sure he was overreacting. I am a doctor and should know if I can or cannot sit down” she frowned at Andy, who raised an eyebrow at her.
“He was right to be cautious ma’am, he has been extremely worried about you” the doctor responded. He took out his torch and checked her eyes. “Where are you hurting?” Jessica pointed out some places and he nodded. “With time, you would be fine” He and Andy assisted her up even though she talked endlessly about not needing assistance. She smiled her appreciation and winced slightly as a sharp pain took hold and vanished.
“Are you Ok? You sure you should be sitting?” Andy asked worried.
“I am fine” she reassured him with a smile. “I need some water”
everyone trouped into Jessica’s room to greet her, everyone carrying either provisions or flowers. “Oh Jessica” her uncle’s wife called immediately she entered. “You had us all worried. How are you”
Jessica had barely answered when questions started pouring in from all angles, with everyone asking about her health and so on. She felt so special and loved. She tried to answer everyone as much as possible. Andy had stepped aside for everyone but as they fussed over her, he had the urge to tell them to be careful but kept quiet.
Jessica saw her father-in-law standing some steps away and smiled softly at him. He walked towards her. “Daughter, it is so good to see you. Can you forgive me? I have really offended you”
Jessica smiled. “It is I who have offended you sir, I should not have done what I did with Andy and should not have deceived you too. I understand what you did sir, you are a father, and God knows that you have carried quite a responsibility on your own for a long time. It is natural that you would protect your son”
“Even at that, I should not have done what I did, I am sorry dear”
Jessica smiled, nodded and hugged her father-in-law.
“Yes Jessica, your father-in-law did nothing wrong. The bitch is that Sonia of a girl, I can’t believe she had the audacity to come here for forgiveness” Lizzy said and Paulina shot her a warning glance.
Jessica gasped. Sonia was here? What did she want? Jessica was not ready to dwell on Sonia. Instead, she looked around, seeing different colours of flowers.
“Oh My God! This place looks so beautiful, if you keep beautifying this place, I won’t want to leave”
Everyone laughed. Andy went and sat beside her on the bed and she leaned her head against his shoulders. The feeling of happiness filled his heart. He knew that for this woman, he would do anything. He turned to smile at her and met her staring at him. They were in a world of their own as they stared at each other. The people in the room were forgotten as Andy leaned towards Jessica and kissed her with all the love in his heart. Vaguely, Jessica heard the squeals of people but she shut them out as she held on to her heart – Andrew Williams
Jessica turned and stretched her hand but found the bed empty. She opened her eyes but did not see Andy. Turning and sitting up, she saw Andy dressing up. He turned and smiled at her. “Hey beautiful”
Jessica doubted that she looked beautiful because her hair was in total disarray, both from sleep and from all the events of the past night. She frowned. “Good morning husband, off to work so early?”
“Yes, got an emergency meeting”
“I know sweetie, today is Friday, I just remembered that I had fixed today for the meeting. I have to rush off” he pushed his hands into his suit jacket hastily.
“But don’t you remember that-”
“Yes honey, I just remembered the meeting. Take care of yourself honey and remember, if you have to go out, please take the driver. Please take the driver” he repeated, kissed her and rushed out.
Jessica glared at the closed door in annoyance. How could he forget that today was her birthday? Please take the driver… why can’t he understand that the accident that happened about three months ago could have also happened if the driver had driven the car? She did not like sitting at the back but at times, she had to admit that she actually enjoyed it. She sighed, getting out of bed. She checked the time and saw that it was almost eight. Her eyes widened. No wonder Andy had been rushing, he had obviously woken up late too. But why could he not wish her a happy birthday. She entered the bathroom, brushed and showered. Just as she was coming out, her phone rang and she picked it up.
“Lizzy” she called, smiling. Obviously, her friend had remembered her birthday.
“Oh Jessica, thank God I got you”
Jessica frowned. “Is everything ok?”
“Oh Lizzy, I am stranded here. I have some things with me and I need to take them home but I can’t find my purse again. I am somewhere around Mackey Close, not so far from your place. Can you come and pick me?”
Jessica wanted to ask what she was doing outside so early in the morning but shrugged it off. Not everyone cuddled up against their husbands till this time. “I don’t know any Mackey close, where is that?”
“Oh, Jessica, ask your driver, he should know the place. Please babes, ok? I am waiting” Lizzy hung up.
Jessica frowned and started dressing up. Minutes later she was sitting at the back seat of the car, as the driver drove. He surely knew where he was going and she looked around, looking out for Lizzy. What greeted her eyes when the driver came to a stop was a massive building that looked relatively new. The beauty of the building was so dumbfounding and she found herself gazing at it, marveling at the mastery behind it. It was long and tall, looking perfect for a shopping complex. She thought of so many things, just by staring at it but she had to forcefully take her eyes from the building to look for Lizzy. She turned to open the door but it was opened before she could. She looked out and saw Andy holding out his hand. “Happy birthday wife” he called with a bright smile on his face. Jessica was floored. There was obviously no meeting anywhere. She took his hand and stepped out of the car.
“You are mischievous” she said grinning. Andy smiled and leaned forward for a kiss. Jessica looked around. “Where are we? This place is not far from home but still, I have never been here” he smiled.
“I know” and for some seconds he looked uncertain.
Jessica looked at the massive building before her, loving it the more. “Oh my” she said breathlessly. “This building is divine… breathtaking” she said gazing at it but Andy did not respond. She turned to look at him and he was watching her. He went to stand at her front.
“Sweetheart, you told me some months back that you would love to own your own business. It was then I thought of it. You are my heart desire, sweetheart, and I wanted to give you something that would make you very happy. I got this project started a week after you told me about it. You said you would love something small but I thought of this – a shopping mall. I know you love supermarkets and boutiques, so I felt it would be nice if we merged it. This building has three floors. We would fill them with whatever you want.” Andy breathed, not sure of what Jessica would say, she had been staring like a frozen goddess. “Happy birthday sweetheart” He stretched out a scissors which had a ribbon on it and put it in Jessica’s hand.
Jessica had been looking at Andy as his mouth moved and words tumbled out. She was not sure if she was sleeping or dreaming or in a trance or something. She was definitely hearing wrong things. When Andy landed and gave her the scissors, she finally found the ability to move a muscle. She stared at the scissors like she did not know what it was used for. She looked back at Andy and stared at the massive structure that towered over her. For the first time, she noticed at ribbon around the house. The full effect of what Andy had been saying slammed into her like a tidal wave and she turned sharply to face Andy.
“You can’t be serious… You are joking right”
He smiled softly. “Do you like it?” Andy had hopeful eyes.
Jessica felt like her head would explode. “Of course I like it, but it is not mine, is it? It can’t be mine, can it?” she turned to stare at the building. “Oh God! Andy, this is too much” It would have cost a fortune” she frowned. “What am I saying? It would have cost a million fortunes” she turned back to Andy. “Where did you get the money to build this?”
Andy almost laughed. “Jess, do you know who you married? I have money enough to feed a nation”. “Please tell me you like it”
Jessica squealed. “Oh God! I love it” she jumped on Andy and he caught her, visibly relaxing. “But you know you did not have to do it right?”
He looked into her eyes. “Yes, I had to. I would do anything to make you very happy my love”
“You are my happiness Andy Williams”
He kissed her and stepped back, holding her hand.
She turned back to face the building and gasped when she saw so many people. “Happy Birthday” they all screamed. Jessica grinned and squealed like a little child. She became calm when someone walked up to her. Jessica looked at Sonia. Sonia had done all she could to get her forgiveness buy Jessica had refused to. Staring at Sonia now, it was impossible to forgive her. Not with the happiness inside her. She looked at Andy who gave an encouraging nod. Moving forward, the opened her hands and Sonia ran into it. Jessica felt her happiness increase. Everyone made mistakes and they deserved forgiveness when they finally realize their mistakes. Cheers went out and suddenly, Jessica was being hugged and pecked by all and sundry. They all went to the ribbon and their pastor who was also there, prayed. “We open this building in the name of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”
Everyone shouted amen and Jessica and Andy cut the ribbon. She felt the instant urge to cry and before she knew it, she had tears rolling down her cheeks. She jumped on Andy. “I have never been this happy Andy… I love you. I am sure our baby would love you very very much too” Andy froze and pulled her back enough to stare into her eyes. She answered his question with a smile. “You are going to be a father” she whispered and Andy gasped. He had just received the best news in the world. Before Jessica knew what was happening, Andy was swinging her in the air. She giggled and people looked at them, puzzled and amused, wishing to find a love like theirs. Jessica’s feet hadn’t touched the ground when Andy pulled her against him for a deep breathtaking kiss. When they broke off, they were breathless. Andy put his head against Jessica’s and gazed into her beautiful eyes. “I am the luckiest man on earth”
“That makes two of us because I was thinking I am the luckiest woman in the universe.
“We are going to be one extremely happy family” Andy said, wanting to scream on top of his lungs. They both turned to the crowd of people who were looking at them with curiosity but they were not going to tell them. This was their news, their joy and they did not want to publicize it. It was too good to share. They grinned and got the celebration started, both thanking God in their hearts for the day they got married.
*All things work together for our good*
THE END $$
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