It was a winter evening. A bike was speeding fast on the road. Suddenly a strange cry was heard. There seemed much pain in the voice. The biker pulled on the brake and the motorcycle stopped with a sudden jerk. He got down from it and proceeded to the direction where a man was lying bundled. He slowly put his hand on his shoulder and said:
“Oh! You have got much injury”
“Aye, but do something fast to provide me some relief”
And without taking more time he took out his cell phone from his pocket and dialed a number. Soon there was a four wheeler. With the help of the taxi driver he boarded the wounded person in the van. He gave some instructions to the driver. The van started moving forward. He followed it. When they had reached the museum crossing, they found themselves in a traffic jam. He became restless as the wounded person had become fainted perhaps, much blood had gushed out of his body.
Though it was busy crossing still there was no traffic police to help the people. He himself took upon this responsibility and began trying to clear the way. After a lot effort he could find himself in a situation to take some breath of comfort. Anyhow, the van driver managed to pass out from here. In less than twenty minutes they were in the compound of the city hospital.
He went straight to the emergency counter where he looked through the small window. None was there at that time. He stood there petrified and perplexed. He saw a nurse coming. He approached her and explained his problem.
“Just wait for a while. Counter man must be coming’’ she said abruptly and marched on.
After ten minutes the man, who was in charge of the emergency counter, appeared there.
Sumit asked him to provide a stretcher soon. The counter man said” Go into the general room no three and call a maid servant”. Without saying anything he straightened there and called a maid servant. She came and went out after getting some instruction from the counter man. The receptionist gave sumit a form which he filled. After completing formal procedure he got his patient admitted. A young doctor came and inspected the wounded body, asked something to Sumit. Then he prescribed some medicines and handed the note to Sumit.
Taking the prescription from the doctor sumit rushed towards the medicines shop which lined there outside the compound of the hospital. He gave it to the chemist who calculated the price and said:
“Eight hundred and forty rupees”
Sumit put his hand into his pocket to look whether he had the amount required. Luckily, before leaving his home he had put some rupees in his pocket to buy a new saree for his wife as it was his marriage anniversary that day. He had gone to his village to see his mother who was ill. He worked in a shop in the city. His income was not much. He could manage to meet his ends with hardness. He took out the money from the pocket. Luckily it was a little less in nine hundred. He paid the bill and taking medicines returned to the patients’ room. He put it on the table beside the patient’s bed, informed the sister in charge of the room.
He was sitting impatiently on a bench in the verandah. Perhaps, he was expecting arrival of the patient’s relatives. The identity of the patient was established and his family members were informed. After about two hours they reached there. They expressed their inability to pay his money. Though, Sumit had not asked them for it. He consoled them and left the hospital.
When Sumit reached home it was about 11 P.M. His wife was waiting for him . she became glad to see him. She came and opened the gate. Sumit came silently into the room and sat on a chair nodding his head as he would have done something wrong. Pramila broke the silence and said, why are you so sad? It’s our marriage anniversary. Are you not happy with me?”
His eyes filled with tears and scarcely he could speak, “ pramila, I could not give you any gift. For ten years I have been promising you but I cannot keep my promise. Each time I am failed.”
He was about to weep when pramila stretched her arms and cuddled him. She smiled and said you have already given me a good gift.
He said” don’t make fun of my helplessness. I am very perplexed.”
When Pramila told him that she knew everything what had happened to him, he could only say with wonder, “how?’’
Pramila explained to him that she also had gone to the city hospital where her friend is admitted. She had seen him there. After knowing everything she came back without telling him about her arrival. She told him that she did not want to divert his attention from a good cause.
She kissed him naughtily and ran to the kitchen to serve dinner for him. When she returned, both of them were happy and laughed together. Perhaps, it was a surprise gift for the both and from the both.