Frank’s Pity Party

Another short story I wrote back in 2008 to 2010 for The Cypress Times in Texas. I haven’t edited any of them but I thought I might share some of my old writing.

FRANK’S PITY PARTY

This news report was brought to you by…” click

“Nothing but bad news.”

“What are you mumbling about, Frank?”

“Nothing, Nancy.”

“Well, when you’ve finished mumbling about nothing you can take out the trash.”

“Okay, Nancy.”

Frank stood with a groan and reached for his cane. It was a routine he had found himself in since the accident. Wake, bathroom, dress, breakfast, sit, watch the news, then empty the trash. “Oh, joy,” he muttered to himself as he opened the back door. “It’s Wednesday… Nancy’s ladies’ meeting.”

He grumbled and groaned the short walk to where the trash can was located by the side gate and dropped in the bag. A car door slammed shut. Frank glanced over the gate. “Well, well,” he grumbled. “Looks like we have new neighbours, noisy kids too I suspect, or annoying cats.”

He headed back indoors. His thigh ached from the cold. “Twenty-seven years old, Lord, and I feel eighty. Why did you let me survive? I’m finished. With this useless leg, my life is over. I…”

A high-pitched scream interrupted his pity party with God. Another scream. Frank turned and returned to the gate as fast as his leg would carry him.

On the opposite side of the road, a middle-aged woman was running onto the street. “Help! Help!” She looked left and right, back and forth calling for help.

Frank opened the gate and hobbled up the path. “What’s wrong?” he yelled.

The woman was trembling. “Please. Help my son.”

“What’s happened?” Frank asked when he reached the other side of the road.

“I think he’s dead.”

“Where is he?” Frank asked quietly, hoping he could calm the woman’s panic.

The woman practically dragged Frank up the path and through her front door. On the floor lay a man about his own age. He was very still and appeared to have stopped breathing. Frank knelt on his good knee beside the man. He felt for a pulse and placed his ear over the man’s mouth. “He’s still breathing. What’s your name?” he asked the woman gently.

“Michelle. Michelle Warwick.” She answered a little less stressed. “This is my son, Colin. He’s a diabetic.”

“OK, Michelle, this is what I want you to do. Go over to my house.” He pointed in the direction of where he came. “Ask Nancy, my wife, to call 911. Then, ask her to make you a cup of tea and stay with her until the paramedics arrives.”

The woman looked at Colin then back to Frank. She turned and rushed off without questions.

Frank felt for injury from head to toe that may have been caused by the collapsed. He then rolled Colin carefully onto his side and checked his airways before rechecking pulse and breathing. Suddenly Frank’s upper leg cramped. He landed on his backside with a thud. He gripped his thigh and sat rubbing it frantically until the cramp subsided.

Frank had just checked Colin’s vital signs again when the patient began to stir. He opened his eyes and looked around slowly before his eyes settled on Frank. There was a sound of a distant siren.

“It’s OK, Colin. The paramedics will be here soon. Stay still. Do you hurt anywhere?”

Colin said something incoherent and rubbed his hand over his eyes. He groaned and gave his head a shake.

The sirens grew louder then suddenly stopped out front. A few seconds later a paramedic entered the house. “Hello, Frank! Who do you have here?”

Frank didn’t get up to greet him. “Tony! Good to see you.” Frank looked across to Colin. “Colin, this is a buddy of mine; Tony. Tony, I guess this is my new neighbour, Colin.” 

Frank pushed himself out of the way and Tony got to work on Colin.

Another paramedic rushed in. “Frank, are you okay?”

“Hi, Sarah. So, they’ve teamed you up with crazy Tony.”

At that moment Colin’s mother returned with Nancy. “Colin, are you alright?”

“I think so,” he replied groggily.

Sarah checked Colin’s neck and limbs. “We’ll rescue you from Frank here and get you checked out at the hospital.”

“You know him?” Colin asked, obviously still confused.

Nancy stepped forward and helped Frank to his feet. “Frank my hero. He just can’t help himself.”

Sarah inserted an IV into Colin’s arm while Tony raced out for a stretcher. “Frank was Tony’s paramedic partner, and driver, until a drunk ran a red light and hit the driver’s door of the ambulance,” Sarah explained.” He lost his lower leg,” she added sympathetically.

“It’s not the only thing he lost,” Nancy added sadly.

Tony returned as Nancy spoke. “Are you still feeling sorry for yourself, Frank? You still have the gift. It’s in your blood, no matter how long you sit in that overstuffed chair of yours and feel sorry for yourself.”

Frank watched Tony and Sarah ease Colin onto the portable gurney. He then looked into the relieved eyes of Michelle who had listened intently to the conversation. He put his arm around Nancy. “Tony’s right. It is time I moved on. Maybe they can use my help down at the First-Aid Station. I can manage that, and we’ll see where it takes me.”

Nancy hugged him and smiled. “That’s my hero,” she said. “Now let’s take Michelle to the hospital and meet up with Colin there. I think it’s also time to get you away from that television and get to know our new neighbours.”

“I know,” Frank replied. “I guess I do have a lot to thank God for after-all.”

© Chrissy Siggee

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

Archived in: Christian Reads

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