By: Tamara Black

“Let me go on another run,” I said. “I hit a truck, but it belonged to a cop and there wasn’t any damage.”

“What the hell are you talking about?” she asked. “You’re going to make a shitty doctor.”

“Just let me work, please?”

“My office. Now.”

I walked in and followed her to the back of the building where she had a tiny office that looked like it could be featured in an episode of Hoarders. Stacks of manuals and boxes full of receipts and old paperwork filled the space around her desk. She barely had enough room to pull her chair back and sit down.

As I stood in the doorway, she sat down and pulled out her infamous demerit sheet. I frowned as she looked it over, tallying up all the times I’d fucked up in the last couple weeks. She looked up at me, shaking her head.

“This is not good, Daniel,” she said. “You were on double-probation already. This takes you over the top.”

“What are you saying?” I asked.

“You’re fired!” She smiled. “I feel like Trump!”

I rolled my eyes, hoping that guy didn’t become President of the United States.

“Can I do something to make it up?”

“Yeah, I’m just teasing you,” she said. “But this is it, your last warning.”

“I understand,” I said, nodding my head. “Can I go on another run? Tips have been shit today.”

“No, I’m sending you home for the night because of the accident, but you can pick up a shift tomorrow if you want.”

“I’ll take it,” I said.

She waved me away. Not being officially on the payroll, I didn’t have to clock out, but I had Tiffany make me a medium pineapple and sausage pizza to take home for my late night of studying. While I waited for it to make its way through the oven, I sat in the lobby and went over my copy of Gray’s Anatomy, trying to prepare for my big test the next day. An idea hit me.



July 25th, 2016 - Monday

I looked at the nurse next to my hospital bed as she looked at a clipboard.

“Why won’t you tell me about my baby?” I asked, my eyes sore from crying. “I have a right to know.”

“Your doctor will be in to talk with you in a bit,” she said, not looking up. “I told you that already.”

What a bitch, I thought, but I didn’t say anything. I was registered as a Certified Nursing Assistant, but I dreamed of being a Registered Nurse someday. I knew the job could be tough. Daniel the pizza and baby delivery man popped in my thoughts as I remember he was a med-student.

Not in pain any longer, I could stop and think about him. I knew a lot of other people in the medical field, but he was different in some way. Maybe it was because he was just starting out in his career like me? Whatever it was about him, I thanked God he showed up to my house when he did.

If he’d delivered the pizza on time, he probably would’ve been gone when I went into labor. I shuddered at the thought of what might’ve happened if I’d been on my own when the baby came out whether I wanted it to or not.

“You really should have come into the hospital sooner,” the nurse said, finally looking at me.

“I know. It’s hard being a single mother.”

“The doctor will be here in a bit, okay?”

I nodded, resigned that I wouldn’t find out about my newborn right away.

As the nurse walked out, I glanced at the door and saw Daniel, which shocked me.

He came in and stood next to my bed.

“What are you doing here?” I asked him.

“I wanted to check on you and the baby. You were my first birth.”

“That was your first time? I couldn’t tell at all,” I said sarcastically.

He caught on and smiled.

“How is your baby?”


“You named him after me?”

“No, after Danny…” I searched for a surname in my mind but couldn’t come up with anything.

“It’s okay,” he said. “How is the little guy?”

I frowned. “They won’t tell me.”

“What? I thought he was a bit small, but…” He stopped talking.

“Small? What are you saying?” I asked, sitting up.

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