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A Random Moment: Part Eight, The Taxi

Will he?

Rufus and Cynthia sat in the gloomy, dingy wee restaurant enjoying their food and each other’s company. They sat and pretended to be posh and ordered the most posh sounding items from the menu. In truth, it was pretty ordinary food, done up to look posh, but it was yummy.

“So... we’re finished here. Movie now?” Rufus asked.

“Sure thing, just settle the bill first.”

“Oh yeah... Waiter!” Rufus called.

“Yes, sir?”

“Vlad? Hey, Vlad, don’t you recognise your own boss?” Rufus smiled.

“Oh, I’m sorry, sir. I didn’t even notice it was you, to be honest!”

“Oh, it’s fine. This is on the house tonight. Well, seeing as I am the house!” Rufus chuckled.

Rufus bid farewell to Vlad, pulled Cynthia’s seat out and held his hand out to help her up.

“Wait, Rufus, do you own this place?”

“Yeah.”

“Kept that a secret!”

“Sorry, it wasn’t intentional, just never had the right opportunity.”

“Ach, it’s all good. Anyway, what do you want to see?” Cynthia patted Rufus on the shoulder.

‘You naked,’ Rufus though. ‘Idiot, keep those thoughts down!’ Rufus berated himself.

“Dunno, let’s just decide when we get there. I’ll call a cab. All of tonight’s on me, by the way.”

Rufus called the cab and lit up a cigarette. The cab arrived a short while later and they got in and directed the driver to the cinema. What happened next, nobody could have predicted.

Rufus and Cynthia were in the back, fondling and giggling to each other. The driver kept his eye on the road - he knew he had no right to stickybeak, so he kept himself to himself, concentrating on the road.

“Cynthia... I’m glad I found you.”

“I’m glad I found you too, Rufus.”

They swivelled in their seats to hug, but before they could even connect, they were upside down in a bloody mess.

They had crashed.

Cynthia was the first one out of the wreck and checked to see if Rufus was alright. He wasn’t moving, but he was breathing. The driver was faring a little better: he was, at least, conscious. Cynthia felt herself begin to panic.

‘Stay calm, call an ambulance.’

Cynthia took her own advice and called the ambulance and fire crew. Within a few minutes, the fire crew were there with the paramedics, working on a strategy to get Rufus from the wreckage. Rufus had started to come to by then. Cynthia ran over to the wreck.

“Rufus, hang in there. Don’t move. The firemen are going to have to cut you out,” Cynthia soothed him.

“I guess... we... crashed?” Rufus babbled.

“Yeah, but you’re gonna be okay.”

“Right, miss, you’re gonna have to get out the way. We’re cutting now.”

“Rufus, I’ll be right over there. I’m not leaving, just hang in there!”

Cynthia almost went to pieces, but she knew she had to keep it together for Rufus. A friendly paramedic came over to tend to her wounds. Cynthia just sat crumpled, stunned, watching the firemen cut Rufus from the wreckage and seeing Rufus babbling. She fought back tears in her eyes.

‘Need to stay strong, Rufus needs me.’

“How’s the driver? Is he okay?” She asked.

“He’s fine, some minor cuts and abrasions, though he’s likely concussed.”

Just then, the driver came over and started talking to Cynthia.

“I’m sorry, I don’t know what happened there. The car just started slipping and I couldn’t control it. I’m so so sorry!” He sobbed.

“It’s okay, it was an accident,” Cynthia comforted him, still keeping her eye on the firemen digging Rufus from the wrecked, upside down car.

They started pulling Rufus from the car and put him on a stretcher. They started putting him in the ambulance.

“Wait, I’m going with him!” Cynthia shouted after them.

She got in the ambulance and held Rufus’ hand.

“You’ll make it through, hang in there!” Cynthia told him.

“Call... call my... mum. My phone...” He pointed to his right trouser pocket.

Cynthia carefully removed Rufus’ phone from his pocket and looked through the phone book until she found an entry labelled 'mum’. She hit “call” and waited for a reply.

“Hello?” The voice asked.

“Um, hi. Is this Rufus’s mum?” Cynthia asked, her voice shaky.

“Yes, who is this?” Rufus’ mum was getting concerned.

“My name is Cynthia. I’m sorry, but there’s been an accident. We’re on the way to the hospital.”

“God! Is he okay? Which hospital? Are you okay?”

“He’s unconscious. What hospital are we going to?”

“City General,” the paramedic answered.

“City General. Listen I’m okay, I’ve got a bit of concussion, but Rufus needs you.”

“I’m on my way.”

Though in no fit state to drive, Rufus’ mother took off in her car to the hospital. When she got there, Rufus had already been admitted.

“Are you Rufus’ mum?” Cynthia asked when she saw her.

“Yes, are you the girl I talked to on the phone?”

“Yes. We were...”

“I know, Rufus told me about you. You seem to make him happy,” Rufus mum hugged Cynthia and they cried a bit on each other’s shoulders. “Is there any word of how he’s doing?” She asked.

“None so far, but I hope he’s okay. I love that man.”

A doctor came along.

“Are you Mrs Hatfield?”

“Yes, how’s Rufus?”

“He’s unconscious. We don’t know when he’ll wake up. The best thing you can do is just let him rest.”

“Can we see him?” Cynthia asked.

“Are you family?”

“Yes, now let us in!” Mrs Hatfield demanded.

“Right. Just a warning. He’s in a pretty bad state.”

Mrs Hatfield and Cynthia walked into the room. There were tubes coming from everywhere, it seemed.

Will he ever awake?
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