Given what is going on in the world right now, I thought this might be appropriate . . .
The elevator doors whooshed shut behind Marcus and he then proceeded to shake his head like a terrier, water droplets pelting everyone within 5 feet. Two people chuckled and moved away but one stayed and offered Marcus a towel.
“With this rain it could be a busy night but I’m hoping it’s the opposite”.
Lila was a petite brunette who usually smiled at everyone and everything. But when she was sad, her emotions spilled over everywhere. Marcus felt protective of her. She was just out of school and this was her first job. A heavy responsibility for a mentor.
“It’ll be fine kid. The rain can’t last. But I must say I have never seen it raining quite this hard or for this long. That weatherperson actually called it a 100-year storm. Seems we haven’t had one this bad in over a hundred years. I don’t believe it. They just say that to get people going. It helps their ratings.”
Marcus proceeded to put away his rain-soaked jacket. Every hospital has a group of people no one knows about. Or rather they just don’t think about them. These are the people that make sure the lights are working, the automatic doors stay automatic and the heat keeps everyone warm on those chilly days. Marcus was one of those people, part of a team. Some of his coworkers were full time and others, like Lila, worked part time. This was one day Marcus thought they might actually be working hard for their pay. Storms can wreck havoc with all kinds of systems.
Lila handed Marcus his first cup of coffee for the evening. There always seemed to be a full pot of coffee brewing. It helped during those sometimes-endless night shifts.
Marcus wrapped his hands around his cup and sighed.
“I heard there was a little excitement earlier. What’s going on? Is there anything I need to know?”
Marcus looked at Lila as he spoke and was surprised to see her face turn as white as a sheet. Her eyes grew wide, her jaw slack.
When she spoke, her voice was low and forced. She didn’t want to speak. But she knew Marcus needed to know.
“I hope it isn’t true. But it doesn’t feel right. What if he is? What if he’s angry with what we’ve done, or what we haven’t done? I, I’m afraid!”
Panic. Lila’s already small body seemed to shiver and folded in on itself. Marcus was bewildered, concerned!
“What is going on?”
He grabbed Lila’s arms, he spoke more briskly then he meant to . . .
“What . . Is. . Going. . On?”
“Let her go. I’ll tell you what’s going on. You can decide.”
Marcus quickly let go and turned to face the new voice. It was another co-worker. John was the unflappable sort. He had a good head for numbers and was a killer at crossword puzzles. He was also wearing a worried expression on his face.
With a quick look at the raging storm just outside their window, the three sat down. Lila composed herself but she still looked shaken. John took the lead.
“We had an intake a few hours ago. In the Emergency Room. A man was brought in bleeding from several cuts on his head and both his hands. Nothing too outrageous. When he was asked what his name was, he said Jesus Christ.”
Marcus started to grin.
“Yeah, we get those every now and then. Delusional people. They’re just looking for a warm bed in the psych ward and a free meal.”
He shook his head, seeming to brush everything off. His grin was firmly in place.
“Besides it doesn’t affect us down here. Did he break anything?”
“I don’t think so,” John whispered, “but I don’t think you understand. He sounded . . . Holy.”
Lila started to whimper. “He’s angry with us!”
Marcus jumped up from his chair.
“The second coming? That’s what you’re thinking aren’t you? Look, we get these crazies all the time! What makes this one different?”
“All over the world there’s excessive flooding and forest fires and outbreaks of diseases and, and . . .” Lila couldn’t continue.
“Well, what did the doctors do? I’ll bet they put him on a 72-hour psych hold. The rain will give up tomorrow morning and all of this will be something we laugh about tomorrow night. It’s just another crazy.”
“You didn’t hear Him speak.” whispered John. “You didn’t hear His words. I did.”
“Okay I’ll bite, what did the crazy man say?”
“Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.”
It was at that exact moment that the lights flickered and died.
Lord, have mercy.