I was having my breakfast while reading the newspapers. I turned to the obituaries page and saw an obituary which announced an old man’s death. Tears flowed down my cheeks when I remembered what had happened a few days ago…
It was raining. I was alone at a bus stop, waiting for the rain to stop. I scolded myself for not bringing an umbrella with me. It was then I saw an old man staggering towards the bus stop, but before he could reach it, he slipped and fell heavily to the ground.
I hurried towards him, helped him up and walked to the bus stop. He sat down on a bench and I saw blood oozing out from a cut on his forehead. I immediately took out my mobile phone and dialled for an ambulance.
“No… I don’t want to go… I…I don’t want to go to h…hospital…” moaned the old man.
“You will be fine,” I told him as I tried to stop the bleeding on his forehead.
Soon, the ambulance arrived and paramedics scurried towards the old man. They stopped the bleeding and examined him. They then rested him on a stretcher. The old man gripped my arm very tightly, so tight that I could not loosen his grip. I had no choice but to follow him into the ambulance.
“I d…don’t want to…to go hospital, no,” he pleaded with hot tears streaming down his pair of puffy eyes.
In the hospital, he did not loosen his grip until he was in a ward, when a doctor finally managed to get his fingers off my arm. I backed away from him, afraid that he would grip me again.
“G…get out of here! I don’t want to die in the h…hospital. No…”
I gasped, eyes widened and began questioning myself. ‘Why does he keep saying he wants to avoid the hospital? How does he know he’s going to die?’ With this thought in mind, I spoke out my mind to the doctor.
“Doctor, is he alright?”
“I don’t think so. He is suffering from a terminal disease and the end of his life is near. He has escaped from the hospital this morning.”
I clamped my hands on my mouth, horrified. Just then, a group of adults came rushing into the ward. Some crowded around the old man while some approached the doctor. A young lady instead approached me.
“Are you the one who has found my father?”
I nodded mutely, lowering my hands.
“Thank you! Thank you for finding him! We’ve have to give you a reward! Is a thousand dollars enough?”
“No thanks, I can’t take your money,” I said, shaking my head.
The lady thanked me again and hurried to join her family members. The adults who approached the doctor, too, joined the crowd and bustled around the old man.
“No… d…don’t…” I heard the old man groan as I walked towards the door with the doctor.
“I…don’t…w…want to b…be here…” I heard him moan as I opened the door and stepped out of the ward.
“I don’t want to d…die in the h…hospital. I w…want to d…die at home…” I heard him wailed as I closed the door.
At that moment, tears swelled in my eyes. I cried, as I felt very sad. I cried, as I felt very sorry for him. I cried, as I felt very miserable. I cried… as I thought of a dying person could not even have his last wish fulfilled…