FORSAKEN AND BETAKEN
by Catherine C. Straub
There are fathers that do not love
their children; there is no grandfather who does not adore his grandson.
— Victor Hugo
No birth on earth was more important than the Christ child born
unto the Virgin Mary.
At 11 at night — Thomas wide awake drove her to the hospital. He
stayed with her at the front desk for her technical work. In due time,
she was taken to the maternity floor. Firmly they told him: “return home
or wait until early morning a good guess, the child born around four,”
they estimated. Thomas went upstairs to the waiting room. When tired, he
lye down on the davenport, conked out until five.
When he awoke, the doctor was walking toward him with a smile.
“Congratulations, Emmy gave birth to a healthy baby boy weighing
seven pound three ounces and 21 inches long. You can see her in
Thomas went to the hall and called Flo, “please call his
grandparents. I’m coming home soon.” He went to her room and kissed her cheek. She
opened her eyes. “Thomas, she whispered; have you been here the
“I cheated and slept at eleven fifteen?” She smiled gratefully at
“Are you going to see the baby before you leave?”
“I will go now!” Then he planned to return home to sleep until
school, if he was lucky? She closed her eyes as he left. She never
expected him to be so attentive. He swore off girls and she never expected
his aid or concern? She tried Eugene’s cell phone. “I had your secretive
baby boy, go back to sleep.”
“Right on,” Eugene responded — wishing she’d give in to wed
him. It wasn’t really fair to her, besides he did meet a pleasing woman
inmate at Bible Meetings.
Thomas gazed at the Sergeant’s son… marveling, as he watched him
move around — wondering about this new world; he came into? See you
later — bud! He rushed to the elevator and out to his car, the night air
She finally birthed the kid — carried for years it felt like.
He hurried home letting the radio blast — to keep awake. There he
shut the car off, hurried inside the quiet house — remembering to lock the
door. The whole bedroom was his; his stupid brother never again would
sleep alongside of him.
Flo was up early, proud of her niece and Thomas for hanging
in there. He always did think something of her. He was devastated
when she had to break off with Joyce coming home. He knew that was the
planned idea. Yeah, everything Flo met up with… except the love Chad and
her felt. She had heard Percy still was not responsive to the doctors’
ideas, and hardly got out of bed, other than to attend to his bathroom
needs. He had to try to come off it and help himself. “The Lord
helps those who help themselves.” Trudy knew what he could do. The rest of
the kin were irate at him for being odd.
Wedding bells were due to ring again that was the happy soul named
“Two men are attracted to me, said Emmy. I just don’t know whom to
Gilda was sick of this braggart talk for a single girl — and how Gilda
loved her dead son. An aide brought flowers. It arrived, as they spoke.
“Such lovely flowers who they from are,” they gushed when the second batch
was brought in. Gilda snatched up the card.
“It says from: Stanley, Landry and family? Who is that?” She peered
pointedly at her.
“Landry is the boy helping me. The family comes from the heart of
Chicago? Stanley bought them after Landry rang, and wrote his name,
first?” How disgusting she privately felt.
“No matter — just wondering who they were…” Gilda remarked, and Flo
noticed her strict look? She’d seen her suspicious glances. She hoped her
mind never went as far as — taking the child away… Gilda nosed
around for ten more minutes, to find a reason, to obtain the baby, and
than waved. Flo watched her go and her eyes turned from relief to
“You have to watch what you remark around her…She could take the
child with talk of two men wanting you?”
“What is she getting so self righteous about all of a sudden — just
because she saw the baby, and lost her son?”
“Just so, and I’m acquainted — that you have to be cautious, what you
“I’m tired, see yah later?” Flo and Marcy kissed her.
Outside the door, Marcy felt aggravated. “She is going to get in
trouble if she flaunts it? Gilda and her husband (or one of them) is looking for
any reason to replace this baby, for the son; they lost?” Flo turned to her
“It is hard to think they’d do this,” they entered the
elevator. He saw Percy many times at their house and talked over a case,
said Flo. It didn’t make any difference to him — freshly he made Percy out a pervert.”
“She’s acting dopey, as smart as she is?” They entered the foyer and
pushed the door open to the brisk air — real scanty snowflakes — April fool
weather. Who was the biggest fool today? They hurried to the car
and turned it on? “How are Janice and Grace doing they came home the other
night? When do they start their community service for a year?” Marcy eyed
her it was a wonder Beth didn’t labor for the community; she was so
off center not long ago….
“Tomorrow they work for the city doing clean up. They should love
that, said Flo. I wish I could trust Gilda and Mitchell not to loose this
“They intimate… they’re so pure. Trudy and Kieran were going to take
Monopoly to play with Percy. There is no way, he would be a
police man again… and what do you suggest for him?”
Flo peered her way pulling in her drive — staring at her…?
Marcy appeared like she fell asleep. She nudged her trying to awake
her… worried with no response… she rushed to the hospital. She dashed
inside hollering: “My friend somehow went to sleep?”
The hospital brought a bed cart out, and wheeled her inside. Flo
frantically stood by trying to find out what was wrong? She took
the elevator up to the third floor, waiting around — while they hooked her
up to intravenous tubes.
“She had to catch a virus that she couldn’t fight?” The aide said.
Flo stared… “She ‘did say, she’s all in’ — but I’m not aware, she
caught a bug.” She looked about. Is Doctor Chad around?”
The desk ran the intercom for him? In minutes, he hastened toward
“DARLING, WHAT IS WRONG? He glances at her worried face. She pointed
in the room where Marcy lay hooked up?
“She fell asleep… driving home from here…We did see Emmy and her
“I see… how odd.”
“The last thing Marcy said to me was: she could not believe that
Gilda and her husband would try to take the child from Emmy. They come to our
parties. Gilda heard unwise talk; two men engrossed with Emmy. She should
know better with Gilda losing Mitchell, her son. The only time, I like to
go out with Marcy — or is it I, alone in the world now. In the morning, I’m
a there from then on? When will she come out of this?”
“For a minute, I mused, you meant Gilda and her obsession? Marcy it
is anyone’s guess? I hope soon?” He peered at Flo’s tearful eyes. He
pulled the two seats close, and took her hands. “Don’t worry about that
relative, on the other side.”
Emmy was training to breast feed him — it had to work. She had a close
connection to the baby. She worried, Gilda appease herself with the loss
of the son, and take the baby from her that really was Eugene’s kid? He
had his blood tested one weekend and she gave hers. Word, what if a
detective comes here?
Flo stayed at the hospital until eleven making calls to Beth and
Thomas relaying what happened. She invited them to come over to her place
for breakfast in the morning. She may awake during the night? Beth and
Thomas went to bed with a heavy heart — what happened to their mother.
During the night they both dreamed about the three of them in a trauma and
in a week, matters worked out? Beth especially felt bad — the time
she gave her mother.
They found she still was in a coma? “I don’t want to see
sorry faces — you must perform in school? Thomas if you want to go see Emmy
come with me. There’s been talk that Gilda like to take the child,
and I don’t like it?” She glared at the wall in anger; her prayer partner
“A new birth and one falls into a coma, what a day.” Kieran made
light of it.
“You were not aware… both of you playing Monopoly with Percy. How
did he seems?” Joyce listened to them with half an ear — her mind on Emmy
in the Hospital. She’d be home soon, and together they’d walk to school.
Flo turned her back — for a few minutes, pouring two more pancakes on
the griddle. She was elated; she birthed the baby. Marcy and she prayed
and left in the morning, now her life was drastically changed. She’d
entreat the Lord at the hospital holding her hand….
She had to awake soon. She did seem a bit tired when she came back
from seeing the new baby. When a person yawns that means missing sleep.
She’d never imagine; she’d fall into a coma after Emmy gave birth. Nobody
could take her place. She had to sit and talk to her for sure? Chad would
help her out as much as possible? Her present mind returned — and her
inquiry about Percy to Kieran?
“I wish he’d a future to look forward to…” The kids walked to the
door. Flo turned; they waved to her and she returned the courtesy.
“Percy is not your concern mother. As fast as that affair went,
you could have Christmas shopped.” Janice firmly said, as she went out the
“I’m so dependent on Marcy coming over, and she’s in a coma. As soon
as I eat. I’ll spend my time between the two until I fix dinner
for all of you?” The girls peered at her; she seemed so worried…they were
Flo arrived at the hospital, and first saw Chad and the neighbor
“Go in and sit by her, and talk to her. Something could dent her
That same day Emmy was nursing the baby, a Social Worker stopped
by. As soon as she saw her, she had to be sly. “You are a minor with a new
baby, and other men.”
“I’m sorry madam — I don’t recognize what you are talking about. I do
not date? I honor my dead to be husband?” She realized how
careless — mentioning Landry etc. in front of Gilda? One of them should aid
her — making up for Eugene?
“So you’ll attend school. Do you have help with the baby?”
“Yes. My Aunt Flo is home. Emmy nearly wept, feeling so concerned.
She watched the lady leave. She laid her head back with the nursing baby.
In a few minutes, her Aunt Flo came in and noticed; she seemed
“A Social Worker was just in to see me…about my life. I wish I
never met Gilda and that husband of hers. I will not stay at the house if
they come to see the child? Who needs to be monitored all the time? I
haven’t indulged in anything besmirching Mitchell’s name, she fibbed. I
might see Thomas or Landry and I should have known better saying it to
Gilda. I will find something out on them?”
“Yes that’s the spirit, have spunk.” Flo felt jittery with this
pointless upheaval. Here her dearest friend was in a coma. Nobody knew
what happened to her?
“She said she had to check this situation out. I told her you would
be there when I’m in school. They are going to check you out too?”
“They could, and I might say how I enjoyed going out in the morning
with Marcy, but now she’s in a coma?” What was going on here that woman
and her husband came to her house for get-togethers.
“God, what happened to her?” The baby moved, as Emmy shouted.
“Some virus hit her, and she couldn’t resist it when I was driving
home last night. We were conversing… Suddenly, she fell
asleep and than when I tried to wake her, I couldn’t?”
“That’s awful, I hope she awakens!” Emmy fret — was this place kooky
The nurse came to get the baby, and she handed him over. Flo noticed
Emmy’s eyes seemed heavy. She walked out of the room and to the elevator to
the upper floor? Her mind distracted about this Social Worker checking them
Flo silently walked into Marcy’s room. Who’d ever think this
could happen. She sat and quietly prayed holding Marcy’s hand….
At lunchtime, she visited the cafeteria with Chad.
“You must eats, and that is doctor’s orders?” She smirked, walking
through the line picking out their chose.
“I could stay here with you all day. I wish ‘you’d eat lunch’ here
more often.” She smiled broadly at him, for his thought. “Did I tell you
Kieran and Trudy played Monopoly with Percy?”
“Great at least they sound okay.”
She kissed him, not caring who’s around. “You are the jewel of the
earth!” The Social Worker sitting in the corner — carefully watched Flo? So
this one was her man, and did he live with her? She approached the two and
sat down on the third of the fourth chairs, and Flo froze… Chad gawked at
her. He had been caught red handed.
“What do you want Madam? The lady is my engaged? We live apart?”
“I need knowledge? Do you have anybody else watching the child?
Don’t misunderstand me. We fill in the gap if you go out, who’d be there?”
Flo thought fast, and came up with a nurse, she knew.
“Nurse Macy Nash will do the job if I have to go out — preceding the
first month and Baptism, I will take him out with me? This recital seemed
to please her.
Chad was ready to top the whole matter off… “This coming
summer we’re going to ‘tie the knot’!” Chad said peering lovingly at Flo.
“I will needs to talk to the woman filling in?”
“She is a private duty nurse. Here is her phone number.” She
scribbled her address down? The Social worker left staring at them, she
did wear a ring.
“Why us, we did not live loose. Why must we marry with no child?”
“I’m hurt. You don’t want to marry.” He pouted.
“I love you. She seems to think a couple is better for the
kid. Is she nuts, it is not my kid? I did feel guilty wed to him. That
marriage to Percy was in the Judges office.”
“So you don’t want to marry me — should we tell Emmy to get out? You
should get Emmy and Thomas to wed? I’ll help when I can?”
“I’m sorry for minutes, ‘I forgot,’ I’m a widow and can be married
“That’s great ‘we can wed’ anytime.” She was the only woman for him.
“Darling, I’d marry you tonight if you want. We should just
go wed. How long will the church make us wait with Pre Cana
instructions? I probably am being looked on as a frivolous lady? Do you
want a large party?”
“Let’s get out of here! He took her arm and they left the cafeteria.
I think we should marry quietly, okay dear.” He pushed the third
floor to the elevator.
Marcy was in a dream world where everything was perfect. Her
boyfriend Peter loved her. He’d be around for life. The baby of Emmy’s
could be lost to the conniving people, who lost their son. It looked like Flo
might have to marry, the special voice told her. She heard some one
speaking to her from a far… and she still could not hear whom…
Flo sensed for one minute, she’s coming back, when her one finger
moved…. Chad held his hand on her shoulder, what a day today. They did
have to live right? They may lose the baby if the law felt either Flo
or Emmy were lax…
Flo pulled in the drive and hurried to her ringing phone.
“Flo here, Oh Emmy isn’t you doing your homework… You’re waiting for
the tutor?” “Chad and I were sitting in the cafeteria….Furthermore to make
a long story short; we’re getting married in the rectory. I do love him.
He said he would help me, as much as he can.” “You should never again go
to that Landry house.”
“Have a good night Aunt Flo, or are you coming out later?”
The Social worker drove into the Morrison driveway? Gilda
let her inside.
“Would you like a coffee?”
“Yes. Gilda I could take one. I don’t have any good news,
the older woman is getting married soon. The younger one denies she has any
man. Really she still is taken with Mitchell Junior?”
“Do you believes them?”
“The evidence is: he will marry her this summer. I heard it… as her
voice carried… walking away. Gilda looked at her with a question in her
Yes, she sighed, I also had to check her month marriage — the rush by
The Chief of Police Percy. I caution you, to see your grandchild,
not let on you called me.”
When she left, Gilda sat down at the table considering… She had not
told Mitchell about any of this. She would blame it on him, if she
had too — he shoved her into the mental home. She never chose wisely
for her toddlers when her Albert died. She was sure he did
worse wrongs than getting rid of her….
Mitchell saw the car pulls out of the driveway — the woman waving to
him. Who was that another kook friend of his wife? He walked into the
kitchen, “who was that, she seemed friendly?”
“My friend, Georgia, from Rosary Society, stops over every so
Generously he said, “I’ll tell you what, let’s eat in the cafeteria
or elsewhere and see the baby.”
Emmy was nursing the baby, and had just hung up talking to
Eugene wanting to marry her. How since Flo pushed Thomas, now attentive to
her. Gilda and her husband stopped to see her and she covered, the
nursing baby? “How are you doing today,” Gilda asked. Emmy studied her?
She acted so normal it must have been her husband’s idea.