Gracie, the Green Sea Turtle, Chapter Four
Samuel was a in kindergarten that year. School was almost over for the year, and he was excited, because he wanted to start learning to surf. She knew between Samuel and Eddie, Clay could learn how to surf in no time at all. They had both been quick learners. She remembered feeling a little nervous, though, since he was only five, but she figured he would be fine since Samuel and Eddie were taught to surf by some older neighborhood boys when they weren’t much older than he was. She really wasn’t worried at all.
One day after school she was watching them from the shore. They hadn’t gone out very far at all. Samuel told Clay to climb up on the surfboard carefully and slowly. Clay did exactly what his brother told him to do. Then he laid out flat on his belly. Samuel told him to start paddling his arms like he was swimming since Clay already knew how to swim. So Clay did that, too. They kept at it for about thirty minutes which was longer than Lucy thought he would last, but Clay became tired and hungry. Samuel said he needed to go back to Mom and get some lunch. He turned Clay around and let him paddle to shore. He and Eddie followed, because they were hungry, too. Yet, they were always hungry!
They were coming out of the water when Clay screamed suddenly. Samuel said, “What’s the matter?”
Clay just kept screaming and their mom came running out to the water as fast as she could run. Then Samuel became terrified, because he didn’t know what was wrong. He grabbed Clay and tried to pick him up just as their mom reached them. She said, “Let me get him, Samuel. Watch out!”
Samuel moved back so quickly that he slipped and fell on his butt. He was crying by then, because he was so scared. He kept yelling, “What’s the matter, Mom? What happened?”
She yelled, “I don’t know!”
Lucy picked up Clay, and that’s when she saw it. She grew really scared, but tried not to let it show. His foot had a huge welt on it. She knew immediately that he had been stung by a jelly fish. She had seen jelly fish stings before. Yelling at Samuel to get out of the water, she ran up to the beach with Clay as he was screaming. When she laid him on the sand, she told Samuel to run and call 911. She knew he needed an antihistamine and a strong one fast. She held him close trying to soothe him.
She began softly singing one of his favorite songs, but she could feel his breathing getting shallower quickly. She screamed to Samuel to hurry. Singing and crying by now, she held him as tightly and closely as she could. She prayed, “Please, God. Don’t take my baby. He and Samuel are all I have! Please let help get here in time.”
Samuel came running down the beach a few minutes later. He stopped quickly when he saw his mom wailing at the top of her lungs and rocking Clay’s limp body back and forth. Something didn’t feel right. He walked over slowly and said, “Mom, the ambulance is on the way.” She didn’t hear him; she just kept crying harder and harder, the tears pouring down her contorted face.
A moment later, they heard the sirens blaring toward their house. She was so thankful they lived close to everything in town. Soon the EMT’s came running down the beach, and the female one spoke to their mom gently.
“Mam. May we lay him on the sand?” She could see he was already gone, but they still started performing CPR anyway. They tried to revive him for ten minutes. Then the man said, “I’m so sorry, mam. He’s gone. He must have been allergic to the jellyfish. I’m so sorry.” He asked her if there was anything more he could do, and she shook her head. She picked Clay up while the woman helped her get up. She carried him to the house. In the fog of her shock she temporarily forgot about Samuel. As she walked on, he yelled, “Mom! What’s happening?” Then he looked at the EMTs and asked, “why aren’t you doing anything? Help him! He needs help!” He was screaming and crying hard by then.
The man said, “Son, there’s nothing we can do. It’s too late. He must have been allergic to the jellyfish sting. He’s so small, the venom ki…um…reached his heart too fast. He’s gone, son.”
“Mommy! Mommy, wait for me!” Samuel wailed as he ran after her. She stopped a moment and turned around realizing she had left him behind.
“Samuel. I’m sorry. Come on. We’re going to go lay him in his bed right now. Okay?”
Samuel cried and asked hesitantly, “He’s not gone, Mommy! That man said he’s gone! He’s right here. Why aren’t they taking him to the hospital or doing anything? I don’t understand!”
Lucy spoke in an almost monotone voice, “Sweetheart, come on. Let’s go in the house.” They walked slowly to the house, and the female EMT was already there holding the door open.
“Mam, is there anything else we can do?”
“Yes, actually. You may call my sister for me. I’ll give you the number. Come in.” Her voice sounded scary to Samuel. They went in, and she gave the lady her sister’s number. Then they went down the hall to the boys’s room and lay Clay down on his bed. She put a blanket on him, because he was getting cold. Samuel stood behind her holding onto her shirt like it was a life raft. He didn’t understand anything.
He cried and cried, and said, “Mommy. Why aren’t you waking him up? Please! He has to wake up!” He began shaking Clay’s shoulders and crying in his broken little voice, “Clay! Wake up! Wake up!” Then he collapsed onto Clay’s chest and cried his heart out.
To be continued….
© Patsy H. Parker
Posted on August 28, 2014, in Art Talk and tagged Chapter Eight, Chapter Five, Chapter Four, Chapter One, Chapter Seven, Chapter Six, Chapter Three, Chapter Two, Sea turtles, writing. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.