Such A Fine Son (Conclusion) by Louise Dragon
The remaining months of Wendy’s pregnancy took an unbelievable toll on the teenage girl. Her grossly distended belly seemed to drain the life from her young body.
In all of his years of practice, Lyle had never encountered such a devastating pregnancy.
What little remaining flesh she possessed hugged Wendy’s skeleton much like pictures he had seen of starving children in Africa. Her once glossy chestnut hair was straw-like and brittle. Large blue-gray eyes had faded to the drab color of dishwater. While the fetal heartbeat was strong and regular, Wendy’s blood pressure had dropped alarmingly as the final days of her gestation approached.
Ever sensitive to his patient’s needs, Lyle monitored the girl continually. He spent increasing amounts of time in Wendy’s room, which had taken on a vile, sickly odor no matter how frequently it was cleaned.
As Wendy’s time approached, Lyle’s uneasiness increased. Power naps seemed no longer necessary as some deeply hidden strength kept the doctor vigorously attuned to his surroundings. Unfortunately, with his newfound energy, Lyle was experiencing surges of uncontrollable anger: a rage that was in constant combat with his rationality.
Anger with the police who had let this travesty happen to Wendy in the first place.
Indignation towards Wendy for allowing herself to be so totally violated.
Wrath for himself and his inability to restore her.
Rage against the unborn child who was whittling away at the essence of its helpless parent.
Even an unwonted hostility surrounding Maggie’s inability to keep Wendy’s sick room fresher.
“Dr. Canthrop, isn’t this your night off?” Maggie asked placing herself in his path with hands on her hips. “I swear, you’re just going to wear yourself out if you don’t take a break.”
Lyle ran a hand over his freshly shaved chin. “Just wanted to check on the patient,” he said evenly, hands clenching. “Pressure’s low, have you increased those supplements, like I asked?” He forced his hands to relax.
Apparently sensing his mood, Maggie nodded and returned to the nurse’s station.
That tiny look of fear in her eyes was not lost on Lyle but rather seemed to incense another of those increasing rushes of fury.
Inside Wendy’s room, the birth of the child was imminent. While the girl’s vital signs were almost nonexistent, the fetal heart monitor was singing with life. The large mound that was Wendy’s abdomen churned and squirmed between contractions.
Nervously, Lyle scratched his chin. Feeling angry stubble, he knew he must work fast. With steady hands and a sharp scalpel, Lyle performed an efficient Caesarian Section on little Wendy.
The healthy baby boy was a joy to behold. Tiny clawed feet and hands waved wildly once the cord was cut. Little sharp teeth clamped down on Lyle’s finger as he cleared the airway. Lovingly, Lyle wiped the bloody mucous from the down covered little body of his son.
Tap, tap, tap.
“Dr. Canthrop, Detective Steiger wants . . .”
The infant let out a sharp howling wail as Maggie entered the room. Standing in the open doorway, her face a study of perplexity, Maggie opened her mouth. Lyle, sensing the forthcoming scream, immediately slashed through her vocal cords with the silver scalpel held awkwardly in a taloned fist. A fleeting feeling of remorse crossed his rapidly mutating brain as a bright stream of crimson quickly transformed Maggie’s white nurse’s dress into a red nightmare.
Suddenly, the face of Detective Hans Steiger appeared in the high patch of glass seizing Lyle’s full attention. Maggie’s prone body across the bottom of the door began to slide jerkily as the detective pushed fiercely from the other side. Steiger, with all the grace of a beached walrus, stumbled over the dead legs of the nurse and landed face first, his drawn gun skittering under Wendy’s bed.
The squalling infant, as if sensing danger, became suddenly quiet. The thing that had been Lyle Canthrop, MD, emitting little grunts of exertion, used its dagger-like claws to rip out the detective’s throat insuring his silence for eternity.
As the remainder of Wendy Wheeler’s precious blood drained out of her abdominal incision, her breathing became sharp little gasps. The Lyle-monster, cradling his beloved little offspring, paused at her bedside.
With a raspy voice from its fang-filled mouth, the beast grated out the last horrible words that Wendy’s tortured ears would ever have to listen to. “Thank you for sssuch a fine ssson.”
With an awkward gentleness uncommon to this beast, the monster clumsily closed the blue-gray eyes for the last time.