I sat with Bianca in the emergency room while she waited for x-rays. It seemed that I may have sprained or even broken her collarbone when I tackled her into the cab earlier. I felt bad about that, and apologized at every opportunity.
“Seriously, Diggory, don’t worry about it. You probably saved my life,” she would say each time, and give me another pat on the arm.
“I know. I just feel bad.”
“You’re probably still in shock and dwelling on minute details to keep your mind off the bigger picture. I know I would,” Bianca said.
The ER was crowded with people from the business district who had been hit by shards of glass, or inhaled too much smoke. I had yet to find anyone from my office, but then, they could have been diverted to another hospital. I hoped no one was hurt. It was taking ages for them to get to Bianca, but then, her injuries probably seemed minor.
Once she realized we’d be there for longer than she’d hoped, Bianca got out her cell phone.
“I think I’d better tell Calla where we are,” she said. I nodded.
“I’m going to call my parents’ place, see if my mother knows anything. She’s probably out of her mind with worry.”
We stood outside the emergency bay, calling our respective numbers. I wondered how real the warning was about using cellular phones inside the hospital. It was damned annoying. I waited while it rang.
“Hello?” My mother’s voice answered after several rings.
“Hi, Mother. It’s me.”
“Good afternoon, Diggory darling. How are you, dear? So unexpected to hear from you. Are you coming to my party tomorrow?”
I stopped short and stared at the phone in my hand. My mother’s voice sounded slurred.
“Mother, are you okay?”
“Of course, darling. Why wouldn’t I be?” She actually giggled. My mother had been drinking in the middle of the afternoon.
“Um, okay… Have you been watching the news?”
“Well, dear, I just woke up from my afternoon nap, so I’ve been dead to the world. Why, is something the matter?”
“Maybe you had better find a news channel. There was an explosion at work, and I’m in the hospital. I’m fine!” I added hastily. “A friend just needs x-rays.”
“Oh dear! I do hope everyone is all right. Have you heard from your father?”
“I was hoping that he had called you by now. I’ll try his cell number. I’ll call you back, Mother.”
“Take care, darling.”
I hung up and shook my head. Then I called my father’s personal cell phone number, and got no answer. I told myself there could be a million reasons for that. It could be off. It could have been damaged. He could have lost it while leaving the building. He might have left it in the office or at home.
I really didn’t want to think about the alternative.
“Everything okay?” Bianca asked me.
“What? Oh, yeah, fine. My mother didn’t even realize anything was wrong, she was taking a nap.”
“I feel like I could use one. This has been an exhausting day.”
I shifted my feet and stared at them. “Yeah, I’m really sorry about that. You wouldn’t have been in harm’s way if you hadn’t come with me to work.”
“Diggory, stop blaming yourself. You couldn’t have known what was going to happen.”
I shrugged. “Yeah, predicting the future hasn’t been my strong suit lately.”
“Is it anyone’s?”
“Well, I usually have a long-term plan in mind. Things have been a little disrupted this week.”
“Because of Calla?” Bianca asked with a grin.
That was a loaded question I didn’t really want to answer.