To The Bitter End, Part 10

Adoria heard the banging on the door and turned to look at the alarm clock on her desk. Frowning, she wondered who’d be knocking at her door at a little past midnight. Grabbing her robe and tying the terry cloth belt around her waist tightly, Adoria walked downstairs flipping on lights as she went. The heavy banging at the door continued. “Hold on, I’m coming!” Without asking who was there, Adoria opened the door widely and was startled to see Zef standing there, drenching wet from the light shower that had persisted for the past few months. “Can I come in?”, Zef asked her. “Oh..yeah..of course…of course you can.” Adoria moved to the side to allow Zefania room to enter. He stepped into the front hall and looked around him as he stripped off his coat. “So, the baby’s expected soon..” Adoria closed the door but did not face him. “Yeah..”  Silence trickled out and soon had Adoria feeling more than a bit distressed. After a while of  drawn-out absence of sound, Adoria began to speak in a low voice that Zefania had to strain to hear..

“Why are you here?”  Zef did not answer. Slowly, she turned to face him, and again she asked,”Why are you here, Zef?” “She’s my daughter, too, Day..and I just wanna be there when she’s born.”  “Now you want to be there?”, Adoria snorted and wrapped her arms around her waist. She walked over to the den and sat in her rocking chair. Zef followed and sat across from her on the sofa. “I think you made it pretty clear that you don’t want anything to do with me or Onamara.” “Is that what you decided to name her? Onamara?”  Adoria nodded. “That’s beautiful, Day.”  Again, she snorted. “Do you know what the name Mara means, Zef?”  Zef shook his head. “No..”  “It  means bitter sorrow.”  Zef frowned but did not say a word. Adoria sighed deeply. “I don’t understand you, Zef..I feel like I don’t even know who you are anymore…..The man I knew would never have walked out on me the way you did.”  “Day, listen..do you know how hard it was to see you go through all that pain before? With each treatment, I had to watch you grow weaker. For a while, you were nothing but skin and bones…” A look of pain took over Zef’s features and he thought back. Adoria could clearly remember what he was probably seeing in his mind’s eye, and for just a moment, she truly felt sorry for Zefania. “Force-feeding you…carrying you up the stairs when you couldn’t walk..hearing you cry every night…watching how it affected you when you began to lose your hair..and every day just praying things would get better..scared I’d lose you to something that was out of my hands and beyond my control…”  Adoria began to silently cry. Zefania went on. “And then..then you beat it. You didn’t need me to carry you, feed you, or comfort you anymore..It took a while to accept that..that you didn’t need me, at least not the same way, anymore..but when I did accept it, I just remember feeling this great relief..like everything had worked out and I didn’t have to worry about losing you anymore.” Adoria nodded her head in understanding and in encouragement for Zef to go on. “Then you told me you were pregnant..The first feeling was joy..happiness..excitement,too. But then Doctor H. said you couldn’t have the baby..He said the risk was just too great..And just like that, all my joy, all my happiness was stripped away. Day, there’s no way I can watch you go through that cycle of misery and pain again. By asking you, or telling you, to have the baby..well, I’d feel like I’d be telling you to put your life at stake..Like I’d be telling you that the baby means more to me than my love for you, and our life together..Do you understand, Day? Even just a little?”  Adoria nodded her head sharply as tears continued to fall down her lower lashes to her cheeks.  “I don’t know where to go from here, Day…I don’t know if you still love me after what I’ve done, and I still don’t know if I can cope with all this. But can you just let me be there? Can we just take this one day at a time? I just wanna be there when…when Onamara’s born. Will you give me that much?”

  Adoria bit her lip and clasped her hands tightly together to stop the trembling..”I..I don’t know…” Zef scooted to the edge of his seat and searched her face with wild eyes. “Please?”

     To be continued..

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One Response to “To The Bitter End, Part 10”

  1. Oh, another cliffhanger!

    Didi, I’m so glad about the change of heart Zef has. Adoria obviously needs to think about it, but she needs all the help she can get and I think she loves him still…
    This is well thought out and very well written. Excellent chapter! 🙂

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