Carrie woke with a start, she had had a fitful nights sleep. Her head felt like it was on fire and her eyes were finding it hard to focus. She struggled into the best sitting position her bump would allow. A wave of pain shot through her head causing her to cover her eyes and wince. The events from the day before began to surface in her mind. “I must have looked like a complete idiot!” She scolded herself as she rocked forward. If only the ground would open up and swallow her. Carrie fell back onto the bed and pulled the duvet over her head. Maybe she could spend the rest of her life in here and no one would be any wiser.
“Are you feeling alright?” Aprils voice knocked Carrie out of her self-pitying thoughts.
“I feel like death, lightly toasted on one side.” Carrie mumbled, her mouth was dry and her tongue felt like a lead weight.
“I’m not surprised!” April scowled placing her hands on her hips. “What were you thinking?”
“I don’t know.” Carrie sat up a shuffled out of bed. “I guess it all got a bit too much, you know.”
“Well, there’s a black coffee waiting for you in the kitchen. That’s if you feel up to joining the world of the living today.”
Carrie slowly made her way to the kitchen, steadying herself on a few items of furniture as she went. Finally she managed to get her bulk into the kitchen. April handed her a cup of coffee and then set about checking several bags that were placed on the floor.
“I going on an out of state business trip, remember?” April looked up at Carrie who was trying desperately to get the coffee in her mouth without spilling it. “I’ll be gone for two days, my flight leaves at 10:00am, I’ll be off soon.” April paused and looked at Carrie, she wondered if any of it was sinking in. “Are you sure you will be okay by yourself?”
“What about Leonardo?” Carrie asked easing down her cup off coffee.
“I doubt he’ll be round, he has this little thing he likes to call pride that will stop him.” April folded her arms across her chest. “Personally I think it’s just stubbornness.”
“I’ll be fine.”
“Are you sure? Because I don’t want to come home and find you dead in the chair.”
Carrie looked at the table and pushed her coffee cup around. “I’ll be okay, I promise.
Just then the sound of April’s entry phone interrupted Carrie. April picked up the handset and listened. “That’s my cab. Are you sure your okay.” April pressed as she replaced the handset.
“Yes, I’ll be fine, don’t worry.” Carrie smiled, she hoped she had sounded convincing.
“Well okay, I guess it’s too late now to cancel.” April picked up her bags and headed for the door. “Bye, see you in two days.”
Carrie carefully rose from the chair and moved over to the bathroom. Maybe a shower would make her feel better.
The warm water soothed her aching back. Carrie felt like she had been pregnant forever. “I’ll still be pregnant when I’m thirty!” She mused to herself turning off the water Carrie reached out for the towel. At that moment a sharp pain shot across her swollen belly.
“Ow!” She breathed as she rubbed her bump. “That will teach me to stretch too far.” She wrapped the towel around herself and walked to the spare room, using one hand she dug around in a pile of clothes. “Simple leggings and a jumper for today I think.”
Getting dressed was awkward, after several attempts Carrie managed to get the leggings up over her bump, luckily the large jumper hid most of her weight gain. Picking up a brush Carrie walked into the living room. Another wave of pain tore through her. This one was more intensive, Carrie dropped the brush and lent against the couch to stop herself from collapsing. After a lot of panting the pain passed, straightening up and using the couch for support she made her way to the phone. Would April be at the airport yet? Fighting the overwhelming surge of panic that now had hold of her Carrie dialled April’s cell phone number.
“The cell phone you are trying to reach may be switched off. Please hang up and try again later.” The tinny recording seemed to mock Carrie. What would she do now? A third pain bit into her sides, causing her to cry out. It was then she saw the sticky note with the beeper number on it.
Leonardo had managed to calm down a little by breakfast time, yet everyone sat at the table in complete silence. Even Raphael was unusually quiet, not that he said much in the mornings. Michaelangelo was convinced this was because Raphael’s brain had yet to kick in.
“Ah, listen to that beautiful sound.” Everyone turned to see Splinter standing in the living room.
“I don’t hear anything.” Michaelangelo’s face screwed up with concentration.
“Precisely.” A small smile crept out on Splinters aged face. “It is so peaceful.” The peace wasn’t to last long, a shrill repetitive sound echoed out through the lair.
“What’s that?” Raphael growled holding the sides of his head with his hands.
“The beeper!” Leo sprang off his chair and sprinted to his room. Where was it? Leo searched around on his hands and knees. Eventually he found the noisy little black box under his desk, he sat back and stared at the words displayed on the tiny screen. ‘Baby Coming’
“Is everything as it should be?” Leo looked up to see Splinter standing in the doorway.
“Carrie needs help.” Leo breathed.
“Then you should go to her.” Splinter leaned on his walking stick and fixed Leo with a firm stare.
“But.” Leo started.
“It would be un-honourable to go back on your word.” Splinter interrupted banging his walking stick on the ground.
Carrie had slowly made her way into the kitchen; dread was taking hold of her mind. It was much to early for the baby to come, but the contractions were coming fast and increasing in strength. She gripped the counter as another wave hit. Was this happening because of her stupid actions yesterday? What had she done! What if the baby arrived here, while there was no one to help her? What if there were complications? Women die from childbirth everyday. Suddenly the idea of giving birth was the most frightening thing she had ever faced. Another contraction, Carrie felt the warm tears start to run down her face. She had never felt so scared and so alone.
Leo run with all his might down the tunnel soaking the disguise that Splinter had suggested he wear. It seemed like forever before he reached the storm grate he and April had pulled Carrie out of a few days previous. A sense of guilt was beginning to consume him; he had been a right bastard to her the day before. Had he caused her to go into premature labor? He scrabbled up though the grate and raced down the street. By the time Leo had reached April’s apartment his lungs felt like they were on fire. I took several attempts to get the key in the lock. Leo took a deep breath to calm himself, he wasn’t sure what kind of scene would greet him on the other side.
“Carrie?” He called out as he walked in. “Are you okay?”
“Do I look okay?” A desperate voice came from the kitchen. Carrie was almost bent double trying to control the pain. Leo walked a little closer, but kept his distance still unsure of what to do.
“Okay, don’t panic. It could just be a false alarm.” Leo did his best to sound calm. There was a soft ‘pop’ noise as Carrie’s waters broke. “Oh my god! What a lot of water.”
Leo stepped back little to avoid the incoming tide. “Okay, now you can panic!”