A pause. Something trickling in, filtering through the haze. She could sense the voice calling her, though she couldn’t hear it yet. There was something else she sensed, she recognized, but couldn’t name. And there also was that niggling feeling, akin to the one you get when you leave something half-done. Unfinished business. Yes, that was it. She had something to do. She couldn’t go, not yet. There were things to be done, loose ends to be tied up satisfactorily. It was time to move on, leave the comfortable place she was in. It was hard …

****

A soft strain of Beethoven’s Fur Elise floated in the air, dispensed relentlessly by the PA system.

There was a renewed burst of animation, inside the room and out. Patches of words came through ‘ yes, she’s conscious ‘   ‘ doctor first ‘   ‘ aside please ‘   ‘ do you feel’ followed by other sounds, garbled sobs, prayers. And eventually, there was relief  ‘ look, she’s smiling ‘.

It was hard … but she had never been short on will power.

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