Love At First Sight
Pete Cummings, an off-duty, thirty-year-old police officer went into the hospital to visit a friend. As he walked toward his friend’s room, he passed a room in which there was a young woman about twenty-five sitting on her bed looking down at her folded hands. Ordinarily, he would have kept walking, but there was something about her that made him stop and look in. “Hi,” he said and waited for a response.
She looked up, squinted and looked toward Pete for a few seconds. "Who's there?"
“Hi. My name's Pete Cummings. What’s your name?”
"I’m here to visit a friend, but he can wait. May I come in and sit down?”
“Because I’m tired. I had a long day and I'd love to chat.”
“Okay. Come in,” she said, and he went to a chair and moved it so he was facing her.
“What do you want to chat about?”
“About me? Okay,” she said clinically. “I’m blind. I was mugged last night, and the mugger hit me on my head and knocked me out. I woke up in the hospital blind. The doctors said I sustained a concussion which probably caused the blindness. They were sure it is only temporary, but they want to make sure there isn’t brain damage, so they’re running tests and conferring with experts, whoever they are. In the meantime, they’re watching me to make sure there aren’t any other problems resulting from the concussion. That’s my story.”
“Now, what about you?”
“I’m a police officer. I’m 6’2’, very muscular and very handsome. Girls follow me everywhere. If you could see how handsome I am, you’d follow me everywhere, too.”
Eve chuckled. “Give me your face. I’ll tell you if you’re handsome,” she said, reached out, and he took her hands, held them for a few seconds, and then put them on his face. She moved her fingers over his face. I’m new at this touch business, so my assessment of your looks is bound to be totally inaccurate," she said and ran her fingers over his face. "Okay, I couldn't tell much from touching. I guess you're not bad looking. As I said, I'm new at this touch business.
“Not bad? Just not bad? You must be blind.”
She chuckled. “I must be.”
"So what did you do before your accident?"
"I was a kindergarten teacher."
"That must be scarier than my job. At least I have a gun to protect myself."
"Not at all. Children that age are precious. I love them."
“They're lucky to have you. I bet you're a great teacher.
“Do you have children of your own, Eve?”
“No. I’m not married. You?”
“No children, no wife," he said looking at his watch. "It’s getting late, Eve. I want to visit my friend before visiting hours are over. I’ll see you tomorrow evening after my shift. Sleep well,” he said and left.
Pete visited Eve every day for a week. On his days off, he sat with her for several hours each day. "Hi, Eve," he said as he entered her room. I have something for you. I hope you don’t have to see to enjoy chocolates.”
“Oh, I love chocolates, Pete” she said, and he put a box on her lap. She opened the box, felt the different chocolates and put one in her mouth. “Thank you.”
Both turned as a doctor entered the room. “I’m sorry to interrupt, Eve, but we need some more scans. Someone will be in to take you to X Ray. I’ll see you later,” he said and left.
“That’s been my life for a week. I feel like a guinea pig. I think they just like to look at X Rays," she said just as an orderly came in. “Time for pictures, Eve, he said and wheeled her bed out of the room. Pete held her hand as she was wheeled out. “I’ll see you tomorrow, Eve.”
“I’ll be looking for you, Pete,” she chuckled. "Bye.”
The next day, when Pete went to Eve's room, he found her sitting on her bed with her overnight bag next to her. "What's happening, Eve?"
"I'm leaving the hospital. The doctors said they haven't found anything wrong and are sure my sight will return, so they're sending me home. I'm waiting for someone to take me to the entrance where I can get a cab."
"I can give you a ride home."
"I'd appreciate it."
"Is someone going to stay with you?"
"My sister will be staying with me"
For the next two months, Pete spent as much time with Eve as he could. After six weeks, they became intimate and felt they belonged together. Eve and Pete lay together in Eve's bed. "Pete, the love I feel for you is something I've never felt before. I want to hold you in my arms forever."
"I guess we're feeling the same, Eve. I can't imagine ever living my life without you."
"Deep down, I feel, I know we'll always be together. Nothing could keep us apart."
The days and nights they spent together were heaven for both of them. They were sure the bliss would never end. Unfortunately, the unexpected happened. One night, Pete answered a domestic disturbance call. When he got to the address and knocked on the door, a man opened the door, and two other men jumped Pete and the three beat him and kicked him in the head. He was unconscious when they put him in his car and drove away in their car. Pete was found and he was taken to the hospital. He had four broken ribs and a concussion. Pete recovered from his bruises and his ribs healed, but the concussion caused him to lose his memory.
That evening, Eve wondered why he didn’t come. Late that night, Eve lay awake. “I can't understand why Pete didn’t come,” she said. As she thought about Pete, she got a splitting headache and she put her hands to her head. “This is terrible,” she moaned and felt for the phone to call her sister, and, as she reached for the phone, her vision returned. “Oh, my God. I can see, I can see.” she squealed. After checking with her doctor, who pronounced her cured, she went back to work. Whatever she was doing, she couldn’t get Pete out of her thoughts and wondered why he disappeared. "I have to find him," she said and went to every police station in the city until she found his, and she talked to his captain.
“Unfortunately, Miss Cain, Pete was attacked and brutally beaten. Beside the physical trauma, he was left with memory loss."
“Do you have his address?”
“I believe so,” he said and checked his computer. Here it is. Number 32 Atwood Gardens.”
“Thank you,” she said, went to her car, and drove to 32 Atwood Gardens. She knocked on the door and waited. Then, she knocked again and again and again.
A woman from the next apartment came out. “Looking for Pete?”
“He’s not home. He went to stay with his sister. He was badly hurt by some thugs you know.”
“I know. Do you know where his sister lives?”
Discouraged, Eve went home. During the next few weeks, Eve tried to put Pete out of her mind. She loved him but realized that constantly thinking about him was a waste of energy and time, so she concentrated on her job and her social life. One suitor was a colleague who wined and dined her. “How about dinner tomorrow night at Palermo’s. The food is great,” Dean said.
“I’d love that.”
“Okay. I’ll pick you up at 7:00,” he said and hung up.
At the restaurant, they sipped wine and made small talk while they waited for their order. “Are my classes getting larger, Dean, or am I the only teacher trying to teach more students this year than I had last year?” she asked.
“You’re not alone. Budget. We are expected to solve the budget gap.”
“And I guess it will get worse. There’s never enough mon…,” she said, stopped talking and looked at a man sitting at a table behind her. She closed her eyes and listened to him talk to the woman he was with.
“Is something wrong, Eve?”
Eve didn’t hear Dean. She heard only the man’s voice and went to the table. “Pardon me for interrupting your dinner, but…,” she said and sat down, never taking her eyes off the man.
“Who are you? What are you doing?” the woman said angrily.
“What’s your name?” she asked the man, who just stared at her.
“Pete Cummings,” he answered.
“If you don't leave us, I'm going to call the waiter," the woman threatened.
"Hold on, Diane," Pete said.
Thoroughly confused, Dean went to Eve. “Eve, what are you doing? Come back to our table. The foods here.”
“No, Dean,” she said, and Dean scratched his head and returned to his table.
“Pete, send this woman away."
“Calm down, Diana. I'm curious. "Who are you? What do you want?"
“Pete. Do you recognize me?” Eve asked looking into his eyes.
“No, I'm afraid I don't. What’s your name?”
“Eve...Eve Cain. Pete, you are handsome. I don’t have to touch your face with my hand to know you’re handsome. I can see.”
"Uh, Miss Cain, I'm glad you can see, but that's a strange thing to say to me. Exactly why are you telling me that you can see?"
"Don't you remember that you came to see me in the hospital. I was blind. And we spent weeks together. Pete, we were in love."
"Miss Cain, I don't remember anything since my accident. I'm sorry. To tell the truth, since the attack, I've been in a fog. Diane was my nurse in the hospital, and she came with me when I went home. I don't know what I would have done without her. I don't know what else to say."
"I…I guess there isn't anything left to say," Eve said, tears filling her eyes. "I wish you well, Pete, both of you," she said, went to her table and picked up her handbag. "I have to leave, Dean. I'm sorry," she said and left the restaurant.
“What was she crying about? What the hell happened?” Dean said as he watched her leave.