African StoriesLife and General Fiction StoriesNaija Stories

Never Conclude

“Hi, Lucy!” said Stella.

“Hello, you won’t believe what happened. That idiot came to me and told me that she was going to be on duty with me, that foolish girl,” replied Lucy.

“My dear, wonders shall never end. I will not tell you what to do, you know our way, leave all the work for her and don’t laugh with her. I told her the last time I worked with her that she would leave this hospital on her own. Very lazy girl, thinks she knows more than everyone. ‘I’m nicer than everybody’,” replied Stella.

“Trust me nah. You know that from the word Lucy, you get Lucifer. I will deal with her.” They both laughed and departed.

On Monday, duty roster started.

“Good morning, Nurse Lucy,” Nurse Jane greeted.

“Morning to you, Jane,” Lucy replied, whilst in motion.

“Your face isn’t nice this morning,” Jane observed.

“What is good about the morning? You better look for something important to do for yourself, rather than looking at my face,” Lucy responded.

“Oh don’t say that, we are on the same duty,” Jane replied

“It’s better you mind your work and duty because you and I can’t just work together, you lazy fellow. You think I don’t know you? Even if I have been in OPD and I had not been rotated to this ward, I know you for the snake that you are. My friend stop it. The previous ward I was in made me to read you like a novel and analyse you like an experiment. Don’t think that you can deceive me. All the nurses in this hospital all have the same thing to say about you. Look, my dear, you miss road. I will show you that opposite of good is bad and the word after Lucy is Lucifer,” Lucy concluded.

“Oh dear! I’m not like that, be patient with me and study me. Yes, they told you things about me, but allow my character to prove what they have said. I have never had an issue with any of the nurses since I started working here, and I have been working with the other nurses and there was no problem with us. The problem came up when I worked with Nurse Stella, all because I was praised by Doctor William, for dedication to my work. She picked offence and started looking forward to accuse me. She went as far as promising me that I would leave the hospital for her, and that’s how she started ganging up against me and started spreading lies about my being lazy, pretentious, rude, cantankerous and naughty. She went round convincing others to hate me too, and they started doing the same. This is the truth of the matter, I have been frustrated in this hospital, please understand me. None of the nurses like to relate with me anymore, they have started doing same. Nobody associates with me. Please give me a chance,” Jane replied.

“You want me to believe you? Oh you want to buy me over against Stella? You will never succeed,” Lucy responded.

At about 8:30 am, Doctor Johnson was ready for ward round, they both prepared and joined for the ward round with Dr. Johnson.

So many thoughts kept moving in and out of Nurse Lucy’s mind, “She may think I would be working with her, but what she doesn’t know is that if not for the doctor, I would not have joined in. I will not fail my friend Stella, I have promised her that I will deal with jane, and I will, I don’t want to fail her.”

Because of the thoughts going on in her mind, she failed in heeding to the doctor’s instructions and made a lot of mistakes and the doctor scolded her, while Jane tried to cover up for her and even defended her when doctor was scolding. After the ward round, she went and sat down and started swimming in an ocean of thoughts, trying to resolve the two conflict of battles in her mind.

“What will I do now? The nurses are watching to see what or how I will I deal with this girl, Stella told me about her, but could what she told me about Stella be true? But I saw her as an innocent girl and a good girl until I was told otherwise. Could all the nurses be against her because of Stella? But she looks so innocent, if she was a bad person, she wouldn’t have defended me in the doctor’s presence. OK, let me just give her a chance by observing her attitude. I cannot start hating her because others hate her. No I will not do that.”

In conclusion, Lucy now decided to accommodate Jane and to work with her and to watch all her actions and attitudes.

Stella was on her way out after her night duty, she was anxiously waiting to hear from Lucy about her maltreatment towards Jane. All this while she had not heard any dispute between both of them either from Lucy nor from the nurses. She arose, and went to the hospital a day before the end of the shift.

“Lucy, how far with you and that stupid girl?” Stella questioned.

Lucy replied, “Stella I never knew I could find this kind of person in this world again. If you see my behaviours and actions towards her, I couldn’t image what I got. She paid back with love, she did most of our duties all alone without minding or sharing it. The most embarrassing one was when Dr. Williams was planning to punish me because of my late coming, she still defended me. That’s not the best of it sef, in Dr. Johnson’s case, the same thing happened and she defended me.”

Stella was very ashamed of herself and replied to Lucy, “I know she has charmed you with that her juju. My words to you is, just be careful.”

Lucy responded, “Please, my sister, it’s better you have a rethink about her and change for the better. This girl is an innocent girl, but because of the things you said against her, it made me act badly towards her, together with all the nurses which you convinced to hate her. But now, God has vindicated her. I have found out the truth. I regret all my actions and conclusions. Life has taught me a big lesson: never conclude after hearing only one side.” Stella left in silence and shame.

Lucy was made the doctor of nurses some weeks after the shift because she was more experienced. She made Jane her second, for dedication to her duty. Having seen that whom they were oppressing was now their leader, the nurses adjusted and mended their ways, and rendered their apologies to nurse Jane.

And together they all exclaimed, “Never shall I conclude before acting.”

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