We saw her pass by the glass before we saw her walk into the room. Her black strands were pulled back into a tight ponytail. Her face wore an expression of sheer determination. Her hands gripped two books as if someone was hunting her for them. She half-walked, half-waddled towards the destination of her journey. Her black boots swung out around her body, taking four seconds longer than necessary to move forward a full yard. Her swagger and look of determination were a sight to behold.
The few of us poised at the tables craned our necks to see if she was going to reach her goal. She finally, heart-wrenchingly, released her books a finger at a time to rest on the counter. Her lanky fingers reached for a cup off the shortest stack in slow motion. By now, none of us were focused on our work anymore. She moved comically slow. With the flesh on the pad of her finger she pressed on the icon for cranberry juice. The pinky artificial concentrate shot out, alternating with the cold water. She stood peering over her drink from a foot away, not being able to break the barrier her unborn child had constructed a half-foot out of her. The liquid swirled in the bottom of the cup. Her outstretched hand grabbed the cup and her other settled down to grope for the books. She rotated on her heel and took a step towards the door.
We returned to our various tasks, which were far less interesting than the pregnant librarian getting her third cup of juice in the past hour. Our heads were fixed on the emotionless words written in our textbooks. There was a sudden clank and the cup of juice fell to the floor. The contents spilled out over the floor expanding their borders by the second like an aggressive dictator. Our heads turn to see the noise. The librarian stood there, clutching her womb, her eyes shrunk back into her head. Her breathing became more and more shallow. The pages lay face down in the mucky juice. The liquid seeped up the pages, moving ink and dirt alike. She would have cringed if she could see what sacrilege was being carried out to her precious novels. I doubted she could see anything at all; there didn't seem anything in her sights except pain.
We all sat suspended in inaction, there wasn't anything in our textbooks to have prepared us for this. The select males in the room reacted quicker than us. The first boy ran out of the room to get a teacher, the second swiftly galloped away for some secret task while keeping a watchful eye on the librarian. His eyebrows were raised in surprise, but the wheels of his mind where spinning quickly. I smirked; this is what they should teach in health class I thought. I was brought back to reality by another gasp by the librarian. The final boy went over to her. She had sat down on the sticky floor. He held her hand as she attempted to break every bone in his hand one by one. He knelt above the sticky juice, and next to the librarian sitting in it. The rest of us had stood up to gather around her. It was a mesmerizing sight, the teenage boy and the middle age woman. I wondered if they had even met each other. The other boys returned with a teacher who relieved the boy of his hand clenching duty. They helped her stand up and walk to door of the school. Out walked the librarian, with two boys on her side, on her way to the hospital. We returned to our emotionless textbooks, oblivious to the event that just occurred. The juice had been mopped up by the time we returned. The boys sat back down at their table, and we ours. The other boys patted the hero on the back. I only overheard a single sentence; but it restored my faith in the kingdom of adolescent boys.
"Because no one should have to go through that without someone by their side."