Out With the Old, In with the New

The “scene”-play below is a response to a Reddit writing prompt in the subreddit r/writingprompts. The original prompt itself was posted by user u/Simplersimon.

[WP] Dead of night, back road, a pregnant woman is going into labor. Her husband, who was driving, pulled over shortly before a heart attack just killed him. Death arrives and takes his last request: deliver the baby. Death is not prepared for this.


EXT. HIGHWAY 70 - NIGHT

A 1993 Ford Taurus speeds down the road like a rogue boar. Close behind is an all white mini cooper keeping pace. Inside the Taurus is an aged man with his beloved wife in the back seat. She is screaming and panting, his right hand is holding hers tightly. She is incredibly pregnant, and sweating. The baby is coming in any moment.


KEITH:

Hold on baby, we’re almost there. Just a few more miles and -


ERIKA:

MILES!? GO FASTER! AHHHHHH!


She screams again and holds her hand to her belly. No amount of literature on birthing could have prepared her for this pain. Keith is also sweating profusely and hyperventilating. His heart is shuddering.


KEITH:

Babe, I’m -


A beat while he removes his right hand from her and wipes the sweat from his eyes.


KEITH:

I’m uh. I’m. Not feeling -


He starts to fade and the car swerves onto the shoulder. Erika screams as they tumble over the bumps. The loud thrum of the rumble strip wakes Keith back up and pulls them back onto the road.


KEITH:

I think I’m - having a heart - attack.


ERIKA:

WHAT!? Keith this is not (breath) the time (breath) for games.


KEITH:

I - I can’t.


He shudders and the car slows. He pulls off onto the shoulder once more. The white Mini follows suit. When they both stop, a gorgeous, tall looking man with blonde hair steps out of the Mini and walks over to the couple. Erika is screaming and slapping Keith with her shoe to wake him up. This gorgeous angel of a man (DEATH) opens the driver’s door and slaps Keith across the face.


KEITH:

Huh? What, who is it?


DEATH:

Times up man. I’m taking you with me.


Erika looks in despair at her husband who is looking out the open door at seemingly, nothing.


ERIKA:

Who are you talking to Keith, we need to go!


DEATH:

You’re having a heart attack, and we’re already late taking you up. Did you have anything else you need to do before we go? Any last words?


As though he has completely snapped out of his heart attack he looks up at death peacefully.


KEITH:

My. My wife. She’s in labor, I need to get her to a hospital.


ERIKA:

Keith you’re scaring me, please let’s go!


DEATH:

Shit. Well um, the next hospital isn’t for another thirty miles or so.


KEITH:

Deliver my baby.

DEATH:

Wait what? I don’t know how to do that.


KEITH:

You’re Death right? If you can take life out of this world, you can bring it in. Go on! That’s my final wish.

Erika screams again, this time louder than ever.


DEATH:

Oh for fucks sake.


Death takes a step back and looks up and down the highway. No one in sight.


DEATH:

Fuck, fuck, fuck. Fine. Fine. Okay, let me see what I can do.


He opens the back seat door, and Erika sees him appear out of thin air. She shrieks and passes out. Death taps her toe and she comes to.


DEATH:

Be calm, I’m an angel. I’ve come to deliver your baby.


ERIKA:

You. You. What?


She passes out again. He again taps her foot and wakes her up. She gasps for breath as she leans up and sees death looking just as uncomfortable as her with this arrangement.


DEATH:

Okay, let’s see. I’m uh, going to take off your -


ERIKA:

Just get it over with.


DEATH:

Um, right. Okay.


Death slips his hands up her thighs and pulls down her undergarments and slips them off. His face is twisted with disgust. He separates her legs and pulls up her dress.


DEATH:

Oh Jesus help me.


ERIKA:

AHHHHHH! He’s coming!


DEATH:

Not yet, you guys still have a few hundred years -


ERIKA:

No! The baby is coming!


DEATH:

Oh right.


Death leans forward and puts an arm up on the backseat for balance and the other underneath Erika’s underbits. She buckles back, grabbing Death’s arm, and screams. The baby begins to emerge. Death shifts and starts to handle the baby’s head.


DEATH:

He’s crowning! I think, I mean his head is out.


ERIKA:

FUCK!!!!! IT HURTS!


Death looks terrified as the Erika pushes again. The rest of her child billowing out with afterbirth.


DEATH:

Oh God. Oh it’s alive! I did it!


Erika looks up with a grin and tears falling from her face.


DEATH:

Er yeah, you did it I mean! Such a gorgeous baby boy. Here.


Death hands over the baby to his mother. He then proceeds to leave the vehicle and vomit all over the highway.


DEATH:

Well that settles that.


He wipes his face and turns back to Keith who is smiling and gripping the steering wheel. The baby starts to cry. Keith’s eyes glimmer. He’s a father now.


DEATH:

Alright I did what you asked, time to go bub.


KEITH:

Wait no, surely you’ll let me stay to see my son grow. Please I -


Death grabs his shoulder and they explode in a blast of light upwards into the sky. Police sirens blare in the distance.