1.22.2 Getting Into Heaven
Muse: Luka Kovac/ER
His time had finally come, after all the years of praying, of pleading, of begging for death to find him it had finally come. Standing now in front of the gates he found the tears wetting his cheeks beyond his control. The one thing he had wished for was finally here and as much as he had wanted it he knew it had meant leaving behind the new life, the new family, he had at long last welcomed into his life.
He saw the man approaching but it wasn't him his eyes were on, no, his eyes had moved beyond him and to the three figures in the distance. If it were possible he was sure his heart would have stopped at the sight.
"Danijela." He whispered her name as if saying it too loud might break the illusion and erase all of them before they were fully visible.
"Tata." It was Jasna who called to him first, and before her mother could stop her the small girl had broke free of the woman's hold and was running toward the gates. His eyes shifted from her only long enough to assure himself that her mother had the only other person he still needed confirmation on, and then he saw him, the dark head resting on her shoulder.
He approached the man at the gates. "I have to get in.
I'm coming baby" He slipped into Croatian as he offered the reassurance to his daughter as she reached the fence and began repeating her demands for his entry.
"Tata...Tata..." The little girl's cries to him became louder.
"Name?" The man flipped through the large book before him.
"Luka Kovac...please, that's my wife, those are my children.."
"Tata." Jasna's pleas had become more insistent and were now joined by Marko's voice as Danijela joined her.
"Tata." The toddler stretched his chubby hand out and motioned to his father.
"Can't you see what you're doing to them?" Luka found himself pleading with the gatekeeper, while trying to remain calm for the sake of his wife and children.
"What makes you think you deserve to be here?" Peter scanned through the book until he found Luka's name and then browsed through the list of notes under it, all the while shaking his head.
"I'm here aren't I?" His eyes shot again to his family as Danijela tried to calm the two small children.
"How can you do this to them, if I wasn't supposed to be here, would they be here to meet me?" His gaze leveled on the man for only a moment before he moved over to where the children were. Kneeling, his tears fell freely as he stretched his hand through the gate's bars to touch that of the child who had died in his arms. "Let me go to them..." He made the request while keeping his eyes on his daughter.
"I've missed you so much." He'd stopped switching back to English, the realization that in this place all language was one finally dawning.
"Down...down...want Tata!" Marko had begun to get restless seeing his father so close and Danijela finally gave in using his squirming as an excuse to allow her to kneel beside her daughter as well.
"Luka..." For the first time she spoke and to his ears it was the most beautiful sound he had ever heard.
"Please...don't do this to them, they've suffered enough...please."
The gates opened...