The ticking of the clock grew louder with each second. It drowned out everything else; the wailing of the rosy cheeked, tear streaked baby, the incessant ringing of the phone, the clatter of nails against computer keys. She looked around at the sterile surroundings of the hospital waiting room. White walls, easy clean lino and rub down chairs. The obligatory stack of well thumbed magazines on a table wedged between chairs. She jumped, her name called out over a speaker that she hadn’t noticed before. All eyes on her, her introduction to the stage. Her farewell speech.