I woke up feeling groggy and blinked until the dim light through the drawn curtains managed to reach my brain and drag me out of oblivion. That, and the endless beeping from the baby. Sarah was waking up too and at the sound of the beeping she panicked.
"Maybe he's hungry? We should feed him, he hasn't had a single thing since he was born."
"Oh God, I'm a terrible mother!"
"Easy dear, you're doing just fine."
Sarah squeezed my hand and then began baring a breast when a frown appeared on her face. "Umm, Harold, how are we going to feed him? He doesn't have a mouth."
"Like any other car I guess, he has a fuel cap right? Can't you just, uh, stick it in there?" I said gesturing to her half-exposed boob.
A little frantically, she pulled back the towel and looked for our son's fuel cap. It was there, miniature just like the rest of him. And like other cars, it was locked.
The baby was still beeping and we still had no way of feeding him.
"Maybe you could try and open it with a knife?" I suggested, grasping at straws.
"Harold! I am not sticking a knife in our son! What do we do, maybe we should call the hospital?"
"Or a mechanic." I said, plugging the phone back in - we had unplugged it during the night when we had been woken up by more people desperate for statements and interviews. I began dialling the number for the hospital when the phone rung. I answered it.
"Hello? Mr. French?"
"This is Doctor Singh, from the maternity ward that delivered your...uh..."
I let him struggle with that.
"Anyway, given the, uh, unusual circumstances we thought you'd like to know that we found something in the afterbirth."
"Jesus!" I burst out, then I quickly held the phone closer, hunched over to muffle the sound of the phone so that Sarah couldn't hear. "It's nothing serious is it? Sarah's alright isn't she?"
"Well no, no, though we'd really recommend some tests Mr. French. No, as I said it's related to the usual nature of the birth. At first we though t it might have been something more serious but then the nurse pointed out it's similarities to certain kind of object. Mr. French, we found a key."
"We'll be right there."
I dropped the phone and turned round to Sarah. "Sarah, our prayers have been answered, we're off to the hospital!"
Quickly she wrapped up the baby and we burst out of the front door, almost tripping over some of the reporters that had returned early for a chance of a story.
"Out of my way, we've got to feed our baby!" I yelled as we bundled into the car and dashed off to the hospital, several excited reporters trailing behind us all the way there.
We burst into the hospital reception followed by cameras and reporters and ran up to the desk. The baby was beeping louder and harder, the poor little guy was starving.
"Dr. Singh, we need to see Dr. Singh right now!"
The receptionist suddenly panicked under all the attention, her eyes darted to the little green Beetle and back to ours and she stuttered a response. "H-He's in th-the m-m-maternity ward."
I nodded, we knew where that was and we dashed on followed by our entourage of news hounds.
"Dr. Singh! We need that key!" I yelled as we burst into the ward.
A nurse looked at us shocked and ducked into an office. A moment later she returned with the doctor and a small plastic bag. Inside there was a small metal key with a black grip. It was like a little toy.
Sarah grabbed the bag, tipped out the key and put it into the fuel cap. Suddenly everything was quiet, the reporters, the nurse, even us were all holding our breaths. The key turned and the cap came off. There was a cheer and then Sarah not even thinking pulled out a boob and pressed her nipple against the tiny hole behind the fuel cap. We waited, the baby kept crying and then Sarah looked to me worried.
"It's not working Harold, he isn't feeding? Why isn't it working?"
I didn't know, I didn't know the answer. I looked to the doctor but he was as confused as I was. Then one of the reporters spoke up.
"He's a bloody car love, unless your boobs squirt 4 star, he ain't having none of it. You can't put milk in an engine, it'd gum the little bugger all up."
We both looked at the reporter, back to each other, down to the baby, and then back to each other again.
There was a pause.
"To the petrol station!"
We all ran to the nearest petrol station, luckily only a minutes walk from the hospital, with the doctors, nurses and reporters in tow. I ran to one of the pumps, grabbed the nozzle and pushed it against the baby. Damn it, it was too big for his miniature fixings.
"What do we do now? Jesus, somebody, elp us, our babies starving to death!"
A woman parked on the other side of the pump stepped out, she had a baby of her own.
"Hey, you're that couple on the news. Flipping heck, I thought is was some kind of stunt! Here, take this, maybe it'll help." She said, handing us a squeezable babies bottle.
I could have kissed her. I unscrewed the cap, poured out the milk and stuck in the nozzle and we filled the thing up with petrol. Meanwhile, the sound of police sirens was in the air and I heard the sound of the petrol station clerk complaining to a police officer.
"They can't do that, their blocking up the entire faircourt! It aint safe!"
"Quiet mate!" One of the reporters hissed, "He's feeding it!"
And I was. I had screwed the cap back on and had pushed the rubber tip of the bottle into the babies fuel hole. I squeezed gently and the beeping began to subside to be replaced by a gentle, slowly deepening rumble.
"He's feeding! He's feeding!" I cried out with joy.
The crowd we now had around us let off a cheer and when the baby was finished we screwed his fuel cap back on and let out a sigh of relief.
"Do you mind if we keep this?" I asked, gesturing with the babies bottle towards the woman who'd lent it to us.
"Sure, of course you can." She smiled, wiping away tears from her eyes.
Next, Sarah and I pushed our way through to the station clerk.
"Sorry about all the commotion." I said, looking back at the petrol pump and pulling out a twenty pound note. "Your petrol just saved our sons life. You can keep the change."
I was high on joy and relief. Standing next to Sarah, I hugged her and addressed the crowd.
"Okay then," I grinned, holding Sarah close, "who want's an interview?"