Taylor stared at the bed in front of him. “Gunny?” He looked up at the young nurse who stared at him from the door way.
“Yeah?” He asked sitting back in the chair.
“Are you sure you don’t want anything to eat?” He nodded.
“I’m fine. I just want to sit here.” The nursed sighed.
“Gunny, she isn’t going to wake up.” Taylor’s head snapped to her. “I’m, I’m sorry I mean right now.” Taylor looked down at his hand where the bracelet was around his wrist. “Maybe you should go spend some time with your daughter….you never know how long you will have.” She said looking at him.
“I rather not think of that Ma’am.” He snapped at her. “I rather do what I want to do. Two of my favorite girls are dying.” He turned to look at her. “And there is nothing I can do to help either of them.” She gave him a look of sympathy.
“Please leave.” He said closing his eyes. She nodded turning to walk out.
“Call any of the nurses if you need anything.” She said before walking out of the room. Taylor walked over to my bed sitting on the edge.
“What am I going to do Bailey?” He shook his head dropping it into his hands. “I can’t live without you.” He sighed picking his head up to gently stroked my hair watching as my chest was forced up by the tube in my throat.
“Son?” He looked over at the door. “How is she?”
“Alive.” He sighed sadly. “That’s about it.” Hunter walked over to the bed picking up my lifeless hand.
“You are strong Taylor.” He shook his head.
“I’m weak. I’m falling apart.” Hunter put his hand on Taylor’s shoulder.
“Your daughter is 2 weeks old. Her mother has been in a coma since. She hasn’t held her daughter. She hasn’t told you she’s loves you, and how proud she was to have your baby. I would have would have fell apart by now. You are stronger than you give yourself credit for.” Taylor looked up at him. “Don’t give up.” Taylor looked down.
“She’s sick. She’s so sick. Her liver it failed. They were able to keep the cancer in her liver, but it was destroyed in the process.” He looked at him as tears rolled down his face. “Having the baby was the last thing she could take. It caused the tumor to rupture. They say she isn’t going to live without a new liver.”
“Have they tested everyone?” He nodded.
“No one is a match.” He shook his head. “How am I going to raise 3 babies by myself?”
“You’ll have us. We wouldn’t abandon you. You’re family Taylor.” Taylor smiled at him weakly.
“She’s my everything.” He rubbed at his eyes. “What am I going to do?”
“It’s alright to be scared Taylor.” Hunter said looking out the door way to look as a nurse walked by.
“No, it’s not. It really isn’t.” He sighed picking up my hand running his fingers over my engagement ring.
“Why would you say that?” He shrugged at him.
“I have 3 kids. 3 babies. How am I going to raise them alone?” Hunter looked at him. “I can barely care for Finley. Now I have a little boy and a beautiful baby girl.”
“You’ll find a way to raise them. I’m sure you will.” He looked at me. “How is Conrad?” He asked looking back at Taylor. “I haven’t seen him since you guys left.”
“We got temporary housing in the housing off the hospital.” He sighed twisting my ring on my finger. “They said we got it because of the babies.”
“They felt bad for you Taylor.” He huffed humorlessly.
“I would feel bad for anyone in my shoes right now.” There was a moment of silence.
“So how is little Conrad?” Taylor smiled.
“He’s doing great. He loves baths and loves to eat with Fin. He follows him around.” He rubbed the back of his neck smiling to himself.
“How’s Fin taking it all?”
“He’s taking it alright I think. He defiantly wants his Mommy still. But he has taken to being a good big brother to Conrad.” Hunter smiled at him.
“That’s good.” He sighed.
“I just wish I could give them a better life then they have now.” Hunter put his hand on Taylor’s shoulder.
“They have you. That’s all they need.” Taylor sat silently as he stared at me…….
I looked around in the dark room I found myself in. Where the hell am I? I put a hand on my flat stomach before pushing myself off the ground effortlessly. “Hello?” I called into the dark room. The room was like a never ending darkness that I couldn’t see past. “Hello?” I called out again. I was scared. The blackness, it was different. It wasn’t as if the lights were out but as if I was in a room covered in black paint. I looked down at myself, but I was in a hospital gown that fell right above my knees. “Please?” I cried out into the darkness. “Someone help me.” I could feel like I wanted to cry but no tears came out. “Please I’m scared.” I could feel my chest move, but it felt like I wasn’t breathing. It was as if I was weightless, breathless. It was as if nothing could hurt me here.
“Hush my little girl. No need to fear.” A voice called into my darkness.
“Who’s there?” I had the feeling again. The feeling of wanting to cry. But for some reason the tears never came. “Please answer me.”
“Patience sweetheart. No one can hurt you here.” The voice called again. It sounded closer now. It was as if it was moving closer to me. “Everything is safe.”
“Who are you?” I looked around at the blankness, the darkness.
“I’m here to help you. I’ve been here your whole life.” I wrapped my arms around myself.
“You’re scaring me.” I whimpered at the voice. A body came into view. It was walking towards me. I should be scared, terrified. But I wasn’t. I felt…safe.
“No need to fear. There is no fear.” The voice called out to me calmly, reassuringly.
“Where is here?” The body came closer. I could make out the combat uniform as well as the helmet in the hands. He was in full combat uniform as if he just got off deployment.
“It doesn’t have a name. We are nowhere, yet we are everywhere.” I shook my head. The body came into view as he stepped in front of me, that of so familiar smile.
“Wyatt?” I asked him confused. He gave me a calming smile before shaking his head.
“Almost there.” His voice was calming. It was familiar. If he wasn’t Wyatt then he must be…
“Uncle Wyatt.” I whispered slowly. He smiled at me nodding slowly.
“I’ve always been there for you as well as your father.” He gave me one of Dad’s half smiles. “I always promised him I would protect him. And I always have been. Even if he couldn’t see it.”
“How is this possible?” I looked down my eyes wide before looking back at him. “Am I dead?” He shook his head.
“Not yet.” I looked at him scared again. “Don’t be. Dead isn’t crazy Bailey. I know your pain. I have protected you all these years. Here, you’re safe. There isn’t pain. There isn’t sadness. It’s life. You watch. You watch what goes on around you. You watch your family, like I have all these years.”
“No pain?” I asked him looking around the darkness.
“No cancer. No needle. No medication. No sadness of the pain that goes with it.” He gave me the smile that made everything seem okay.
“No cancer?” He nodded at me.
“None at all. There is no fear here. No terror of tomorrow. There isn’t anything that would scare you. There is only safety here.”
“No one can get you here.” He smiled at me putting his hand on my shoulder. I felt weightless again. It felt like a feather touch on my skin. “Come with me.” He said slowly taking my hand in his feather touch again pulling me though the darkness.
“Where are we going Uncle Wyatt?” I asked him. It felt like we were flying as we glided across the floor silently.
“You will see my child. Patience.” He pulled me through the weightless darkness suddenly into a blinding light.
“Uncle Wyatt?” I couldn’t see anything.
“Hush.” His voice whispered. I could feel the feather touch over my eye lids making them flutter open. The darkness was no more. It was only light now. Not an ounce of darkness to be seen.
“Where am I?” I asked him as he took to what looked like a pond. He turned to look at me.
“Hush.” He smiled taking my hand and putting it into the warm water of the crystal clear pond.
“What?” I closed my eyes as I felt the water rush up my arm. My breath caught in my throat as my mind went off. I could see a picture of Taylor. He was standing by my hospital bed as I lay lifelessly on the bed.
‘Bailey I can’t do this alone. I can’t be the father everyone thinks I am. You were always there. You always had my back. I can’t live without you Bailey. Please. Wake up. I love you.’ He was curled up in chair next to my bed crying holding my hand. The image was cut short as another gush of water came up my arm. It showed me Fin who was curled up on a bed in a room I’ve never seen before.
‘Finley would you like something to eat?’ a voice called out to him from another room.
‘No sir. I want Mommy, not food.’ He sighed looking back at the TV in his room.
‘You got to eat Fin. Mommy would want you to.’ He shook his head as Conrad crawled over to his bed sitting down by the bed looking at the TV too.
‘Conrad you want a ba ba?’ the voice asked. Conrad shook his head lying down on the floor. I felt breathless as another gush of water went up my arm. I was now in the NICU. I knew I was in it. I stared at the little baby curl up under a pick little blanket tubes and wires running out from under the blanket. I could hear her little heartbeat from the monitor. I looked to see ‘Baby Andrews’ written where it says name. My little girl. I stared at her as the picture of everything started to fade from my vision.
“Wait.” I cried at Uncle Wyatt as I opened my eyes to look at him. “What’s going on? Why are you doing this?”
“I’m showing what you have to live for Bailey. You have three kids. A soul mate. You have so much back on earth. So much.” I stared at him as I felt the urge to cry, but the tears wouldn’t come.
“What does this mean?” I asked him. Uncle Wyatt pulled me up from the pond of water.
“I’m saying you have a chose. You can go back to living with all you have. All your family, your children. Or you can stay here. You can stay here where you don’t feel pain, or fear, or anything. Just safety.”
“You mean?” He nodded.
“You can go back to your family, or you can stay here with me, in the light.” He said slowly. “You get choose.” Uncle Wyatt took my hand into his putting something into my hand closing my fingers around it…..
….. “Bailey no!” Taylor screamed as the heart monitor went flat. “Please no!” He screamed the tears falling down his face. “Please no!” He cried as a nurse pulled him out of the room. “Please no!” He screamed as an alarm went off in the hospital. “No!” He yelled. He looked back one last time as a pair of dog tags fell out of my hand onto the bed not making a sound as the fell to the floor….
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