Chapter 19:

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 121

Kara finished towel drying her hair and sighed. She glanced into the bathroom mirror, looking at her face; she looked tired and sick. She yawned. So maybe I am a little bit tired, she thought. She sighed, pushed her fringe behind her ears, and hung up her towel.
Opening the door, Kara was greeted by Sam and Tyra arguing in the hallway.
‘I’m having a shower after Kara.’
‘No. I said before that I was next.’
‘Shower’s free,’ Kara walked passed them to her bedroom.
‘I’m going.’
‘No you’re not.’
Tyra ran and jumped into the doorway ahead of him. ‘I’m your girlfriend. If you really loved me you’d let me go first.’
Sam sighed and shrugged his shoulders in defeat. ‘Go for it. I want more pancakes anyway.’
‘Sam, you’re a pig.’ Tyra slammed the door in his face.
* * *
Kara let the door fall closed behind her. She pulled a pink scarf off her desk chair and wrapped it around her neck. She tugged down at the bottom of her brown jumper and flopped down on her bed.
I’ll just close my eyes for a minute, she thought as her eyelids fell closed.
* * *
Corey had seen her slip into her room. He went over to the partially closed door and peered inside. She was lying down on her bed.
No answer.
She was asleep, he realized, slipping inside and closing the door. He sat on the edge of the small couch near the door. She looked peaceful. He didn’t want to wake her by going over to where she was asleep on the bed, and yet he didn’t want to leave her, all alone. He didn’t want anything to happen to her.
He slid down into the seat of the couch. Nothing will happen, not while I’m right here, he thought, allowing his eyes to fall slowly shut.
* * *
It’s so quiet, Tyra thought coming out of the bathroom and brushing her hair off her face. She glanced around but there was no one anywhere. Strange, she thought heading for her room. She opened the door and found Sam fast asleep on the bed. Ahh, everyone’s tired. They’re all asleep; Tyra put yesterday’s clothes in a drawer and yawned, realizing for the first time that she too was tired.
Sighing she lay down beside Sam and rubbed her neck. Sam instinctively rolled over and wrapped an arm around her waist. She smiled as she slid into a light sleep. I know I have school, but we have plenty of time. I’ll get up again in a minute. Catching a few winks of sleep isn’t going to kill anyone is it?
* * *
He woke just seconds before it started; a high-pitched scream from the other side of the room.
‘No! Get off! You’re hurting me! I can’t breathe!’
She struggled against a force that wasn’t really there, tugging on the scarf wrapped around her neck, pulling it away from no one.
He stood up and raced over to her. The scarf was caught, he realized, stuck between the edge of the bed and the wall, choking her. He leant on her shoulder, holding her down as he tried to free the scarf.
She screamed, louder and louder.
‘Get off of me! You’re hurting me…I thought you cared…’
Her entire body fell limp in his arms as he worked quickly to loosen the scarf. As it came free, he pulled it off her neck and threw it to the other side of the room.
He looked up and saw Tyra, standing in the doorway, half-asleep.
‘She won’t wake up. What do I do?’
‘Sam. Call an ambulance.’
Sam just stood there watching.
Snapping back to reality, Sam pulled his phone from his pocket and dialed the ambulance number.
* * *
He watched in silence as the paramedics loaded her into the ambulance. Tyra answered their questions as he stared at her. He climbed into the ambulance beside her and sat, holding her hand, watching her miserably.
Tyra slid in beside him, wrapping her arms around his shoulders.
‘What happened Corey?’
‘She…She was asleep. Then I fell asleep on the couch. Then she started screaming. And her scarf was caught and it was choking her. And I had to hold her down to get it and she started screaming at me…”get off me”, “you’re hurting me”, “thought you cared…” Do you think she knows it was me holding her down? Do you think in her dream it was me doing this to her?’
Tyra shrugged slightly. ‘She’s been having dreams of her mother hurting her for years, as long as I’ve known her. I don’t think she’d think it was you doing it.’
‘Yeah but…’
‘Corey, would you ever hurt her?’
‘I’m not her mother Tyra.’
‘Would you ever yell at her? Scream at her? Hit her?’
‘I’m not her mother Tyra.’
‘Would you ever force her to do anything?’
‘I’m not her fucking mother Tyra!’
‘Exactly. You would never hurt her, yell at her, hit her, scream at her or force her into anything. You are not her mother. That dream, her reactions, that’s what she does when she’s dreaming of her mother. Not you Corey. When you’re with her, when she’s dreaming of you, she’s peaceful, calm. She has a smile on her face. That dream had nothing to do with you.’
‘How do you know?’
‘That’s not a Corey dream.’
‘A “Corey dream” now?’
Tyra rolled her eyes and looked at him.
‘She loves you,’ Tyra said softly, as the ambulance pulled to a stop outside emergency. She got out before he could say anything in return and went to meet Sam, who had followed in his own car.
‘How do you know?’ Corey whispered, letting his head fall to his hands.
* * *
They’d had to lie to get inside her room. They were only allowed to see her if they were family so they lied and said they were her cousins. Ever since they’d arrived Corey hadn’t left her side. He’d stayed right where he was, head resting on the edge of the bed, her hand gripped in his, waiting for her. Hoping she’d wake up. Because if she didn’t, if anything happened to her, he’d blame himself.
Tyra stayed seated by the window. She refused to move. She couldn’t watch Kara and yet she didn’t want to leave either. Tyra stared out the window, watching the busy city streets, the people coming and going, the cars driving passed. This isn’t right, she thought to herself. She can’t really be here. This can’t really be happening…
But it was. And deep down, Tyra knew that. And nothing she could do could stop it. Kara was in the hospital, for a stupid accident. It was her own fault really, she should have known better than to fall asleep wearing a scarf. But evidently she was so exhausted that she didn’t even think of taking off her scarf. Tyra sighed and leaned back against the wall. She didn’t like hospitals. She turned towards the door. Sam should be back by now. He’d gone to get food, because he couldn’t survive five minutes without it.
Sighing, Tyra stood up. She walked passed Corey and gave him a gentle hug. He didn’t even look up. He’s asleep, she realized. Good. He needs it. Although, he’ll punish himself when he wakes up.
Outside, Sam leant against a Coke machine, a half empty can of Coke sat on the floor beside him as he stared at a spot on the floor.
‘She’s stable now,’ Tyra sat beside him and stole the drink.
‘That’s good.’
‘You ok?’
‘Fine. I just don’t like hospitals. How you holding up?’
‘About the same I guess.’ Tyra starred straight ahead before letting out a loud sigh and letting her head fall to her hands. ‘She’s in the fucking hospital Sam. How the hell did things get this bad?’
‘Hey,’ Sam said, allowing her to curl up in his lap. ‘It’s all going to be okay. It was just an accident and she’ll be fine.’ He cupped her chin in his hands. ‘You’ll be okay.’ Sam kissed her forehead and let her lean heavily on him. He felt she needed him, his comfort. Then again, who wouldn’t in her situation, her best friend was in the hospital.
* * *
He woke with a start. Someone had turned of the lights. Tyra must have whenever she left, he thought looking around and remembering where he was. Quickly he glanced back to Kara, making sure she was still there, that she was still breathing. He’d dreamed she was alright. He’d dreamed she woke up and she was fine. But she was still unconscious, her hand still limp in his.
He sighed and ran his fingertips across the edge of her cold cheek. She feels so cold, he thought. Carefully, Corey slid onto the narrow hospital bed beside her, holding her in his arms, wrapping the sheets around and willing her to open her eyes, to wake up.
‘Please…’ he whispered. ‘Please.’
* * *
The days following dragged by. Sam, Tyra and Corey went to school each day but none of them learnt anything, none of them spoke. Corey sat at his usual tables, with Kris and Ellie. Tyra and Sam joined their table but none of them could help noticing the empty space next to Corey where Kara should be.
Corey left school at lunch most days, reasoning that he wasn’t learning anything anyway so he was better off with Kara. Even though she was in a hospital he still worried about what might happen to her and would only leave for four or five hours a day.
He wrote the date at the top of his page. Friday 15th June. It had been a month now. A month since they’d been going out. Although, one and a half weeks of that month she was comatose so he wasn’t entirely sure if that counted. He glanced at the whiteboard again, copying down the homework. Loneliness, the whiteboard read.
Loneliness.Write 250-500 words about what loneliness means to you. Be prepared to share this with the class during our next lesson.
He slammed shut his book, picked up his bag and walked out of the classroom, heading for his car. Corey quickened his pace as he heard a pair of footsteps following him. He didn’t know who it was. Didn’t care, more to the point. He just needed to be alone for a minute. He needed to talk to Kara. Tell her all the stuff that floated through his head, but he couldn’t.
Sometimes people wake up from comas. Sometimes they don’t. The doctors had told him that she should be alright. That she hadn’t hit her head so it was very likely there would be no permanent damage and she’d be fine as soon as she woke up. If she woke up. They told her she would but he didn’t know what to think. What if she didn’t?
He was so lost in thought that he’d reached his car ten minutes ago and he just been standing by the car door. He looked up and became aware of someone behind him, the same person who had been following him. He turned around to see Sara standing there watching him.
‘Corey, is everything okay?’ Sara edged towards him.
‘Yeah. I’m fine.’
She raised one of her perfectly waxed eyebrows at him. ‘Sure, whatever you say.’
He shrugged and opened the door to his car.
‘You’re going?’
‘I have some stuff to do. Now did you have something to say or where you just following me for the hell of it? Because I have somewhere to be.’
Her face fell slightly, ‘What changed Corey? I thought you liked me.’
‘I do like you Sara.’
‘So we could like, I don’t know, hang out sometime then?’
‘Oh. You mean like that. Sara, it’s more complicated than that.’
‘Because of Kara? She’s nice and all but don’t you think you’re a little bit…how to say this? Out of her league? I mean, she’s alright I guess, but she’s rather strange.’
‘Nice of you to say this about my girlfriend who is in a fucking coma Sara.’
Corey’s entire body tensed before he took a deep breath and went towards the driver’s side car door.
‘Oh, no you don’t.’ Tyra’s voice called out across the car park. She wasn’t sure whether to let on that she’d heard their entire conversation or not. She walked over to where Corey stood, frozen in the car doorway. ‘You,’ she said looking at Sara. ‘Have a lesson to go to. And you are far too upset and angry right now to be driving.’
Corey watched while Sara glared at them both before spinning on her heel and storming off to towards the school gates. He watched as Tyra took the keys from him and led him towards the passenger seat door. He watched as she opened it for him and still as she forced him into the seat and leaned over him to plug in his seat belt. He continued to watch as she slammed the door and walked to the driver’s side door and got inside the car. He watched as she put the key in the ignition and started the car and as the roads flashed by them. He watched as she drove onwards and onwards.
They stopped outside the hospital, down a small side street that no one else seemed to have discovered. There was never a car parked down the street and no parking hours signs lined the edges. Tyra turned to him and smiled a faint smile. ‘You ready?’
A lone tear slide down his cheek but he wiped it away quickly, before she saw it. ‘What if she doesn’t wake up, Ty?’
Tyra smiled lightly, ‘Don’t you worry. She’s stronger than you know.’

Submitted: October 15, 2009

© Copyright 2021 TimeTruthHearts. All rights reserved.


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