by Phyllis

Here we sit again. Ezra is shuffling his cards. Josiah is leaning back against the wall, his eyes closed and his mouth moving, in prayer, I assume. Nathan just came back with coffee for us all. He strides over to look out the window.

Room is a little crowded, what with the three beds. Luck, if you want to call it that, have it, we're at home in Denver. The staff here knows us by name-all of us, so they worked with us on the room. I try to take comfort in that, but it seems kind'a warped somehow. Truth is, we're just in here too much.

Vin is sleeping off and on. He asks about Chris every time he wakes up. His right ankle rests on a pillow. The fractured limb makes it hard for him to get comfortable. His right arm is encased in a cast also and he's sporting a whale of a bruise on the right side of his face. All this is the result of the piece of sh*t rental not having air bags. Chris cracked his sternum and several ribs when the seat bolts gave way, throwing both him and Vin forward. Chris hit the steering wheel. Luckily, it was after the first impact and the car had lost some momentum. Hate to think about how bad it could'a been if they had of still traveling at top speed.

The kid didn't fare any better in the back seat. He slammed his head into the side window and suffered a concussion. Then the front seat back and ended up across his legs. He's developing some mighty colorful bruises from that and both knees are swollen, but the Doc said that would pass in a couple of days. Now, if he and Chris would just wake up, we could all relax.

Oh, no, Vin's stirring again. Good. Ezra's talking to him, coaxing him to sleep.

I listen to the woman next door laughing. Damn, I wish she would have a little respect and restrain herself. This IS a hospital after all. People are sick and dyin…no, I ain't going there. They'll wake up here in a while. I have faith in that. If I didn't, I lose my mind, sitting here, watching 'em for some sign of life. Just gonna bade my time and watch 'em breath. That'll do for now.

I can still see the car-the front tire shredding, rubber flying all around. The rest of us can only watch from the second piece of sh*t, as it veers off the road and down the embankment. We were stopped and going down the hill before their car stopped rolling. I know I was yelling, my throat is sore enough, but all I remember hearing is my own heart beating. Course, the fact that it was in my throat made it real easy to hear.

Damn, my eyes are burning again.  I must be getting soft in the head. These boys are gonna be okay. I know it. The doctor said it. Hell, even Nathan told me. They ain't serious hurt, just need some time to recover. Ok, I'm an adult. I can wait.

Yeah, right, let's tell another big ole lie, Buck. You know you ain't gonna relax until they're both awake and talking.

I see my hand reach out for JD's again. Damn, I hate this. Wake up, kid. It makes me nervous when you're still for this long. Besides, maybe, Chris will respond if he hears both of you young'uns talk.

What? Did I feel.. yep, kid squeezed my hand. I stand and lean over him as he opens his eyes.

He smiles and I smile back, as I push some of that dark hair out of his eyes. He knows everything is going to be fine without me saying a word.        

We both turn as Chris mumbles and starts to move around. His eyes open and he frowns. He glances to the left and sees me and the kid. As his eyes sweep the room, he acknowledges each man.




Vin, who's returning the silent look, the look that says, 'I'm good. You?' Chris nods.  

We all laugh. The silent communication did not go unnoticed.

Chris slowly shakes his head. He knows everybody's safe, his team intact.

We all relax. The woman next door laughs out loud again. She has a beautiful laugh. I think, maybe, I'll step out for a breath of air; see if the face matches that light, melodic sound.

Yeah, I'm gonna do that, in just a minute, or two, as soon as these three drift off.

Sure is a pretty laugh.


Comments to: maxbobabe@aol.com