12 Fading Zen

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Louis heard muffled rumbling. He heard music.

Slow Dancing in a Burning Room?

He felt the low vibrations of a road. He felt something soft against his cheek and something warm on his thigh. He felt heavy. He felt something restricting his chest and touching his neck. His mouth was dry and his lungs felt tight.

Am I in a car? Can I breathe? What's happening?

He inhaled sharply and opened his eyes. Everything was moving. His sat forward and head snapped around to take in his surroundings. A seatbelt held him against his seat and sweatshirt tumbled down into his lap.

He was in a moving car. There was a roll of carpet to his left, and above it he saw the face of Harry peeking over it. Harry's hand was resting lightly on Louis' thigh. Louis was shirtless.

"You're okay Lou. It's okay." He paused. "You passed out in front of Home Depot. You were only out for about three minutes. We're on our way back to your house. When was the last time you ate and drank water?"

Louis was silent.

What day was it? Home Depot.

He had to backtrack from there.

A shower with Harry because...? Pool. Polo game. Right. It's Saturday.

"I had an egg for breakfast and a granola bar and two lemonades at your game."

"Thought so." He looked over to check on Louis again. "Your breathing was normal. Your heart rate was just really slow and you were really hot. Just a bit of heatstroke. I'm assuming you don't spend much time in the sun?"

Louis let his head fall back onto the headrest and his eyes fluttered shut. He slowly shook his head from side to side.

"We're right around the corner from your house. Hang on for just a bit okay?"

Louis nodded. Harry's voice was dwindling away.

"Lou, speak for me please. You need to stay awake so we can hydrate your body quicker. If you faint again, it may be a while until you wake back up. Here, squeeze my hand."

Louis held onto Harry's hand. He barely managed to whisper a "kay."

"Do you want me to roll down the window a bit? Would you like some fresh air?"

Louis lightly squeezed Harry's hand three times trying to signify a yes. Harry apparently got the message as Louis felt cool air on his face. He felt Harry's fingers rubbing his hand.

"We're pulling in your driveway now. Stay with me."

He could do this. 30 more seconds till he's inside his house. The car came to a stop and he heard Harry's car door open. Moments later he felt his seat get unbuckled and Harry's arms wrapped around him. He was carried bridal style and Harry fidgeted with the lock as Louis rested his head on Harry's very comfortable shoulder.

In his flat now, he was set down on his cool living room couch. "I'm grabbing you some water. Try to open your eyes."

By the time he had his eyes half open, he was being handed a cool glass of water with a straw in it in one hand, and some crackers in the other. He sipped on it and the chilled water was refreshing in his dry mouth.

"I'll bring everything in. Just try to wake up a bit more okay? Take it easy." Harry's voice was soft against his ear, and he felt fingers brush his fringe out of his forehead.

20 minutes later and Louis felt significantly better. Harry had been shuffling in and out of the house bringing in the items and putting them in his front room. Feeling embarrassed but determined, he stood up, put Harry's sweater back on and went in search of Harry. He was locking the front door when Louis walked in.

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