The C Word

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I was unsure on how many days had passed.

Was it even days? Maybe it was weeks.

It felt like long, dragged out years.

I sighed heavily and rubbed my eyes forcing them to stay awake. I hadn't left her side, only to shower and get a change of clothes. I spent every night clutching her hand tightly and making do with the uncomfortable chair next to her bed. I'd been sat on it for so long, my arse had definitely left an imprint on the murky brown leather.

My eyes were heavy, hours of spending long nights and days awake by her bedside praying for her to wake up. The dark circles underneath my eyes were obvious and my face was drawn in, pale and ghostly.

I couldn't eat. I couldn't sleep. I was a living zombie, watching the world go by whilst my own seemed to be one big blur.

How could I possibly sleep when every time I closed my eyes the gunshot would echo loudly, dauntingly in my mind?

It would play continuously on a loop like some sick horror movie that's purpose was to torture. The door opened and Emily's doctor (Doctor Green) walked in. He nodded in my direction giving me a warm smile as he usually did and I nodded back, the smile not quite reaching my lips nor my eyes.

"Any more news?" I asked the doctor as he did his usual daily checks. Every day I would ask the same question and every day the reply would be the exact same.

No change yet.

The doctor looked at me sympathetically and shook his head causing my disappointment to deepen.

"It's up to her when she chooses to wake up Mr Melvin, the coma she's in is caused by the amount of blood she lost. She'll wake up when her brain is ready to do so" Dr Green said writing something down in his files.

I ignored him, scrunching my fists up in frustration, I already knew it was up to Emily when she woke up. What I wanted to know was when she was going to bloody wake up and if she was going to be okay.

Would she still be the same Emily? Would she be able to walk, talk and laugh like she once did?

This is my fault, she is in a coma because of me. If I had just moved an inch and stood in front of her, shielding her from the bullet, things would have been so different. It would have been me lying in the hospital bed, completely unresponsive.

Dr Green glanced in my direction, noticing the gloomy change in my posture -

"Why don't you go home and get some rest Jake?" he said, more softer this time. I shook my head repeatedly at his words.

"I need to be here for when she wakes up, I can't leave her."

Dr Green nodded knowing he was wasting his time convincing me, he cleared his throat before leaving the room, shutting the door softly behind him. I was left once again alone with Emily.

Just me, her and the steady beeps of her heartbeat.

I stood and lifted her arm up gently before tucking myself in beside her. I draped my arm over her stomach and breathed in her warm scent, the only thing that calmed me down these days. I lay next to her when I'm feeling desperate and right now, I'm desperate.

Guilt was eating me up alive and seeing her lie here day in, day out only made me feel worse. I felt defeated watching her knowing I couldn't do anything to help. I would sometimes talk to her, when I was feeling lonely and missed the sound of her voice. I'd talk to her about silly things, the football or her favourite cooking show. She'd lie there unresponsive but I'd like to think she was listening to me, absorbing my words slowly.

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