Chapter 18: I Do I Really Do

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I walked down the bland white halls hearing beeping, coughing, and quiet murmurs. I hated hospitals. I kept walking silently until I got to Rob's room. Katie was nowhere to be found, but there was a note.

'Went back to the hotel, be there ASAP in the morning, promise.
-K'

I crumpled the note and put it in my pocket, sitting on the stool next to Rob's bed. He looked like a little boy, peacefully sleeping. The little boy I once knew. I took his hand and started murmuring to myself and him. Silent tears slipped down my face. Normally I wasn't emotional. But these last few months, I had been to hell and back again. I looked at Rob's sleeping face, and his hair was matted down to his head with sweat. I habitually was fixing his hair, so it was practically second nature. I brushed a wet strand of dirty blonde hair from his forehead, and his eyes shot open.

"I-I'm sorry," I stuttered. "I'll just go."

I got up to leave.

"No!" he pleaded. "Don't leave. I want to talk to you."

I sat back down on the stool and brushed a tear away.

"What do you want to talk about?" I asked softly, looking into his beautiful brown eyes.

"What happened over the last five years?" he asked.

"We were dating. I left. I don't know what else. I left you, then came back for the first time a few months ago. We saw each other and talked, but you weren't yourself. Then we started dating again...and then you took a hard hit to the head in the game. And now you don't know who I am. The only thing you remember is me leaving," I said quietly, silent tears dripping down my cheeks like little rivers.

"Did I do that?" Rob asked, motioning to my neck. I got up and checked the mirror, and there were slight bruises.

"Yes," I whispered. He shut his eyes tightly.

"I'm sorry. I never meant to hurt you. I...I feel like I should know who you are. I kinda do...but it's fuzzy." A single tear dripped down his face. I wiped it away with my thumb.

"Any questions?" I asked. He nodded.

"How much did you love me?"
My heart sank. I felt like bawling.

"More than life," I replied. I turned away because I couldn't stand this. It was too emotional. An envelope that lay on the table caught my eye. It said Alex on the front.

"What's that?" I asked, determined to change the subject.

"The doctor found it in the back pocket of my pants I guess," he said, closing his eyes again. "I wrote it after you left, determined to give it to you if I ever found you. Everyday, I guess I'd put it in the back pocket of whatever pants I was wearing, in case I ever saw you again."

That hit me like a brick. Had he really felt like this when I left?

"You remember that?" I questioned.
He shook his head.

"No. Tom Brady told me. It says 'Give to A. Stone'."

He literally just said Tom Brady told me so casually. Another tear slipped down my face.

"Can I read it?" I asked. He nodded. I took the envelope and opened it slowly. There was a folded piece of notebook paper, with a picture. I took out the picture, and it was Rob and I, taking a random and ridiculous picture at a football game. I had on blue and white face paint, and Rob was wearing his football uniform. He was all sweaty, and we were both grinning. I started to cry even harder, but still silently. Rob was staring at me intently as I took out the letter.

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