Chapter 13

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Tiana POV
Because if the stress of the news I just received, they're keeping me here for one more night. In a hospital. With the stench of death fresh in the air.

God I hate this place.

"Stop pouting Kitty. It's just one night. After that you can get out of here!" Tyson says, an unnaturally cheerful smile on his face.

"Easy for you to say. You're not the one stuck in a hospital," I say, glaring at him.

"I'll be staying with you. So yes, I am the one stuck here with you. And I'm damn happy about it too," he says, smirking. There's nothing in that sentence to be smug about. He's the one who's stuck in a hospital room with me.

Stuck with me.

Guilt suddenly floods me and I stare at him with wide eyes. He shouldn't have to stay in a hospital with me. He doesn't have to bear the unnatural coldness of the place. He doesn't have to bear the unnatural silence. The unnatural smell of cleanliness. He has to be asleep in a comfy bed, snuggled into the warm sheets, wrapped in the familiarity of his own room. Not in a cold hard hospital bed sleeping next to an ugly suicidal girl.

"You can go sleep over at your house today," I say.

I look up to see him watching me with curious eyes. Like he's trying to unravel something. Maybe my thoughts. Maybe just why he's here in this fucking hospital.

"Where is this coming from all of a sudden?" he asks, brows furrowing a little in confusion. He looks kind of...nice.

"Nowhere. But don't you think you need a warm bed and blankets to sleep in?" I ask, looking anywhere but at him. I despise the fact that I'm so easy to read. It makes hiding harder. But there's also a small part of me that finds relief in this fact. Because I won't have to explain myself that way. They'll just know. I won't have to say anything out loud. Make it real.

"Nah I'm good here," he says, smiling brightly and I contemplate putting on sunglasses to hide my eyes from the brightness almost radiating from him.

"You don't have to be though," I say. "You can stay at home. I know the hospital isn't all that comfortable."

"It's because of that that I'm staying over at the hospital. The hospital may not be comfortable for you, but I hope it'll be at least a bit better with my company," he says jokingly, but there's also a little... something in his gaze that shows that this question is real. He wants to know whether I care for him too. And maybe I do. But he doesn't know that. He doesn't have to know just how alone I was before him.

"You? Being good company? I don't think so," I say, but I smile to show I'm kidding. I know how hurting it is to be unwanted. And I'd never purposefully do that to anyone else, ever.

(And maybe I'm too desperate for acceptance, for whatever it is love is, to really complain. Maybe I'll do anything for it.)

He laughs and says "Well I'm all you have so I'm all you're gonna get."

Oh how true that statement is.

"Unfortunate. But I'll take what I can get," I joke, smiling at him.

"Seriously though. I hope I'm not a bother or something," he says, his face suddenly serious.

"You're not," I say a little hurriedly, and he smiles. A wide smile that shows all his teeth and brings out this small, tiny dimple on his left cheek.

"I know you care," he says, smirking.

"Nah I don't care. I just tolerate you," I say. I never thought I'd get this. This playful banter.

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