53 - Reunited: Day Seventy-Five

40 1 1

The groups continued to travel and perform as scheduled. They did numerous interviews and photoshoots during the day and performed for sell-out crowds every night. Melanie performed full out for each concert and contributed somewhat to interviews, but when not occupied with her Spice schedule, she would to try to seclude herself from the group, either going to her room to be alone or escaping into quiet areas where she would be left alone. Apart from when she was asked questions during interviews, she rarely said a word unless her friends really worked at getting her to speak. They were no closer to coming up with an answer as to why she'd suddenly become depressed and anxious and they were becoming increasingly worried about her.

Lucy was flown in to have a session with Melanie, but made no more strides than the group had. She'd prescribed anti-depressants, hoping that might bring her around, but was unable to get to the bottom of what was causing Melanie's sudden depression.

Meal times had become an issue again. While no longer concerned that her food had been drugged, Melanie simply had a difficult time consuming much of anything. Her friends would force her to join them for meals and would make her sit long after the rest of them had finished eating, hoping she would finish the food they portioned out for her. She would attempt to eat and slowly got some of it down, but she would end up gagging at the table or making herself sick afterwards.

Doctors couldn't find any physical reason that Melanie couldn't keep her food down and had concluded it was the anxiety she had developed that was most likely causing the nausea. Without being able to determine the cause of the anxiety, they had hoped the anti-depressants would eventually kick in and help the issue and encouraged Melanie's friends to get her to eat small portions of food throughout the day to keep her from starving herself.

Following a full day of press and a concert that evening, Melanie had adjourned to her hotel room alone and sat anxiously on the side of her bed. She'd tried watching telly, but the noise and the lights bothered her and she had shut it off in hopes of making herself feel better. She was shaking uncontrollably and her chest was becoming increasingly tighter, making it harder and harder to breathe. Tears stung her eyes as they began to build up and sweat was beginning to form along her hairline.

As the room started to close in on her, she quickly pushed herself off the bed and raced to the door. She burst out of her room and into the hallway and knocked on the door across the hall from her room, desperate for anyone to help.

Brian answered the door and looked at her with concern, immediately realizing something was wrong. He pulled her into the room and over to the bed where AJ was sitting. The two of them had been doing a phone interview with an American magazine, talking about the accident and everything that had happened from when they'd gotten lost to when they'd each been found. Seeing Melanie in distress, he apologized to the person on the phone, offering to call them back, and he disconnected the call.

"I can't breathe," Melanie whimpered between laboured breaths. She gripped Brian's hand tightly and struggled to pull in enough air to fill her lungs.

"Just relax," Brian said calmly as he sat down on the edge of the bed and pulled her next to him. "You're having a panic attack, honey. You're going to be all right, you just need to try to calm down."

"Hey, we've done this before, remember?" AJ chimed in softly as he sat on the other side of her. "Breathe with me, okay?" Melanie's eyes were wide as she stared at AJ and tried to follow him through the breathing exercise. She continued to squeeze Brian's hand and focused on AJ, eventually calming herself enough to breathe normally once more.

AJ smiled and kissed Melanie's cheek, brushing away the tears that had spilled during her panic attack. She leaned back against Brian, tired from the ordeal, and she loosened the grip she had on his hand.

In The DarkRead this story for FREE!