You're All I Dream About

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Chapter Ten

Title from Vegas by All Time Low

"Alex!" Vic was calling me to their regular table, everyone was already seated. I didn't even look up to acknowledge him before I walked to the opposite side of the cafeteria and took a seat at an empty table. I felt kind of bad, Vic was a real friend and he was a great friend, but I don't know if I'm strong enough to face them. Tonight's dinner was spaghetti, I twirled the undercooked noodles around my fork and took brave bites, it wasn't terrible but I wouldn't choose to ever eat it again. I ended up finishing it, and I was proud of myself, I wouldn't lose points for not finishing. We only had a few more minutes left in the cafeteria so I sat at the empty table, thinking about anything and everything.

The second we were dismissed I jumped out of my seat and disposed of my trash before walking out, desperately trying to make sure I wasn't caught by Vic. I was almost to my room when I heard the voice of Vic "I don't know why you're ignoring me, I'm not sure exactly what I did..then again I never do know what I did when people start hating me. I just wanted to have an explanation...please?" Vic was pleading, I sighed and ran my fingers through my hair

"it wasn't you" I said weakly, really not wanting to talk to him right now. Vic momentarily stopped speaking and I felt bad for no explanation. "I'll be in the day room right after closure group, if you're alone we can talk" I said quickly, his face perked up and he lightly nodded with a small smile tugging at the corners of his lips. I nodded and uneasily made my way to my room, the nurse was in her usual seat

"hello, how are you?" she asked sweetly as I entered

"I'm good, how are you?" I said in an equally sweet tone.

"I'm good"

Jack was sitting uncomfortably on his bed, his tray was laying in front of him, not even touched, his fork laid clean beside the serving of spaghetti. The nurse looked anxious "Jack?" she asked, Jack gave her a blank expression but he looked fearful at the same time. Without saying anything Jack stood up and exited the room, I was almost sure about Jacks eating disorder now. His nurse looked stressed "would you take his tray to the cafeteria and tell them he didn't eat?..I get off my shift early so I have five minutes left" she said, standing up. I nodded lightly and picked up his tray, carrying it out of the room, I was nervous about being the one to tell on him for not eating. When I walked in with my plate I saw the usual nurse standing beside the trash can, she's the one that marks if you ate or not. She is wonderful with names, so I didn't even have to tell her my name. She smiled at me and looked at the untouched tray

"did you not eat?" she questioned, I was about to explain that this is Jack's tray but something changed in my mind.

"No, my stomach was upset, I just feel kind of sick" I explained, she looked down at her clipboard

"it says here that you ate all of it" she sounded confused, It took me only a few seconds to think up something else

"oh, that was Jack Barakat..I took his tray for him" I explained my false story, she looked a little doubtful but changed the numbers anyway. I smiled at her and threw the tray away before making my way out of the mostly empty cafeteria. I walked out and saw Jacks nurse leaving, her purse hanging from her shoulder. Almost as if Jack was watching her leave he wondered out of the day room, passing me, and walking back into our room.

I followed him in and watched him sit down on his bed, he gave me a blank look and I walked uncomfortably to my bed "I told them that your plate was mine" I said simply, he turned his attention to me with pure confusion written on his face. "I told them that my plate was yours and your plate was mine. So you ate all your dinner tonight, go along with it when Dr.Grace brags on you" I explained the full story, he looked over surprised. Really there wasn't much more to be skeptical about, I was almost sure he had an eating disorder, and Josh told me they only feed people from tubes if they have an eating disorder and they don't eat at all. He would've had to eat through a tube, if I wouldn't have saved his ass.

"t-thank you" he stuttered out.

I just smiled at him "no problem" I was almost upset with myself. I just helped an eating disorder patient not eat and get away with it. I didn't want him to have to stay longer, I didn't want them to feed him through a tube.

"Why didn't you eat anything, Jack?" I asked with a questioning tone. The room was bitterly silent and it stayed that way as he didn't answer me, we both sat there staring at the ceiling until we were forced out of our room and to closure group

"Hey guys!" Dr.Grace chirped as Jack and I walked in and took our seats, this time I sat next to Jack. It was weird sitting this close to her, it was weird sitting this close to Jack without a table between us, or a space between our beds. When Vic walked in I noticed his eyes on me and I nodded at him, remembering our little agreement. I still didn't know what I would say.

The group went on as usual, we went around the circle telling everyone if we met our goals and what we rated today. When it got to me I had to explain that I did read but I didn't call my friends, and I rated today a six when it was really about a three.

Only a three because of Jack.

From group I went to the day room and took a seat on the couch Jack and I sat on together a few times. Vic walked in and I was impressed that he was alone, I wasn't sure how he managed to talk everyone to go to their room but he did, maybe he told them that he had to talk to me alone, maybe he had excuses.

"hey" he started as he took a seat on the end of the couch as I was sitting on the other end

"hi" I said quietly, after only a few seconds of silence I decided to speak. "I was too ashamed to talk to you, you weren't the problem..but earlier-everyone heard it and I didn't want you to talk about it or act differently" I tried to explain why I wasn't talking to them.

Vic nodded in understanding "Alex, we would never..I mean a lot of people who can relapse here do..I did, Josh did, Andrew did..we wouldn't think about you differently" he tried to reason. I sighed and thought about it a little more. Okay, I trust them now, but do I want to leave Jack for them? Jack is a new friend. Something about him makes him different from them.

"okay..sorry I was kind of rude about it" I apologized but only got a smile from him

"it's okay. And I know you're friends with Jack, you can still hang out with him, but us too..maybe we can all-" I cut Vic off as soon as I saw where this was going

"Jack would hate spending time with anyone. Im surprised he was even okay with me talking to him, I can split the time" I laughed, Vic shrugged but actually seemed a bit relieved. I knew he was only suggesting we all hang out together to be nice.

We spent the next hour talking about random things until we were called out for meds, everyone rushed to get first in line. Vic and I ended up towards the back of the line so we spent the wait talking more. After we got our meds we decided to go to our own rooms. With a quick goodnight, we ended on a good note.

"How do you get out of here, Jack?" I asked as I was settled on my own bed.

Jack paused for a moment before answering "if you make straight A's for one week they start considering, unless your therapist holds them back from a decision. If they are considering and you make it another week with A's then I think they'll probably let you out" he said wisely, I nodded. I wonder if he put it together himself or if he was told.

"How do you make straight A's?" I asked again, I knew I made a B today, the other days I made A's.

"you get three points off for not finishing your food, five points if you didn't eat at all. If you have an eating disorder it's five points for not finishing and ten points for not at all. If you make physical contact it's five points, if you're rude or insult someone it's five points, late to therapy it's three points, go against dress code they'll take off three and tell you to change, if you don't you'll lose ten and be forced to change. If you panic or something you'll be sent to the safe room and from there your therapist will decide if you need to lose points so he can keep you longer. If you don't participate in therapy it's five, if you relapse it's ten." Jack went through the long list of things I could get points taken off for.

Today I lost about twenty one.

It would've been eighteen if I didn't trade trays with Jack, but I knew he lost more points than I did even before he lost the ten for not eating.

For the rest of the night we talked about random things. Movies, Books, Music.

"Lights out!"

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