At Erin’s house Kieran put the car in park but didn’t turn it off.
He looked over to her and she didn’t beat around the bush, “Kieran, I would really like for you to come in for a drink. The girls are not here. They are spending the night at their grandparent’s house.”Even though Kieran had thought about this he wasn’t all the way ready for it and he hesitated for a moment.
Erin then added, “You don’t have to spend the night. I just don’t want the evening to end yet.”
She put her hand on his hand holding the gear shift.
He looked up at her and she pleaded, “Please Kieran! I have no agenda but just want to hang out a bit longer and have a drink maybe.”
He turned his car off, “Okay, I guess I can come in for a drink.”
Erin smiled, “Thank you.”
She got out as Kieran got his Quickie and his back pack from the back seat. He hung the back pack on the wheelchair handles and transferred into it.
Erin was already at her door and looked concerned. She hadn’t even thought about the three steps into her house. They were not very steep but she didn’t know if Kieran could even come into her house now.
As he approached, he already eyed the steps and saw there was no railing to hold on to and possibly make it up the stairs in his Quickie. He thought about his options.
When he looked up at Erin she said, “I’m so sorry…I didn’t think.”
He pulled up to the steps and thought for a moment what the best way was to get up the stairs, “I may need your help getting up. I could possibly do it on my own if there would be a rail to hold on to at least on one side, but without a rail I don’t know.”
Erin wanted to be as helpful as possible and came down the steps, “Yes, of course. Tell me what I need to do.”
“Maybe you could take my backpack off and set it by the door.”
Erin did as told and Kieran spun his wheelchair around facing his back to the door, “I have to get up backwards but I need your help to pull me up. I don’t know if I’m too heavy for you though.”
Erin felt bad and wanted to do everything she could to get Kieran up into her house, “I can do it.”
She came around to him and he looked up at her, “I’ll back up to the stairs and if you could grab the handles and while I work my rims backwards I need you to pull up at the same time. I’ll tell you when to pull up. If I’m too heavy though then don’t worry about it. I can possibly get out of my chair and pull myself up the stairs on my butt.”
Erin did not want for Kieran to get onto the ground and pull himself up that way, “I can pull you up. I’m pretty strong and you don’t look heavy.”
Kieran smiled, “Thanks.”
He wheeled backward to the bottom of the stairs and said, “If you could grab the handles and get a good stance. I will tell you when to pull up.”
Erin got behind him on the bottom step and grabbed the wheelchair handles tight, “I’m ready.”
“Okay, on three just pull up.”
Kieran put his hands to his rims, ready to push back and hold, once up on the step.
He was a little worried that he was too heavy for Erin to pull him up, “Okay, ready set…one, two, three….”
And he slightly lifted the caster wheels off the ground, pushed his rims back, Erin pulled and his Quickie jumped onto the first step.
He quickly commanded, “Hold it.”
He balanced his chair by holding its rims in place, its caster wheels still off the ground, just floating in front of him in the air.
Erin didn’t think Kieran was too heavy in his chair but she definitely felt the weight of him and she held for a moment, then they repeated the same thing two more times until Kieran was finally up on top of the stairs and right away spun his chair around as Erin stepped back and took a breath of relief, “We made it.”
He turned to look at her and even though he felt somewhat embarrassed he was glad he was up now, “Thanks Erin…you did great.”
She looked down shyly, “You did great…I’m glad you are up here”
She unlocked her front door, Kieran grabbed his backpack off the ground, set it on his lap, and wheeled by Erin holding the door. She still felt excited at having been part of the previous moments. Kieran stopped in the hallway, waiting for her to close the door. He spun his chair around to face her.
The hallway didn’t have any carpet and Kieran was able to maneuver his chair easily.
Erin dropped her purse by a coat rack with a small drawer chest next to it, “Do you want your backpack or do you want to leave it here?”
Kieran hadn’t catheterized in a few hours.
He replied, “Actually I will hold on to it for now.”
Cautiously he then asked, “Erin, is there a way I can use your restroom?”
It had crossed Erin’s mind on how Kieran used the bathroom but she really didn’t know and even though she had a slight idea she really wasn’t sure on how Kieran did those things. So far the only thing that had confronted her with disabled persons using the bathroom was when she felt bad about using the larger disabled stall in the public restrooms and always hoped there wouldn’t be a disabled person coming in wanting to use the stall.
Quickly she answered, “Sure, it’s down the hallway, first door on the right.” She was worried about the accessibility of the bathroom for Kieran and hoped it would be okay.
He nodded with a smile, “Thank you. I’ll be just a few moments.”He felt strange having to catheterize in the bathroom of the woman he had just kissed wildly and spent a romantic evening with so far. If he could just go into the bathroom and pee like any guy, it wouldn’t take him two minutes. There was a little more to catherization. He had not slipped into any incontinence briefs at home because he felt strange wearing them while out with Erin and he didn’t know how the date would go. Now he needed to check the situation and make sure everything was still all right and at the same time empty his bladder.
Kieran was able to wheel into the bathroom, even though his Quickie barely fit through the door frame. The bathroom itself was spacious enough for Kieran to maneuver his chair around easily. At the sink he washed his hands and then pulled right up to the toilet and unzipped his jeans. His backpack contained everything he needed and he pulled out a new sterile catheter package, and some alcohol swabs. He had to dig into his boxers to pull out his penis. He swabbed the tip of it with the alcohol pad. From the package he pulled out the catheter tubing. He lubed the appropriate end of the tubing and then finding the opening on his penis he inserted the tubing slowly into his urethra, the other end hanging into the toilet. Momentarily the urine started flowing through the tubing and Kieran watched as it ran into the toilet. He was glad he had decided to cath because there was quite a large amount of urine flowing out. When he was done he held some toilet paper to where the tubing entered his penis and pulled out the catheter. By shaking it slightly he let the rest of the urine drip into the toilet. He placed the tubing into the sink and he swabbed his penis again with the alcohol. He then stuffed it back into the warmth of his boxers and was relieved that everything was still dry. He zipped up and buttoned up the fly of his jeans. He then washed the catheter, put it back into a plastic bag and washed his hands again. He checked himself in the mirror and was relieved that everything was all right. With his backpack on his lap he wheeled back out to Erin in the kitchen.
She looked over at him and smiled. He smiled shyly and set his backpack in a corner.
Erin asked, “What would you like to drink? I have beer, wine, different liquors and of course nonalcoholic drinks.”
“What kind of beer do you have?”
“Alaskan Amber, Heineken.”
Erin pulled out the beer from the refrigerator, “We can sit in the living room.”
Kieran nodded and followed Erin into her living room. It was nicely furnished with light colored furniture, a fire place which housed a metal candle holder with eight thick candles on it, and some larger plants in the room. There was a big screen TV sitting on a low stand and over it on the wall there were various photos of Erin’s family.
Erin sat down on the couch and handed Kieran his beer when he pulled up next to her. She had a glass of wine for herself. They cheered each other and drank.
Kieran wasn’t sure if he should stay in his wheelchair or get on the couch with Erin.
It was like she read his mind when she asked him, “Could you sit next to me on the couch?”
He scanned the way to the couch quickly and decided he could wheel up to it. He set his beer bottle down on the coffee table and wheeled in front of the couch. Erin watched every move he made and she felt very excited when she witnessed the transfer onto the couch. Kieran was focused on the task and as he was on the couch he pulled his legs over some more and adjusted them in front of him with his feet planted on the floor. He had to adjust his legs again so they wouldn’t fall over to the side. Erin watched him and as he looked over at her he met her curious eyes.
She smiled shyly, “Are you okay like that?”
“Yeah, I’m good, thanks.”
Without waiting she handed him his beer and scooted herself closer to him. Kieran was still trying to be more comfortable around her and not worry too much about anything but he felt her curious eyes on him a lot. It made him extra conscious about how he moved around and he wanted to try to be as confident as possible. Still he pondered if Erin was only curious about his disability, or if she was possibly intimidated. Then again she wouldn’t have asked him in and she wouldn’t have kissed him earlier and wouldn’t have said the things she did. He tried to relax about the situation.Erin set her glass on the table and cuddled closer to him with her legs pulled up onto the couch, bare feet sticking out from under the long skirt that covered her legs.
She moved right up to his face, looked him in the eyes and let her hand run through his hair, “Thank you for coming in Kieran.”
He nodded and looked down at his hands, rolling the beer bottle in between them.
Lowly Kieran replied, “I haven’t been inside a girl’s house in years.” He looked up with a smile and took a sip from his bottle and knew he wouldn’t be able to reach the table now as he glanced over at it.
Erin read his mind again and held her hand out, “Here I’ll set it on the table for you.”
He handed her the bottle, amazed at her intuition.
She remarked, “I know the table is too far over.”
He looked up at her again and nodded.
Her face was gentle as she remarked lowly, “Kieran, I’m really glad we met at the mall.”
He laid his arm around her as she moved closer again and let her head rest on his shoulder.
For a moment he let the words sink in and then replied, “Me too. I’m glad I decided to go to Old Navy with Ash that day.”
Erin laughed, “I was almost going to go on Sunday with Chloe.”
Kieran touched her hair, “Well, I guess it was meant to be.”
She nodded, came closer with her face and moved in for a kiss. She wasn’t shy with her kissing and her hands ran through Kieran’s hair as she let her tongue slide into his mouth, meeting his tongue for an exploration. Kieran pulled her closer to have a better grip on her, he felt slightly wobbly on the soft couch and only the depth of it kept him somewhat seated steadily.
Erin’s hands moved from his hair to his neck and when her fingers found the scar her hand trembled at running her finger down the length of it and ending at the collar of his shirt. She slipped her fingers under it and felt the scar go further but at the same time she felt Kieran’s kissing weaken.
She didn’t stop her kissing and moving her fingers to the buttons of his shirt she started to unbutton them when Kieran pulled his lips from her and under quick breaths he looked at her hands and pulled them away from the buttons of his shirt.
Erin felt uncertain when Kieran pulled her hands away from him.
She couldn’t look at him and she apologized in a whisper, “I’m sorry Kieran…I didn’t mean to…”
He didn’t know what to say and he felt dumb at having stopped her to take this any further.
Lowly he replied, “It’s all right. I don’t want you to be sorry but I can’t…”
Erin’s breaths were quick as she hushed, “The scar on your neck….I just wanted to…”
Kieran laid his head back on the couch as she stuttered, “I just wanted…I want to see it. How far…”
He took a deep breath, nervous at her advancing on him, and he didn’t know what to do.
Erin nestled her face in the crease of his neck and mumbled, “I’m so sorry Kieran.”
He had made up his mind and lifting his head to look down on his chest he said lowly, “If you want to see it…go ahead! Unbutton the shirt.”
Erin looked up at him and her eyes were shiny like she had almost felt like crying, “Are you sure?”
He nodded, “Yes.”
Erin shifted in her position and slowly moved her fingers up to the buttons on his shirt again, then undid them one after the other. He watched her concentrating on the task and her breathing was quick as she exposed more and more of his chest and her eyes travelled over it. He was somewhat skinny, only his small belly slightly over the waistband of his jeans, a side effect of being paraplegic and sitting all the time. A light fluff of dark hair surrounded his nipples and Erin softly touched his chest. With the unbuttoning she had also exposed the artwork of some skilled tattoo artist showing a vast variety of tattoos on Kieran’s chest. She was silent as she let her fingers trace some of the tattoos and eventually moving his shirt over some, revealing his shoulder, she found the scar coming down from the side of his neck and leading all the way over his right well defined pectoral and over his rib cage down to his belly, where it just ended. The tattoos covered it somewhat but at close inspection she could still see it but also realized some of the distortions in the tattoo designs along the scar. Apparently the injury that had left this prominent scar on Kieran’s body had happened after the tattoos had been done on his chest.
Her trembling fingers felt the slightly uneven skin of the scar as she traced it once more from his neck all the way down. Kieran just watched her nervously and really didn’t know if he should say anything but there was something in the way Erin admired his chest scar that kept him silent and he let her explore the scar.
Lowly she asked without looking at him, “How did this happen?”
This was the question he didn’t want to hear, but had expected that it was going to be asked eventually. He didn’t answer right away and contemplated not answering at all.
Erin’s fingers still softly travelled up and down the scar and he was utterly surprised when he saw her lower her face and her lips gently touch the scar and kiss him right on it in several spots.
He kept his eyes on her, unsure at what was happening and amazed at the attention she gave to his scar. She kept kissing him for a few more moments and when she looked up his green eyes were on her, confused and questioning.
Shyly she started, “Kieran, if I crossed the line, please tell me now.”
He shook his head slowly from side to side and for assurance he touched her cheek and asked lowly, “Why?”
She lowered her eyes, “I don’t know. There something about it….it…” She stopped and took a deep breath, “I don’t know…I know it’s not right.”
Kieran swallowed, “What’s not right?”
“Me…wanting…” Her voice trembled as she tried to keep talking.
Kieran took her hand in his, “What is it Erin?”
He actually thought there was something not right with him and that something had happened that made her uncomfortable and he attributed himself for letting her unbutton his shirt and letting her see the scar, only one part of his mangled body.
Erin’s hand was sweaty in his as she continued in a scratchy hushed voice, “Something about you that makes me…I don’t know…crazy. You being like this….and the scar….I don’t know Kieran. I’m so sorry. I feel like an idiot. I know I crossed the line.”
She pulled her hand away from his and moved away some.
Kieran still had no idea what she was talking about and with shaky hands he started to button up his shirt and mumbled, “It’s my fault…I shouldn’t have let you do this. I’m sorry.”
Erin sat up alert, “Kieran, no…it’s nothing you did or didn’t do. I have the problem…”
Kieran finished buttoning up his shirt and said lowly, “I know the whole paraplegia thing is weird and my body is pretty much fucked up everywhere. I should probably go Erin. I shouldn’t have come in.”
She looked at him terrified and her breaths came in gasps. Her voice was breaking under the tears that were developing.
Just as Kieran was about to pull his Quickie closer for him to transfer back into, Erin touched his shoulder, and begged, “No, Kieran…please don’t go…not yet. I have no problem with your body or any of it.”
He didn’t listen and transferred into his wheelchair as gracefully as possible moving from the soft couch onto the sturdy chair.
He looked up at her and with a trembling voice he said, “I’m sorry Erin….I think it’s better that I go. I’m not sure what you expected from me to come into your place but I just can’t do this….”
He put his hands to his rims and was about to push his wheelchair toward the door when Erin jumped up, “Kieran…please. I want to explain something to you, but I feel so strange.”
He was almost at the door where he grabbed his back pack from the floor and set it on his lap when he stopped, Erin coming up behind him and words tumbling out of her, “Kieran, you didn’t do anything wrong. I have no problem with your body or you being paraplegic. It’s just that I have these feelings when it comes to you being in the wheelchair and something about the scar. It gives me…” She swallowed, breathing quickly, and stuttered, “It gives me feelings…that I don’t think are right. I don’t know what those feelings are…they scare me and they confuse me.”
Kieran looked up at her with serious eyes, “What feelings?”
She felt a tear run out of her eye as she almost whispered, “I’m actually really glad you are paraplegic.”
This was not what Kieran expected. On the contrary, he had expected something in the line of how his disability made her feel uncomfortable and how she didn’t think she could handle it.
The statement she had given though made him feel something completely different and what seemed like relief for a few seconds turned into an utter confusion on his end. Then it turned into disappointment and a pain he felt in his heart.
He swallowed and asked more tensely than he had intended, “What do you mean that you are glad I’m paraplegic?”
She felt her knees weak and she felt her whole body charged as she tried to explain in a better way, “I don’t mind you being paraplegic and I…the scar…it actually arouses me. You not walking arouses me.”
His eyes became small as he took in the unbelievable confession and he put his hands to the door handle about to leave.
Erin now shed some tears, “Kieran, I’m so sorry…Please don’t leave. I want to explain…but I really don’t know what it is. Maybe something is wrong with me. Please stay…”
Kieran left his hand at the door knob and said without looking up, “I shouldn’t have ever let it go this far. I don’t know what you are talking about but I do know that maybe something is wrong with you. There is a shitload of stuff wrong with me for sure Erin, and so maybe all of this was actually a fucking stupid idea….”
With that he opened the door and Erin could only cry as she watched Kieran throw his backpack down the stairs and then focusing on letting his Quickie down the stairs, holding his balance for a wheelie and his rims tight, just enough to let the wheels come from one step down to the next. When he got to the bottom he picked up his back pack from the ground and with strong pushes he wheeled to his car.
Under tears she called out once more, “Please Kieran…don’t go!”He started the Mustang with a loud engine roar and he glanced toward the house once more and saw Erin’s silhouette in her door, then his vision distorted by some tears as he drove off.
In his car he cursed and he couldn’t grasp that even this second date had turned into a total disaster. A disaster that possibly meant the end to Erin’s and his brand new relationship. The pain inside was eating him up and he pulled over. Cursing into the night he hit the steering wheel with his fists and all kinds of questions were running through his mind.
He concluded that something was wrong with Erin and that it couldn’t be normal for her to feel that way about him. Another thought crossed his mind. If he was unstable dealing with strange things how could Erin and he be a strong unit if apparently she was just as unstable?
As he started thinking clearer he decided that he and Erin were not going to happen after all. It hurt him so much to think that it had all been a big mistake.
Erin couldn’t stop her tears from running after Kieran had left. She watched him drive off and as she went back inside she fell on the couch and cried and regretted being too assertive with him and regretted even more that she had tried to tell him about her feelings pertaining to his disability. It had been wrong to tell him those things. She couldn’t figure out why she felt a kind of excitement when she saw him in his wheelchair or adhering to just regular tasks like transferring from his wheelchair into and out of the car, spinning his rims, or lifting his body from the seat every so often for reasons she didn’t know. Her heart had been racing when she helped him manage the stairs into her house and being able to look and touch his scar gave her feelings beyond just curiosity but caused actual arousal and it scared her. It wasn’t just the fact that he was in a wheelchair though. She liked him in any other way too and she wanted to get to know him better. Now she wasn’t sure if she even stood a chance anymore to reconcile or somehow get another opportunity to talk to him. She cried into the pillow and felt bad about having caused the sudden end of their wonderful evening.
Kieran got home around midnight and when he came in Tyler and Fiona were still up in the living room. He really didn’t want to talk to anyone but as he came in from the garage he couldn’t dodge them and both looked over and greeted him with Fiona asking right away, “Did you have a good evening?”
He didn’t wheel all the way into the living room and stayed by the garage door, trying to sound cheery, “Yes, I did. It was a good evening.”
Fiona and Tyler smiled and Kieran hoped that his sister wouldn’t ask him anything else. He felt a headache coming on and the knot is his throat after he left Erin’s house had not gone away.
Lowly he stated, “I’m beat. I’m heading to bed.”
For one he didn’t want to bother his sister and her husband in their romantic evening on the couch and really he could barely say the few words he had said without almost choking on his bottled up emotions.
Fiona and Tyler let him get away, seemingly having spent a romantic evening of their own together and not really wanting to bother with Kieran too much at that time. He was all right with that.
He wheeled quietly through the hallway, passed the kids rooms, where he heard some giggling coming out of Ashleigh’s room but didn’t stop and just disappeared into his room, closing the door behind him.
Inside he just stopped at the door and he rubbed his hands over his face, trying to somehow rid himself of the frustration and confusion, but unsuccessful.
Just then his phone announced a text message and he pulled it out and saw it was from Erin:
“Kieran, I’m so sorry for having caused our wonderful evening to turn so bad. I thought it would be right to somehow let you know how I feel about you but I know it all sounded strange and not right at all. I feel horrible and I’m so very scared that I just destroyed everything we had established. When being around you I’ve been experiencing feelings I’ve not felt with anyone before. I’ve been trying to figure out what they mean but I can’t. Those feelings scare me because they don’t seem right but then again why can’t I feel a certain way about you. I like you very much and I was looking forward to getting to know you better and spending much more time with you. Everything you are is special to me and not just certain features of you. I don’t know how to fix this or if you are done with me now but just know that I was so happy to have met you and I was so excited that you seemed to feel the same way and my heart was skipping beats at seeing you and being in your presence. You are an attractive man and even though I know you are dealing with things I would have wanted nothing more than to be there with you. I care very much about you and the thought of having messed up what had just started between you and I is killing me. I can’t stop crying about what happened earlier. Kieran, I am so very sorry from the bottom of my heart. Erin”
His hands trembled as he read the message and again he didn’t know what kind of feelings she could be harboring for him that scared her. Her words echoed in his head “I am very glad you are paraplegic”, and “You not walking arouses me”. It had been too much for him to hear her actually say these things, Erin knowing he was still dealing with never walking again and knowing how it had changed his life and how he was still trying to adjust to life in a wheelchair. Aside from all of it she had no idea about the demons that were haunting him in the form of strange ordeals he had been experiencing or in the form of his mental status which had seemed on the mend at this time. Now somehow he felt like things were crumbling in his hands and his head hung as he read over her message once more and a few tears landing on the phone in his hands.
He was having difficulties getting undressed and getting in his bed. Everything seemed to be harder than usual and once he finally laid down and adjusted his legs he was exhausted mentally and physically from the evening and how it had ended. Instead of being able to fall asleep though everything repeated itself like it had been night after night when at 12:48 a.m. his body went into severe spasticity as it sprung back to life to torture him with the sensations coming back into his legs and lower body for almost 30 minutes now. He didn’t get up, he didn’t try to stand or walk. Instead he held a pillow over his face as he wanted to scream into it but had to hold his agony in so Fiona or Tyler wouldn’t hear him. He felt it all once again, his legs on the bed, the blanket on his skin, the urine running into the incontinence briefs, his penis in its warm confinement, his abdomen contracting with spasm after spasm, actually sending pain into his back and making him feel nauseous and sick. He didn’t want to touch himself, he didn’t want the feeling because he knew it would end again as fast as it came and it made him feel crazy and like he had no control anymore. For a moment he thought about what would have happened if he would have still been at Erin’s house with this attack coming over his body and now he was almost glad he was at home in his bed once again fighting the tormenting of his body by himself but feeling so very alone. Through the whole evening he had forgotten about these sensations happening to him night after night, he had pushed them far away because he was focused on Erin and he enjoyed being with her so much. He had pushed them so far away that he was hoping they would finally stop and turn out to be some crazy hallucination he had been dealing with, but here it was again, happening to him as real as can be and the pillow got wet from the silent tears he cried.
After the attack and when the spasms had subsided, leaving his body in stillness and numbness he pulled out his phone and tapped on the message option to his friend Andy. With trembling fingers but determined he typed:
“Andy, hey man! I sent you a message a few days ago but didn’t hear from you. I know you are probably busy with the wedding preparations and all but I really need to talk to you about the night I got hurt. There are things going on and I don’t know how to deal with them anymore. Please let me know if you are up for getting a drink or something. I know I haven’t been in touch and I’m sorry about that but since that night, everything changed for me and this shit isn’t always easy. I hope you can forgive me for being such an asshole friend. I know I fucked up. Kieran.”
He let the phone drop on the bedside table and fell back on his pillow, absolute exhaustion overcoming him and letting him fall in a restless sleep. And it was one of the nights when his body cheated him out of just about everything. He dreamt vividly about his time in the Military, horrible things that he had seen, and horrible things that he had done. Unknowingly he tossed and turned in his bed, twisting his legs oddly across each other, lifting his head and throwing his arms up to keep away invisible dream demons. He was taking quick breaths, mumbling words no one would understand and he started sweating and freezing at the same time. His words became more and became louder and when the visions in his dream included Erin in horrific situations with him not being able to do anything he mumbled his words louder and louder and he threw his head from side to side and he ended up screaming and waking himself up from it.
A few moments after Tyler came rushing into his room, sleepily but alert at Kieran’s outburst, “Kieran, hey what’s up?”
Kieran was still in a state of half-asleep and his eyes seemed jaded as he stared at Tyler in horror. Tyler sat on the edge of the bed, Kieran had moved almost all the way off the bed, his one leg dangling over the side.
Fiona came in a moment later and Kieran was still not focused, instead he was staring at the ceiling and Fiona wiped a tear from the side of his face, “Kieran, we’re here. Everything is all right.”
Tyler got busy moving Kieran’s leg onto the bed and trying to push him toward the middle again. Eventually Kieran spoke lowly, “I can walk at night…”
Fiona and Tyler had no idea what he was talking about and brushed his words off as still half asleep and not really with it at that time.
Tyler asked, “Did you walk in your dream?”
Kieran moved his eyes over toward his sister and brother in law and shook his head slowly, “Not in my dream…in reality. Every night I can get up and walk…”
Fiona looked at Kieran full of worry in her face, “Kieran, you had a nightmare…”
Kieran’s eyes were shiny as more tears tried to build up, “I know…but before I fell asleep I had sensations…it has been happening for days.”
His voice was low and scratchy and he saw the confusion in Fiona’s and Tyler’s faces when he repeated, “Every night at 12:48 I can walk for about 30 minutes.”
Fiona stroked her hand softly over his cheek, “You should try to go back to sleep.”
They didn’t know what he was saying, they didn’t know he was telling the truth and they didn’t know he wasn’t dreaming anymore. Instead they looked at him worried and confused when he said things that sounded very crazy even to him.
Tyler draped the blanket over Kieran again, “Maybe you can go back to sleep now buddy.”
Fiona leaned over some, “You are safe, we are here and it is almost five o’clock in the morning on Saturday. We need to sleep again Kieran.”
With a tissue she wiped the sweat off his forehead and Kieran tried once more, “I’m not crazy. It’s happening every night. I don’t know why but I’m scared.”
Again Fiona stroked his cheek, “Kieran, we are here for you. There is no way you are walking but we can talk about it in the morning. Try to sleep now.”
Kieran gave up and didn’t say anything else as his sister and her husband left him behind in his bed with his dreams and in his soaked briefs. He knew they would never believe him and before he would keep going and get admitted to the Psychiatry ward again he wouldn’t say a word about his ordeals anymore.
The nightmare that had awakened him in cold sweat still lingered as he saw the faces of women and children, his hands covered in blood standing there in full Military gear and holding his M-16. He had always only followed orders and nothing else.