Chapter 22It didn’t take long and Kieran heard the siren and saw the blue and red lights flash in his rearview mirror. He gripped his steering wheel tight as his heart beat was competing with the speed of his car. There were two police cars on his trail now. One came up on the right next to him, the other one, a state trooper, was right behind him. When Kieran glanced over he saw the cop had his window down and motioned him to slow down.
The state trooper behind him was almost touching his bumper.
The cop in the police car next to him then used a loudspeaker and yelled, “Sir, you need to slow down and pull over right away!”
Kieran’s hands gripped the steering wheel so tight he felt his heart beating in his fingertips. His breath came in gasps as his anxiety level rose and his mind was racing at what to do. Instead of slowing down though he kept going at almost 90 miles per hour. He stayed on the fast lane for another few miles until he came up behind a car going about 70 miles per hour. The slower car quickly pulled over to the right trying to get out of Kieran’s way and obviously realizing there were cops involved as well, the car then pulled over to get out of the police car’s way.
Kieran slowed down some but instead of pulling over he stayed on the fast lane for another mile. He was talking to himself and he was cursing and his vision became blurry. Another slower car came up in front of Kieran but instead of slowing down he swerved into the middle lane, cutting off the police car and getting away from the state trooper. He left another few miles behind him but the police and the state trooper caught up to him again. Cars were pulling over and out of the way of the Mustang being followed by the police.
Kieran then heard the cop over the speaker again, “Sir, this is your last warning. You need to pull over right away or we will have to force you to stop.”
Kieran swallowed and felt how his hands were sweaty on the steering wheel. He swerved between cars into the far right lane where the shoulder on the right was now wide enough for him to slow down.
His breaks squealed as his Mustang came to a stop on the right shoulder of the Interstate.
Kieran saw the flashing lights behind him, and in front of him. A third police car had appeared. Kieran squeezed his eyes shut, his hands were still gripping the steering wheel and he let his head rest on the steering wheel as he heard the loud voices of the police outside, “Sir, step out of the vehicle NOW and hold your hands over your head!”
When he heard the command he looked up and into his mirror and saw the state trooper approach on the left of his car and a police officer on the right of his car. They slowly made their way along the side of the Mustang, ready to draw their guns at any moment.
Someone repeated the command, “Sir, step out of the car right now with your hands over your head!”
Kieran laughed at the command.
He heard the command for the third time but he didn’t move.
Suddenly the driver’s door was pulled open quickly and the state trooper screamed next to the car with his gun pointing at Kieran, “Sir, step out of the vehicle with your hands above your head!”
Kieran looked over and he made out the other cop on the side of his car with his gun pointing at him. The third cop had stepped out of his vehicle and came up from the front, holding his gun out.
“Step out of the vehicle NOW! Arms above your head!”
Kieran laughed lowly and sarcastically, “I can’t step out of the fucking vehicle. Do you see this?”
He flicked his fingers to the blue disability placard dangling on his mirror.
The state trooper ignored Kieran’s statement and the other cop came up and it was all so fast Kieran couldn’t do anything about it when they pulled him out of his Mustang, dragged him to the front of the car and tried to stand him up and push him down onto the hood while pulling his hands behind his back.
The officer and the state trooper grabbed him under his arms and pulled him up again, demanding loudly, “You need to stand up and spread your legs right NOW!”
Kieran’s legs didn’t do any of that.
He now yelled, “I can’t stand up you idiots. Look in my fucking car on the passenger side or we can fucking wait with this shit until 12:48 and I can possibly stand up for you assholes and spread my fucking legs while you dig around in my crotch and I may even get a hard on.”
As the officer’s grips loosened some he almost fell to the ground again. They pulled him back up roughly by his T-Shirt and threw his body over the hood, but Kieran was basically sliding down toward the ground again right away.
The third officer, who was over by the passenger side, called out, “There is a wheelchair in the passenger seat.”
The state trooper and the officer were holding Kieran up under his arms like a wet sack. His legs were twisted oddly under him as they held him up, pushing his upper body down on the hood at the same time, and his hands in handcuffs behind his back starting to hurt as the cuffs cut into his skin.
The state trooper commanded, “Lay him on the ground!”
They let Kieran down on the ground turning him face down, he felt the pebbles and concrete under him, he smelled exhaust, and saw police officer feet around him. He was breathing quickly.
One of the police officers asked him loudly, “Are you disabled?”
Kieran turned his head to the side to somehow avoid the rough concrete on his face and he still yelled, “Yes, I’m fucking disabled….I’m paraplegic.”
They loosened their grip some and a police officer asked tensely, “Are you not able to walk?”
Kieran laid his head down and the dirt and dust of the roadside hurt his face and mixed with the tears starting to run down his face.
With a trembling voice he answered, “I can walk at night at 12:48, I can walk for about 45 minutes then, I can run and I can stand, I can even get my dick hard….but right now, no, I can’t fucking walk.”
One of the officers took his insurance and registration paperwork out of the glove box and asked a loudly, “What is your name?”
“Kieran, have you been drinking tonight?”
The officers confiscated his personal belongings, Kieran never did see the message Erin had sent him and he didn’t see the messages from Andy and Brandon either. They took his backpack but left his Quickie in the Mustang. They pulled Kieran up, his legs dragging and flopping like rubber, his sneakers dragging over the concrete, and scraping off the top layer on the toes of the shoes. They shoved him into the police car, handcuffed and dirty from the ground. Just as he was positioned in the backseat of the car he saw the moisture appear in his crotch and along his thighs. Urine drenched his jeans and even the seat of the cop car. He stared down at the mess, confused and dazed.
One of the police officers looked into the back seat once more and he spotted the wet mess and announced it to the other officer, whose car it was, “Well, he just peed his pants on your backseat.”
Without stability Kieran was slumped over and lying halfway across the backseat.
He glanced up at the officer and stated sarcastically, “In a moment I may just shit my pants too.”
The officer didn’t say anything and just ordered, “Take him down to the station.”
Earlier when Erin had received Kieran’s message she had cried a few tears as she had replied to him:
Kieran, I’m so glad to hear from you. I’m so sorry about this morning, I shouldn’t have left like I did but all this stuff you said about “devotees” scared me and I feel so bad about it all. I looked at the websites you sent me and it’s all so overwhelming. I cried and I’m nervous. I love you Kieran but you have to help me understand this too. The things that are going on with you, it’s difficult for me to comprehend, it seems so strange but I want to be there for you no matter what happens. I love you and I want to be you always. Please call or text and we can meet up tonight. Erin
She wasn’t sure why she didn’t hear from Kieran and now it had been over three hours. She was about to go pick up the girls from their father’s house and she touched Kieran’s phone number on the display. It rang and it rang but he didn’t answer.
His voice mail came on: This is Kieran, leave a message!
Erin thought for a few seconds if she should leave a message and she did:
Kieran, it’s Erin. I got your text earlier today and I sent a reply. Just wondering why I haven’t heard from you. I hope you are okay considering last night. Love you!
Kieran didn’t hear any of it. Instead his phone was in possession of the police and he was on his way to the police station. He tried to somehow sit himself up in the backseat of the police car but couldn’t. His hands were still cuffed and he was too weak to pull himself upright. He crouched uncomfortably in the seat and wondered what was going to happen to him. His jeans were soaked, the scent of urine reached his nose.
He knew he had messed up big time but he just couldn’t stand it anymore how he had been put into this position of having to choose between Erin or walking again. His thoughts were still racing through his head around Erin, the proposition, the fact that he was now handcuffed in a cop car and most likely in a lot of trouble. Seeing the flashing lights outside he felt his anxiety level heighten quickly and he started to experience visions of the night he got injured. He blinked his eyes to rid himself of the visions but instead of calming down his breathing came in quick gasps and all he saw was the flashing of lights. The sound of the car driving on the Interstate all the sudden seemed tremendously loud as the wheels rolled over the concrete. He heard the voices of other police officers and the dispatching center on the radio. All the sudden he seemingly heard soldiers over the radio, talking to each other about an attack and ambush. When he opened his eyes again and looked down on himself he saw a metal piece stuck in his chest.
He pushed himself up somewhat and took quick gasping breaths, then calling out to the cop driving the car, “I am injured! You need to get me out of here.”
The cop didn’t acknowledge him and now Kieran yelled, “I’m bleeding, you need to get me out of here.”
He was panicking and the cop quickly looked back to him, “You are not bleeding son. You peed on yourself.”
Kieran was breathing fast, trying to focus but he kept seeing the metal in his chest and he pressed himself in a panic against the door of the cop car, screaming, “Get me out of here now. I’m dying.”
The officer kept his eyes on the road and replied, “You need to calm down. You are not dying and you are not bleeding.”
Kieran felt his anxiety level increase and could barely breathe anymore. When he looked down on himself again he didn’t see the metal piece anymore but his jeans had dark moist shades all along his pants leg. He was wheezing now, trying to keep calm but thought he saw blood seeping through his jeans.
Again he yelled toward the officer, “I’m bleeding, my leg is bleeding…get me out of here.”
The officer looked into his mirror and sounded tense, “Kieran, you need to calm down. You are not bleeding. You peed your pants.”
He then radioed to his colleagues following behind him, “I’m going to take this guy to the hospital. He’s freaking out on me here. I’m heading over there now.”
On and off Kieran kept seeing strange visions. He was thinking clear in between and then he saw strange things again.
In a clear moment he stated, “I need to call my girlfriend.”
They pulled into the Emergency entrance of the nearest hospital. Kieran was basically laying in the backseat of the police car now. His arms hurt in the awkward position behind his back and the officer and a hospital security guard reached into the backseat and pulled him out. He was drenched in cold sweat and his pants were soaked.
His breathing still came in gasps and when the officers pulled him out he pleaded, “I’m dying. I need to call my girlfriend.”
His eyes were glossy and his legs were twitching now. A wheelchair stood next to the police car and they hoisted Kieran out of the car and let him down into the wheelchair.
He looked around himself frantically and obviously confused still, “I want to go home.”
The officer undid his handcuffs now because he knew Kieran wasn’t going to get away from them. He sat in the bulky hospital wheelchair and they pushed him in. He let his head hang and one of his legs came off the foot plate and they almost rolled over it, twisting his foot. A nurse came out and intercepted them, putting his foot back on the foot plate but realizing right away that his legs were spastic and would possibly come off again, “Let me get that chair.”
The nurse took over the wheelchair pushing and the two men followed her in. Kieran was assigned a room in a closed unit where they hoisted him onto the bed.
He was shaking now and he was cold.
He tried to sit up on the bed and the nurse calmly asked him, “You need to stay down, okay! What is your name?”
Kieran stared at her, looked around the room and he also saw the police officer and the security guard standing by his head.
The cop answered, “His name is Kieran O’Meara.”
Kieran now said lowly, “I’m bleeding.”
The nurse glanced over to the officers and one of them explained, “He’s hallucinating or something.”
Kieran tried to sit up again, holding himself up with his hands.
The nurse asked again, “Kieran, you need to stay down or I have to strap down your wrists.”
All he said was, “I’m bleeding out.”
While the police officer gave report to the doctor in charge, Renee, the nurse leaned over Kieran and asked gently, “What is going on with you Kieran?”
Kieran’s legs were twitching and she decided to loosely hold his legs down on the bed with a soft strap over his shins.
“As soon as doc checks you out and gives me orders for you I will try to help you out, okay.”
Kieran just stared at her, “I need to go home.”
“Right now you’re not going anywhere.”
Renee checked Kieran’s vital signs and found his blood pressure very low. After the vitals she gently untied his shoe laces and took off his sneakers.
Kieran kept mumbling, “I need to go home.”
He didn’t have enough strength to do anything else at the moment.
Renee went up to the head end of the bed and looked at Kieran again, “Kieran, listen to me!”
He moved his eyes toward her and she continued, “I’m going to help you take your jeans off. I think we should clean you up, okay?”
“I don’t want you to do that.”
“Kieran, you’re wet and I think we need to clean you up, honey.”
Now he pushed himself up on his elbows and then on his hands and Renee stood by watching him, “Kieran, I need you to lay back down.”
He felt dizzy right away but still held himself up with the little strength he had left, “I don’t want you to take my pants off.”
Renee was concerned she would have to call security back into the room and have them help her with Kieran, “Honey, you’re in the hospital and I’ll get you into a dry and clean hospital gown. Please lay down for me.”
Kieran looked down at his twitching legs and the soft strap over them, “Take this off my legs.”
Renee glanced at his legs, “You may fall off the bed.”
“I don’t give a shit. Where is my chair? Where is my fucking wheelchair?”
He was getting aggravated and tense and Renee tried to calm him down, “Kieran, I’m asking you one more time to work with me here. I’m trying to help you. I want to clean you up. We will get you some medication for your spasms. The doctor will be right in and we will also call your family. So please lay back down for me.”
Instead of lying back down Kieran ripped the strap off his legs and holding himself up he tried to move his legs over the edge of the bed. With that Renee pulled up the side rails of the bed and Kieran glared at her with hostility in his eyes
Renee now called for help, “I need help in here. He’s about to fall out of his bed.”
When she touched Kieran and tried to keep him from moving his body over, he forcefully pushed her away, and yelled, “Leave me the fuck alone. Where is my wheelchair?”
Two nurses and two security guards came into the room. As people tried to touch Kieran and tried to get him to lay down again, he yelled at them and attempted to fight them off, lashing out toward the staff.
He was then held down by the security guards, his wrists were strapped to the side of the bed and quickly Renee unbuttoned his jeans and while the other two nurses held down his legs she pulled off his pants and boxers, and dried Kieran off somewhat, then draped the sheet over him. The doctor came in at that moment. He informed Renee on Kieran’s status and what had been happening with him so far while he was in the custody of the police. He also informed her of Kieran’s paraplegia.
It was then decided they would insert a Foley catheter for the time being. A light sedative was also ordered and soon Kieran was injected with a quick acting sedative and his body surrendered.
He was still trying to fight but all the strength left his body then and all he could say lowly was, “I want to go home. Where is my wheelchair?”
The last thing he saw was the two security officers hovering over him, one holding Kieran down with his hand on Kieran’s forehead and the other holding him down on his chest while Renee and the nurses inserted the Foley, and covered Kieran up again.
The doctor checked Kieran’s heart beat and since there were no obvious sign of injury it was decided that Kieran was suffering from a severe panic attack, mental breakdown, and hallucinations. The doctor wanted to talk to Kieran’s family before he would give him any kind of medication or make any further decisions.
The home phone rang and Tyler answered, “Hello.”
“Is this the Jamison Residence?”
“Yes, it is. I’m Tyler Jamison.”
“This is Cathy calling from St. Francis hospital in Renton. We have a Kieran O’Meara here in our Emergency Department and found your number listed in his cell phone as family.”
“Yes, Kieran is my brother-in-law. What is going on?”
“I will transfer you to Dr. Baxter, he is Kieran’s provider tonight.”
Fiona wasn’t at home. She was on her way to pick Dominic up from a birthday party. Nervously Tyler awaited the transfer to the doctor.
“Good Evening. I’m Dr. Baxter, one of the attending Emergency Room physicians here at St. Francis. I am calling concerning Kieran O’Meara. I understand you are a family member?”
I’m his brother-in-law. Kieran lives with us. My wife is his sister. What is going on with him?”
“Apparently Kieran suffered from a mental breakdown earlier this evening at a restaurant in Seattle, where he attacked a staff member who had also witnessed Kieran experiencing some kind of hallucination. When the staff addressed him and asked him to pay for his meal he verbally attacked them and stormed out. There was some destructive behavior. The police was called and the situation escalated and turned into a car chase on the Interstate until they had Kieran cornered and were able to detain him. In the custody of the officers he was still suffering from hallucinations and after consideration one of the officers decided to bring him to our hospital instead of the station. He is now with us. Unfortunately we had to sedate Kieran because as he arrived he was combative and was non-compliant in following our orders.”
While the doctor was talking Tyler felt his hands tremble and his heart beat speed up. He couldn’t believe what he heard.
The doctor continued, “Kieran is not physically injured but he seems to be dealing with some mental issues at the moment. He is also facing charges of assault, destruction of property and endangerment of traffic.”
Tyler was almost lost for words and swallowed the knot in his throat before he spoke, “We need to see him. Where is he? Can I talk to him?”
“He is sedated and sleeping. One of the police officers is here monitoring Kieran with us. Once he is stable he is possibly facing arrest.”
“Arrest? Oh my God. He…” Tyler swallowed and took gasping breaths. He felt his heart beat in his neck, “You can’t arrest him. He was not himself if he did anything stupid. He’s not a criminal. He’s dealing with PTSD, he was injured in combat and is paraplegic. He’s dealing with anxiety and panic attacks. He’s a veteran for God’s sake. You can’t arrest him.”
“I’m sorry I have to bring you these news. I encourage you to come up and see him, and maybe talk to the officer in charge. It would be beneficial to have Kieran’s family here right now.”
“At St. Francis hospital?”
Tyler finished the conversation with the doctor. He couldn’t grasp anything he had just heard and he knew Fiona would be completely devastated if she found out. Ashleigh came out of her room and when she saw her dad’s face pale and sad she knew right away something was going on, “Daddy, what is going on? Did something happen?”
Tyler nodded slowly, “Kieran apparently had some kind of a breakdown and is in a hospital in Renton. He got in trouble with the police.”
Ashleigh came rushing over, “The police, oh my God. No way…Uncle Kieran…”
She knew Kieran had been struggling lately but she didn’t know it had been that serious.
The first thing she could think of now was calling Erin to let her know.
Tyler’s mind was racing, “We have to go up there as soon as mom gets home.”
Ashleigh nodded and went back to her room where she pulled out her cell phone and called Chloe’s phone.
Chloe answered cheerfully, “Heyyyy girlfriend.”
“Chloe, hey...is your mom there?”
“I need to talk to her about my uncle. Something happened.”
“Let me talk to your mom.”
“Okay, hold on.”
Ashleigh heard some rustling noises and then Chloe’s voice, “Mom, it’s Ash for you. She needs to talk to you about her uncle.”
A moment later Ashleigh had Erin on the phone, “Ashleigh, hi.”
“Hey Mrs. Decker. I am sorry to be calling so late.”
“Don’t worry about it, what is going on?”
Ashleigh explained to Erin in short what was going on. Erin was shocked and extremely worried now. She decided quickly that she was going up to see Kieran as well. She planned to drive up on her own.
In the meantime Fiona had made it home and Tyler was just in the process to tell her about the situation. Fiona was stunned and right away felt guilty thinking she may have brought on the situation by the way she had treated Kieran during the night and morning when he had tried to tell the family what had been happening to him.
She started crying and Tyler held her, “It’s all right. Let’s get ready and drive up there. He needs us now.”
Fiona nodded under tears and the family got ready to go.
Erin had left as soon as she had hung up with Ashleigh and was on her way to the hospital. She was now ahead of the family and arrived at the hospital at almost eleven o’clock. She went up to the Emergency Room reception desk and after she had told them who she was here for they made her sit down and wait. Her hands were shaking and she could barely contain her nervousness. She needed to see Kieran.
She also wanted to be in there before 12:48 a.m.
Erin saw the family walk in through the automatic doors and just as they made their way toward the reception she called out to them, “Fiona, Tyler.”
They turned to her and while Tyler went up to the reception desk Fiona came up to Erin.
They two women fell into each other’s arms and Fiona started crying, “I’m so sorry Erin. I think it’s my fault he freaked out.”
Erin held Fiona, “It’s not your fault.”
Fiona still cried and said lowly, holding on to Erin, “I don’t understand what happened last night. It’s weird and impossible. He was diagnosed, he was in a hospital for months, in rehab. He can’t walk and I don’t know what is happening. I’m so scared he is so far gone that he somehow faked all of this.”
Erin looked at Fiona, her own eyes watery, “He’s not faking this. Something is happening to him every night and it’s the hardest thing for him. It happened after we met and ever since then he has this happen every night. He explained it to me, he cried, he is scared and apparently the night he got injured he made some kind of deal to give up love if he could walk again. Has he been with any other women since he came out of the hospital?”
Fiona thought for a moment, “No, he hasn’t. You are the first woman he went on a date with.”
“See, so most likely this is happening because we are together. He says an old man appears to him sometimes and gave him the whole proposition. Kieran needs us to believe in him. If we don’t he’s not going to make it.”
Both women now cried silent tears and hugged each other again when Tyler walked up.
He softly touched his wife’s shoulder, “Are you all right honey?”
Fiona let go off Erin and leaned on his shoulder, nodding.
Tyler greeted Erin, “Hey Erin, it’s good you are here.”
He guided the two women to some chairs and they all sat down. Erin hugged Ashleigh and Dominic, who were sitting there already, their expressions worried and sad.
Erin turned to Ashleigh, “I had to leave Chloe at home. Ciara was sleeping already.”
Ashleigh nodded, “Yeah, I’m texting with her now.”
She held her phone in her hand, her fingers quickly running over the keyboard and updating her friend on her mom’s arrival.
About thirty minutes later a police officer came out to them and Tyler jumped up right away.
“Are you family of Kieran O’Meara?”
Tyler took the word, “Yes sir.”
“Hi, I’m Officer Figueroa. I’m one of the officers who chased after Kieran on the Interstate. He put a lot of people in danger.”
Tyler looked down and shook his head, then up again, “I’m so sorry. My brother-in-law is struggling sometimes but I know he’s not purposefully putting anyone in danger.”
Fiona stepped up and under tears she pleaded, “Please don’t arrest him. We pay whatever needs to be paid for.”
Tyler put his arm around Fiona and tried to tell her, “Fiona, honey, I got this, okay.”
Officer Figueroa added, “Well, the restaurant may be filing charges of assault and destroying their property and we are still looking at the car chase. I ran his background check and he has a clean record except a few speeding tickets in the past. I see he has served in the Military and has been in combat a few times, resulting in injury and medical honorable discharge.”
Tyler nodded, “Yes sir. He’s getting help for his PTSD and is on medications. Lately he has been struggling with some things.”
Erin overheard the conversation and she knew there was no way the police would understand or believe anything Kieran was experiencing night after night. There was no use in even trying to tell them what Kieran struggled with.
The officer continued, “He did have some hallucinations when we picked him up and that is the reason I thought it would be better to bring him here. I can’t let him go home with you though. His car is impounded for right now. He may lose his license.”
Tyler could not even imagine how Kieran would feel about that. His car was his pride and joy and it made him feel good and now they were going to take this away from him.
Tyler sighed deeply and looked at the office, “I understand….” He thought for a moment, Fiona was crying lowly in his arm and he added, “I want to do whatever we need to do to keep Kieran out of jail or a mental institution. He’s not able to make it if that does happen.”
Officer Figueroa nodded, “I understand but for right now he’s under arrest and once he’s stable I will take him in.”
Fiona cried more now and Erin felt her heart beat in her neck at hearing the officer’s words. She couldn’t even imagine that this was really happening. She needed to see Kieran.
Tyler didn’t say anything else but Officer Figueroa explained, “Under my supervision you may go in and see him for a few moments but then I have to ask you to leave until we contact you again.”
Tyler shook his head, “Are you serious right now?”
“Yes, I’m sorry. He is officially under arrest.”
Fiona sobbed now. Erin stepped back some and took quick breaths, her mind racing with worry and fear for Kieran. It was now midnight and only the adults were led into the Emergency Room and to an area away from the main ER. It was a small closed unit and could only be accessed with an ID badge. Ashleigh cried some when her parents and Erin walked away. She wanted to see Kieran as well but the kids were not allowed to come in.
Officer Figueroa and Renee the nurse led them into the area and then to Kieran’s room. It was an empty room except the bed Kieran was strapped to and the IV stand with a large and a small bag of fluids flowing into the veins on the back of his hand, the urine bag from the Foley Catheter halfway filled and attached to the side of the bed. A small Oxygen tank was also mounted to the bed.
Kieran was kept under slight sedation, he wasn’t able to move and his vision was blurry, he felt very tired and kept falling in and out of sleep.
Renee came up to the bed, “Kieran, honey, can you hear me? Your family is here to see you for a short while.”
It hurt to hear Renee put a timeline on the visit. Officer Figueroa stayed by the door but inside the room.
Fiona rushed to one side of his bed and Erin to the other.
Fiona started, “Kieran, can you hear me?”
Erin put her hand around his hand with the IV in it, “Baby, I’m here too.”
Kieran was under just enough sedation where he couldn’t really do anything. He slowly opened his eyes and blinked at the faces above him.
His wrists were strapped to the side of the bed with padded restraints. He had oxygen running into his nostrils.
Renee checked the fluids and explained lowly, “He was hyperventilating earlier and needed some oxygen. We are giving him fluids and he’s on a light sedation to keep him calm. He was very distraught earlier, putting himself and the staff at risk.”
Kieran’s eyes flickered and moved from Fiona to Erin.
Erin leaned down to him and kissed him softly on his cheek, then saying, “Baby, I’m here. You’ll be all right.”
Right then a tear ran out of the corner of Kieran’s eye down the side of his face, then followed by more tears.
They saw him trying to move his hands but he couldn’t and he swallowed as his chest started moving up and down quicker.
Fiona hugged him and tried to keep him calm, “Everything will be fine Kieran. We are here for you and I’m so sorry about not believing you. I believe everything you said and I wish I could take that away from you. Take away what you are going through and what has been happening.”
Some tears dropped out of her eyes. Tyler came up and put his arm around his wife again.
He greeted Kieran lowly, “Hey bud.”
Kieran couldn’t really focus but he moved his eyes again and then stopped on Erin’s face. Tears were just streaming down his cheeks.
Erin smiled under tears, “Hey baby, can you see me?”
He nodded slowly and she closed her hand tighter around his.
He opened his mouth to speak and barely brought some words over his lips, “I f…fucked up…but I know ….what I want…now.” He was breathing quickly.
“Don’t worry about anything right now. You need to get some rest so you will be home soon.”
Erin didn’t know how much truth her words held. After all he was under arrest and may not be going home anytime soon.
Kieran asked with a low scratchy voice, “What time…is it?”
Erin looked at the clock on the wall, “Almost twelve thirty in the morning.”
Kieran took gasping breaths and started, “I w…want…everyone…to be here at 12:48 and I need….to be…I can’t be restrained. But I don’t…w…want you…in here, Erin.” He had a hard time speaking and his eyes wanted to close.
He continued with difficulties, “I didn’t want…to be…se…sedated…because I will….get up. I need….everyone to see it…the doc and…the police….”
He was still crying and he kept on talking, taking gasping breaths in between, “I need…everyone…to see it…and it w…will be the last…time…because I know…what I want now…that is why you can’t be…in here..”
He was breathing through his nose now, pressing his lips together, his chest rising quickly up and down and Erin nodding in affirmation.
She turned to the Officer and the nurse and started lowly but demanding, “I need Kieran out of the restraints. He won’t do anything but it is very important. I know he won’t do anything stupid but I need everyone to fully trust him. This needs to happen, it’s very important.”
Officer Figueroa replied sternly, “What makes you think I can take off the restraints?”
Erin cried silent tears, “Please, it’s possibly the most important thing in his life right now….If anything happens you can arrest me, charge him or whatever you want to do but give him the freedom for just a few moments where he can show the world what has been happening to him.”
Fiona now stepped in, “You need to trust us. It’s important that Kieran is able to get up at 12:48. It’s very important to show us and you and everyone here what has been happening to him. It can’t be explained and we don’t know why it has been happening but it’s a life altering situation for him.”
Officer Figueroa remembered Kieran talking about walking when they first arrested him on the Interstate. For him the young man was hallucinating or was high on drugs but now the family was talking about strange things too and he looked at all of them, wondering what all this was about.
“You are all kidding me, right?”
Tyler now said something, calm and controlled, “No, we are not. Kieran met Erin a few weeks ago. She is the first woman he went out with after he came out of the hospital paralyzed. Ever since he met her, every night at the same time something is happening to him that none of us can explain. He’s able to walk, he gets sensation back, and all of this is apparently caused by a proposition that he agreed to the night he was shot and badly injured, almost dying in Afghanistan. There is a type of messenger who brought Kieran those news, it’s an entity we cannot see, only Kieran can see him.”
Officer Figueroa looked puzzled, “I have no idea what you people are talking about and it’s really making me wonder what everyone here is on. You do realize that you sound crazy, right? This kid is paralyzed, he couldn’t stand for nothing when we arrested him and you are telling me that at 12:48 he can walk around in here?”
Tyler nodded, “Yes sir.”
Officer Figueroa looked at everyone and his mind was working. Erin was leaning down and close to Kieran, stroking his face softly and whispering in his ear that everything would be okay. Tears were still running down the side of this face and he was terrified if they would keep him restrained.
After a few moments Officer Figueroa walked over to Kieran. Erin stepped back as he leaned over Kieran and stated strictly, “If you are going to pull one over on me young man, every mercy I have considered is out of the window. You will get charged and you will go to jail. I don’t care about your background, your history or anything. What you did on the Interstate was serious stuff. What you did at the restaurant was inacceptable and yes, it can get punished. Whatever the hell is going on with you I don’t know but you want to proof something to me, okay. I will give you that chance and you better not screw this up.”
Kieran nodded. He was scared of the moments ahead because even though he wanted everyone to see what was happening to him, he was feeling the effects of the sedative very much and it made him tired and weak. He didn’t know if he could actually pull it off under the circumstances. He knew he was on IV’s and he also had a Foley in him, tubing attached to his body possibly making it difficult to do any kind of walking.
Officer Figueroa turned to Renee, “Take off the restraints.”
Renee did as told as Dr. Baxter walked in on the whole situation. Kieran was nervous, Erin was still holding his hand. Tyler had his arm around Fiona.
When Kieran’s wrists were free he said lowly, “Can you…detach…the IV’s from me?”
Officer Figueroa ordered, “He stays on the IV’s.”
Renee made sure the IV’s were secure on the portable stand. She then moved the bag with urine from the bed and attached it to Kieran’s leg under his hospital gown.
Kieran then asked, “If my niece….and my…nephew are here….they…need to come in.”
Fiona shifted nervously at the request and Kieran looked at her quickly, “I want…them…to see it…too.”
He then turned to Erin, “Can you…help me…sit up?”
Renee let the bed rails down and Erin stepped up to the bed. Renee also took the tubing with the Oxygen out of his nostrils and turned off the Oxygen for now. With Renee’s assistance Erin helped Kieran sit up on the bed. She let the head end of the bed up some and Kieran sat up. He looked very tired and exhausted. Dark rings were under his eyes, a shadow of a beard was showing and his hair looked damp. His face was wet from the tears and sweat and Erin pulled out a tissue and dabbed his face some.
She hugged him and whispered in his ear, “I love you Kieran.”
He held her for a moment and weakly whispered in her ear, “I am so…out of it…but I need…to do this. And I’m sorry…you need…to leave…but it’s…the only way…”
Erin then turned to Fiona, “Fiona, I’m going to walk out. Can you help him please?”
Fiona stepped up and looked at Erin questioning, “Why are you…”
Erin didn’t let her finish, “It’s not going to happen if I’m in here.”
Fiona nodded and Tyler also stepped closer.
Erin looked at Kieran once more and his eyes were on her and he nodded slightly. Erin nodded at him and with tears running down her face she walked out.
Officer Figueroa asked, “Where is she going?”
Tyler answered, “She can’t be in here when it’s happening.”
The officer was obviously wondering what was going to happen, “I really don’t know what is going on here but it better be worth it.”
Weak and drowsy Kieran then moved his legs over the side of the bed and everyone watched him, Officer Figueroa standing right next to him, seemingly ready to tackle Kieran if he should try anything.
Kieran was barely able to hold himself in the sitting position, he was hunched over, Fiona helping him somewhat with his trunk stability, holding him. His head was hanging and he was focused on his breathing. It was difficult for him to sit up at this moment.
Fiona stood next to him. Tyler was tying the string on the back of his hospital gown to cover him up. He was naked under there after all.
Fiona was rubbing his back and looked up at the clock. It was 12:45. Kieran was nervous because the whole ordeal always started rough and even painful. Just as Kieran looked up he saw him standing next to Renee, the nurse. The old man was in the room with everyone else.
Kieran stared at him for a moment but he wasn’t going to say anything. Renee realized his eyes in her direction, somewhat focused on the area next to her and she looked over for a moment. Kieran then felt the spasm start in his legs. They started twitching and everyone stared at his legs. He held himself up and his breathing became quicker.
Fiona moved in closer, “I’m here Kieran.”
Kieran nodded and glanced at her, then saying softly, “He’s here too.”
For a moment Fiona didn’t realize what he was talking about until Kieran added, “The old man.”
Fiona and Tyler looked around the room frantically but they didn’t see him.
Tyler asked, “Where is he?”
Kieran’s legs were twitching harder now and he gasped, “Next to the nurse.”
Just then a spasm shot through him from his toes all the way up into his back, making him jerk upright and clenching his teeth together. Everyone shifted some seeing Kieran in this state. He arched his back and pressed his eyes shut as he let the spasm do its thing. It hurt and he was breathing quickly through his nose as a sensation like a thousand needles poking him ran over his skin. He jerked again as another strong spasm straightened his back, and making his feet move.
Officer Figueroa said sternly, “What the hell? If you are going to pull over some shit on me, you are in a lot of trouble young man.”
Kieran ignored him. Fiona and Tyler stood in shock, Ashleigh and Dominic watched almost in terror what was happening. Ashleigh ran over to Kieran when a spasm contracted him so hard that his back quickly straightened and then collapsed again.
“Uncle Kieran, I’m scared.”
He glanced at her quickly and moaned, “I’m okay…”
He closed his eyes again, breathing fast and gasping he then was able to feel his legs, feel his butt on the bed and even feel the Foley catheter in his urethra and it didn’t feel good. He clenched his teeth again as Fiona came to his aid and he moved to the very edge of the bed, his bare feet shaking as he put them on the floor, still sitting on the bed though.
Kieran looked up once more at the old man, who stood quiet and watched Kieran. Kieran hung his head, placed his hands next to his hips and pushed himself further off until his butt almost came off the bed. Tyler helped him stand up eventually, he was breathing fast, trying to get all his strength together. Fiona was on one side of him and Tyler on the other when he said to them, “Take your hands off me.”
Renee held the portable IV stand and moved it with Kieran as he slowly moved one foot after the other, his head hanging, his eyes on his feet and the floor and taking one step after the next. Fiona cried holding her hand in front of her mouth. Tyler was having a hard time watching Kieran go through this, and Officer Figueroa was speechless.
So were Renee and Dr. Baxter who mumbled lowly, “This is not possible. He was diagnosed with a T-4 complete injury, leading to paraplegia, permanent. There is no way this young man would be walking anymore. I looked up all his records from the VA, his injuries and all the surgeries he had been through….”
Dr. Baxter’s voice faded as he watched in amazement how Kieran made his way slowly toward the door.
Kieran was fully focused on his walking and his feet on the floor. He walked and he took steps once again and he stood tall, Fiona realizing that he was taller than her. She cried silent tears and her arm was now around Ashleigh who also cried, not understanding what was happening to her beloved uncle. Dominic was snuggled up against his dad and couldn’t comprehend any of this.
Kieran came to the door and was able to slide the door open and he actually walked out into the open area of the closed unit. Officer Figueroa was close behind him. Everyone followed Kieran into the hallway and he walked better now, more secure and steady on his feet.
Dr. Baxter mumbled again, “This is not possible.”
Ashleigh pulled out her phone and Kieran didn’t even realize she was recording some of this and took some pictures. This went on for about fifteen minutes and Kieran finally looked up at everyone, tears were streaming over his face, “This is what is happening…to me…every night.”
He also still saw the old man in the back watching him closely.
Dr. Baxter wanted some kind of medical explanation, “Kieran, how long does this last? When did this start? It must have been a false diagnosis.”
Kieran sounded exhausted, “It lasts…about 45 minutes.”
“This is incredible. We need to investigate this and do some research on this phenomenon.”
Kieran looked over at Fiona who watched him teary eyed, “This will be the last time…you will see me standing and walking…like this. There….won’t be no…in…investigation…This is a curse…It has caused me nothing…but pain…it almost made me lose the…best thing…that has ever happened in…my life.”
He looked at the old man, “In this space is a….being, a divine entity…who gave me…the proposition. A proposition of….either walking again…or finding love.”
It was difficult for him to talk and walk at the same time.
He lifted his feet off the floor to show everyone how he stood on one leg and then continued, “I cannot have…both…I have to choose…between the two. It hurts like…hell.”
He kept walking again a few steps, Renee awestruck behind him with the IV portable.
While he was walking he added, “After this night…I will…never walk…again. This makes…it the second time….I am faced with…the reality of being…permanently paralyzed….”
He hung his head and then looked up at his family, “But I will give…up walking…”
He took a few more steps and said lowly, “I need someone to get…my girlfriend back in here. Quickly…I have to tell her…something.”
Tyler turned to Dominic, “Nicky, bud, go out there real quick and get Erin.”
Dominic really didn’t want to leave this situation, he didn’t understand fully what was happening to his uncle, but he also felt it was very important to get Erin.
While Dominic was gone, Kieran kept walking around and explained with a trembling voice, “Whatever happened tonight, and in the…last couple of weeks…it was because…I was faced with making the hardest decision of my…life. I could gain back….my life on two…legs but without…having the love of…a woman. Or I could have love…but spend my life….in a wheelchair. Apparently I made…some kind…of deal the night…I got shot when I was on the…brink of dying.”
He could barely speak anymore but he needed to tell everyone who was witnessing this, “So this being appeared…in my life and…told me I have to decide. I have…no ex…explanation. I don’t know…why this… is happening…I’m not crazy and I didn’t…mean to hurt anyone ever.”
At this moment Ashleigh called out, “Look at my phone…look at the pictures, the video….Look.”
Everyone turned to her and Tyler rushed over to his daughter, “What is it baby?”
Tyler took the phone from her hand and looked at the pictures she had taken and in almost every picture he saw a bright spot, next to Renee, next to Dr. Baxter in another and in a corner in another.
Office Figueroa went over to have a look.
Kieran didn’t move but looked at the old man, who actually then came closer to him.
The old man said, “You have a lot of courage Kieran. I know this caused you pain and I know it was hard but I had to be the messenger. Someone had to and me being your guardian angel I had to do the deed. I had to be the bad guy. When it was decided that you wouldn’t die that night we had to come up with the proposal, because you basically got a free pass at living. I wanted you to live but it wouldn’t be without a cost because of the many lives you had claimed during your time as a soldier.”
Tyler saw that Kieran stared at something invisible to everyone but he was alert and seemingly listening to some inaudible voice.
Tyler pointed the camera toward Kieran and as he pushed the recording everyone saw the very bright spot next to Kieran, the spot his eyes were focused on.
The old man then asked, “What is your decision Kieran?”
At that moment Dominic came in with Erin behind him and Erin stopped in her pace at seeing Kieran stand in the middle of the hallway. Tears were running from her eyes and she held her fist against her mouth in amazement and disbelief.
Kieran looked over at her and nodded at her to come over to him. His eyes were shiny and filled with sadness as Erin rushed over to him. She threw her arms around his neck and he held her to him, standing tall and holding on to her with both his hands. He smelled her hair, he felt her warm body next to his, her trembling going over into him. He felt the pressure of pulling her whole body close to him and he cried, tears running into her hair. He felt her legs against his, and her hips against his. Erin felt his whole body charged and his heart beat next to hers. His heart was racing and she pushed herself to him more. Kieran tried to take in every movement of Erin he could feel on his body and how much did he wish it would always be like this. His heart wanted to burst at feeling her against his body and all kinds of images of Erin and him were racing through his head but he knew in the end he had to make the most difficult decision of his life.
Kieran then turned his eyes to the old man again, not realizing everyone watching and Tyler recording with the bright light visible on the camera but not in reality.
Erin had buried her face next to Kieran’s neck as he answered lowly and with a trembling voice, “I want to have love in my life…and I want it to be…with this woman. I love her more…than anything. I love her more than…walking again because I know…she is okay with me not walking…and I can’t ask for anything better in my life…I love her.”
Everyone listened and Kieran turned to Erin, “I love you so…much Erin and…I want to spend my life with you…even if it’s in a wheelchair.”
Erin was nodding with tears running down her face, “I love you and I want to be with you for a long time.”
At that moment Kieran saw as the old man’s vision become transparent and he could see the room through the old man’s body as he vanished, everyone watching the bright light fade and Kieran collapsing sudden into Erin’s arms, his legs harshly giving out under him. Erin was barely able to hold him but Officer Figueroa quickly reacted and rushed over to help support Kieran and break his fall to the floor. Kieran clenched his teeth as the sensation left his body, his legs, his feet, his manhood and belly losing any kind of feeling and becoming numb and any sensation quickly evaporating just like his guardian angel. Some more tears escaped his eyes, Fiona and Ashleigh rushed over to his side, kneeling on the ground. Erin was holding him in her arms and pulled him close to her. Tyler was still holding the phone on record and felt his vision get blurry. Dr. Baxter was in shock, kneeled next to Kieran as well and Renee was busy trying to hold the IV tubing up and didn’t understand what was happening to this young man. Fiona cried, Ashleigh cried, Erin kissed Kieran softly on the lips.
Kieran felt his whole body give in and he had no strength left.
Officer Figueroa couldn’t believe anything he had seen either and he walked over to Tyler and asked, “Let me see this again. What the hell just happened in here?”
Tyler replayed the recordings and also scrolled to the pictures where the bright spot was impeccably visible and then fading away as Kieran had told Erin he loved her.
Dr. Baxter was still awestruck by the incident and could not believe his eyes at what he had seen. A paraplegic with a complete T-4 injury walking. It was unbelievable and could not be explained. Obviously watching the whole scenario unfold Dr. Baxter realized there was much more to Kieran’s story than just getting up every night and walking. Witnessing Kieran confess his love for Erin and with that obviously losing the ability to walk made the story even more surreal. It had happened though and everyone had seen it with their own eyes.
Dr. Baxter had his stethoscope ready and asked Kieran, “Kieran, are you all right?”
Kieran nodded and answered lowly, still gasping for air, “Yes, I’m going…to be all right…You don’t have to…check me.”
Kieran was now basically on the ground. Erin still held him in the crease of her arm and she smiled at him. His face was sweaty and his eyes were shiny.
“Kieran, I love you so much.”
He gazed into her dark eyes, “I’m so sorry…about everything.”
Fiona kneeled next to her brother and leaned down to hug him.
She was crying still and apologized, “I’m so sorry Kieran. I can’t even imagine what you have been through lately.”
He hugged her back and mumbled, “It’s all right.”
Ashleigh hugged her uncle and whispered, “I have it all on photos and video.”
Kieran was lifted back up into the bed and he laid his head back on the pillow, exhausted. Erin held his hand in hers as everyone somewhat stood around clueless.
Officer Figueroa’s mind was racing exceptionally as he was trying to piece together what had happened with Kieran and as he was trying to figure out what to do with him. Kieran was officially still under arrest and he could be facing charges. Now with this whole situation everything had changed.
Erin sat on the bed and just held Kieran’s hand. He didn’t say much anymore. The whole ordeal had cost him tremendous strength and he also knew that the sensations had been taken away from him as soon as he had expressed his love for Erin. He had not been given the full amount of time but instead as soon as he had made his decision everything was taken away from him right away.
Renee detached the leg bag and hooked it to the bed again. Kieran still had the IV’s running into his arm and he was still breathing quickly, so Renee gently laid the Oxygen tubing over his face again and into his nostrils.
Dr. Baxter asked Renee to check Kieran’s vitals and she did. His heart rate was up now, obviously from all the excitement.
Dr. Baxter stood next to the bed looking at Kieran, “I don’t know what to say Kieran. What I saw tonight was…I don’t even know…it was a tiny glance into a medical breakthrough of some sort. A medical breakthrough we will never be able to research on but I understand that this situation cost enormous strength and was very painful for you, probably for a lot of people. What we saw can’t be explained and will stay a mystery. I’m still glad I was able to see it with my own eyes and I think we have footage on it.”
With that Dr. Baxter glanced over at Tyler who was still holding Ashleigh’s phone. When he clicked on her gallery he was shocked to find the photos and the videos to be black screens like someone had taken a photo of a black spot.
Tyler shook his head at the discovery, “I can’t believe it. It’s all gone. There is nothing anymore.”
Officer Figueroa rushed over and looked at the phone, shocked, “What the hell?”
Dr. Baxter also came over and saw the same thing.
Kieran didn’t say much anymore, he held Erin’s warm hand and he kept his eyes on her. She was the only person he cared about at this moment. He feared the worst was yet to come. He was under arrest, he could get charged and he was probably losing his license. He couldn’t even imagine going to jail and it scared him tremendously. He only wanted Erin to be there with him at this moment, he couldn’t imagine losing her again.
Erin kept her eyes on him and she saw the worry in his eyes.
She leaned down to him and said softly, “Baby, I’m not leaving your side.”
He replied lowly, “I’m scared.”
“I know but hopefully it will all work out. Don’t worry about anything right now.”
Erin was very worried herself but she didn’t want Kieran to know and she wanted to be strong for him.
Everyone was asked to leave around five that morning when Officer Figueroa spoke up and made the decision.
Tyler walked up to him and pulled him over to the side, “Officer, you saw what happened tonight. This was not a normal situation. My brother-in-law has been through some kind of ordeal that we all cannot imagine but we witnessed it tonight. There are things we will never be able to explain but I beg you to let him go. He’s not a bad guy. What he has been dealing with is what brought on all of this. He cannot be locked up. We want him at home with us. It would break my wife’s heart to see her brother get charged and locked up. You saw what happened tonight, his girlfriend Erin…the kids…you met all of us. We are a normal family. We care about Kieran, he is family and he doesn’t deserve to be punished like that. Please reconsider the charges against him. I beg you.”
Officer Figueroa didn’t say much but only, “I will have to work this out. Right now I need everyone to go. I will stay here with him and we will make a decision tomorrow. Until then he is in my custody.”
Tyler knew that was all he could do for Kieran at this time and he nodded.
Saying Good Bye to Kieran was the hardest thing for everyone and even Ashleigh pleaded with Officer Figueroa under tears not to punish her uncle.
Everyone cried and Kieran could barely hold it together. The family left and Erin was still next to his bed and she leaned down to him, crying quietly and whispering in his ear, “I love you okay. No matter what is going to happen, I love you so very much Kieran. I will be there with you and for you through whatever is going to happen. You need to be strong for me now and hopefully tomorrow we will have you home again.”
Kieran couldn’t speak, he was overcome by his emotions and he could barely keep his tears in.
He just nodded when Erin asked, “Do you hear me?”
He swallowed and barely got the words over his lips, “I can’t make it if they lock me up or bring charges against me.”
“You won’t get locked up. I love you, you hear me?”
He nodded, “I love you.”
Officer Figueroa cut in, “Okay, I am sorry but you need to leave now.”
Erin hugged him once more and kissed his lips and looking into his shiny green eyes she detached herself from him with a smile and left.