Tuesday, January 26, 2016

For The Love Of Not Walking Chapter 7

Chapter 7
Lost in thoughts Kieran didn’t realize the time and at 12:48 a.m. he was ripped from his thoughts by the sudden pain that drove from his legs up into his chest. He gasped and clenched his teeth, grabbing the steering wheel tightly with his hands to get some kind of grounding. It happened again, the mysterious sensation that started in his body as a severe spasm, letting his nerves gain sensation of pain and shocking his body into life again. He hit the steering wheel cursing into the night, wondering again what was happening to him now night after night.

                Without waiting though when he felt the sensations return into his legs, he opened his car door and stepped out of his car, breathing quickly as his feet were planted on the ground and he rose from his car, holding on to the door to get his balance and making sure he was really standing.
He talked to himself, no one around to hear him, “Why is this happening? What the fuck…”
He walked away from his car, first very slowly, planting one foot after the other and stepping onto the walking path along the water.
He stood there on the sidewalk looking down his legs and touching his thighs and knees with his hands, wondering, “Why?”

                He lifted one leg and stood on the other leg and then did the same with the other and without thinking anymore he took off jogging down the sidewalk and tears were streaming out of his eyes. He ran back and forth close to his car, feeling the strength return in his legs and feeling the pounding of the concrete under his feet. He stomped, he jumped and he ran and ran and he cried and he talked to himself.

         He didn’t think about the short time line he had been experiencing these sensations over the past week and after about 20 minutes when he was at least 30 feet away from his car, the sudden sting in his back, almost like the bullet that had lodged in his back hit him again, and without a warning the sensations disappeared and in the middle of the sidewalk just as he was trying to run back to his car, his legs gave out under him and he fell to the ground, preventing a harder fall by bracing himself with his arms and hands as he went down and screamed into the night, “Fuck!”

                Kieran hit the grass next to the sidewalk with his fist and he cried loudly and desperately into the night. He lay there and all the sensations were gone just as quick as they had appeared. He buried his face in the crease of his elbow as he laid there on his stomach and he sobbed and he questioned his sanity. He had no explanation of what was happening to him for over a week now, night after night. He had realized that every time it happened he gained another minute on the experience, the sensations of being able to walk again a minute longer each time. Once he had collected himself somewhat, his tears only running silently over his face, he realized the distance he was from his car and he also realized that he had left his cell phone in the car, the driver side door still open from when he had stepped out of his car.
                He pushed up on his elbows, still on his belly and the only option he really had was a low crawl by pulling himself to his car with his arms and hands, dragging his legs behind him. It would be painful on the concrete sidewalk but he didn’t trust the grass where people walked their dogs during the day. His face was wet from his tears and he started pulling himself gasping and panting, in between curse words hissing over his lips. Slowly he made his way over toward the car and he remembered the many times he had been through training low crawling under fences and barbwire and low crawling in ditches in the Afghani and Iraqi desert, hiding from enemy fire or avoiding to be seen. He didn’t feel when his T-Shirt tore, his jeans only staying up on his hip bones, and the skin of his belly grinding over the concrete, tearing open and bleeding. His black sneakers were dragging over the ground and getting worn down some on the toes. He just wanted to get to his car and he needed to get home.
As he was almost at his car, he was startled when two pairs of feet appeared in his view.

                He stopped and looked up and to his absolute surprise the old man he had yelled at, at the mall. He stood over him, looking down to him curiously, “Do you need help?”
His voice was deep and scratchy, like it had been in use for a long, long time. Kieran didn’t know if this was real or if he maybe was hallucinating in his moments of anger.
He moved his eyes for a moment, then looked up again but the man was still there, asking him again, “Can I help you Kieran?”
When he said his name he didn’t know what to think and asked angrily, “Who the hell are you? How do you know me?”
The old man didn’t answer his question, instead he remarked, “You have a nice car. I can help you get to it if you let me.”
As much as he could have used help he didn’t want this guy to help him, because he creeped him out and he had no idea who he was.
He yelled at him, “I can get it, leave me the fuck alone. If you want my shit, go ahead and take it.”
The old man squatted down in front of him, “I don’t want anything from you Kieran. I just want to help you.”
Kieran didn’t look at him but instead he kept pulling himself, the old man stepped out of his way and remarked lowly, “Erin seems to be a very nice woman.”
Kieran stopped and looked up at him with dark eyes, angry and very confused, “Get the fuck out of my life. I don’t know who the hell you are and what you want from me but leave me alone and just get the fuck away from me.”
The old man didn’t get mad but said calmly, “I am just a messenger reminding you of a choice you made.”
Alert Kieran looked up to him again and asked angrily, “What the fuck are you talking about? If I had a gun, old man, I would fucking shoot you right now.”
“Just another person added to the many you already killed. It wouldn’t be a wise choice though Kieran. I am glad you don’t have a gun.”
Now Kieran could barely control his rage anymore but he was stuck on the ground, not able to get up, not able to fight or attack the stranger or do anything at all. He pulled himself up to the front of his car and twisting his body around he was able to sit up and lean on the front bumper of the Mustang, turned to the man and screamed at him, “Fuck you, I wouldn’t have a problem killing you. What the hell do you want from me?”
Kieran felt like he wanted to explode but his body kept him imprisoned and all he could do is yell and scream at the stranger.
“Kieran, did you enjoy walking and running again?”
Kieran shook his head in disbelief of how the man could know these things about him and the anger and rage he felt turned into a questioning pain.
Feeling exhaustion overcome him he didn’t scream anymore but asked with a trembling low voice of defeat, “If you want my stuff just take it. If that is not why you are here, then why are you here? Who are you? Why are you fucking with me like this?”

                The old man squatted down in front of Kieran. He wore a clean tailored suit, matching dress shoes and an elegant hat. Kieran couldn’t see the color of his eyes in the dark but he saw the deep lines in his face, the mustache and the beard and a shiny ring on his finger.
He said, “Kieran, I want you to remember the night you got injured and then you will know what is going on with you.”
With that he got up and was about to walk away when Kieran asked desperately, “What do you mean? I don’t remember that night…Why…”
The old man cut him off, “You will have to remember and then you will have answers to your questions.”
With that he walked away along the path and Kieran called after him, his voice trembling with another onset of tears trying to escape, “Wait! What the hell are you talking about? Wait up old man!”
He considered crawling after the man but when he looked after him he saw him disappear into the darkness.

                Kieran was clueless about what had just happened. It seemed so surreal and he wiped over his face to get the tears that had starting flowing again and he felt very alone all the sudden. He thought about calling home or Erin or someone because his mind was racing with thoughts of bad things and the words the old man had spoken rang in his ears.
He was scared when he got down on the sidewalk again and pulled himself over to the sidewalk again and toward the grass line that separated the sidewalk from the edge of the water, which was at least 15 feet down hitting some large rocks with light waves. He pulled himself over, his legs dragging behind him and he cried as he reached the grass line and then the edge of the grass where he looked down to the rocks and the dark water. He pressed his lips together, tears just streaming over his face as very bad thoughts ran through is mind. He pulled himself over some more and his head and chest was already over the edge, one more good push with his arms and hands would have pushed him over the edge and his body would have tumbled down, hit the rocks and landed in the water.

               Erin appeared in his mind, Fiona, Tyler and the kids and he cried and he was breathing through his nose, his body charged with an energy that was building up to give him the strength to finally push his body over the edge.
Just then he heard some male voices, “What is that?”
The sound of wheels and feet came closer and when he looked over he saw silhouettes of bikes and people.
The voice seemed distant, “It looks like a person. There is a car, the door is open…”
They all came closer and Kieran heard the young voices in a distance, “I think he is dead….wait maybe not.”
Bikes crashed on to the sidewalk and people came closer and now the voices seemed to boom over Kieran like thunder, “He is hurt…Mister…are you okay?”
Kieran just felt commotion around him but his mind was in another place and faintly he heard, “We need to call an ambulance. Sir, can you get up? Are you hurt?”
“I am calling 911.”
“Hurry up, Help me Trev! Let’s pull him away from the edge.”

                Kieran blocked out everything that was happening to him. The old man’s voice boomed in his head like an echo “the many you already killed”, “the many you already killed”.
He closed his eyes but he felt people grabbing him and he felt being dragged and when he opened his eyes again he looked into the faces of three teenage boys, “Sir, are you all right? An ambulance is on the way.”
He heard from another voice further away, “There is a wheelchair in the backseat of the car.”
Kieran mumbled, “I don’t need an ambulance. I am all right.”
“You’re bleeding sir.”
“I don’t need an ambulance…”
Kieran realized the seriousness of the situation now and he really didn’t want to get picked up by an ambulance.
The boys had him leaning on the front of the Mustang again and he tried to convince them, “I am fine. I am all right.”
“We don’t think you are okay.”
Kieran then said somewhat tense, “I am okay, please leave me alone.”
He attempted to pull himself over to the driver’s side door and the boys just stepped back and watched.
He heard them talk to each other, “I think he is drunk or something.”
Kieran looked over at them and said tensely, “I am not drunk, I am fine.”

                The kids didn’t try to stop him as he pulled himself to the door and just when he was going to pull himself up into his car, an ambulance got there with flashing lights, brightening the parking lot with red and blue flashes and Kieran then pushed himself up and tried to get into his car and make his get a way but the paramedics came rushing over and called, “Sir, wait up! We are here to help.”
Kieran now was about to close his door but they held it open, “Sir, we don’t think you should be driving. Can we check you out please?”
Kieran felt his hands shaky and his body tremble, his legs shaking violently under strong spasms now.
He yelled, “I am okay, I am going home.”
The paramedic didn’t let him go, “Sir, please let us check you out? We will help you out of the vehicle.”
When they reached in to help Kieran out he actually tried to fight them off and attacked them, yelling now, “I am fine. Don’t fucking touch me.”
He heard one of the kids say to a third paramedic getting their statement, “We think he tried to kill himself or something.”
One of the paramedics said, “Sir, what is your name? You are bleeding.”
Kieran didn’t tell them his name, instead he still tried to get away from them. One paramedic kept him from starting his ignition and the other two then brought over the stretcher from the ambulance.
Kieran yelled in frustration, “For heaven’s sake, I am okay. Please don’t take me away right now. I am okay again.”
He took deep breaths, his legs were shaking and he begged desperately now, “Please, just let me go home. I am all right, please.”
The paramedic looked into the backseat and as he spotted the wheelchair and realized the hand controls in the car he asked Kieran, “Sir, are you disabled?”
Kieran had his head leaned back on the head rest, looking up at the ceiling and begging, “Just let me go home please.”
They had taken his car keys and now all three tried to talk him into cooperating but Kieran didn’t even think about it and pushed their hands away and yelled at them, “I don’t need to go to the fucking hospital. Don’t touch me! Leave me the fuck alone!”
Two of the paramedics actually pulled him out of the Mustang and as the stretcher was right next to the car they managed to get Kieran on it, even though he now tried to hit them still yelling, “Get the fuck off me!”
His break down made things worse and eventually he realized he didn’t have a chance and he gave up as they restrained his wrists on the stretcher trying to calm him down with words, checking his vitals and asking him questions on what his name was, what his disability was and where he lived.
Kieran didn’t answer, it didn’t matter what he said. He had been through this before and in the end they would take him to the hospital no matter what and he already saw Fiona and her sad face when she would see him.
He didn’t talk, he just let happen whatever happened. His legs were spastic and the paramedics pulled a soft strap over his legs to keep them from falling off the stretcher, his wrists were held down by soft straps and they took him away, the last thing he saw was the teenagers looking at him very confused. In a situation where they thought they did the right thing in helping a person, this person seemed to not be happy about their help at all.

                On the way to the hospital Kieran didn’t say anything but just lay there and still thought about how this night had turned into a total disaster with the old man showing up in his life. He tried to remember all the words he had said but the only thing that kept coming up was “the many you already killed”.
The paramedics were patient with him and there was no more aggression from Kieran’s side. They checked out his abdomen which had been scratched up badly and was bleeding.
At the hospital he was wheeled into the Emergency Department and into a room, and fitted with a wrist band with all his information on it. They moved him from the ambulance stretcher to a bed and with that untied his wrists and one of the paramedics said, “If you are okay now I can leave the restraints off.”
Kieran didn’t even look at him but he also didn’t move or protest.
The paramedics gave their report to the staff in the ED and left, turning Kieran over to the emergency room staff.
Kieran laid in the room and shortly after a nurse came in. She smiled at him warmly and checked his wrist band, at the same time asking him exactly for the information on the wrist band as in his birthday and name. He answered lowly.
She then introduced herself, “Hi Kieran, I am Deirdre. I will be taking care of you. So what happened?”
Kieran didn’t speak and Deirdre logged into the computer and then turned around to Kieran and said warmly, “I have your cell phone and wallet here by the way.”
Kieran didn’t know they had taken his wallet and phone from the passenger seat of his car and he looked at Deirdre.
She smiled, “It will make our communication a lot easier if you talk to me a little bit. I like your name…Kieran. Is there family we can call to let them know you are here?”
Kieran didn’t want to stay and he didn’t know what the plan was for him. He had calmed down and tried to act on his best behavior again, he didn’t feel good but he couldn’t let them know and he wanted to go home. He didn’t want to get admitted into the hospital.
Lowly he answered, “My sister, Fiona Jamison.”
“Good, do you have her number on you?”
Somewhat annoyed he stated, “It is in my cell phone.”
Deirdre pulled his phone from a small plastic bag and handed it to him but she didn’t leave the room, “Do you want to talk to her or do you want me to?”
Kieran didn’t answer but held on to his phone and with trembling hands he tapped on Fiona’s cell number. She had her phone next to her bed at night.
He knew she would get mad or be worried and he planned to sound as confident as possible.

                After a few moments he heard Fiona’s sleepy voice, “Kieran?”
It was almost 2 o’clock now and Kieran said, “Fiona, hey!”
She sounded alert now, “Kieran, where are you? What is going on?”
He was nervous to answer, “I am…I am actually at the…hospital. I need you…to come and get me.”
“What are you talking about? Kieran, I thought you were on a date with Erin.”
“I was on a date, now I am at the hospital.”
“Oh my God, is everything all right with you and Erin?”
“Yes, just come and get me out of here.”
“Kieran, where at?”
“St. Joseph hospital. In the Emergency Room.”
“I will be there in 30 minutes or so.”

                When he was done with Fiona, Deirdre wanted his phone again and he handed it over reluctantly and watched her put it back into the bag.
She then turned to him again, “So Kieran, what is going on?”
“You were found on the ground almost falling over into the Sound or looking like you were about to push yourself over the edge.”
He didn’t reply and Deirdre then looked at his legs, which were still twitching on and off, “I am not going to put you on IV’s yet, but I am going to have a look at your belly if that is okay?”
Kieran just nodded. Deirdre took his vitals and remarked that his heart beat was fast and his blood pressure was high. He didn’t run a fever.
He watched Deirdre as she moved his torn T-Shirt out of the way some and he saw his skin was lacerated and bleeding down to the waistband of his jeans.
Deirdre asked warmly, “Do you think we can take your shirts off and clean that wound?”
Kieran was surprised how bad his belly was, he didn’t feel the pain and had not realized how bad he had hurt himself on the ground. His hands were dirty and the knuckles scratched up some as well.
He nodded again and when Deirdre wanted to help him he said cool, “I can get it.”
He took his button up shirt off and then slipped his torn black T-Shirt over his head. He also saw some light bloody streaks on his hands and his right pants leg had a hole in it by the knee and the skin looked somewhat bloody as well. His elbows were also scratched up.
Deirdre brought some items in and cleaned his wound, asking during the process, “Kieran, what is your disability?”
“I am paraplegic.”

                While Deirdre finished cleaning the wound Kieran just laid there and stared at the ceiling. He thought of Erin and what she would think of him now that he lost it. He had no idea how he was going to tell anyone what had happened to him tonight and for a week now every night. No one would believe him.

                The doctor showed up and introduced himself as Dr. Chambers, “Hi Kieran.”
He pulled the chair closer to the bed and started in a friendly tone, “So what happened tonight?”
Kieran didn’t want to talk about anything and he shrugged his shoulders but Dr. Chambers kept asking, “I looked up your records and it shows that you had some problems in the past. Apparently you are on medications and it looked like you were doing all right up until tonight. I saw you are with the VA. How can we help you Kieran?”
Kieran didn’t say anything and Dr. Chambers sighed, “I see you don’t want to talk to me. Kieran, you realize that if I feel you are a danger to yourself or others. I may have to keep you here for a few days until things settle down.”
                Hearing this Kieran felt his hands tremble and Dr. Chambers looked at his spastic legs, “You are paraplegic and you are dealing with some spasticity tonight. I can get you some Baclofen if you want. Is anyone coming for you?”
Kieran answered lowly, “My sister.”
Dr. Chambers made a note on his paper and then looked up again, “Baclofen, yes or no?”
Kieran nodded because the spasms were getting worse again and the doctor added, “I will put that order in for the Baclofen. I am also going to have a look at your wounds.”
The doctor stood up and looked closer at Kieran’s belly and asked, “How did this happen?”
Kieran didn’t say anything and Dr. Chambers said, “I am going to have that wound cleaned and disinfected and will have the nurse put on some antibiotic ointment and then bandage it, okay? I am going to look at the other wounds on your body.”
Kieran knew his hands were scratched up some and also his left knee had taken a rough drag on the concrete, leaving a hole in his new pants and a bloody knee and he let the doctor take a look at the other wounds.
Dr. Chambers quietly scanned Kieran’s knuckles, elbows, and his knee and remarked, “So, I will have the nurse clean those wounds as well. They are merely just lacerations on the top of your skin but I want to make sure they get cleaned. Do you want to tell me why you were found on the ground?” Kieran didn’t say anything.
Just as the doctor was about to get up Kieran started lowly, “Doc…I don’t want to stay here. I am okay.”
Dr. Chambers took this opportunity for some more communication with Kieran, “Kieran, did you try to harm yourself tonight?”
Kieran looked up at the ceiling and he felt water collect in his eyes.
He thought for a moment and then looked over at the doctor, “I wouldn’t have done anything to myself.”
“Why were you out of your car without your wheelchair and on the ground at one o’clock in the morning?”

                There was no way he could tell the doctor that he had actually stood up and walked around outside his car. Kieran felt trapped because he had no good answer. It didn’t matter what he would say, either way he would look like a lunatic or hallucinating idiot.
He felt a tear roll out of his eye and down to his ear.
Dr. Chambers saw it too and asked gently, “Kieran, what is going on? You can talk to me, you know.”
Kieran just nodded but he felt the knot in his throat and he was trying to figure out what to tell the doctor. He was scared that whatever he would say would land him in the psych ward again and he saw Erin’s face and he remembered her kiss and he didn’t want to destroy what had not even really begun yet.
He swallowed and lowly replied, “I know but I don’t know what happened. I guess I blacked out or something.”
“That would be of concern Kieran.”
Now Kieran begged, “Doc, please don’t admit me. I can’t be in here right now. I am okay, my sister can take me home again and she is there with me, all the time.”
He felt his voice tremble and his breath come out in gasps, fearing the doctor would still feel it would be safer to keep him at the hospital.”
Dr. Chambers looked at Kieran concerned and after a moment asked, “Are you taking your meds as directed?”
“Yes, every day.”
“Your sister works though?”
“Yes, but maybe she can take off.”
Kieran tried to sound convincing and secure but he knew the doctor had doubts.

                Just then it knocked on the door and it slowly opened with Fiona peeking around the door.
She saw Kieran and looked quickly from him to the doctor but rushed in, “Kieran, are you all right?”
She hurried over to his bed and she saw the tears on his face and she looked at him with a weary expression.
Her eyes looked tired and she asked, “What is going on?”
Kieran looked at her with green, shiny eyes and said lowly, “Fiona, I am sorry…please let me go home with you.”
She sounded somewhat tense, “What did you do?”
Kieran wished so much he could tell the people around him what had been happening but he was scared it would mean the end of his freedom again and he would be deemed unstable again, seeing things that are not real or experiencing things that did not really happen.
He kept his eyes on his sister and pushed himself up on his elbows, the tears now flowing over his cheeks instead down to his ears, “Fiona, please…I am okay. I just want to go home.”
Fiona didn’t get soft too quick but looked at the doctor, “I will talk with the doctor and we decide.”
Kieran feared the worst now and he grabbed Fiona’s arm, “Please Fiona…I am okay. I will tell you at home. Don’t let them admit me to the Psych ward, please.”
Fiona patted his hand, “Let me talk to the doctor!”

                While Fiona and Dr. Chambers were outside Deirdre came back in and gave him some Baclofen and also tended to his belly again, applying ointment and eventually wrapping a clean bandage around Kieran’s back and over his belly, then fastening it with some medical tape, holding the bandage in place. She also cleaned his knuckles, elbows, hands, and the knee wound and taped some gauze with antibiotic cream on his knee and put a few band aids around the knuckles that were most severely scratched up.
Kieran felt nervous and anxious at the decision Fiona and Dr. Chambers would make.
About twenty minutes later Fiona and the doctor came back in. Kieran sat up in the bed, the spasticity in his legs had subsided some with the Baclofen and they both stood on either side of the bed.
Kieran looked nervously at Dr. Chambers and the doctor started, “You have a good sister Kieran. Fiona will take you home.”
A weight dropped off Kieran’s shoulder and he looked over at his sister, “Thanks.”
Dr. Chambers added, “We talked about your medications and it sounds like you are on a good regime of medications right now. Fiona is going to keep an eye on you and if there is anything going on you need to talk to you sister. We want you to be okay, Kieran but your past medical issues are of concern of course with anything going on and still need to be taken seriously now and in the future. I am going to get your discharge papers ready. According to your sister you still have a supply of your regular medications at home, so I will just send you home with some antibiotic ointment and some Iodine to keep that scratched up belly clean.”
Kieran nodded nervously, “Thanks.”
Eventually Dr. Chambers walked out to get Kieran discharged and Fiona sat on the edge of the bed and looked at her brother with concern, “You have some explaining to do for me when we get home. Where is your wheelchair?”
She took his shirt and handed it to him.
Kieran sounded somewhat annoyed, “They left it in my car. I need to get it.”
“Where is your car?”
“At the waterfront.”
His T-Shirt was torn and he said lowly, “Give me my other shirt!”
Fiona grabbed the button up shirt from the counter and handed it to Kieran. He slipped into it and closed the buttons in the front. Fiona held up the T-Shirt and when she saw the torn shirt she looked at Kieran with serious and questioning eyes, “What happened to your T-Shirt and your belly?”
Kieran didn’t answer and Fiona didn’t push it but she was very concerned about her brother.

                Kieran hated it when they pushed him out to Fiona’s car in a bulky old hospital wheelchair. Firstly he hated being pushed and secondly he felt very bad in an ugly looking wheelchair. His black framed Quickie was an extension of his body and his independence and he had picked it out exactly the way he liked it because he wanted to at least have a somewhat nice looking wheelchair if he had to be in it day in and day out. The wheelchair was part of him and it was important that it looked all right and fit his needs.

                In Fiona’s car he didn’t say anything except for where his car was parked.
The Mustang was still the only car parked on the parking lot by the waterfront and when Fiona parked he started lowly, “Fiona, I could drive home. I really don’t want to leave it here.”
Fiona agreed with her brother on the decision. The Mustang Shelby was a very nice looking and expensive car and shouldn’t really be parked there the rest of the night, close to downtown where sometimes strange people made their way down to the water in the early morning hours.
Fiona parked next to the Mustang but far enough for Kieran to open the passenger door of Fiona’s little Kia.
He unlocked the Mustang and Fiona opened the door standing by and asking, “How do you want to get over there?”
Kieran looked up at her, “You think you can help me over?”
Kieran lifted his legs out of the car with his hands, and moved his butt over to the edge of seat some. Fiona stepped over to Kieran and standing in front of him she reached into her car and under his arms with Kieran locking his hands behind her back. They didn’t speak because they knew their process as they had done it on a couple of occasions already. Fiona lifted Kieran up with her arms and even though he was heavy still she was able to drag him the short distance to his car and turning around she somewhat let Kieran drop into his driver’s seat.
When he sat Kieran looked up and met Fiona’s eyes. She looked concerned still and she didn’t want to worry about her younger brother but for the past year she had mostly worried about him, sometimes more about him than her own children.
They only had each other and she didn’t want anything else to happen to Kieran. They had always been close, even as kids and it had not changed in their adult years.
She followed Kieran home in her car.

                When they got to the house and came inside, Tyler was sitting up in the family room and as Fiona and Kieran entered he got up and looked at them both, “Hey, everything all right?”
Fiona kissed her husband and as he held her close he looked at Kieran, “Kieran, are you okay?”
Kieran nodded.
Fiona leaned her head on Tyler’s arm, he was almost a head taller than his wife.
Fiona said lowly, “You didn’t have to get up honey?”
“It’s okay, I wanted to make sure you guys are all right.”
He walked over to Kieran and looked at him curiously, “Kieran, what is going on?”
Kieran didn’t know what to say and he just replied lowly, “Nothing, I am all right. I am going to bed now. I am sorry I woke you guys up.”
He felt bad for having caused worries for Fiona and Tyler and he just wanted to go to his room.
Tyler knew better than to bug Kieran and just said, “If you need anything let us know. I am glad you are home.”
“Thanks man.”
Kieran looked at Fiona and with his sister’s eyes on him and a worried expression he said, “Thanks Fiona for getting me out of there.”
She nodded quietly and watched as Kieran wheeled away into the back hallway to his room.

                Tyler looked at Fiona and asked what had happened and Fiona gave him an update that she really didn’t know what was going on with her brother and that she worried about him again lately.
“You should go to bed honey, you have to work tomorrow, right?”
“Just for a few hours. And you need to sleep too babe.”
Fiona looked toward Kieran’s room, “I wanted to talk to him.”
“Leave him alone for tonight. Let him get some sleep and talk to him tomorrow.”
Tyler was right but on their way to bed Fiona knocked on Kieran’s door softly and she heard a low, “Yes.”
She opened the door and peeked around. Kieran spun his chair around and looked at Fiona.
She asked lowly, “Are you all right or do you need help?”
Kieran looked down, “I am okay.”
“Good Night Kieran. We will talk tomorrow.”
He didn’t reply to her comment but only said, “Good Night.”

                As Fiona cuddled up next to Tyler in bed she said softly, “Tyler, I am worried about him. Why was he out of his wheelchair twice this week? First here at the house in the bathroom and now tonight. I don’t know what is going on with him and he won’t talk.”
“I know, maybe he is just dealing with stuff and still has some kind of hope he will walk again or something. I am really not sure how he was out of his wheelchair in the bathroom the other day and now tonight.”
“I think he was trying to harm himself tonight. I don’t know how the date with Erin went. Maybe I will call her tomorrow. I need to find out what is going on with him. I know he had been taking his meds and he hasn’t really had too many nightmares anymore.”
“It has been a lot better lately. Not sure what is going on with him. But let’s try to get some sleep now.”
“It is almost like I don’t want to leave him alone anymore.”
“You can’t be hovering over him 24/7, he is a grown man.”
“He is also my little brother.”
“I know babe and I want him to be all right too but you need to try to sleep now.”
Fiona fell asleep in her husband’s strong arms.

                Kieran couldn’t take a shower with the bandage on his belly. He sat in front of his mirror and looked at himself and thought about the night again. It seemed surreal how things had happened for him. Everything had started out so good with Erin and he really liked her. He wanted to see her again but he didn’t know how he could let her in on all of his problems. Any normal woman would make her get away if she found out all of the things that were going on. The nightmares he had all the time, flashbacks in the middle of the day if there was a loud noise, anxiety attacks for no reason, his inability to be around crowds, his insecurity and his past of three deployments as an Infantry soldier, always on the front lines and having to do bad things. To round it all up now his disability that limited him in the things he could do and wanted to do, including his sexuality which was basically non-existent now.

                He stared at his mirror image and ran his hands through his hair, sighing and thinking about maybe blowing the whole thing off with Erin.
It was almost five in the morning when he finally lay in his bed and exhaustion overcame him but he was relieved he didn’t have to spend the night and day at the hospital but was at least in his own room at home.


  1. Oh, what a tough chapter... Hope that in the next chapter things will get better! Thanks for sharing!

  2. WOW - Exciting chapter.
    Can't imagine where you are going.
    Can't wait!

  3. Great chapter Dani, this is getting more interesting, I´m intrigued.

  4. I sure hope Kieran will be okay! Great installment.

  5. I am really happy you are updating weekly now!
    It was a really intense chapter. I didn't expect it to be such an eventful night after the date... I enjoy your story and it is very exiting not to know what is going on with Kieran!

  6. Wonderful! You are a fantastic story-teller. Thank you so much for the great read.

  7. I love your very different writing. Keep up your great work. It's refreshing to read a story here that is not the usual kind of love story

  8. Interesting chapter. Not sure where this is going which is the fun of it.

  9. Is that old guy God?
    A well written chapter. Thank you Dani!

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. I actually had to smile...and I will keep you guessing...not God! :-) Thanks so much for reading!