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The Fog
By Ann


Day 1

The dense fog surrounded me, keeping me from finding my way back. I was aware of an intense pain in my head, but nothing else. I held onto the pain with every bit of strength I had. It was the one thing anchoring me to myself, the one feeling that reassured me that I was still alive. Now, if I could just tap into the rest of me, I'd know that everything was going to be okay.

I desperately tried to remember what had happened to cause me to be in this state. The only thing I was certain of was that I'd heard a loud explosion and then nothing, until just a few moments ago when I'd allowed myself to experience my pain. Where was I? How did I get here?

The confusing thoughts whirred through my head, only serving to frustrate me more. I could neither remember what had gone wrong nor could I get a hold on my surroundings. It was as if I were here, but not here; alive, but not. My state of being was both perplexing and mystifying. The puzzlement overwhelmed me as I allowed the fog to pull me back in.

Day 2

A new sense made itself known today. In the far background, I could hear a very faint beeping, the cadence keeping the same beat as my heart. And . . . wait a minute. Someone was holding my hand. The joy of experiencing another sense was short-lived as the person began to speak, and I could only listen.

"Sabrina? Can you hear me? Please, open your eyes."

Kelly's voice came through loud and clear, but try as I may, my eyes stubbornly refused to comply with her wishes. My hand felt warm in hers, so I focused on it instead, pushing my frustration into the background.

"Okay, you just rest some more then. The doctors said that you came through the surgery fine with no major damage. Um, aside from the coma, but I told them that you're just resting. So, don't make a liar out of me, Bree. We need for you to come back to us soon."

The fog returned, encompassing me once again. I fought and fought against it, but I was simply too weak to fight the thick mist. So, reluctantly, I gave in. Kelly's voice faded away and, unfortunately, so did her touch.

Day 3

"Kelly, you have to go home and get some rest. Sabrina wouldn't want you to make yourself ill."

Bosley? Kelly? What's going on?

"I'm not leaving her, Bosley. What if she wakes up and there's no one here?"

"The doctor said there'd be signs beforehand. Sabrina hasn't shown any indication that she's ready to join us again."

"Oh, Bosley. What if she never wakes up?"

Kelly's voice cracked, and I struggled to reassure her, only to find that I was still being held captive by the fog. Thank goodness Bosley was there.

"Kelly, Sabrina is going to come out of this. She's a fighter, and there's no way she'll give up. Now, how about we make a compromise? You can stay during the day, but you have to go home and sleep at night. I'll make sure the nurse has your number."

Good, Bosley; make her go home and rest. I don't want her to get sick.

The voices faded into the background, but if I could've smiled, I would've. Kelly had agreed to take a break.

Day 4

The beeping noise was getting louder, but everything else was silent. I wondered where Kelly was. Oh yeah, Bosley made her go home. I couldn't help but feel disappointed at not hearing her voice or feeling her touch. It was the only thing keeping me grounded.

Footsteps approached, and I felt myself getting excited. I knew she wouldn't stay gone for long.

"Well, Ms. Duncan, it looks like your IV bag needs to be changed. Too bad the loud noise didn't wake you. I'd almost be willing to let it go on longer if I thought it would, but it's disturbing the other patients."

A shuffling sound was soon followed by silence as the beeping had mysteriously stopped. I guessed the woman must've done something to shut it off. I hoped that she'd keep talking to me, though.

"I guess your friend must be busy today. It's the first day she hasn't been by. She really needed to get away for awhile. She hasn't left your side since you returned from surgery. Your other friend would bring her changes of clothing, but that's not quite the same thing as showering in your own home or sleeping in your own bed. I'm glad she finally decided to take care of herself. Okay, I'm gone now. I'll check back on you later."

The footsteps headed towards the doorway, and I was once again alone. The fog was staying to the edges today, and I was more aware of the outside world. What a time for Kelly not to be here.

Time passed, and the fog still stayed away. I never thought I'd welcome its touch. It's usually so cold and confusing, but now, I found that I needed it. Conscious loneliness was far worse than the subconscious kind.

Please Kelly, come back soon.

Day 5

" . . . So, Kris caught the idiot."

I slowly pulled myself from the fog, missing the first of Kelly's words. Kelly? Oh, thank God; she came back. I tried to squeeze the hand holding mine.

"Anyway, I decided to bring Mr. Fluffy to my house since Bosley made me promise to sleep in my own bed every night. I thought that perhaps your cat would like to spend some time with someone so I brought him over. He sleeps next to my pillow."

Lucky cat. The closest I'd ever come to sleeping in the same bed with Kelly was when there was a mix-up at the hotel we'd stayed in on the Harkin case. The clerk had accidentally typed in the request as a king instead of a double. A cancellation at the last minute had us back to a double. I never did forgive that clerk.

" . . . Bree, I wish you'd wake up. I have so much to tell you. I've been such a fool."

Thoughts of cats and hotels immediately evaporated as I tried to focus on Kelly's words. What could she possibly be referring to?

A knock sounded from somewhere, stopping Kelly mere seconds from explaining herself. The familiar voice of Kris filled the empty space.

"Hey, Kelly. How's she doing today?"

She? Who? Oh yeah, me. I sure didn't like this hazy feeling; the fog was keeping me trapped, keeping me from my friends.

"I think she may have squeezed my hand earlier."

I did? I mean, I know I'd tried when I felt the familiar touch, but I just figured it was like the other times when I'd only thought I'd squeezed.

"Did you tell the doctors?" Kris sounded excited.

"No, I'm not actually sure she did. I may have hoped it so hard that I thought it'd actually happened." Kelly's voice was low and sad, almost a whispered tone.

It did! Kelly, it did! Don't give up hope; don't give up on me. I desperately tried to squeeze again, but I guessed the excitement of trying to communicate with my friend had done me in because the fog came once again.

Day 6

"You should've told me how much Mr. Fluffy likes to drink out of the toilet. He almost fell in today. I have to keep reminding myself to lower the lid. I'd never forgive myself if he accidentally fell in and drowned."

Heh, he'd fallen in before, Kelly. But, don't worry, his fat ass never moved so fast. He stayed away from the bathroom for weeks afterward. Now, he was much more careful when he jumped on the lid.

"Um, anyway, back to what I was saying yesterday . . ."

Oh, goodie. I hoped no one interrupted today. I'd forgotten about her words from yesterday. Or was it the day before? Who knew, but at least I was aware of her today.

". . . You see I've kind of fallen for you. You just snuck into my heart and made yourself at home."

What? Was she saying what I thought she was saying? Damn, I needed to wake up. I couldn't miss this. Please, somebody; please, let me wake up.

"Bree? C'mon, Bree. Open your eyes. You can do it, baby. Just open your eyes."

I struggled to lift my eyelids, and finally, a very bright light made its way into my view. Reflexively, I slammed them closed again.

"Shit. Hold on a minute."

The sounds of rustling caught my attention, and I waited silently, for what I didn't know.

"Okay, I've closed the shades and turned down the lights. Try again, Bree."

Trusting the words, but mostly the person speaking the words, I worked my eyelids upward, the effort more exhausting than running a mile; however, it was all worth it to look up into tear filled brown eyes.

"Kelly?" The word sounded foreign even to me, so I could just imagine how it had come across to her.

"Oh, Bree. Thank God." Kelly smiled and leaned down, softly kissing my lips. Now, this wasn't exactly how I'd dreamed of this moment, but I was definitely going to hold onto it for as long as I could.

After what seemed like minutes, she pulled away and grabbed hold of my hand tightly.

"You had me so worried; I was so afraid you'd never wake up. I'll never doubt you again. Listen, we have lots to talk about, but first, let me get the doctor to check you out."

Kelly turned to leave, but stopped at the doorway, smiling. "Now, don't you go anywhere, okay?" She winked and stepped into the hallway.

I stared up at the ceiling, forcing myself to stay awake. There was no way in hell I was ever leaving again. With a renewed purpose, I kept the fog away.

I was here to stay.

The End

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