The Endless Chain

This story is a romantic short story/play. It's about love, the dangers of it and how it can effect everyone. Oh, and it's in reverse order (There are 10 chapters). I used this as a final project for my English class and received an A on it. Apparently it was one of the best stories my teacher had ever read. Let's see if he's right...

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1. Chapter 1

Robert Hall, 17th floor lounge, May 19th, 2013

 

            “What do you mean she’s in the hospital?” I stared in disbelief at my friend Keith. It had been a rough month with midterms for the past two weeks (I suppose that’s what you get for coming to a quarter system school such as my University), but it was spring term so mostly everyone was used to it by now. I however, was not. I stood on the ledge of the top of Robert Hall, I wasn’t sure if I would jump or not, but the air felt great against my face as an invisible tear rolled down my cheek (my eyes were dry due to allergies).

 

Keith looked back at me scratching his short blond hair on the back of his head, “Apparently she tried to kill herself by slitting her wrists, after she heard about…” He paused. “Ashley.”

 

I turned away from Keith and faced the skyline of Philadelphia. The Amtrak Building was illuminated with bright green lights that would cycle to red lights and then back to green. “I really don’t understand why I’m so upset over this. It’s not even like I had feelings for her. You did…” I paused. “I mean… I feel bad for her of course, and can’t help feeling slightly responsible for this whole mess, but was it really in my control?” I turned around. “Keith?” He had vanished, and all that sat there were empty couches in the lounge at three in the morning. “Damn it!” I got down from the ledge and walked back inside, I lay down on the carpet, resting my head in my cupped hands between the floor and my skull and I stared at the concrete ceiling. 

 

I had dozed off for about ten minutes when I awoke to Keith kicking my side. “Get up!”

 

I rubbed my eyes as I sat up. “Where the hell did you go?” I asked, annoyed at the fact that Keith had ditched me. Before he could answer, I fully opened my eyes and noticed that he was eating a container of Ben and Jerry’s Cherry Garcia ice cream. “You left me…for ice cream?”

 

Keith took a step back as I got up. “Hey, I eat when I’m depressed.”

 

I walked towards him and snatched the ice cream container out of his hand. “First off, this isn’t good for you. Second, you’re going to eat at a time like this? I almost commit suicide and you leave me for ice cream? Not to mention the girl you’re in love with is in the hospital!” I was at a steady shout now.

 

Keith started to glow. “Will you shut up? Contrary to popular belief people actually live on the floor and are trying to sleep. Now give me my ice cream back.”

 

I generally have a high tolerance before I get mad at someone. However, because of midterms and the all-nighters needed to study for these midterms my fuse had dwindled to the length of toothpick. “You have it so damn easy Keith. And you’re blind to it all. You have a 4.0 GPA, come from a fantastic family with a good amount of wealth, and you have plenty of great friends. You don’t need this damn ice cream!” I walked over to the door that lead to the ledge and threw the carton of ice cream of the roof of the 17 story building.

 

“You son of a bitch!” Keith came charging at me and shoved me to the ground. “I have it easy? Take a look in the fucking mirror! You have great friends as well, not to mention two girls who are pretty attractive and that are at least 8’s on the University scale who like you. And yet…for whatever reason… You decide to have a crush on the crazy one who doesn't even like you in the same way!”

 

He was standing over me, so I moved my legs and tripped him, bringing him to the ground. “Don’t talk about her like that! I’m so sick of everyone calling her crazy! If you want crazy, take a look at the girl you like! She slit her own wrists!” Keith pinned me down to the ground.  It helped that he was about five inches taller and about thirty pounds heavier than me.

 

“Ha! You’re one to talk, Mr. Ledge.” He paused and smirked. “I think you’re jealous because Ashley likes me!” I cringed a little.

 

“What does that have to do with anything?” I said, almost cowardly.

 

Keith snapped back, “Don’t give me that bullshit Tony! I was a great friend and respected your wishes and didn't go out with her, even though she told me directly that she liked me.” I sharply raised my knee up and got him in the crown jewels. I stood up and dusted myself off as he rolled over in pain.

 

“Yeah, because you would have gone out with her anyway.” I spoke sarcastically. “You said it yourself, you think she’s crazy.” I could hear him muffle the words “She is.” I kicked him in the stomach, and then did it again. “Fuck you Keith.” I paused; I wasn't sure what to do next. I had never been in a fight before, let alone win one.  Then I heard the elevator come up, it was the RA of the floor. He saw Keith and immediately pointed at me. The next thing I knew, I flung forward and hit my head on the ground with a massive smack.

 

I couldn’t hear anything but the RA yelling and Keith apologizing repeatedly, and that was muffled. I tried to get up but couldn’t move. Then about five minutes later, I could hear the noise of an ambulance from the street below. Then I hear nothing but the whining sirens of that ambulance for the next five minutes as I was taken, I assume, to Penn’s hospital. I could hear doctors rushing me to the ER. I wasn’t sure what was going on. Was I paralyzed?

 

A couple of hours later I could hear the doctors talking. “His vital signs are stable, but his muscles aren’t showing any movement, not to mention he’s unconscious.” The other doctor spoke. “Should we declare it a coma?” The one that sounded like the boss tapped his feet; I assume that he was thinking. “I think we’ll...” He paused.

 

“Not quite yet. We’ll give it 24 hours. Besides, I was reading up on his medical files after the ER visit and it says that the parents don’t want him on life support in a coma. Poor kid…”

 

“Shit. What the hell am I supposed to do?” I thought to myself as I tried to move, to get up, to just twitch a muscle. But nothing. Nothing happened. How is it that I could hear everything, yet I couldn’t move? Was I in a coma? … No… that wouldn’t make sense. I heard and could sense someone walk in the room and stand by my bed.

 

“Damn…” There was silence. It was Keith. I was furious with him. If I could have, I would have gotten up and punched him square in the face. I even tried to move, but nothing worked. “I didn’t want…. or mean for any of this to happen.” It sounded like he was below me now. I assumed he was on his knees leaning up against my hospital bed, praying. “I’m such an idiot.” He then proceeded to put what sounded and felt like a piece of paper on my chest.

 

“Well…. you’re not wrong.” I thought to myself. I could hear Keith start to sniffle. I had never heard Keith cry before, let alone get close to it. He was always that tough guy, he wasn’t really that sensitive when he talked to me about Rebecca and was always telling others to “man up.” ,

 

I must have dozed off somehow, despite the state I was in, because before I knew it, the doctors were in the room talking. “It’s been 24 hours, the parents gave us the green light and according to the tests we’ve performed, it doesn’t look like he’ll be getting out of the coma any time soon. Should we pull the plug Dr. Richards?”

 

I was screaming “No!”, but my mouth remained shut and no words came out. I was screaming and violently shaking to try and get a muscle to move. But my body stayed still.

 

“I suppose we should. Although I disagree with it, it’s my job to follow regulations.” Dr. Richards said in a monotone voice.

 

“Should you do the honors, or shall I?” The other doctor said.

 

“I might as well, I’m supposed to anyway Chuck…” Dr. Richards said in an irritated voice. He didn’t think these situations could be made better with jokes.

 

I could sense Dr. Richards walking past me and pulling up on my left side, near my head. The plug must have been there. I was shaking, trying to get at least one muscle to make a move, one  lip quiver, finger twitch, anything that would make a change on the monitor near my bed!

 

As Dr. Richards started to bend down, I fought, and I fought to get a vital sign to change. Heart rate, breathing rate, anything!

 

Dr. Richard’s hand was on the plug. I continued to fight to get my finger to make a subtle yet noticeable movement that would spare my life.

 

Then, Dr. Richards pulled the plug.

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