After the doctor had finished doing all the necessary tests, he sat down on the wooden chair in front of the desk and faced me.
"Well, Miss Wesley, everything seems to be fine. We're going to have to keep you in for one more day to keep an eye on things - I don't know if you remember what happened last time.." My face remained blank. "Well, yes, like I said I'll let your mother tell you everything. We're done here, I'll just call her in now." He left the small room and I suddenly felt very alone.
The pain all over my body seemed to increase as I had nothing to distract myself from it. My eyelids were impossibly heavy, my throat extremely raw and my limbs felt very weighty and ached in a way they never had before. I tried to lift my head by it lolled back on the pillow as if my neck couldn’t take the weight, similar to a newborn baby.
"Maia!" I heard my father's voice exclaim as he burst through the door with my mother.
"Dad!" He wrapped me in a massive hug which I would have returned gratefully if my limbs were easy to move.
"I've missed you so much." He kissed my forehead and then pulled up the chair from the desk to sit beside my bed. Mum sat at the end of the bed with a grave face, and I could tell what was coming.
"Okay, Maia... Listen you're going to be shocked by this. Just hear us out. Just-Just remember that everything's going to be okay-"
"Come on, Linda, she deserves to know what happened."
She took a deep breath. "On 17th March 2013 you.. you were hit by a car on your way to school." Her voice hitched and I could see tears welling in her eyes. "We found you lying in the road in the middle of a crowd of people, unconscious and bruised..." Her voice hitched again.
"We rushed you to a hospital where they healed your wounds but they were not able to bring you back to consciousness - you were in a coma." My father continued. "Days, weeks and months passed and the only progress was the healing of your physical wounds. After a year we were told that we would have to give up, but we paid for you to stay here. We kept praying that one day you would wake up. After the second year we had practically given up hope but told ourselves we'd give it one more year. And now here you are, our little Miracle Girl." He squeezed my hand and smiled.
I just stared ahead at nothing in particular the whole time they were talking. My brain was still working agonisingly slowly and it took me longer than normal to process what I had been told. I had been in a car crash. The thoughts seemed numb in my head, like they had no emotion behind them. I knew I should feel something but I didn't, I couldn't. "After a year... the second year... one more year." I stopped breathing as I managed to comprehend what my father had just told me.
"I've been here for 3 years?" I said slowly, afraid of what I already knew was the answer.
I stayed very still, staring into space, and it felt like I had retreated into my head where I sat with nothing but my thoughts, trying to understand.
"N-no I haven't." I finally said.
"Maia, yes you have. I know it's a lot to take in but-"
"A lot to take in!? Yes, it's a lot to take in. You're telling me I've just missed the last 3 years of my life? No. You're making it up. I'm dreaming. I-"
The doctor came rushing back at the same moment that I noticed the beeping in the room getting quicker and quicker. He stared at the screen of the computer and then came over to the bed.
"Mr and Mrs Wesley, I think she's heard enough for now."
I shouted at the same time as my mother said, "Okay, you're probably right."
"No." I repeated more calmly as they all turned to look at me. "I want to know. I want to know what happened."
"Maia.." My father started.
"I can handle it. Come on I'm fifteen, I'm not a baby." I stared at them defiantly. They all gave each other nervous glances, and I realised why.
"You're eighteen, Maia."
I took a deep breath to say something but the words wouldn't come.
"Maia, I'm sorry.." My mother said, reaching out to rest her hand on my leg.
"What happened last time?" I said with no emotion in my voice. I decided to leave the issue of getting my head round my age for later, and deal with another.
"Everyone's talking about 'last time'. What happened?"
They all looked at each other.
"Miss Wesley, it would not be a good idea for you to know before a couple of days, tomorrow at the earliest."
"Why not?" I said defiantly. I had a right to know.
My father shook his head. “No, Maia. You will understand when you find out..”
“Maybe we should tell her. It’s her decision.” My mother interrupted, and a little triumphant smile started to creep into the corners of my mouth.
“No. Linda? Come on, she doesn’t understand the effect it will have if she finds out now.”
“She’s a big girl, if she wants to know-“
“Are you just trying to pick an argument with me? She shouldn’t find out until later.”
“I agree with Mr Wesley – I do not recommend for her to find out until tomorrow at the very earliest. She has just woken up; we don’t want to do anything to upset her further. It can wait.” The doctor said.
My mother crossed her arms in annoyance. I was just like her in the fact that we both hated not knowing something interesting or important, and she must have known how frustrated I was feeling. She clenched her left hand where it lay against her arm in aggravation. That’s when I noticed there was no ring. My eyes shot to my father, where his hands lay limp on his lap. Again, there was no ring.