There had still been no change in Adam's state in three days. He'd lost consciousness two days after I'd stitched him up. Now, three days later, he was still not responding. It wasn't good news. The worst part was that I had no idea why. His pulse seemed steady and normal in comparison to any of the others.
I sat by his bed, changing the bandages around his wound. The stitches stuck up in the puffy skin that was tender and red. I traced my fingers along it, hoping for any kind of response from him.
"I know you're in there, Adam," I said, holding his hand. We'd hooked him up to one of the IV bags the creators had sent up. "Don't you give up on me."
"Just…squeeze my hand… please," I continued and used my free hand to wipe the tear off my cheek. Crying would do him no good. And it discouraged the boys. No… I wouldn't cry. Not here. Not now.
The familiar alarm broke through the silence. Another Greenie. I wanted to stay with Adam but Nick always ordered us to go to the box. New items from the creators would need to be unloaded. Besides, the boys were usually curious about the new boy. That and they wanted to harass him a little.
I reluctantly went to where the box comes up. The gated top had already been opened and I could hear Nick giving the introduction. I slipped between Alby and Gally. The new boy had muddy brown hair and his eyes lit up when they landed on me.
"Who's this?" He asked, completely ignoring Nick and walking over. "Does the girl have a name?"
"Back off, Greenie," Gally said, stepping in front of me and putting his hand on Greenie's chest. "Don't go getting any ideas."
"My name is Elira and I'm a med jack," I replied.
"What does a med jack do and where do I sign up?"
"I'm warning you to back the hell off," Gally growled and shoved Greenie back so hard he lost his balance and hit the ground with a thud.
Greenie got angry quick. He lunged for Gally. Dammit. Why do boys have to have a quick temper? He swung first, catching Gally off guard and getting a good punch to the jaw. The fight didn't last long. Newt and Alby had them separated in moments.
I touched the puffy spot on Gally's jaw. He'd have a serious bruise.
He swatted my hand away. "It's fine, E." He stalked off back to the camp.
There would be party later. It was a tradition to have a big fire and celebration in honor the new greenie. It was supposed to be a time to relax but someone always ended up needing stitches. I didn't care to attend this one. Someone should be with Adam.
I didn't stick around to hear whatever came next. He'd get a night in the pit. Tomorrow, of course. I returned to the med jack's hut. Clint and Jeff would come in and bring the new supplies. I took my seat next to Adam.
"We have a new greenie. I think he'll fit in with you slicers quite nicely. You'll have to show him the ropes," I said and smiled. I held his hand again. Just in case…
"Do you think he can hear you?" Jeff asked, setting down the last box that was for us.
"I know he can," I answered, squeezing Adam's hand.
"The fire is about to be lit-"
"Go on. I'll catch up."
Jeff ran out to join the others. As soon as the maze doors closed, a cheer came from all the boys. The sound of crackling wood came next. It wouldn't be long until they started drinking and making bad decisions to fight each other.
"I'm going to go get some food from Frypan and I'll be right back," I told Adam. I stood up and started to pull my hand away.
Adam lightly squeezed my fingers.
A grin broke out on my face and I couldn't help but laugh. "Keep fighting, Adam." I leaned down and kissed his forehead.
I ventured out to the kitchen. It was empty except for two of the runners: Minho and Ben. Frypan fixed me a plate of chicken and rice with extra rice. He gave me a wink. It was our secret that I got extra rice when he made it. I sat down next to Ben.
"How's Adam?" Ben asked with a mouthful of chicken.
"Not much has changed. I know he's going to wake up though. I can feel it," I replied, looking at my hand that Adam squeezed with a smile. I knew that I shouldn't tell any of them. No need to get their hopes up yet. My stomach growled.
"Didn't eat lunch again?" Minho asked, concern resting on his features. "We heard what happened with Greenie."
"The shank is an idiot if he thinks he can touch you," Ben threw out.
There was some kind of agreement between all the Gladers that I was "off limits." None of them ever tried to make an advance. At least, not after the first time. I had earned some respect with my healing skills.
"He's just new. I doubt after the encounter with Gally this morning, he'd be stupid enough to try anything." I smiled, dismissing them.
"We all know that you aren't eating because of Adam," Minho said.
There it is. Sometimes they get into the headspace that I'm a girl so I'm fragile and if I start acting weird, the world is ending. I shook my head. "I was busy with other things too. It was just one meal."
They were both oddly quiet. I didn't really care to find out. I excused myself, taking the rest of my dinner back to the hut where I finished it in silence.
I licked my fingers and decided to busy myself by sorting through the new supplies and organizing them. I took each one out and explained to Adam what they were and what they were used for. The boys outside were getting louder and louder. I frowned a little. Adam should be out there with them. I shook that off and continued.
Mid-sentence, someone seized me around the waist and clamped their hand over my mouth.