When I came back in the waiting area, I was feeling a little better, as my blood and Stephen’s was the same. It might be only a small think, but I was feeling so good, that at least I could help him, by giving him my blood. But at the same time, even if I just donated my blood nobody would tell me how he feels, as I am not a family member. I tried explaining to them, that the only thing I want is to know at least if the operation is over, but no matter who I would ask, I would always get the same answer, “I am sorry, but if you are not a family member I cannot tell you anything”. As I did not know his family, the only thing that I could do, was to sit and wait for someone to come and ask for him, and then maybe they would tell me how he is.
As I was getting so impatient, a girl almost in her forties, with long, straight brown hair and brown eyes came into the room. She was dressed in a navy blue dress, and for some reason I felt like I knew her from somewhere. It was then when she stopped a nurse and asked about Stephen. Her name was Emely. The nurse told her that unfortunately she does not have any news about Stephen, but she will ask and then come back to her. The nurse also told Emely, that I was in the ambulance with Stephen, and then she left.
As I knew she was my only hope to find how Stephen was feeling, I went to where she was to talk to her, but I could not say a word, as when she saw he she directly asked me who I was. It was then that I thought she might be Stephen’s girlfriend, and the whole situation would be so hard to explain.
“Hello Emily. I’m Kate. I know this will sound so weird, but I meet your brother almost a month ago, when he came to fix my toilet, as it was broken. Since I saw him, I developed a crush on him, and even I had not seen him since then, for some reason I kept thinking about him, and wishing that maybe one day I’ll see him again. I definitely never expected or whish for an encounter like this one…
“This is definitely crazy, but I am not surprised on you developing a crush on my brother.” For some reason hearing that Emily is Stephen’s sister and not girlfriend made me release my breath, even if I did not realize I was holding it. “I mean since I can remember, he had that effect on every girl, and the fact that he loves to flirt with everyone adds to it.” was all she could say before starting to cry, thinking about her Stephen.
“Yeah, I realized that your brother likes to flirt a lot, even if sometimes he does it without realising. But I’, sure he is also a great guy.”
“How did you find him? The nurse told me you came with him in the ambulance and I’m not sure how that happen?”
“Some friends were giving me a lift home from college, when I saw your brother’s car in the accident. I just start running out of the car and when I saw him, I knew I could not let him alone. I just begged the doctor to let me come with him in the ambulance…” In that second a nurse came, and was calling Emily’s name. We both turned toward the nurse, to hear everything she has to say about Stephen.
“I asked some doctors around, and I could not get to much information at the moment. He is still in operation, and as it is only 30 minute since he arrived, there is not much to say yet. The doctors said he is stable now, but we have to wait until the end of the operation, and also the next 72 hours after the operation are very important. Fortunately, even if the accident was quite bad, he did not suffer any brain injury, but he did lost a lot of blood, and he has some broken bones. That is all I know for now, but if there will be any news, I’ll let you know.”
Emily could not believe what she was hearing, and in fairness, I was the same. We were both looking at the nurse, trying to be strong and pay attention at every single detail she was saying to us.
“But he will get out of the operation right? I mean, you said he is stable so that it is a good thing? You have to do everything you can to save him, my brother is a strong man, and he cannot die at such a young age. Beside, we had to much death in this family, so promise me that the doctors will do the impossible to save him” was all she could say, as her tears did not let her continue, even if she wanted to add something else.
“I promise we are doing everything we can do to save your brother. I am sorry but now I have to go as it is a busy night. I promise, if I find something else, I’ll let you know as soon as possible”
I thanked the nurse, for all the information she gave, before turning to Emely and give her a hug. I’m not sure who needed that hug more, if her or I, but it felt good to know that Stephen has a sister that loves and cares for him so much. But my mind, was keep thinking about what thing that Emily said, “we had to much death in this family”. I could not stop wondering what she meant by that.
After a few seconds, I looked at Emily and reassured her that Stephen will get through this. “Listen Emily, I might not know a lot of things about your brother, but I am sure that he is a strong person. Before they took him into the operation room, he promised me he’ll fight hard for his life, and that he will get out of this. Your brother keeps his promises right?”
Between her tears and sobs she manages to calm herself a little and say, “yes, Stephen, always keeps his promises. There was not a time, when he promised me something that he did not do it after.”
“You see. Then I am sure, he will keep this promise too. We have to be strong and hope for the best. I’m sure in no time, the doctors will come out of that room and tell us that everything is okay with him. By the way, did you let your parents or other family member know about the accident?”
“There is no one else that should be here, except myself.”
I was so shocked by what she said, that I could not keep my surprise, and curiosity, so I just asked her what she meant by that.
“We do not have any extended family, no uncles or aunts, so there is really no one to call.”
“And your parents?” The second I asked the question, I regretted doing so, as I could see the huge pain in her eyes, and she just start crying again.
When she calmed herself again she told me what she meant by so much death in her family. “My parents, same as Stephen now, had a car accident five years ago, and died immediately. It was a bad rainy day, and the road were wet, and my father just lost the control of the car. They didn’t even make it to the hospital, as the impact was so hard, they died a short moment after the ambulance arrived. When the ambulance arrived, they tried to save them, but no luck. They were inseparable, so probably the only good think, if you can see it like that is that at least they died together.”
“Oh my god, Emily, I’m so sorry to hear that. In can’t imagine what you and Stephen must have gone through. And now with this accident, in one way it is like re-living it for you. I’m really, really sorry to hear that.”
“It was hard. I’ve to say that it was much harder on him, as even if I’m the big sister in the family, he took the job of taking care of everything, and the death of our parents really got to him, as he become more distant, and less emotional. It was after this, that he become to go out more, and start having on and off relationships and nothing serious.”
“I guess he was afraid of losing another person for which he cares deeply. Ii could understand his behaviour, even if I might not agree with it.”
“Yes, exactly. He just did not want to go again through all the pain of losing someone, so he decided to avoid compromises in a relationship.” After a few second she changed the subject as really there was not much to talk about him. “I’m going for a cup of coffee. Do you want one too?”
“No thanks, Emily. I’m fine.”
As Emily left to grab her cup of coffee, I couldn’t stop thinking about what she just told me about Stephen. As much as I understand his reasons, about not wanting a serious relation in his life, as he is afraid of losing someone again. But at the same time I think it is a little cowardly, as he is just running away from affection and love, do to his fear. This explains why he wasn’t so appealed of the idea, to grab lunch together someday, when I asked him. So, am I hopping for something that it will never happen? As much as I might want to try something with Stephen, he does not seem to want to do that.
Probably the best thing to do then is to leave. There is no point on staying here and wait for him to wake up, as the only thing that I will get is a thank you and probably an explanation of why he doesn’t want us to be friends or even something else. But then also, no matter what will happen, I cannot just leave him the way he is. I cannot forget about the fact that right now he is seating in an operation room, full of doctors, trying to save his life. The best thing to do is to wait until he gets out of operation, make sure he is okay, and then just leave. That way he won’t have to give me any explanation, and I don’t have to face his refusal once again.
Three hours later, the doctor finally comes out. The second we saw him, myself and Emily, jump out of the chair, hoping that he brings some good news.
“We successfully finished the operation. He is stable and everything went well. Thankfully, we stopped the internal bleeding, so that is a good think.”
“Thank God and you doctor. Thank you for saving my brother. So everything is okay with him right?” said Emily
“Well the operation went perfect, but the next 48 hours are very important to see how he feels. We’ll keep him under observation, to make sure what he does not develop an infection and that his recovery goes perfectly.
Even if the doctor said that only after the two days can he definitely say he is out of danger, both myself and Emily, felt good that at least he was alive. “Could we see him please?” was all hat Emily could ask now.
“He is sleeping now, as he has to recover, but you could visit him for a few minutes. But not the two of you together. If you follow me, I’ll show you where he is.”
Emily turned back to me and gave me a big hug, that took me by surprised as I did not expect it. “Thank you, Kate. Thank you so much for being here for my brother, and staying all this time with me. I won’t stay a long time, as I’m sure you’ll want to see him a little too.” And with that she turned back to the doctored, and both of them left to go and see Stephen.
I was extremely happy, that the operation went well, even if he was not completely out of danger. He did keep his promise to fight for his life, so that is a good thing. But right now, I’m not sure I can see him. Not after all the things his sister told me about him. Probably the best thing to do now, is to go home, take a shower and just relax, as I planned since I left college, a few hours ago.
I could not deny that him asking about me, was a nice thing to hear, and even brought a smile on my face, but I also could not forget about the fact that he is not a relationship guy. I don’t know what to do… As much as I want to run into his room and give him a hug, and make sure he is all right, I have to think about myself too. Going there and then leaving once again, won’t be easy to do. This will only cause me to think more about him, and about what will never happen between us.
When Emily came back from the room, she told me he looked well and tranquil, and that she is sure he will get well soon. Looking at her, I could see she was so tired, and even if I was feeling a little tired myself, I knew she needs some rest, if she wants to be here again.
“Emily, you need some rest. You look so tired. If you want I could stay with him tonight, until you come again tomorrow. Go home and get some sleep, relax a little, as I’m sure he’ll need you strong.”
“Thanks, but I’m ok. Beside, I’m sure you are tired as well, and want to go home, so don’t worry about me.”
“Seriously, I’m ok. I’ll stay tonight, as anyway he is sleeping now and I don’t think he will get up anytime soon. So you go home, get some rest and come back tomorrow. If anything happens I’ll text or call you, I promise.”
“Are you sure, you are okay with staying here with him, for the night. I really don’t want to impose too much on you. You already did so much for him.”
“Yes, I’m sure.” I told her. She hesitated for a second, but she knew she needed to get some sleep if she wanted to be here for him tomorrow. She gave me a hug and then left.
After she left, I went into Stephen’s room, as I promised her I will do. He was peacefully sleeping, trying to gain his energy back, hopefully trying to keep his promise about fighting to stay alive. I went to sit in the couch that was near the window, and start to read on some of the cases that I had to prepare for a project in college. It was a good distraction for a few hours, but then I just fall asleep.
When I waked up, it was morning, around eight but Stephen was still peacefully sleeping. I texted Emily that everything was the same, and not to worry about anything. After that, I start sorting my papers from last night, and putting them back in my purse, when Stephen start waking up. He tried to get up in a setting position when he saw me, but I could see the pain that it caused him to do that small effort. I run towards his bed, to try and help him.
“Hey stranger. How are you feeling? Do you need me to call the doctor? Or get you something?” it was all I could say.
“Hey. No thank you, I’m okay for now. Much better then yesterday, given the circumstances of the situation.”
“I’m, glad to hear that. I’m sure you will be back on your feat in no time. Beside, your sister is very nice, so I’m sure she will take good care of you.”
“Talking about my sister, where is she? Why is she not here instead of you? Does she not know I’m here?”
“Yes she knows you are here. After the doctor told us, the operation went well, I told her I could stay with you the rest of the night, so she could get some rest. I’ll stay with you until she comes back, if you’re okay with that, of course.” After saying that, I was so afraid that he will say no. That he will tell me to go, and obviously that would be normal, as at the end of the day, we don’t know each other at all. But when he said that it’s okay to stay, I could not hide my content.
“Kate listen. Thank you. Really, thank you for all you did, for staying with me, for giving me your blood, for staying with my sister last night, and for coming here today too. I really appreciate all the thing you have done for me.”
I was so happy that he did remember who I was, as I was so afraid that he might open his yes, and don’t even recognize me. But he did, and apparently he remembered the drive to the hospital too, if he knows I gave him my blood. “Stephen, you don’t have to thank me for anything. I haven’t done anything, that no reasonable person would do. The second I saw you yesterday, I just could not let you alone, and when we arrived here, of course I couldn’t go home, without knowing how you were feeling. Beside, your sister was very nice, and she was a great company.”
“Well, I’m not sure if everyone would do what you did for be, but really thank you. I don’t know how I’ll pay you for all this. And sorry for ruining your weekend. You really don’t have to stay here, until Emily is back. It’s ok if you want to leave, really.”
“Stephen, you did not ruin anything for me, as I didn’t hand anything planned for today anyway. And if I stayed here with you, is because I care about you and I wanted to be here. Beside I think Emily needed the rest, as I’m sure she won’t leave you alone, until you can go back home. But like I said, if you don’t want me here I can go. At the end of the day, we don’t know each other that much, so I get why you might not want me here.”
“No, I did not mean for it to come like that. I’d be happy if you’ll keep me company until Em comes back, I just did not want to keep you away from your things that all. And now that you’re here I guess I need to explain why I did not text you back the last time…”
“Stephen, you don’t have to do that. I get it now. Your sister told me you’re not the relationship guy, so don’t worry about it.”
He was clearly surprised by that answered and all he could say was, “What did she told you?”
“She told you what happened with your parents. I’m really sorry about that by the way. I can’t imagine what you must have gone through.”
“Thank you. It was pretty hard I won’t deny that.”
“I can imagine. She also told me that it was after your parents’ death, that you stopped having any serious relationship, as you were afraid to lose more people in your life.” The second I saw the last words, Stephen’ face change completely, and I wasn’t sure if it was a good idea to tell him that.
“Well that is one way to put it. It’s not that I’m afraid of losing someone again… I guess it’s more the fact that I don’t want to deal with all the stress and complications that a relationship brings. I know it’s not the best decision to take in life, but I don’t want all that. My life is great the way it is now and I’m not looking forward to change it. That is why I did not text you or anything. I can see you’re the type of person that wants a relationship and not just a way to have fun, right?”
“Like I said, I understand your point, no need to explain everything. But yes, you are right. I’m not that type of person, I want commitment from a person, and not just for a few hours. I want it to last. So in one way, thank you for being honest and well for not giving me any hopes either”
As we wanted to say something else, sister came in the room, and that was the end of the conversation. It did not go exactly as I hoped but at least he was honest about it. Maybe other in his shoes would have taken advantage and still have his fun, and then just leave, but he was nice enough as to tell me why he did not want me.
After hugging Emily, and talking for a few seconds with her, I turned back to Stephen, to say my goodbye and then to Emily too. I knew then that this would really be the last time we will see each other, as it was clear that we both wanted different things in this life.
“Stephen, I really wish you all the best, and I wish you a speedy recovery. It was great seeing you again, even if the circumstances weren’t the best. And also thanks for being so honest. I really appreciate it.”
“It was great seeing you too Kate. Really thank you once again for everything you have done for me. I wish you all the best, and I hope you will find someone who can give you more than this, because you deserve it. You are really a great person.”
“Thank you, and I wish you the same.” Then I turned and Emily to say my goodbye too. “Emily, it was great meeting you even in this circumstances. Wish you all the best in the future.”
“It was great meeting you too, Kate. Like Stephen already said, thank you for staying with him last night, and for everything else you have done for him. I will never forget it, and I wish you all the best in the future.”
I picked my purse, and left the room, as clearly there was nothing else for me do to there. It’s good that I did not put my hopes to high, as they would be crushed right now, with what Stephen just told me. But deep down, I did have a little hope, that maybe this time, he will give me a change. I guess I had the hope, that maybe I was the one to change this idea. Don’t we all girls believe that one day will find a guy, that will want to have a serious relationship with us. The guy that would want to give up all his simple life, and decided to have a formal relationship with us, decided that you are the one he was waiting all his life.
Deep down I had had the hope, that I would be the woman who changes his mind, but I seams that I’m not. I won’t lie, it does hurt a little bit, but that is the way life is, right? The things you care the most about, always bring you the biggest happiness or the worst disappointment.