Monday, October 1, 2012
Boyfriend in a Coma
I couldn’t talk, immediately. Perhaps I never would. At least I thought so in the beginning. But there were others who kept prodding, hoping for the best. Not those testing me, constantly. They were practically picking my brain.
There was the one who was by my bed a lot. I could hear him, how he was going to be a better brother. Honestly, I doubted he was talking to me. Someone, of higher calling, perhaps.
Still, I was numb for the most part. Just a broken body on the mend, which took weeks maybe months to fix. Somehow, I managed under all the monitoring and equipment I was hooked up too.
It was a bit fuzzy, but it seemed I’d been hit by a truck and evidently, I’d been missing. And maybe there was a reason I got hit.
Of course, I was going in and out. Sometimes, I felt my body actually floating away. And I could see this guy laying there bandaged up. I guess it was me. But I’d hang from the ceiling watching my progress.
In my dreams I met other people. We knew secret passageways that took us to some sort of neither world. Except it was only behind the walls of this place. I met a few people. There was a girl down the hall who overdosed on something. She wouldn’t tell me what.
“You might want to try it.” She made it sound like a secret recipe. I never learned her name, either.
“I promise, I won’t.” But that didn’t seem to satisfy her. She was very secretive, yet she looked quite supernatural with her golden curls and pale skin. Like an angel, I guess. Except, she seemed to be fading away.
Of course, she showed me how to steady myself in mid-air and to go from here to there. I’m quite clumsy. She on the other hand was so agile and nimble. I was afraid I’d never keep up. But she said that was because I was possibly on recall so it was OK if I didn’t perfect being a floater.
It was so unexpected too. There we were floating about the hospital. She was busy telling me about how everyone got in their predicaments. Carwecks. Football injuries. Someone broke their neck in the kitchen.
“They aren’t really sure who you are,” she informed me. “You better start remembering before its too late.”,
It might have been too late. Suddenly, I couldn’t hear her. I was sucked back into my body. The next thing I remembered my eyes opening and how happy someone was to see me.
“Geoff!” He squeezed my hand. I could only squeeze back. I gazed at this sky-blue eyed guy with his boyband haircut. If only I’d been happier to see him.
My head was filled with such emptiness.
“Geoff, you know who I am, don’t you?” He waited for some recognition. He told me he didn’t call my dad. “I know you two don’t talk. Besides, he’s in jail on a DUI. But I filled out all the paperwork. You don’t have to worry. Everything is under control. I took care of it.”
I only nodded not even wanting to know how much this would all cost. Evidently, a fortune. But he seemed optimistic about my recovery.
“Geoff, say something?” His sad puppy-like eyes were pleading, but I wasn’t sure if I could cope. All these expectations, and I had nothing.
There was the other fellow who was hanging around. I didn’t know him, either. Of course, he was happy with the news. He hugged my so called friend like a long lost buddy.
“I’m so glad you aren’t Kirby.” He explained about his brother, how he was some sort of high tech bank robber tapping into people’s accounts and sucking their money into a mystery account overseas. Of course, he didn’t expect to ever hear from his brother, again.
“I guess I am too.” I agreed. Still I felt rather stupid and totally doubtful. “Who are you people?” Did I have to guess?
“Penn.” The one who wanted me to remember him who wore nice slacks and a dark plaid shirt to match, finally gave me his name.
“Joey.” The other informed me, who’s brother was the bad one and evidently still on the loose.
I winced thinking what a nice couple they made. Penn, all preppy and blond. Joey with dark feathered hair who looked as if he could be a rockstar in those skinny jeans.
“I don’t know what to think," Penn said about my misfortune. "So random. If only you’d called me that day.” Penn was still in discontent that I wasn’t responding to anything from my past. “I would have picked you up from the grocery store.”
“Grocery store?” I winced, thinking I evidently wasn’t the sharpest tool in the shed.
“You work at the deli. Salads are your speciality. You chop things up.” Penn told me I wanted to be a chef.
“So, my dad hates me?” I winced, wondering if he’d ran over me.
“You never talk about him.” Penn shrugged. He pulled out a CD mix. “See if this helps.”
“Huh?” I guess it wouldn’t hurt. Maybe we should start with candy bars. That might bring some memories. My stomach was starting to growl. My limbs felt so weak as if I might have a relapse and I’d fade back with my friend, who I’m sure was laughing at me at the moment for being so silly.
“Wake up..its a beautiful morning...” As soon as I heard the riff of the guitar and the whistling harmony, I couldn’t help but smile.
“I know that song.” I was almost moving to the beat of the tune.
“That’s our song!” Penn sighed with a happy relief as if it were meant for our moment.
“It was on The Inbetweeners.” I said automatically.
“The Inbetweeners?” He squinted hard as if that was not the answer he was looking for.
“Yeah, Simon, Will, Neill and..Jay... Its a British comedy.” I sighed as if I knew exactly what I was talking about.
“That’s all you get from a song by The Drums?” Penn didn’t look so happy about this.
“It was the first song we ever danced too.” Penn told me.
I couldn’t help but stare at him. Was I missing something?
“Huh.” I didn’t mean to disappoint him. I really wished I could go back in limbo. Obviously, there was nothing for me here.
Finally, dinner arrived. I could definitely go for a steak right now, but there was bland salisbury steak and mashed potatoes.
“We’ll get through this, we will.” Penn nodded. Joey left as if there was no reason for him to stay around. I kept thinking Penn might really need him.
“So is he..your friend?” I thought they might even be a couple.
“I guess, we were almost in a band, but our one gig got cancelled because the bathrooms weren’t working.” He explained.
“Imagine that.” I dug into my mashed potatoes, thinking I didn’t really want to know about the band. The girl in a coma was on my mind.
“We might have had our own EP by now if it hadn’t been for those stupid bathrooms.” Penn said as if he were only using it as an excuse of something else on his mind.
I wolfed down the steak and cold green beans even if they didn’t taste great. A part of me thought I might already be in purgatory. Life was not the best. But I was here.
“Look, we go way back, Geoff. You knew me in high school. I just didn’t know you..you had feelings for me, then.” Penn kept watching me as if I might stop and admit everything. But I couldn’t even make anything up.
“I love you.” His voice cracked as if he were hopelessly devoted to me.
“I-I..” I closed my eyes. “I kind of get that. Its just...” How could I explain it. “I’m not gay.”
Maybe I was once, but I wasn’t that guy anymore. I didn’t know where he went.
“Who knows, maybe my Dad might like me now.” I sighed. “But.. um..I don’t think I give a rat’s ass if he does.”
Penn was there for me. And I did feel a certain kind of love, just not the kind with sex.
If only I could break it to him about the girl in the coma down the hall. I didn’t want him to think I was mental.
“Guess, we can be friends.” I shrugged.
“Friends.” He nodded. “I got a room ready for you.”
“Can’t wait to see it.” I smiled, thinking I wanted to go home, after all.