Not Worth It
Kurt rushed down the hospital corridor towards the doctor’s office. He had no idea what Jordan was even doing there because her next appointment hadn’t been scheduled until tomorrow. When he stopped by the physical therapy room to pick up her keys, hoodie and phone David had been annoyingly elusive about the reason behind Jordan’s change in venue.
“She seemed upset, so I called in a favor.” He explained though Kurt could see so much more in his friends’ eyes. He decided to take him at face value as the doctor had stressed the need for him to come quickly.
Jordan looked strangely disinterested when he came surging through the office door. She was lying on the doctor’s couch, her face the picture of utter exhaustion. Her eyes immediately closed again once she recognized Kurt as if conversation were too monumental a task.
“Doctor?” He turned to the older woman questioningly and she quickly led him to another part of the office.
"Thank you for coming so quickly,” she began in a hushed tone though Jordan seemed completely uninterested in the commotion surrounding her. “I’m concerned that we may have a crisis on our hands.”
Kurt frowned at the term ‘crisis’. Sure Jordan had been upset overnight, she had suffered a few nightmares but he didn’t feel one restless night justified a full-scale intervention. He told the doctor so and her expression grew dour.
“Did you know the man who attacked her might be alive?”
“I’m sorry. Where did you hear that?”
“From Jordan. I’m afraid the emotional trauma of that possibility may have caused her a severe emotional break…”
Kurt was still stuck on what the doctor had just said. CLU was alive? Suddenly it occurred to him that this was what Jordan wanted to hide from him, what Nona was too loyal to divulge. Unfortunately for his beloved, her subconscious wanted help even if she didn’t. His mind backtracked the conversation.
“A severe emotional break? I think anyone would overreact to news like that.” He stated slightly angrily, trying to protect Jordan from accusations that she might be unhinged.
“That’s just it. Most people would overreact but her reaction was the opposite. She was eerily calm when she told me that she hoped he would ‘finish the job’.” The doctor paused letting what she had just told him sink in. “Kurt, I asked her if she was suicidal and she said she didn’t know. I want to place her on a 48 hour psychiatric hold.”
At that last suggestion, Kurt reacted as if he had been burned. No! Jordan was NOT suicidal. She was just overwhelmed and he would not have her locked up like some out of control head case. He couldn’t do that to her.
“No. I’ll take her home and we’ll watch her.”
“Kurt, I don’t know if that’s wise…” Dr. Buckler had placed a calming hand on his arm but he snatched away and headed back towards Jordan. Kneeling before her, he tried to rouse her.
“Babe, wake up. We’re going home now okay?” She opened her eyes hazily as he pulled her upright. He quickly zipped her hoodie around her then cupped her face in his hands. “We’re going home.”
Jordan felt an immense sense of exhaustion as if letting go of her innermost feelings had taken all her energy with it. She was aware of Kurt dressing her, saying something about going home but she couldn’t clear her head enough to comprehend. He seemed angry. Was he angry with her? This is why we should have kept it to ourselves, her brain hissed but she ignored it. I need help; I know I do. I’m sorry Kurt; I can’t stop ruining your life. She must have said that last part out loud because she was enveloped in a crushing hug.
“Don’t say that. Don’t you ever say that. You are my life and we’ll get through this!” The hug was gone and she was suddenly lifted into his arms, a now maddeningly familiar position.
See? A burden. Why else would you need to be carried all the time? Much to Jordan’s annoyance, the little voice in her head was starting to make some very valid points. She wanted to protest, to tell Kurt to put her down but he was speaking again, his tone slightly less angry then it had been before and she was so tired.
“I appreciate your concern doctor, I really do. But we can handle this.” He was moving steadily towards the door in case she tried to stop him. She didn’t.
“Fine. But I want you both back here tomorrow for her appointment and if I’m not convinced you can handle it, I will invoke my right as physician.”
Kurt stopped moving at that last statement. He knew she was right. If she wanted to, she could have had Jordan admitted the second she thought she had become a threat to herself. Calling him had been a courtesy. He nodded his understanding and headed for the parking lot, ignoring the inquiring looks they were getting as he stormed down the halls, Jordan resting limply in his arms.
The car ride was noisy and bumpy, making it very hard for Jordan to sleep comfortably but then she realized there was something else nagging her. She could feel her body flashing hot and cold and she knew her powers were reflecting her emotional unrest. She had been suppressing them lately, pushing down anything related to that painful event. It seemed her powers would be denied release no longer and she lurched painfully into wakefulness, scaring the wits out of Kurt!
“What’s wrong? What happened?” He inquired with rising panic.
She couldn’t answer him as she pressed her knuckles tightly to the side of her head, eyes burning with the unreleased power. She didn’t think she could hold it much longer, her insides felt as if they’d been set aflame. She had never gone this long before and she was worried Kurt would pay dearly for that mistake unless she found a safe place to release, NOW. He parked the car at the back of their home and she hurriedly stumbled out, headed blindly for the small creek just beyond their backyard. Kurt was running behind her, yelling for her to stop but she couldn’t.
Her feet reached the edge of the creek but her balance was so distorted she tumbled down the small embankment. When her back struck the dirt, all the power she had been suppressing was forced from her in one concussive blast! Kurt barely avoided the wall of fire that shot down the creek before it imploded within itself, extinguished in a matter of seconds. Covering his mouth and nose, coughing through the smoke, he descended the embankment in search of Jordan. He found her lying in the belly of the creek, breathing raggedly, once again completely spent. When he bent down to pick her up, she came alive.
“No! Leave me alone,” she moaned while pushing him away. “Just leave me alone.” She moaned again as he fought to get her up the embankment and into the house. They fell into the foyer a dirty, smoky mess of limbs, she still fighting him with what little energy she had left.
“We need to get you in the shower.” He informed her; breathless from the literal and figurative uphill battle they had just endured. He tried to gather her up again but she managed to break free, falling hard against the wall. Kurt had had enough.
“Stop it! Why are you fighting me? I’m trying to help you… Dammit babe, I just want to help…”
She looked painfully pitiful, crumpled against that wall, dirty and covered in soot. Her eyes were closed but her mouth was moving, forming words soundlessly. Kurt moved closer to her cautiously, placing an ear to her mouth, trying to decipher what she was saying. When the sounds reached his eardrum, he felt his heart burst into a million tiny, jagged pieces. She was saying three little words over and over.
“Not worth it… not worth it…”
He wasn’t sure what she was referring to but he was certain he didn’t want to know. Kurt drew her cautiously into his lap relieved when she didn’t struggle. Her head settled onto his shoulder as she kept repeating those three painful words. He rose shakily to his feet before carrying her down the hall to the master bedroom. Kicking the door open he stumbled in and laid her on the bed as gently as he could manage. She murmured his name and he leaned closer, terrified of what he might hear this time.
“I’m sorry… I keep failing you…”
A single tear rolled down her cheek, leaving a trail in the soot on her face. Kurt couldn’t take it, couldn’t be strong. Had he lied to the doctor? Watching her battle through this emotional crisis was proving to be harder in the past hour than all those weeks in the hospital combined. He leaned forward, pressing a single kiss to her forehead before tucking her in. She was breathing evenly now, the exhaustion having won her over. He leaned back on his heels to fish his phone out of his pocket to call Nona. They would need all the support they could get to make it through the night.