Jeanette rushed into the room. "Is he okay?" She panted.
"Yes." I muttered and put Luc's arm under the blanket.
I stood up and turned to face Jeanette. Alexandria was asleep in her arms. I sighed with relief. Seeing the two of them took some of the stress and fear away.
"How's he doing?" Jeanette pulled up a chair and sat down beside Luc.
"He's alive. That's the important thing." I responded.
"We should have done something sooner." She whimpered.
"I know." I whispered.
We've done wrong by him. I'll make sure we fix it.
Dad was extremely stressed out. He even yelled at a guy, threw him off Luc's case. Guess he did something he didn't like, I didn't go anywhere near him.
When we were finally able to see Luc, Mom made me wait outside his room while she went in. I wanted to see him. Was he even awake?
Dad walked out of the room. "Dad?"
He turned and looked at me. "I'm going home to get supplies. You can go see him if you want." I hopped up and rushed into the room.
When I saw Luc I froze. It was hard to see him like that. Almost dead and wrapped up like a mummy. He had a lot of tubes in him. Will he be okay?
I sat down beside Mom.
"He's alive, right?" I asked.
"Yes." Mom answered.
Mom reached over and pulled me into her. She was upset.
"Oh Mom. He'll wake up." I said to her. She kissed me on the head and rubbed my arm.
A few hours passed. Mom went to the cafeteria and to feed Alexandria. Dad came back and, of all the things he could've done, he cut Luc's nails.
"If he wakes up and we're not here, make sure he doesn't try to talk." Dad told me.
I looked up at him before he left. "Hey Dad. Why'd you yell at that guy?" I asked.
"He was being too rough with Luc. He was in a rush and I didn't need that for him." He answered. I nodded and he left.
"Where am I?" I thought. "What? I'm still alive?!" Jason. That asshole! Why couldn't he just let me die?
I opened my eye. I was in the hospital. I gasped a little, barely any air. I couldn't feel a thing. I flung my left arm out and knocked over a vase, causing it to shatter.
I clasped onto the bed rail and heaved myself over it. I have to get out of here. I landed on the cold floor with a loud smack.
"..." I can't speak. "Why can't I speak?" I opened my mouth. Nothing came out.
I felt so weak, I could barely stand up. I used my head to help myself stand up, but I crumbled to the floor.
Why didn't I die? I wanted to die. I want to die!
I slowly reached over and grabbed a shard from the broken vase. I looked at my arm. Healed scars and a throbbing vein. The shard touched my wrist.
Die! Die! Die!
A hand grabbed my wrist and pulled. I didn't let go of the shard. I looked up. Jason.
I didn't even hear him come in.
"Let it go, Luc." He ordered.
"I hate you! I hate you!"
I hit Jason's knee. "Knock it off!" He yelled.
He pulled me to my feet.
"Kill him! Kill him!" I raised my hand that held the shard and tried to stab him.
"Stop!" Jason yelled. He held my wrist, trying to keep my hand back. It was close to his eye, the shard. I kept pushing. Jason grunted.
Two hands grabbed me and ripped me from Jason. It was Brian. He held onto me.
"Luc stop. Get back in the bed." He ordered. It's his fault. I should have died! I would've if it wasn't for him! I went ballistic on him.
"No right! You had no right!"
"What's wrong with him?!" I asked Dad when Luc tried to stab him.
Dad had wrestled with him.
"Jason! Hold him!" Dad yelled as Dr. Eliza ran in with a syringe.
"Oh no..." I said.
"Jason!" He called.
Dad managed to get him on the bed, but Luc was still thrashing. He hit Dr. Eliza and knocked her into the nightstand.
Dad had to sit up and practically straddle him.
I ran forward and grabbed Luc's arm and held it out. Dr. Eliza dove forward and jabbed the needle in his arm causing him to let out a pained squeal when she did. She pulled it out. He was still thrashing a little.
"Shouldn't he have passed out by now?" I asked.
"This isn't a movie!" Dad panted.
Luc started to slow down. His grip on the shard was loosening and he stopped moving. The shard fell to the floor.
Dad put his hand on the side of Luc's head and looked at him. I looked at him too.
His eye was still open, but slowly closing. Once he closed his eye Dad put his head down on the pillow.
Dad huffed and got off the bed.
"Did he freak out because he was scared?" I asked.
"Doubt it." Dad answered.
"Then what?" I asked.
"Pastor." Dad called. "Let's put him on suicide watch."
Dr. Eliza nodded.
"Brian we need to talk still." She said.
"We will." Dad said.
He put his hand on my shoulder. "Are you okay?" I only nodded.
"I'm going to get the psych consult for when he wakes up." He said.
Pastor walked out.
Dad looked at me. "I'm sorry I made you do that."
"Go outside. Let me clean up here." He said.
I exhaled and left.
A few minutes passed and Dad came out of the room holding the broken vase pieces and other things that Luc could hurt himself or someone with.
"Can I go sit with him?" I asked.
Dad hesitated. "Sure." Will he wake up again?
"He won't wake up for a while, so don't worry." He must've read my mind.
I sat down beside Luc. Dad had put him under the blanket at one point. Luc looked as troubled as ever.
"What's going on in there, Luc?" I asked.
I heard talking outside the room.
"No, you can't!" I heard Mom cry. Who's she talking to?
I got up and walked into the hallway. I saw a woman in a suit and my parents on the other side of her. Mom looked worried and quite frankly about ready to cry. Dad looked upset.
I went over to them, "Mom? Dad?"
"Jason, take Alexandria and go sit with Luc." She handed Alexandria to me, the woman turned as she watched us. She wore an ID badge on her jacket.
"Social Services." It said.
I opened my mouth. "Jason, go." Mom ordered.
I left quickly. I sat down beside Luc.
"Is she going to try and take Luc away?" I thought.
We exhaled with relief, the social worker had been called off. Good, cause I could not handle her holier-than-thou attitude and she's not taking my son.
"Do you think he may actually get taken from us?" Jeanette asked me.
I shook my head. "I don't know."
Pastor walked over. "We didn't call her. One of the other doctors did."
"Mm-hmm." I nodded.
Luc woke up for a bit, gave us another scare in fact. He tried to rip out his stitches. Pastor stopped him and tried to calm him down, but he was inconsolable, so she was forced to sedate him again.
The next day Emily Carte showed up. She'd taken the place of the other social worker.
"Guess we aren't off the hook." I whispered to Jeanette.
"We just have to explain to her what happened and show her we're still able to take care of him." Jeanette responded. I nodded.
"Please, don't let him be taken from us." I thought.
We sat in a hospital conference room, Emily sat in front of us, her business face on. She looked angry, quite frankly.
"Sorry you had to come all this way, Emily." Jeanette said nervously.
Emily got straight to the point. "Luc is in the hospital with a damaged voicebox. You guys keep sedating him."
"He was trying to kill himself." I explained.
"Oh, sure." Emily said sarcastically.
"We didn't do this; we'd never hurt him." Jeanette said.
"I know, Jeanette, but this isn't the main issue. I want to talk about what led up to this."
"His PTSD." Jeanette said.
"Yes... Why didn't you do anything sooner? You're doctors. Shouldn't you have noticed? That's abusive in itself don't you think?" Emily asked.
"And, I even told you from the start. He's fragile. I don't know what it is, if you just don't know how to handle him or you're scared - or what."
Jeanette and I shifted uncomfortably.
"Well, it's as you said. We're doctors. His episodes started suddenly and quite frankly subtly, at first. I don't know how, but he managed to slip by us." Jeanette spoke.
"Well...the skipping and not coming home, was one indication." I jumped in.
"But of course...that's not a justifiable excuse." Jeanette said.
"And he had an appointment with a therapist this morning. Which he obviously didn't make."
"We were just too busy to get one sooner." She finished.
Emily stood up. "I know you're busy, but there's a fine line between busy and negligence."
Jeanette sighed quietly.
"Where is Luc now?" Emily asked.
"In his room. With Jason and his sister, and an orderly. He's on suicide watch." Jeanette answered.
"Take me to see him." Emily ordered.
When we got to Luc's room he was awake. He's still sedated, just lightly so he'd be calm.
Jason sat on his bed holding a spoon of Jello out to him. Alexandria was in between his legs.
"Liquid diet, Jason." I said loudly.
"Oh." He set the spoon and cup of Jello down.
The three of us walked in.
Luc reached over and grabbed the Jello cup and threw it at me. It hit the side of my chest. The Jello fell to the floor in pieces.
"Luc," I scolded.
"Yeah, he's still pretty angry." Jason stated. He leaned over and whispered, "he hit me with the tissue box."
Jeanette spoke up. "Luc, I know you're angry but don't take it out on them."
Luc clenched his teeth together, as if to growl.
Emily didn't say anything, but just examined Luc. What will she decide? What will she leave behind when she walks away today?
"Dr. Benson." A nurse called.
"Dr. Pruitt is here." We turned around. Finally. The psych consult.
"I'd like to speak to the two of you privately first." He said.
Emily left and sat in with Jason. Pruitt began to walk away.
"Wait." Jeanette said.
We looked at her.
"I hate to do this, but I think it may be needed." She said.
I think I know where she's going with this.
"We should put him in restraints."
"I mean he...keeps trying to kill himself and attack you and Jason. We can't keep him sedated forever." I nodded in agreement.
"Okay." I breathed.
Loud beeping came from Luc's room.
"Please, please!" I heard Jason's voice.
We, a nurse, and an orderly ran into the room.
Luc was grabbing onto Jason's shirt and pulling him. Emily was trying to pull him away.
"His heart rate is up." The nurse said.
"He's hallucinating again." Jeanette stated as she snatched up Alexandria from the bed.
"Luc!" I called.
The nurse injected his IV and he slowly began to calm down. His grip released and Jason backed away from the bed as quickly as he could.
Luc laid back down, losing consciousness slowly.
"Luc," Jeanette sobbed quietly and touched his face.
I turned to the orderly. "Get some restraints. Now." I ordered.
He ran out quickly.
When the orderly came back Jeanette and the others left while I put the restraints on Luc.
Jeanette was very upset at this point.
We sat in the conference room with Dr. Pruitt. We were talking a lot.
"I have Luc's chart from when he came in two years ago." Dr. Pruitt had the binder on the table. "I see how you guys got to this point."
"Is Luc a danger to himself and others?" Dr. Pruitt asked.
"Yes." I answered.
"Would you allow me to have him committed to the psych ward? It's the best course of action at this point."
"Yes." I answered again.
Jeanette hit my thigh. I turned to her.
"They're better equipped to help him than us." I whispered.
"I know that," she whispered back, "but aside from what happened yesterday, how is he a danger to himself?"
She doesn't know.
"He tried to slit his wrists before we met him. He's in a fragile state right now. We can't know what he's going to do next." I explained.
"What?" Jeanette questioned.
I turned to Dr. Pruitt. "If getting him medicated will help him, then you have our permission to take him." I said.
"Jeanette?" Dr. Pruitt called.
"Get him the help he needs." She said. She got up and left.
Dr. Pruitt and I finished our conversation then we parted ways. I went to Luc's room and saw Jeanette standing by his bed.
"You knew about these the whole time?" She asked. The large scars on his forearms.
I nodded my head. "Yes."
Jeanette changed the subject. "When does Pruitt intend on taking him?"
"He said within the next hour. He has to fill out paperwork first." I answered.
I moved to the foot of the bed. Jeanette held Luc's hand and sat down.
"Luc, baby?" She called softly. "I'm so sorry we let this happen to you. But I promise you, I won't let this happen again."
She kissed his hand. "I love you."
I lowered my head and looked out the window.
I opened my eye. "What happened?" I thought. "That's right...I can't speak anymore."
"What's more, I'm still alive." I felt loopy, and tired. I don't think I can move.
I looked down. Jeanette was holding my hand and had her head down on the bed. I saw a strap on my wrist. It kept me from moving. I looked to my right. Same thing.
And my feet too?!
I gasped a little. Jeanette raised her head. I started jerking, trying to get out of the restraints. I can't believe this!
"Luc, Luc!" Jeanette called as she rose to her feet. "Calm down. You're okay. It's okay."
"Stay calm." She soothed. I settled down.
She began to sit down, "we restrained you because you're a danger to yourself."
"So? That's the fucking point!" I thought.
"There's something I need to tell you." Jeanette said.
I looked at her.
"You're going to be angry at us and maybe even resent us, but I swear it's to help you. You'll get better." She said.
"But there's nothing wrong with me." I thought.
"We're putting you in the psychiatric ward of the hospital, you'll be put on medication so this won't happen again." She explained.
"But that's where crazy people go, right?"
"I'm not crazy!" I started jerking again and the monitor went crazy.
"Luc, please!" Jeanette begged. "Stay calm. It's to help!"
"Shut up! I don't need help! Get away from me! Get away!"
Brian and a nurse ran in. "Bastard!"
"Don't you dare sedate me again!"
I jerked, trying to rip myself out of the restraints. "Get me out of these."
"Maybe we should take them off before he hurts himself." Jeanette said.
"We can't have him attacking people." Brian said.
Jeanette grabbed onto my shoulders. "Stop it!"
I sat still.
"Luc, I swear this isn't to hurt you. I wouldn't let them take you if it was to." She said.
"Hey!" Jeanette screamed at the nurse. She was holding a needle to the IV. "Don't sedate him again!" The lady backed off.
Jeanette kneeled down. "I'm going to take off the restraints. Don't lash out at me or try to hurt Brian." She ordered.
I didn't do anything.
She started with my feet, then undid my wrists.
"Just look at me, Luc." She said softly.
She kneeled by my head. I turned onto my side and rested my hand on the pillow.
"Do you like how you feel right now, Luc?" Jeanette asked.
I shook my head.
"This place can help you. So this doesn't happen again. So you don't feel like this."
"I promise you it'll help." She finished.
She held my hand. "Will you go?"
I nodded slowly. Jeanette smiled. She leaned forward and kissed my nose, and I let her.
"Thank you, Luc." She said.
I just closed my eye.
"They're ready." A voice said.
"Okay." Brian's voice responded.
The bed began to move and Jeanette's hand slowly slipped from mine.
A tear fell from my eye. I made a mess, and now I'm paying the price.