What We Do for Love

Chapter 5

I barge through the infirmary doors. All attention flies to me; all of them gawking at the 21 year old that is insane. I trip over my two left feet, shuffling to the reception desk.

I barely notice the lingering glances, the only thought occupying my mind is Eric. Where is he? Is he okay? Did Four kill him?

"Where is Eric Coulter's room?" I whimper.

"I'm sorry, only need-to-know is given this information."

"Where the fuck is his room? Tell me!" I scream in the nurse's face. "I'm his cousin..."

"I didn't know that miss. His room number is 3B," she apologizes.

I don't look behind. I just whisk through the hallways, dodging corners, trying to find him. I am in my own world. Thoughts run through my mind: does he have brain injuries, will he remember me, does he know what happened, is he in a coma, is he dead?

I find the room number on the left side of the door. I slowly walk through the gaping hole in the wall, terrified about what I will see on the other side.

A sob wracks through my body, breaking apart my sole. His body is battered and crippled. He doesn't even look like my Eric. I drag my feet across the slick tile of the infirmary's floor. I lower my head, kissing his swollen eye. His smell means security to me and lingers in the air, but is tinted with the scent of disinfectant.

He is asleep: maybe never to wake up. I can't live without him. I can't complete life's tasks without him. I don't want to. Who will hold me when I cry? Who will laugh at my stupid jokes? Who will wake me up in the morning to tell me they love me?

The dream comes back to mind. What if I never get to raise a family with him? What if I don't get to love him how he was truly supposed to be loved? I hear the laughter of the little girl in the back of mind, reminding me of what I am on the verge of losing.

"Eric, please wake up. I can't do this without you. I love you! Please! Please, wake up," I weep.

"You promised me you wouldn't leave me. The night after you returned from the factionless raid, you held me. I was so scared you would never return. That was when I was for certain I loved you; that you were the one I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. You rocked me to sleep that night, whispering in my ear that you would never leave me, ever! Don't break that promise, Eric!"

I feel a hand hover over my shoulder, unsure if they should touch me. I'm hysterical. I jam my elbow into their stomach and hunch over Eric. His heart monitor flat lines.

"Why isn't he waking up! Somebody help him!"

I'm pulled out of the room by the nurse at the desk. I push her off of me and slide down the wall. He is my missing piece. I can't go on without him. I would be wandering around missing for the rest of my life. I would never be complete. He is a part of me.

I hear the shock being drawn back into his being. I hear footsteps advancing toward me. I hear my best friend calling my name. I hear the nurses gossiping in their station. I hear the light above me flicker. I am in a rem state. I am not here.

Tobias kneels down in front of me. He wipes my tears away with his man beating hands. I push him away from me.

"You killed Eric! I loved him! How could you!" I screech at Tobias. I lunge at him.

He takes a few hits, letting the guilt flow through his veins. He traps my hands between his. Falling in his arms, letting him envelope me in a hug, was inevitable. I was drained. All of my strength leaving me, escaping with my tears.


An hour later, they walked out of room 3B with emotionless expressions. I collapse on Tobias, the emotions too strong to remain inside the bottle I tried to keep sealed shut.

"Are you Eric's cousin?" a older man asks.

His grey hair is sticking to his forehead from perspiration. He is wearing a doctor's coat. I cry harder. He is going to tell me my love is dead. I slowly nod my head.

"Eric is awake. You may see him now. I must warn you he is injured severely," the man sympathizes.

"What are his injuries?"

"He had a collapsed lung that was ruptured from a broken rib. We already repaired his lung. He has a bruised kidney, a mild concussion, sprained knee, and his eyebrow piercing was ripped out. I'm so sorry, sweetie." He walks away, letting me bask in the stifling news.

I rise out of my seat and step in pace with the ticking clock on the wall. When his door comes into view, I speed up. I inhale and exhale, clearing my thoughts. I need to be strong for him; even I know that isn't possible.

I walk through the door, keeping my head down. I sit in the chair at his bedside. I take his hand in mine, holding it to my heart for dear life.

"I thought you left me..."

"I would never leave you, Tris. How did you get in here anyway. It's family only. I mean you are fam-"

I cut him off with my lips on his. Inhaling his scent. I don't know how to describe it, but I feel revived. His hand grips the back of my neck, holding me in place. I am whole.

"I thought you learned your lesson, Eric!" I retreat from Eric's form and glare at Tobias, wondering what happened to him. He stalks toward Eric's bed, raising his fist.

I propel over him, preparing for the blow, but I don't feel one. I raise my head and see shocked blue eyes.

"This is who has stolen your heart all of these years?" Tobias whispers, his voice wavering. I nod apprehensively, afraid to put Eric's life on the line. "I hurt the one you love?" I nod once more.

Tobias falls on floor, utter regret covering his face like a soaking blanket. I know I should comfort him but I can't. The alarms start going off in my brain, signaling me of the task at hand: break Eric out of Dauntless.

The next few hours are a blur. It consists of me kicking Tobias out of room 3B, ignoring his apologies. My heart shattered, knowing that I was cutting the bridges of our friendship.

Eric ripped out the tubes and wires connected to him. We stealthily made our way through the infirmary. I made him stand guard while I stole percocet to sneak into his food.

We knew it was smart to leave immediately and not go back to our apartments. We left out of the infirmary exit.

I fell asleep in Eric's arms on an old mattress in the factionless sector.

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