"Soraya," Zeke's Voice trembled through the phone, and my veins filled with Ice.
"What? What happened?" He didn't respond, "Zeke?"
"Something went wrong, really wrong." Okay, what the fuck is going on?
"What went wrong? Zeke you're not making sense." I pointed out the obvious.
"It's Xavier, he... he's hurt." Was the reply I got, which didn't really help clear the situation at all.
"What? How hurt? Where is he? Where are you?" God, I might need to calm down with the questions here.
"At the hospital." Oh holy shit, that's not good. That's bad. That's very very bad.
"The actual hospital? You're at the actual hospital? Not an imaginary one, the real fucking deal?" silence emanated from the other side of the phone so I took that as a blunt 'yes'. Holy fuck. "Okay, um, what can I do to help?"
"I left my car at the party house, I was just hoping you could get it or something." He replied, voice distracted and quite.
"Okay, do you want me to pick you up?" I questioned.
"No, I want to be here when he wakes-"
"He's unconscious?! What in the name of batshit is going on?!" I shouted.
"We fell off the roof last night, Xav was drinking and had way too much and we ended up landing in the pool but – but Xav hit his head on something on the way down." Shit a motherfucking muffin.
"Alright, tell me what's going on as soon as you know, I'm going to wait until Ashton wakes up before I go anywhere though." I replied.
"Okay, thank you." Zeke finished quietly.
"Be careful, bye." I hung up before I went back into my bedroom, finding some clothes to get changed into since pyjamas aren't very respectable. I got a pair of clean skinny jeans and a baggy jumper to change into, leaving my room to change once again since it was still awkward as hell to change with Ashton in there asleep.
When I walked back into my room with my clothes on and my hair brushed I saw that Ashton was awake, kind of. His eyes were open and he was sitting up but, apart from the fact he looked confused as fuck, he looked like death himself.
"About time Sleeping Beauty." I stated as I grabbed a pair of socks, getting only a groan in response. "How you feeling?"
"Like someone smashed my head in with an anvil." He muttered.
"Painkillers?" I questioned, watching as his eyes moved to meet mine slowly.
'What kind of question is that?" He replied, so I smirked before I walked down stairs to find some. By the time I got back up with the pills and some water he had moved to sit on the edge of the bed, his head in his hands as he seemed to be even more confused. I handed the pain killers and the glass of water to him, watching as he struggled to swallow them.
"Where am I?" he asked bluntly.
"You're in my room." I answered.
"Why am I in your room? What happened last night?" Oh Jesus, this is a role reversal of what happened at the last party. I slightly shook my head, not knowing how to say it. I could go the blunt option... I mean nothing bad happened in the end, he's okay.
"Uh, you were..." I trailed off, taking another deep breath before I continued. "You were drugged." His eyes widened, and I threw my hands up as if to calm an animal or to prove that I had nothing in my hands. "You didn't get hurt, Calen found you first and eventually everyone gathered around. The executive decision was made that I would drive you home in your car, which was interesting because I don't know how to drive manuals. So, anyway, somehow I made it home without killing us and I let you sleep in my bed, which you should be exceptionally grateful for."
"I got... drugged?" he asked as if to make sure that he was right.
"Yeah, you did." I responded.
"I think I might just-"
"You can't just go, we have to go back to where the party was last night because when Zeke went to check on Xav he left his car there... you might have had some bullshit happen to you but he's worse. After we get Zeke's car we're going to the hospital." I stated, slightly lying about him not going. I wanted to keep an eye on him since he was severely hung over, he was drugged last night and he just found out that one of his friends is in the hospital.
"What happened?" Ash asked, pain seeming to evaporate from his mind as he heard that Xav was in trouble.
"Well last night Xav was in a shit place, Zeke told me that they fell off the roof. Zeke landed in the pool but apparently Xav wasn't so lucky, and now he's unconscious in hospital." I answered, briefly wondering how they got on the roof in the first place.
"Holy shit. Okay, well when do we leave?" he asked me next.
"I was waiting until you woke up, but we can wait a little longer until you feel alri-"
"I'm fine, let's go." He stated, standing up quickly, but his face contorted in pain and he grabbed his head in pain before I forced him to sit down again.
"We're not going anywhere, not until you're actually okay to go." I instructed, worry clear in my tone.
"Well I'm okay-"
"Don't be a dipshit. You're not okay, you're majorly hung over and you were drugged last night. We'll get you hydrated and get you to eat some food, then I might think about letting you move." I stated, trying to talk some sense into him.
"Then what the hell am I supposed to do until then? What about Xavier?" He groaned.
"Finish that cup of water, I'll get you some food and then you can lay down and rest for a little while. Xav's currently unconscious and there is nothing we could do to help at the moment anyway" I told him, waiting until he nodded reluctantly. "Okay, I'll be back in a minute... is there anything you want? Specifically? Foodwise?"
"Uh... I'll eat anything really." He responded.
"Alright." I responded walking slowly down the stairs and into the kitchen. I needed to get two bowls, some delicious oats, honey, yoghurt and fruit. He needed something nutrition filled and that would do it. A couple minutes later I had everything in two bowls, one for him and one for me since I haven't had breakfast either, with a spoon each and two small bottles of orange juice to accompany it tucked under my arms. I carried everything upstairs with extreme skill, letting him take a bowl and a bottle of juice.
"This is... nutritious." He said, sounding kind of judgemental of the breakfast.
"That's the point, now eat." I instructed, sitting on the end of my bed and opening my laptop so I could pick a movie or TV show to watch to break the awkward silence.
"What if I don't w-"
"You said you'd eat anything." I cut him off, looking him in the eye and practically waiting for a response. He took a deep breath and nodded before he took a spoonful and ate it, looking pleasantly surprised at the taste. "Oh, does that taste alright?" I asked rhetorically.
"Unexpectedly." He responded, quickly devouring the bowl before I had even picked a movie. He kept looking at my bowl, which I had eaten only half of. I looked at him, before I looked back at my bowl while sighing. I held the bowl out for him to take, which he did gratefully.
"Are you going to sleep, or would you rather a movie?" I checked, he mumbled something sounding similar to 'movie' so I clicked on the one I wanted to watch. I've been meaning to watch this one, apparently it's pretty good. I shuffled to in between Ashton and the wall, meaning I was on the left side of the bed, settling my laptop on the mattress next to my legs.
"What are we watching?" He asked, moving closer to me.
"A movie." I answered, both of us confused with what was going on in the movie.
"What movie?" he questioned next.
"You probably don't want to know." I answered, watching intently as I wanted something to happen. As ten minutes dragged on I realised it was going to take a while until it got to the good part.
"Seriously, what movie is this?" He questioned as the main character was on a group skype chat with all her friends. What we saw throughout the entire movie was only the main chick's (Blaire?) computer screen. (Kk bruv this has spoilers for the movie 'Unfriended' and I'm not sure whether we have to warn peeps about that or not so... spoiler alert? Also I don't know if some of the comments are like... weight discriminative or nah)
"Unfriended. Heard of that one?" I questioned.
"No, is this one of your horror movies?" He queried, I looked away from him as I decided whether to lie or not.
"Nope." I responded, going with the 'lying' option.
"You aren't lying to me, are you?" he asked next, while looking at the screen. Oh, I think it's getting to the good part now. The bitch friend, I didn't catch her name, or I kinda ignored it because I didn't care, was staring into her webcam while sitting extremely still. The music in the background (if you would call it that) was slowly picking up, meaning it was getting to a good part. There was a flash of light and a loud 'bang' before the computer and her body fell to the floor.
The other friends in the group were all screaming, it didn't make it any scarier, but I suppose Ashton had a different opinion.
"I might be lying a little bit." I answered his previous question, looking at his face. "I'm waiting for the chubby kid to go, his death is going to be interesting." I stated, shifting around.
"Are you kidding me?" he asked, I raised an eyebrow.
"Does it look like I'm kidding? I'm serious, his death is going to be the most interesting." I stated, waiting patiently for it. I mean, the kid had a blender in his room, they have to do something with that, right? My wish came true, later in the movie the 'mystery person' (who was obviously the evil spirit of the dead chick 'Laura' they keep talking about) had a camera in chubby kid's room. I sat mostly still, my foot tapping with impatience as I wanted someone to die horrifically with blood everywhere...
That's not a thought I should worry about, is it?
Next minute, poor chubby kid is sticking his hand in the blender which is turned on and flicking blood everywhere. "Oh lord, that looks painful." I stated bluntly, before the glass around the blade shattered and something happened ending with Sir Chub-Chub landing his throat onto the still moving blades, again blood went everywhere and the remaining four friends were screaming like hell as little-dead-and-brutally-evil-Laura was leaving messages to the group about how they should do what she says or they would end up like Sir Chub-Chub. God I wish I could remember the characters names.
"Cuddle-buddy?" Ashton asked quietly and I laughed, grabbing a pillow and shoved it into his chest. He threw it away and I was suddenly yanked into a hug. I was being awkwardly held as my breathing started to stagger, my mind started to give me horrific memories but I pushed them away. This was only Ashton, little 6 ft, Ashton who was extremely afraid of horror movies.
My breathing started to slow, but my mind was still racing a million miles an hour. My thoughts slowly gaining momentum as I wondered why I was letting him keep contact with me. My body was slowly relaxing and I don't know why, what the hell am I doing?
"Uh, I gotta go to the bathroom." I lied, taking his arms off of me and jumped off of the bed.
"Don't leave me with the movie alone-" I cut him off by pausing it, the visual of Sir CC with his throat being blended sitting on the screen innocently before I practically ran out of the room. I went into the bathroom, closing and locking the door behind me. I looked in the mirror, staring at what felt like a stranger. I had changed so much since I had come here, too much. I barely recognised the dark blue eyes I saw, my bright hair slightly confusing me.
Why had I changed?
I ran the water tap, splashing the cold liquid onto my face as I tried to calm down. I don't know how long I was staring blankly at my reflection for, but it was probably too long. I heard a knocking on the door.
"Uh Ray... how much longer are you gonna be? The screen's still on Sir Nacho and his blender and I don't know whether I'm allowed to touch your computer." He told me.
"I'll be out in a second." I responded, just loud enough for him to hear through the door.
"Are you okay? Is it because I touched you? I just thought that because last time we watched a horror movie you were pretty alright with it and-" I opened the door to cut him off.
"It's fine." I stated. "How are you feeling?"
"Pretty alright, food and the juice definitely helped." He answered quickly.
"I suppose we can go then." I stated, walking down the stairs with him close behind.
"Are we going to talk about it on the way?" he queried.
"Are we going to talk about it in the future?"
The hospital was abrasive and harsh, the lights blinding and the smells assaulting. Xavier was gone, wheeled off into some other room to go through his check-ups and to get any excess water removed from his lungs. In a way, it felt like I was back in the pool, a panicked nausea settling in my stomach like a rock, but only this time, I knew he was alright.
He was okay.
The words felt like an echo in my head as I sat uncomfortably in one of the plastic backed hospital chairs. People rushed passed, but not any of the people I wanted to see. I felt oddly useless, but as the minutes ticked by the relief settled thick across my mind.
He was safe.
The painting on the wall across from me, with its bright colours and swirling paint lines, felt oddly out of place and yet strangely calming and I understood why they'd placed it in the waiting room. To think that hundreds if not thousands of people had sat in this same position, waiting for possibly the worst news of their lives to be delivered by a person in a long white coat. It was... it was horribly daunting. I didn't feel like I didn't have the right to be here, I didn't even know Xavier that well, and I'd caused this whole mess. If I'd only stayed at home and listened to Soraya when she'd told me he didn't want to see me, well, none of this would have ever happened in the first place.
It was my fault.
And that's when I noticed another person had entered the building, her tall frame held with a confidence that was both cold and harsh. The neat folds of her blouse and the crisp cut of her grey suit, matching the sleek grey skirt and the dangerous heels around her feet. She imposed a sense of superiority as she walked, pale green eyes scanning those around her robotically. Her pale brown hair was pulled back into a tight braid, not a single hair loose and when she stopped at the front desk, I couldn't help but stare. She gave off a horrifying sense of familiarity that had me straightening my back and staring forward, her voice drifting across the waiting room as she addressed the attendant at the desk.
"I am here for my son, we have private health insurance for situations like this and I refuse to allow him to remain in this...disgusting... facility." She stated bluntly, her voice as cold as ice and wrapped in an accent I couldn't quite place.
"Ma'am, this facility is fully capable of caring for your son," The attendant replied calmly, and I was mildly impressed by the way she ignored the obvious distaste emanating from the woman's harsh presence. "However, if you wish to move your son, I would suggest talking first to his doctor, and if you give me a name I could get you in contact with them."
"Xavier Ragnvalsson" The woman stated, her voice as condescending and harsh as her presence, lip curling as she spoke.
"One second please" The attendant responded, her fingers tapping against her keyboard, but I didn't notice, my mind already processing the new information I'd just gotten. Ragnvalsson? Was this the same Xavier? It had to be, the odds of another Xavier being admitted to hospital on the same night were slim to none, but Ragnvalsson? That was such a strange last name, I'm sure I would have heard it before if it was actually Xav's.
But this woman certainly looked the part. Hair as dark and rich as Xavier's and eyes just a few shades too light, they could definitely pass for related and that thought gave me chills. I knew he was rich, Xavier wasn't shy too throwing parties when his parents went out, so I'd been inside his house before, but I'd never met his parents, never even seen a picture of them. And now I knew why. If his mother came across this horrible, what on earth could his father be like?
"Ma'am, your son is currently undergoing mild surgery at the moment, but they've had to sedate him." The attendant spoke, "He is scheduled for release in the morning, I don't think there's any need for relocation. And we take private health insurance claims here during payment."
"Mild surgery?" Mrs. Ragnvalsson spoke, her tone sharp, "Will someone please tell me what on earth has happened to my son?"
"Ma'am-" The attendant tried but faltered, clearly not knowing how to answer and I realised it was probably my time to speak.
"Excuse me, Ma'am?" I asked, standing from my seat hesitantly, immediately regretting my decision when those cold eyes snapped to me. "I can explain what happened to Xavier."
"And you are?" She asked, her eyes narrowing in question,
"Zeke, ma'am, Zeke Kingston." I replied, focusing on keeping my posture rigid and respectful, the last thing I wanted to do was offend Xavier's mother. I didn't even want to think about how bad of a first impression this was going to be, because not only was I still wearing the fully wet clothes I'd pulled on without a second thought before leaving the house, but I was the reason her son was in hospital. Even I would hate myself if I was her. "I was – uh – I was the one who brought Xavier in." I fumbled to find the right words. "There was an argument, and we – um – we –"
"Stop stuttering" Mrs Ragnvalsson snapped impatiently, her arms crossing over her chest, the blazer jacket looking just as impeccable.
"Sorry Ma'am" I quickly apologised, swallowing the lump in my throat as the memories swirled at the for-front of my mind, "There was an argument, and we both fell off a roof, we landed in a pool, but –uh – I think Xav hit his head on the side or something on the way down." I rushed to finish, immediately panicking that I would somehow get Xavier in trouble by telling his mother the full story.
"Why were you two together on the roof?" Her eyes seemed to narrow even further,
"We – we were just talking, Ma'am" I stuttered under pressure, the strange urge to duck away from her attention eating away at me.
"I thought you said you were arguing."
"No – I mean we were, but –"
"But what? I see no reason to continue talking to you if you can't even give me proper sentences." She cut in, her attention scolding, "My son, has less than satisfactory choices of 'friends' but I will not stand here and listen to a stuttering fool."
"Yes ma'am, sorry ma'am" I rushed to continue, "It was my fault, I should have taken him down from the roof the moment I found him, I just – I thought I could help. But then the rain, it was just a mess and we were close to the edge, and I slipped and he went after me. It was an accident."
"I don't care if it was an accident." She snapped back, her eyes blazing in anger and I was starting to get the feeling that she wouldn't have cared if it was just me that went over the edge. "You are not to talk to my son again. I will not stand for this – this incompetence. "
"That doesn't even make sense!" I shouted, all composure lost, " You can't just decide who your son is friends with, he's 18 for christ sake!"
"Do not speak to me without prefixes boy." Mrs Ragnvalsson glared, her voice retaining its icy shell, "And I can and I will dictate his friends however I please."
I was speechless.
I couldn't believe how conceited this woman was, it was unheard of. How could anyone still think like this in the 21st century.
"Seriously?" I asked in shock, my jaw feeling like it had hit the floor, only to be snapped shut as I jumped in shock, something landing heavily on my right shoulder.
"How you holdin' up man?" Ashton's voice cut the air and I turned my head to see him standing beside me, his hand giving my shoulder a squeeze before dropping. He didn't seem the least bit phased by the cold glare Xavier's mum was shooting him, in fact he look like a wreck, dark circles beneath his eyes, hair rumpled, it was probably and aftershock of the drug.
"Uh.." I started awkwardly, suddenly at a loss for words, how was I supposed to answer that, I was standing in the hospital, in damp clothes, after having fallen off a roof that nearly killed not just me but Xavier as well, and to top it off I'd just been told by his mother that I wasn't allowed to be friends with him.
"Maer isn't giving you the speech is she Zeke?" Ashton questioned, clearly understanding my fault in speaking,
"The speech?" Ray suddenly spoke up, appearing on my other side, looking just about ready to fight Xav's mum just purely for the look she was sending the three of us.
"The speech, the one where she tells you that you can't be friends with Xav because you're a bad influence, or she just doesn't like you." Ashton continued, "She tried it with both me and Alice, but Xav never listens so it doesn't matter. It's not like she can keep us away."
"Wow, that's fucked up." Ray stated bluntly, her scowl turning darker.
"Ashton" Mrs Ragnvalsson stated, her frown deep and angry, "I see you're still a bad influence on my son and his choices of friends." She narrowed her eyes in on both me and Ray pointedly,
"Oh you know me Maer, always causing trouble" Ashton smirked.