Gone Before Tomorrow

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Chapter 4: New Friends

Paisley

I woke up too soon to the sound of someone fiddling around with something close to my right ear. I open my eyes slowly to see a nurse standing next to my bed adjusting something just out of my line of sight.

She looks down at me and smiles “I’m sorry, did I wake you dear?” I just shake my head in response not trusting my voice completely. “Well since you’re up you might as well get up. A stretch of the legs might do you some good.” I nod and swing my legs out from under the covers and onto the floor. For the first time I notice what I am wearing: an almost see through issue hospital gown. I bite my lip and tug on a strand of hair nervously. The nurse seems to sense my apprehension and gives a little laugh that sounds almost magical. She walks over to a dresser across from my bed, another thing I hadn’t seen before this moment. ‘I seriously need to improve my observational skills’ I think following the nurse with my eyes. She pulls out a sweater and pants, and I can tell instantly that both are going to practically hang off my small frame. ‘At least they’re better than what you have on now’ I think taking the clothes when the nurse hands them to me. “There’s a bathroom just through there.” she says pointing to a door “You can change and then wander as you please.” she flashes me a smile before checking her watch and walking swiftly out of the room.

I let out a sigh before walking into the bathroom and pulling on the sky blue sweatshirt and black sweatpants. I was right that they were too big, but their bigness just brings a kind of comfort to me that I haven’t felt in a while.

I walk toward the door that leads to the rest of the hospital and peak my head out only to see that the hall is swarming with people. I build up my nerve and take two quick steps out of the room. A bright blush tinges my cheeks and a small smile creeps onto my face as I begin walking around.

I round a corner and hear and unfamiliar and quite shrill voice yell “OW YOU LITTLE BRAT YOU BIT ME!!!” I walk toward the noise to see if the person needs help.

I walk toward an open door, that I identify as the source of the yelling. ‘Jeez I hope they’re okay. Do people still really bite other people? God will someone....’ all of a sudden I am on the floor.

I hear a voice next to me growl “Bloody hell watch where you’re going.”

I look over nervously to the person, or more specifically the guy, sprawled out on the floor next to me. I cringe slightly at the bite in his words before responding “I-I’m so sorry.” I look up into his eyes expecting to see hatred and anger, and instead I am greeted by surprise and shock in his baby blues.

The boy stands up quickly and brushes himself off a little before extending his hand to me. I take it tentatively and let him help me up. ” I’m Derek” he says kindly as he looks me up and down.

I wrap my arms around myself and turn my eyes to the floor before responding “Paisley” I whisper hoping that he won’t ask me to repeat myself.

“Paisley” he murmurs as if testing out how my name feels on his tongue. At his words, or rather word, I feel my heart skip a beat and my face flush bright red.

I tuck a stray strand of hair behind my ear and say “Well it was really nice to umm meet you Derek” I clear my throat lightly “and i’m so sorry about running into you, and uhh I guess I’ll see you around.” I quickly turn away and begin walking when I feel a hand grab my forearm Luckily it was my right so it didn’t hurt.

“You’re the new girl in room 288, yeah?” he asks pulling me gently back to face him. I just nod and wrap my arms around myself again. Derek leans against the wall next to us letting go of my arm, a smirk tugging at his rugged features “So what are you in for?” he asks running a hand through his brown mop of hair.

I wait a few moments before mumbling my response ashamed “Attempted suicide” I feel the tears beginning to build up behind my eyes again.

His smug facade drops immediately from his face as he straightens up “Oh shit” he says. I turn to walk away and for some reason takes my words as an invitation as he begins to walk with me. ‘Ugh why can’t he just leave me alone.’ I think pushing back the tears ‘well is that what you really want? I mean he’s hot!’ a voice replies and I just roll my eyes in response.

Once we reach my door I turn toward Derek “well umm thanks I guess for walking me back, and i’m so sorry again for...”

He cuts me off “Stop apologizing”

“Sorry” I whisper in response.

He lets out a little laugh and says with a small smirk “See ya round Paisley.” He turns and starts walking away. Something in me tells me to call him back to me.

Instead I do something equally as dumb “Hey!” I yell at his back “What are you in for?” he just looks over his shoulder, smirks wider and continues walking down the hallway.

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