Somehow They're Alive (part 24)

Yes. I know it's been a very long time since you all have heard from me. I got working on another story that just sort of came to me. While I was wroking...

on it I guess that I just sort of forgot about this story. I'm so sorry! I recently wrote the rest of "Somehow They're Alive." Since the rest is prewritten it shouldn't take long to get out.

Created by: Topaz

  1. ***Jaslina's Point of View***The tinge of soreness in my arm from yesterday evening is gone completely. Really, giving blood isn't all that painful to start with, but the wooziness can get pretty bad for anyone after losing a pint of it. However, it's worth every ounce of dizziness to help Audrey. Once they finish the surgery on her ankle they might be able to concentrate on Landon a little bit more. He might actually live through this ordeal if more people can focus on him. My bottom lip begins to quiver. Who am I kidding? What will more doctors help? Even if they do have fancy medical degrees doctors are human. Doctors are mortal and imperfect. In the end it'll take God himself to heal Landon. I slam the brush down on the dresser top as I feel the tears slipping down my face. This can't be happening. Of all people why must this be happening to Landon? All he did was try to help us. Yes, he made a mistake, but don't we all make mistakes? I just don't get it. I turn on the cold water nozzle and splash my face. My eyes can't be puffy when I step out to face Tammy and Rayla. I've already cried enough tears in front of them to last a lifetime. I dry my face on a hand towel and look around the room that I'm in. With a spa tub, shower stall, and sparkling white tiles, the bathroom is absolutely beautiful. This whole hotel room is beautiful. Chuck and Michiko are more generous (and wealthy) than we could've hoped for. Normally I'd be heightened with joy at the room we get to stay in, but not this time. Not with the situation at hand. I sigh, pick up the brush, and resume working the snarls out of my hair. The clock I brought in here with me reads one forty-five. I should've gotten ready long before this. Yet again, I am the last one in here. Tammy spent forever in here first and then Rayla and now me. Hopefully the others can hold off knocking on our door for fifteen more minutes so I can finish pulling myself together. It doesn't even take me fifteen minutes to get my hair brushed and pulled back into a half ponytail and for me to put on my makeup. I get all of that done in ten.
  2. The moment I step out of the bathroom there's a loud knocking on the door. I guess I finished putting myself together right on time. It's still much too early for my mom to be here, so it must be Ryan, Jay, Chuck, and dad. Since Michiko sat with us for so long yesterday she's probably resting. When Rayla throws open the door I discover that I was wrong on that assumption. Michiko stands directly next to her husband brightly smiling despite what goes on across the street. Might I add that the smile looks glued on rather than real. Unlike Michiko, the men don't try to put a positive spin on anything; their expressions' are clearly mutual. Ryan is the first to enter the room. He paces across the floor and gives me a peck on the cheek, rendering me unable to frown. "Good afternoon, Ryan," I say. "I'd like to say the same to you, sugar cakes." He attempts a smile that quickly fades. Seeing this I peck him on the cheek in return. "So how are you feeling? Did you sleep okay?" My words are probably empty, but I hope that they at least help a little bit. I doubt it. "To put it simply, I feel as good as a man with an evil sister who is now dead, and who has two friends in the hospital because of his evil dead sister." After a slight pause he adds, "Compared to yesterday that's actually pretty good." We're all awkwardly silent. He coughs. "So are you feeling all right? You had to donate blood." "I'm fine. It feels good knowing that I could help Audrey. Of course that doesn't make me feel any better about Landon and Sapphire. Sadness isn't something that can be helped I guess." "I'm depressed, too, but I try not to be. About Sapphire I mean. She was an awful person. I'd feel bad mourning over her when she's hurt so many people." At his words we all gather in the center of the room in a tightly-knit circle with Ryan at its center. Normally he'd be a bit embarrassed by being shown this kind of affection, but he isn't this time.
  3. "Ryan, honey, you don't have to be strong around us. We know that you must be aching inside," says Michiko patting his back. The plain expression that he's been struggling to keep begins to soften. Rayla puts in, "It doesn't matter who your sister is. It's okay to feel sad." "How can you possibly mourn over her after everything she's done? Just forty-eight hours ago Sapphire nearly destroyed Chuck and Michiko's house and killed us all." "But she didn't. God didn't let anything happen to us," I soothe. He gives a sigh that shakes with lidded yet uncontrollable grief. "You're right. That's very true. It just grieves me to think that"”"Ryan's voice trails off. Nobody asks him to finish that thought. The majority of us know exactly what he's getting at. I can feel a strong sting laying deep inside of my heart at the thought. If only Sapphire wouldn't have been so evil and against Christianity. For a moment, an extremely long moment, Ryan says nothing. None of us do. We're just sort of standing there in the center of the room in a dreadful gloom at Ryan's unspoken words. Abruptly, Ryan breaks the silence. "It may be too late for Sapphire, but it isn't too late for Landon. Not yet it isn't. I want to go across the street to the hospital to do what I can to help." "But, Ryan, you can't do it all on your own. You're not God and you're not a doctor," Chuck presses. "I know that I'm not God or a doctor, but it doesn't matter. I'm going to see him anyway."
  4. "Can I come, too?" I ask. "My mom won't get here for about an hour still." For the first time in days he shows a genuine smile. "Of course. You really think that I don't want your company?" Hand-in-hand we amble for the door. Before exiting, I ask, "Does anybody else want to join us?" The whole group of them exchanges glances before Jay concocts a response. "We'll be along in a few hours. Go on without us." "Are you sure?" "Positive," Rayla replies. "Besides, Ryan does deserve to spend some time alone with his girlfriend." "They'll hardly be spending time alone, Rayla. They'll be with Landon," Tammy points out. "Hey, the walk there should be nice." Seeing as their decision is made Ryan and I bid them farewell and close the door behind us. For a moment we don't go anywhere; we just stand there in the hallway, walk a few paces, and stand in front of a window staring down at the traffic we'll have to walk through. Ryan's hands are locked around my waist and his chin is resting lightly on my shoulder.
  5. "Jaslina?" he says. "Yes?" I ask turning to face him. To my pleasant surprise, he gives me a long sweet kiss on the mouth. All of Ryan's kisses are wonderful, but this one has a different kind of passion behind it. Being in understanding of his love for me I kiss him back feeling the same kind of love. The kiss only lasts for a few seconds, but the length doesn't matter. You don't need long perfect kisses to understand someone's affection for you. Once we break the kiss, I say, "Even if there're most likely friends of ours watching us through the peephole on the door, I do love your kisses." He smiles at me with sparkling brown eyes. "I feel the same. Only, I wanted this one to tell you something." I smile back. "Tell me what?" "That I feel so lucky to have you. Because of selfishness and greed some relationships turn out to be absolute disasters; Sapphire and Landon proved that to be completely true. I want ours to stay a relationship that turns out to be good for everyone involved. Because of God's loving grace I know that it will." "I know that it will, too, Ryan. I know that, too." "I love you so much, Jaslina. More than you could ever know. Do you feel the same?" "I do, Ryan. I have for a very long time." As we kiss again I can feel tears brimming in my eyes. For once they're happy tears.
  6. ***"You couldn't have gotten here at a better time," says the nurse. "He just woke up." Ryan and I enter the white-painted room with the sparkling white-tiled floor. The walls are practically bare except for the window on the right hand wall and the painting of a bowl of fruit on the left hand wall. The smell of alcohol swabs, pain killer, and surgical equipment waft through the air confirming this to be a sterile environment. In the center of the room sits Landon looking very different than when we last saw him. I don't think that there's a single inch of him not covered in casts, bandages, or slings. Also, he looks to be hooked up to every machine in the hospital. The idea of what most of the machines are presently escapes me. I know that one is an IV. There is another one that is supposedly helping him breathe; he does have a lot of broken ribs and a punctured lung. Then there's the famous monitor where the line rises and falls with his heart beat. The line looks surprisingly low, worrying Ryan and I a little bit. More slowly than necessary, we make our way toward him. He spots us and attempts to sit up on his own. When the nurses catch this they immediately rush to his aid. He groans in agony at the exertion of moving too quickly.
  7. "Hi, Landon," I say. "Hi, Jaslina. Hi, Ryan. It's good to see you both." "It's good to see you, too." We say nothing for a second. During our period of speechlessness a few of the nurses decide to give us some time alone with him. Now only two are in the room with us. For a moment we just stand their awkwardly. This doesn't last long. With the now emptier room Landon wills himself to talk. Although it seems like his every word is a struggle he speaks anyway. "Is it true?" he asks. "Is Sapphire really dead?" Ryan winces at his question. "Yes," he manages with a thick voice. "She slammed into a tree after being thrown for thirty-five feet. She's gone, Landon." You can tell by his expression that the shock of it overwhelms him. "She's really gone?" "I'm afraid so," I say. The memory of Sapphire's last seconds on earth flash before my eyes again and again. One moment she's shooting at us from her car and trying to kill us and then ten seconds later she's dead. It's unbelievable how fast someone's life can be taken from them. Landon rubs his forehead with his good arm. "The doctors told me about her death. I even saw her get thrown off of the ledge of the car window. It's still just so...unbelievable." "I understand. It really is mind-boggling," says Ryan. "Ryan, you know that I consider you, Jaslina, Tammy, Rayla, Jay, all of you, my friends' right?" This question surprises both of us.
  8. "Of course. We consider you a friend as well. Why else would we be here to see you?" Landon smiles. "Thank you. I'm glad that we actually have gotten back to the friend basis with all of you after my extreme betrayal a year ago." "Don't worry, Landon. We have long since forgiven you." "And you'll never know how grateful I am to you for doing so."After a slight pause he continues. "So, you know that when I ask certain questions I'm only asking out of pure need for an answer right? You'd know that I'm not trying to be insensitive?" "I don't know. It really depends on what question you want to ask." "See, that's the thing. I'm not sure if I should ask it..." Ryan bites his lip in thought. "If you want to know something the, by all means, ask. I promise that I won't get upset with you." "Okay. Thanks. You guys are Protestant Christians right? You believe in heaven and hell with no in between?" "Yes. Absolutely," I say. "According to the Christians, you have to accept Jesus Christ as your savior in order to make it to heaven. Sapphire never accepted Christ. Not just that, but she was a murderous maniac. Does this mean that she went to hell?"
  9. A large silver tear slides down Ryan's face. "Ryan, I'm sorry. I didn't mean"”" "It's okay. What you're saying is true. Unless Sapphire begged God's forgiveness in the seconds before her death she probably didn't go to heaven." It's now that Landon starts to cry. Like most of the other men in my life, I've never seen him cry before coming to Ireland. "I know that you probably know this already, but..." he's forced to pause before continuing. "I overheard the doctors talking about me once; they thought I was sleeping and couldn't hear them. They said that I'm probably going to die. I probably won't survive the week." "You heard them say that?" I ask. "Yes. Right in front of me. A woman doctor said, "˜How long do you think he'll have to be on life support for?' A male doctor replied, "˜A week at the very most. This boy is in very bad condition. He probably won't survive the week.'" I don't know what to say, and neither does Ryan. We all had a hunch that Landon might not have much of a chance at survival, but we didn't think it'd be this bad. "Guys, do you think that, if I do die, I'll go to hell?" Ryan's eyes are wide. "We can't answer that, Landon. I'm not God and neither is Jaslina. Do you think you're heart's right with God? Have you accepted Christ?" "I've never told anyone this, especially Sapphire, but yes. I've begged God for forgiveness so many times I lost count. I just don't think it's enough." Wow. This conversation has taken an interesting turn. I'm very glad that it has. "Why don't you think it's enough?" I ask. "You don't know the things I've done; not all of them anyway. I beg for God to forgive me, but then I think how could anyone ever forgive me? I'm a thief. I'm a murderer. I got involved in a relationship with a girl, whom I knew would destroy me straight from the beginning, because of my sickening lust. That's not even half of what I've done. Nobody, not even God, could forgive a person like me."
  10. "Landon, you must understand that God does forgive. He sent Jesus down here to die in your place; for you he did that. You think that Jaslina and I are any better than you or Sapphire? The only thing separating the born-again Christians from the nonbelievers is the fact that we accepted God's offer and let Jesus take our place." "What are you a preacher? I just don't understand why God would forgive me so easily." "I don't understand why either. The point is that he did. From the thief on the cross next to Jesus to the person who's praying the prayer as we speak, God forgives us all if we ask for it. You have." "The thief?" asks Landon completely confused. Ryan smiles at the opportunity to get to explain. "Yes. When Jesus was crucified there were two thieves on crosses beside him. One thief mocked Jesus and wouldn't believe that he was the Christ. The other thief rebuked the first thief and said to Jesus, "˜Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.' Do you know how Jesus responded?" "Let me guess," says Landon. "'Surly I will remember you.' Right?" "Wrong. Jesus answered him, "˜I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.'" We talk for a few more minutes before Landon gets too tired. Eventually the thought of sleep overwhelms him and we have to go. Even as he's laying there on the hospital bed I can't help but wonder if our words really meant anything to him. I think that they did.

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