By Tom Fraust
Copyright 2016 © Tom Fraust
All Rights Reserved
She woke up in an ambulance with two masked people hovering around her. The strong smell of sterilizing alcohol and rubber hung in the air like a fog. The ambulance's repeating siren blared half muted, barely audible through the walls.
"Hand me a glove."
Based on their voices, the girl easily figured that one was a man and the other a woman.
They were busy adjusting knobs and tubes when she opened her eyes and they didn't notice her until a minute later. "She's awake," the masked woman said to the man.
She tried to move but she found her body strapped down. She felt that something was wrong, but she didn't think it was something physical. Her arms stung because of a few gashes and her head rang with a mysterious ache, but that was about it for anything painful she was able to diagnose.
Noticing her attempt to move, the masked man gently pushed her down. "You shouldn't try to move," he said before turning to the woman. "We still don't know what the damage is. We're going to need to do a full scan on her to double check. Aside from that, a few cuts and bruises. Nothing major. A real miracle alright. Have you seen those kinds of accidents before? She should have multiple fractures, but so far I don't see anything wrong."
The masked woman shook her head. "I've never seen one before. This'll be the first time." She turned to the girl with a pen and notebook. "Can you hear us?"
"Yes," she softly said. Somehow, she found her voice foreign, like it was someone else's voice.
"I'll need your parent's phone number so we can call them," the woman said, pen on the ready.
She shook her head. "I don't know their phone number..."
"Okay. What about your address?"
She thought for a moment, but still ended up shaking her head. "I don't know," she answered.
The woman frowned. "How about your name?"
Fear came over the girl's body and a sickening sense of horror spread through her system like a slow fire. My name? What is my name?
The woman repeated her question.
Dread started consuming her mind as she asked herself over and over: My name! What is my name? Surely I must know my name! What is it? Her eyes started watering and she began a low series of sobs. Panic slowly drowned her.
"Don't you know your name?" the masked woman asked. The girl shook her head. "E-mail? How about your age? Your birthday?" She didn't bother to shake her head as she concentrated on calming herself, but tears just kept on coming. The woman let out a soft, "Oh..." She called the masked man and whispered something in his ear and the girl saw him look at her with pity.
"Head injury," he announced. "Possibly...amnesia."
Amnesia. The word floated in the girl's mind. The thought of it made her feel woozy and sick. Soon she felt herself losing consciousness once again. She tried to grab anything as she sunk into the deep abyss, but got none as she spiraled helplessly into the darkness of her own mind along with the fading sound of sirens.
-Entry 013, October 30-
Hey, it's me again.
It's almost Halloween. The hospital had decorated the hallways with black and orange streamers and every kid in the floor got sweets in pumpkin-buckets. I heard the kids and nurses in the amputee rehabilitation center are going to make a haunted house with all the kids. I can imagine it, actually. Matt would make a great mummy with his casts and all that.
Speaking of rehabilitation, I heard that there was a new boy at the center. Celia told me that he's blind. It was kind of funny how disappointed she sounded when she muttered the word "blind." It was like it was a big disappointment for her. Well, not for me, at least. I don't get the whole "if you have a disability you're automatically denied as a potential friend" scenario. It's pretty much a big disability on its own for the community. They're people and they don't deserve negativity.
I told Celia that just a few minutes ago and she somewhat agreed to it, explaining that she wasn't disappointed at all, but sorry for the boy's tragedy. I should try and meet the newcomer—which is sort of becoming my part-time job here. Although, I can't help but feel suspicious because I could swear that Celia was laughing to herself when I turned my back to her.
I'll keep you posted.
Amelia closed her journal after signing the entry with her name. A few kids were playing in the playground with a recreational ball game along with a supervisor in front of her. She traced her hands on the wooden bench she was sitting on and took note of the wooden grooves, listening to the hoots and cheers of the playing children. The tree that stood tall behind the bench filtered the harsh sunlight that the summer sun was radiating upon her.
She smiled to herself as she watched the children, but she found herself frowning when she saw a girl, not older than twelve, trip and land on her hands and knees; no one came to help for the supervisor was busy breaking up a fight that had started between two boys, and the other kids were too engrossed with the ball game. In an instant, she rushed forward and helped the girl up.
"I keep on tripping," the girl said, annoyed, once Amelia helped her up and dusted her.
"Then you should run a little slower. What's your name?" Amelia asked as she checked the girl for scrapes and bruises.
"Ellie," the little girl answered briefly. "You're Amelia, right?"
Amelia nodded and smiled. She was used to the children recognizing her on sight for she was the eldest person in that rehabilitation hospital at a tender age of seventeen. The next eldest patient was ten. Because of this, many of the girls and boys saw her as a big sister. "I haven't seen you here before," she said, kneeling to the little girl's height.
Although a little wobbly, the little girl stood by herself. "I'm new," she said. "I got into an accident and now Mister Ham is helping me walk again. I'm still getting used to it ever since I could stand from my wheelchair," she said, sounding a bit discontent.
"It'll take a while," Amelia said, smiling. Seeing that the girl's legs were trembling, she put her hands on the little girl's waist. "But before you know it, you'll be able to run all you want!" she encouraged. "But until that day, you should be a little bit more careful. Okay?"
"Okay," the girl replied, smiling, and she slowly accelerated to a brisk walk towards the other children—not as fast as she was moving before.
"Sweet girl," a woman's voice said from behind her.
"Celia!" Amelia greeted, acknowledging her nurse. Celia stood before her with three hardbound books clasped between her hand and breast. She held a clipboard in her other hand. She was wearing her "civilian" clothes, as she called it, which consisted of a t-shirt and cargo shorts. She usually dressed like that (or some form of variation of that style) whenever she wasn't wearing her indigo nurse uniform, which she disliked as much as she disliked eating pears. She ran her hand through her short brown hair and wiped the sweat off her forehead.
"You should be more precise when you ask for books," her nurse replied, handing her one of the three books. "There were three Midnight Dance books in the central library. I figured it'd be better if I borrow them all."
"You got all of them?" Amelia asked, her eyes widening at the other two books in Celia's hands, amazed. "Oh thank you, thank you, thank you!" She tackled the nurse with a manic glee and squeezed her in a hug.
Celia nodded several times. She eased out her chest and lifted her chin, taking pride in her accomplishment. "Well I did go through a lot of haggling. There was another kid who wanted to borrow all three of them as well, but I got them anyways. Cost me five solid greens, though
"Please," Amelia puckered. "You owe me more than five bucks." She got off the nurse's space and skipped along the paved sidewalk, clutching the first book of the trilogy like a prized trophy. "You lost the bet!" She reminded her.
"Be careful, Amelia," Celia said, smiling affectionately as she followed her half-prancing, half-dancing patient to the hospital rooms.
Komorebi by Tom Fraust / Romance & Love have rating 2.3 out of 5 / Based on30 votes