The doctor's verdict on Gerard's condition
Chapter Four: If He Dies Before I Wake...
"Relax," the nurse had said. "Everything's fine,"
There was no way in hell Mikey could even think about relaxing. It wasn't the pain. The pain in his arm didn't bother him at all and besides, he'd already been given something for it anyway. He tried once or twice to close his eyes and fall asleep, but every time he did, he saw Gerard bleeding, pale, practically devoid of life and his eyes would fly straight back open again. Even with his eyes open he could still smell the coppery scent of blood --Gerard's blood-- on him although he had already been cleaned up. Mikey drew his legs up to his chest, curling his good arm around them and resting his head on his knees: a position of self- security, and then the tears broke free.
The nurse, a middle-aged woman named Esme, noticed Mikey's distress.
"Honey? What's wrong? That arm still bothering you?"
He shook his head and pressed his face against his knees, his shoulders shaking as he wept for his brother. Esme approached the bed and sat down. Mikey looked up when he felt the slight sag in the bed's support.
"Tell me about it, hon',"
He sniffled, brushed at his tears, and a single word escaped his lips.
It was the first word he'd spoken since he discovered the absence of his brother's pulse.
"My brother. He's--"
"-- I-I don't think..."
Mikey trailed off, incapable of finding the words to finish the sentence.
"Is he in the hospital at the moment?" Esme asked.
"I'll see what I can do. Meanwhile, you really need to try and get some rest, hon'. It's been a rough day for you, hasn't it?"
As Esme left the room she heard a soft "Thank you" behind her and she smiled.
"If you need anything, you know where the call button is,"
She turned off the light and closed the door gently. Eventually Mikey fell into a restless, haunted sleep.
The very second the taxi pulled into its parking space, Frank was already out the door and making a beeline towards the front entrance. Ray hesitated only a moment to pay the driver and thank him before he followed the rhythm guitarist a second later. Both reached the front desk in record time, startling a young nurse with blonde hair seated at a computer. She blinked, surprised at seeing the faces in front of her.
"Uh...wow...hi. Aren't you from--?"
Ray interrupted her. "Yes. Can you tell us which rooms Mikey Way, Gerard Way and Bob Bryar are in?"
The nurse's fingers flew over the keyboard.
"Bob Bryar, Room 486; Mikey Way, 503; and Gerard...I'm sorry, he's in surgery right now, I'm afraid you can't see him right now. As for the other two, well, they need their rest, so if you come back tomorrow—"
"We'll wait," Frank spoke up, and from his tone there was to be no further discussion on the matter.
So they waited.
The minutes stretched on like hours, the hours like an eternity. Ray and Frank read every out-of-date magazine in the waiting room to keep themselves occupied, and when that got tiresome, they watched whatever was on the TV that seemed the slightest bit interesting. Eventually, that too, bored them and they just sat, Ray staring off into space and Frank as restless as he'd ever been. Neither man spoke; they didn't have to. Both had the exact same thought on his mind: that Gerard would live. It was after six hours of waiting, just as Ray was drifting off to sleep and Frank thought he was going to pace a ditch in the floor, that a doctor finally addressed them.
“Anyone here for a Mr. Gerard Way?"
Several shocked faces turned in the doctor's direction, but only two approached him.
"How is he?" Frank asked, the very second Ray opened his mouth to ask the same question.
"He's in a severe condition," the doctor said. "Stable, for the time being, but a wound of such critical proportions lowers his chance of survival drastically. He'd be lucky to survive the night--"
Frank swore under his breath.
"--There is also another thing. The x-ray on Gerard's throat showed that although the bullet went in deep, it was fortunate that it missed the artery. However, the larynx was greatly affected, as that was what stopped the bullet from puncturing his artery. If he manages to pull through, I'm afraid that he may be unable to speak. I'm not completely sure; I'll have to run a few more tests. For now, all we can do is wait and hope. In all honesty, this man needs a miracle,"
Mikey opened his eyes slowly, the remnants of a nightmare fading from his mind. The first thing he saw were two familiar faces. The painkillers for his arm had long since worn off, and now it was throbbing again, but he ignored it. He sat up, rubbing the sleep out of his eyes and yawning.
"Hey, Mikey," Frank greeted him. "How's your arm?"
"Okay, I guess," he replied, then suddenly he remembered his brother, and a string of questions slid from his mouth in a panicked rush before he even knew what he was doing. "Where's Gerard? Is he okay? What did the doctor say? Can I see him? Have you--"
"Mikey, calm down," Ray told him firmly, and obediently the bassist shut his mouth, tears glittering in his eyes.
"I'm sorry. I just--I wanna know if he's gonna be okay,"
"Don't we all," Frank muttered, his eyes suddenly becoming interested in the floor.
Ray told him everything the doctor said, as if it would serve as some sort of consolation, and by the time he'd finished, Mikey's unshed tears were streaming down his face. The guitarist sat next to him and put an arm around his shoulders. He wanted to tell him it would be okay, but the truth was, he didn't know for sure. So the three men sat in silence for a moment, until Mikey finally spoke up.
"I wanna see him,"
In those four words, Ray heard a tone of such desperation and sorrow that he almost felt like crying himself. He hadn't the heart to tell him that they couldn't visit Gerard yet. The doctors were still running tests on him and he wasn't allowed visitors until they said so. And so Ray simply gave Mikey a one-armed hug, being careful he didn't squeeze the injured shoulder, and settled for five words that said everything without having to explain it thoroughly.
"Me too, Mikey. Me too,"
"I'm standing outside the local Starbucks' cafe where, just this morning, three members of the alternative rock band My Chemical Romance were injured in what was apparently a motiveless shooting. Witnesses have reported that drummer Bob Bryar received an injury to the leg, bassist Mikey Way was wounded in the arm, and more shockingly, frontman Gerard Way, the bassist's brother, was unlucky enough to get a bullet to the throat and is now fighting for his life in the ICU. The unknown shooter allegedly shot herself after aiming for guitarists Frank Iero and Ray Toro and missing. No word yet on any progress the band members have made, but all we can do now is wait and hope for the best. I'm Nadine McCarthy; back to you, Charlie,"