Gerard tries to hold on.
Both nodded but remained silent.
“What happened while I was gone?” She whispered looking over at Don and Donna who were sitting with their heads bowed.
It was Alicia who spoke, “The doctor talked to Gerard. They still don’t know exactly what happened.” Tears rolled down her cheeks, “But they told Gee that Willow is in a coma.”
“Oh, God.” Jamia reached out and took Alicia’s hand in hers. “Do they think she’ll come out of it?”
Alicia simply shook her head. “They are running tests on her now. That’s why Gee hasn’t been able to see her.”
“I passed him out in the hallway.” Jamia said looking over at Mikey, “He looks really bad. I didn’t say anything to him because he was reading something.”
“It’s a letter from Willow.” Alicia said softly, “She made me promise to give it to him as soon as he got here.”
Mikey stood up, “I’m gonna go check on him.”
Both women watched him walk out into the hallway.
“Any idea what it said?” Jamia asked Alicia.
Alicia wiped her cheeks, ‘I don’t know. When I first got to their house Willow and I talked of awhile then she went to take a nap. A few hours later she came woke up and we started to watch the movie I’d brought but she started having contractions. At first she just thought it was nothing but I could tell they were getting worse. So she called her doctor’s answering service and they told her to go to the hospital. Before we left she went back to the bedroom and I saw her put the letter in her pocket. By the time we got here I could tell she thought something was wrong. That’s when she gave me the letter and made me promise to give it to Gee as soon as he got here.”
“Oh, God.” Jamia leaned over and spoke softly so the others couldn’t hear her. “Do you think she knew Gee wouldn’t get here in time before the baby was born?”
Alicia nodded as tears once again filled her eyes.
In the hallway Mikey saw that Gerard was leaning against the wall with his eyes closed. In his hand he still gripped the letter from Willow tightly.
“Bro?” Mikey said softly.
Gerard opened his eyes slowly and Mikey could see they were filled with pain. “She knew this was going to happen.”
“What?” Mikey asked struggling to understand.
Gerard’s voice trembled, “She knew this would happen. Grandma showed her but she had my baby anyway.” Suddenly it was all too much and he slid down the wall.
Mikey lowered himself to the ground. He knew there were no words that would ease his brother’s pain so he simply sat next to him.
Gerard shook his head, “Fuck, Mikey. This is all so wrong. Why? I just don’t understand.”
“Did she say what Grandma showed her?” Mikey asked.
“She saw our baby being born.” Tears began to fill his eyes, “But then she saw herself laying there while the doctors worked to save her.” He looked into his brother’s eyes, “She said that our baby’s life was more important to her than anything else in the world.” He looked down at the letter. “She said she loves me and that she hopes I won’t hold any bitterness in my heart towards her because she didn’t tell me.”
Mikey reached out and squeezed his brother’s arm.
“She told me before that she understood our baby will help others when she grows up but she told me that she understood the baby will help me too. That they baby would help me to love but damn it Mikey, Willow did that. Willow taught me how to love again.” He shook his head, “Why didn’t she tell me?”
“Gee if she knew it was going to happen what good would have come from telling you? These past months you and Willow have been so happy. “
Gerard was struggling to understand, “Mikey she saw this happening before she ever got pregnant. She knew this would happen but she got pregnant anyway.”
“Because she loves you so much, Gee. Willow knew how important it was for your baby to be born. Her love for you was more important than her own life.’ Mikey said softly feeling his own eyes begin to tear.
Gerard lowered his head, “I can’t live without her.”
They both sat silently for several minutes. Finally Mikey asked, “Gee, did she say she actually saw herself die?”
Gerard shook his head, “I told you what it says. Grandma showed her the baby being born and then the doctors trying to save her.”
Mikey prayed he wasn’t giving his brother false hope but something deep inside made him continue. “So then we just gotta have faith that Willow will come out of this.”
Slowly Gerard raised his head, “Mikey do you really believe that?”
“Gee, sometimes what we see isn’t the complete vision. Maybe Grandma showed this to Willow so she’d understand there was a very serious risk. She showed her so that Willow could make her own decision, which Willow did. She decided to have your baby regardless of what could happen because she loves you.”
A very small flame of hope caught in Gerard’s heart and mind. “I want to believe that.” He whispered.
“Then believe, Gee.” Mikey said squeezing his arm to offer strength. “You gotta believe that if there is anyway Willow can come back to you she will.”
He had to believe for him there was on other option. “Yeah.” Gerard said wiping his eyes, “I have faith Willow will come back to me and our daughter.” He stood up on shaky legs, “But fuck it, I need to see her.”
Mikey stood also. “Let’s go back in and see how long before you can.”
Almost an hour later a nurse informed Gerard that he could go in and see his wife. As she led him down the hall she gently tried to prepare him still when he walked into the room and saw all the monitors his heart stopped. She looked so small and pale his eyes filled with tears.
“Let me know if you need anything.” The nurse said softy touching his arm before leaving.
Slowly he moved closer to the bed. He pulled the chair as closely as possible, sat down and took a deep breath. Then he reached out and gently took her hand in his.
“Oh God.” He muttered as tears ran down his cheeks. The feeling they shared was still there. It wasn’t strong but he still could feel it. Willow was still with him.
“Willow.” He whispered. “I love you. I will always love you.” He lowered his head and cried.
Mikey and Alicia stood arm in arm looking through the glass at the baby.
“She’s beautiful.” Alicia whispered.
He nodded, “Yeah.” He decided to tell Alicia what Gerard had shared with him earlier, “Grandma showed her to Gee and Willow before she was born.”
Alicia turned to him, “What?”
He explained what Gerard had told him. He also told her what was in the letter Willow had insisted Alicia give Gerard.
“She knew?’ Alicia began crying and Mikey quickly pulled her into his arms. “Oh my God.”
Mikey slowly rocked her in his arms as they stood still looking at their new niece.
“What do you think is gonna happen?” Alicia whispered.
For several minutes Mikey didn’t answer then suddenly with renewed faith he answered, “I think Willow is gonna be okay.”
Alicia looked into his eyes, “Do you really think so?”
He nodded, “I need to believe that.” He closed his eyes a moment, “I just need to believe that.”
An hour later Dr Kyle walked into the waiting room.
“I’ve spoken to Mr Way and he asked me to explain to you what I just told him.” He took a seat across from Don and Donna. Mikey, Alicia, and Jamia all gathered around.
The doctor took a deep breath, “The tests show Willow is suffering from eclampsia. That is what caused the seizures during the delivery.”
Donna interrupted him “What is that?”
He explained, “Eclampsia, like preeclampsia, tends to occur more commonly in first pregnancies and young mothers where it is thought that exposure to paternal antigens still has been low. Women with preexisting vascular diseases such as hypertension or diabetes, are at higher risk to develop preeclampsia and eclampsia. In Willow’s case as far as we know she had none of these preexisting problems. But when she arrived at the hospiatal she was experiencing very severe hypertension.” He sighed, “Sadly eclampsia often does not appear until the third timester. I’ve spoken to her doctor and he assured me Willow had not displayed any symptoms that would have been warning signs she was suffering from this.”
Don spoke up, “Doctor is she gonna be okay?”
“I wish I could answer that. In most cases the seizures do not lead to lasting brain damage. However Willow is in a coma.” He paused hating the news he had to deliver, “The truth is we just don’t know. The cat scan we preformed showed little brain activity.”
Donna broke into tears and Don tightened his arm around her.
“What exactly does that mean?” Don asked.
“Lack of brain activity would point to several brain damage.” Dr Kyle said softly.
Gerard sat near his wife’s bed holding her hand. He knew the doctor was talking to the others but he refused to go into the waiting room. He refused to leave Willow’s side for one minute. In his mind he’d decided that as long as he could still feel the conection they shared there was a chance she’d wake up. Nothing was going to make him give up that hope, nothing was going to make him lose that faith. It didn’t matter what the doctors said, Willow was going to come back to him.
Time had no meaning for Gerard. He stayed at Willow’s side holding her hand and gently speaking to her. Mikey had come in and they’d taked for a bit before he’d taken Alicia home. So had his mom and dad. The nurses came and went some trying to get him to at least go to the cafeteria to eat but he refused.
He’d fallen asleep in the chair still holding Willow’s hand when Bob gently woke him. “Gee.”
Gerard opened his eyes, “Hey Bob.” He blinked several times. “When did you get here?”
“We came straight from the airport.” Bob said softy. He pulled up another chair and sat down by his friend. “I talked to Mikey.”
Gerard nodded, “So I guess you know what the doctors said?” There was a hint of anger in his voice.”
Bob nodded as he glanced at Willow.
“They’er wrong.” Gerard said. “I know what they said about the lack of brain activity, I know what they think.” He squeezed Willow’s hand, “But I know that doesn’t mean anything. Willow said herself her brain ain’t wired like the rest of us.” He turned to look into Bob’s eyes, “She’s still in there.” He whispered. “I can still feel her.”
Bob remained silent.
Gerard wanted hi, no needed him to believe. “I told Mikey the same thing and he understands. When I touch her I can still feel the connection. She’s gonna wake up.”
Bob had talked to the others before coming in. He knew the doctors were holding out little hope but looking into his friend’s eyes he simply had to believe for him “Yeah, I think she will.”
Gerard smiled slighly, “Thanks, Man.” He whispered.
“Gee, you need to go eat something.” When he saw Gerard start to shake his head he added quickly, “You have to keep your strength up for her and your baby. Willow needs you to do that.”
Gerard didn’t want to leave her side.
“I’ll stay with her.” Bob promised. “I’ll hold her hand and talk to her while you’re gone.”
Still Gerard looked unconvenced.
“And you need to go see your daughter.” Bob added softly. He knew from the others that Gerard had so far refused to go see the baby.
“No.” Gerard shook his head, “I’m waiting for Willow. She and I will see the baby together.”
Bob felt his heart breaking for Gerard and Willow. “Gee, at least go grab a bite to eat.” He stood up. “Come on you know you need to.”
Slowly Gerard stood but was still holding Willow’s hand. Bob reached down and genly took Willows hand from his. “I stay right here until you get back.”
Bob blinked several time trying to hold back the tears. Willow looked so pale and lifeless. He held her hand tightly.
“Willow you gotta wake up. You got a whole lot of people here waiting for you.” His tone was soft and gentle. “And you know how much that husband of yours needs you.”
Late in the afternoon Willow was moved to another room. Mikey and Alicia returned to the hospital and brought Gerard a change of clothes. He would only leave Willow’s side to change when Mikey sat down to take her hand.
He quickly changed then returned to the room but stopped short when he saw a strange look on his brother’s face. “What is it Mikey?” He whispered.
Mikey looked down at Willow’s hand in his but remained silent.
Gerard moved closer to the bed, “You can feel it can’t you?” He asked excitedly, “Can’t you?”
Alicia was sitting aross the room watching them.
Mikey nodded unable to look his brother in the eyes and lie. He felt nothing. He stood and let Gerard take his seat. Gerard laced his fingers with Willows.
“I’m back Sugar.” He said to Willow.
Alicia stood and left the room before they could see her crying.
“Mr Way, we can bring in a cot for you.” The nurse said looking over at the exhaused man who refused to leave his wife’s side.
“No, thanks.” Gerard answered. “I’m fine.”
The nurse gave him a kindly smile then left the room.
It had been more than 24 hours since Willow had given birth. Gerard knew that with each passing hour the doctors and nurses were beginning to believe Willow’s chances of awaking from the coma grew less and less. He refused to belive that.
He squeezed Willow’s hand, “Sugar, Ma said that our daugher is beautiful.” His voice trembled, “I really wanna see her so you better wake up soon.” He lowered his head and closed his eyes. “Please.” He whispered.
Suddenly his eyes snapped open and he felt his stomach drop. He looked down at Willow's hand in his and realized he was feeling nothing. “Oh God.” He cried out. “No.”
Tears filled his eyes, “Willow”
And then he saw her standing by the bed.
AUTHORS NOTE: One more chapter left. I want to thank all of you from the bottom of my heart for reading this story. Your reviews mean so much to me. Love you all - Elena XOXO