The girl sat on one of the couches scattered around the hospital floor, her legs up against her chest. Her clothes were still bloody, but the jacket her father had given her was preventing the dried up blood from messing up the couch. Her forehead was resting against her knees, the blonde hair falling down her shoulders.
Gerard stood by the vending machine, leaning against it, deep in thought while his wife was staring at the selection of the vending machine.
“Do you want something to drink?” Lindsey asked her husband who snapped out of his thoughts.
“No,” he replied and shook his head. “Should I go talk to her?”
Lindsey glanced at the blonde girl and saw that she hadn’t moved. “I don’t think she’s interesting in talking right now.”
“I can’t believe this happened,” Gerard sighed. “You hear about this stuff in the news but you never expect it to actually happen at the same school your kid goes to. And you just don’t expect it to happen to your kid. Or her boyfriend.”
Lindsey didn’t know how to respond, so she just pushed a dollar into the machine’s slot and got it back right away as it was rejected and the machine started to blink an error message on the tiny screen.
“What if he dies?” Gerard then asked. He was the first person to say it outloud. There was a possibility he could die, all of them knew it, but no one had dared to speak about it. Lucas had been in surgery for the past four hours, since they arrived at the hospital. Gia had been sitting on that couch since then, barely speaking or moving at all.
There had been three other kids who got shot, so far none of them had died. Two, including Lucas, were still in surgery.
“He’s not going to die,” Lindsey said.
“You don’t know that.”
“No, but I want to believe that the world isn’t that cruel. Look at her.”
Gerard looked up at his daughter who had finally raised her head and was now leaning it back, and wiped away some of the fresh tears she had on her cheeks.
Gia wanted to be left alone. She just wanted to sit there and wallow in her misery and guilt. Lucas could be dead. He could’ve already died, or it could happen any minute now. What if he doesn’t survive the surgery? What if, what if, what if. Gia’s mind was haunted by all the possibilities that she just didn’t want to think about. She didn’t even know what to do if Lucas died. All of her plans had involved Lucas. When thinking about future, her mental images were always shaped around him.
But now, what future was there? If he was dead, she would be, too. Gia wasn’t religious at all, but right at that moment, she prayed to every single deity she could think of. If there was just any chance to save him and have him come back to her, she’d kidnap that chance and keep it captive in a dark cellar until it cooperated.
“Hey,” Gerard said quietly, setting down a paper cup of hot coffee on the low table in front of the couch. “I brought you coffee. Two sugars, no milk.”
Gia stared at the cup for a moment, then she slowly reached for it, tempted by the opportunity to avoid sleeping. She took a small sip of the hot liquid, and wasn’t surprised that it tasted like crap.
“How are you holding up?” he asked her in that annoyingly understanding and sympathising tone. When she didn’t reply, he carried on by saying: “They said on the news that the shooter shot himself. Look, I’m sorry, I -”
“Sorry?” Gia scoffed in disbelief. “You’re sorry my boyfriend got shot? My boyfriend who you’ve hated since I met him? My boyfriend who was also my first actual friend? The same guy you’ve told many times you’d kill him? You’re not sorry. Aren’t you glad he’s probably dead?”
Gerard knew he deserved all that. He hadn’t always been very nice to Lucas, but now he was willing to throw all of that aside and hug the guy. You know, if he could. “I know I haven’t really accepted him, and maybe I should’ve been... You know, not so crazy. But he saved your life, that changes things.”
Gia shook her head but didn’t say anything for a while. She took another sip from the coffee and decided it was too icky to drink, so she set it down. Finally she spoke. “I completely froze,” she said.
“You what?” Gerard asked, not entirely sure what she was even talking about.
“When we heard the gunshots and when that lunatic was pointing a gun at us... I had no idea what to do. I just stood there like an idiot. Lucas tried to talk him out of it. Do you think... If I had said something...?”
“This wasn’t your fault,” Gerard sighed. “And it’s okay that you were scared.”
Tears started to roll down Gia’s cheeks again and she didn’t even bother wiping them away this time. “I wish he hadn’t taken that bullet for me. It should be me who’s in surgery right now. I should be dying, not him.”
Gerard had gone through a lot of shit in his life, and there had been many times when he had seriously wanted to die. One of the few things that made him feel any sort of pride as a parent is that Gia hadn’t felt the same. She was stronger than he ever was, and not once had she ever expressed any will to kill herself. But now, the tone of her shaky voice and the look on her pale, tear-stained face, Gerard recognized that will to die. If she could just drop dead right there and then, she would have, and it would have made her happy. Obviously the circumstances were a bit different, she would’ve done it to save Lucas, but the feeling was still there. Now it wasn’t just Lucas’ possible death that scared Gerard. No, it was the fact that it would affect his daughter so strongly that she would follow her boyfriend.
“I never realized,” he said, not daring to glance at her teary eyes from the fear that he’d tear up, too. “I never realized how much you love him.”
They fell silent, neither of them knowing what to say. Gerard didn’t know how to attempt to comfort her, and Gia fell back into staring at the opposite wall silently.
All of a sudden there was a loud scream echoing through the halls of the hospital. They could recognize it immediately. “BABY! MY BABY!” Frank was hollering, and came into view with his arms wildly flailing around him and for some strange reason, he was wearing a floral granny dress over his black skinny jeans and black band t-shirt.
Lindsey grabbed on to the guitarist before he could dash at Gia and start ripping her clothes off so he could check for deadly gunshot wounds. Lindsey spoke to him quietly, trying to hush him down, and eventually he shut up and glanced at Gia over Lindsey’s shoulder.
“I’m here for you baby!” Frank called out. “Mommy’s here! Don’t cry! Mommy will buy you a pony!”
Normally this would’ve made Gia laugh or at least crack a smile, but now it did nothing for her. She simply looked away from him and remained catatonic for the next hour until a doctor approached them.
“Who here is for Lucas Parker?” the man asked, looking around the hall where a few other families were waiting as well.
Gerard and Gia immediately stood up. “How is he?” she asked eagerly.
“Are you his family?”
“He’s my boyfriend,” Gia announced as if this would clear everything up.
“And I’m her dad. Lucas’ family lives in California, they’re not here yet,” Gerard then explained.
“Well, when they get here make sure they inform someone, I’ll have a word with them.”
Gia was getting frustrated, and she looked ready to murder this doctor guy if he didn’t tell her about Lucas already. He noticed the homicidal look on the blonde’s face.
“He’s going to be fine. The bullet didn’t hit any vital organs but it did break an artery near the heart which caused some complications to the heart.” He continued to speak, but Gia didn’t hear anything else.
Everything blurred out and she began to cry, not like she had before, but out of relief. She felt like she was going to lose her balance so she wrapped her arms around her father’s torso, hugging him tightly and not caring that she was getting tears all over his shirt. She had been so scared, sure she had lost him, but now the relief washed over her like a wave. Gerard hugged his daughter back, and she couldn’t stop crying.
A/N: Wazzaaaapp?? I've already began writing the next one, so give it a few days. A week, probably. Just, it won't take long alright? :D
Thanks for reading. And thanks for the few reviews I got, they always make me write faster (hint hint hint HINT)
I baked a cake today. It's already gone, otherwise I'd share.