Page 68

Author: Kirsty Moseley

Wow my girl was demanding, wasn’t it usually three words that a girl wanted to hear? I smiled teasingly, “Five words? Oh wait, you mean: Go buy me some candy?” I joked, slipping back into our easy relationship.

She laughed and shook her head, biting her lip as she climbed onto the bed next to me, crushing half of the crap that she had thrown at me when she walked in.

I smiled even wider, “Jelly doughnuts rule, so there?” I offered.

She giggled and looked me right in the eye. “If you don’t get it right this time, I’m never kissing you again,” she warned, raising one eyebrow playfully.

I grinned and put one hand around the back of her head, pulling her closer to me, our lips almost touching. Her smell filled my lungs making the hair on the nape of my neck stand up with excitement. “I love you, Riley bear,” I whispered.

She seemed to breathe a sigh of relief. “I love you too, Clay.”

I tightened my hand into the back of her hair and pulled her mouth to mine roughly. Kissing her so hard that it probably hurt her lips, but I was almost desperate for reassurance. She didn’t complain or pull away, quite the opposite in fact, she pressed her body against my side as she kissed me just as fiercely.

She pulled her mouth away from mine slightly, pressing her forehead to mine as we both gasped for breath, I didn’t let go of her hair, just held her close to me as if she was the only thing holding me to this earth. In reality she always did feel like that to me, like she was the very center of my world, like she was the reason I was here.

“I love you, Riley Preston,” I whispered.

She pulled back slightly and shook her head, “Riley Thomas. If you want me to be Mrs Preston then you’ll have to marry me again,” she teased, smirking at me.

I laughed quietly; I would love to marry her again. There were parts of our wedding in Vegas that were a little hazy because of the alcohol and I would love to have another shot at it, so I could memorize every detail of the day I became the luckiest man in the world.

“I’ll think about it,” I breathed, pulling her mouth back to mine again. She giggled and bit my bottom lip warningly. I pulled my head back a fraction, “Ok ok, no biting. I guess I can marry you again,” I whispered against her lips, grinning like an idiot.

“Good boy,” she breathed as she crashed her lips to mine again, ending the conversation.

Chapter 31

She pulled away after a couple of minutes, just as I was getting really into it, but I guess I couldn’t exactly lay here making out with my wife all afternoon. I felt sadness hit me again when I remembered that we’re not actually married, but that was easily fixed if she really was up for it again. I’d stall it for a little while though, to make sure that was what she really wanted, I didn’t want to tie her to me if she didn’t want to.

She smiled and shifted on the bed, pushing her hand under her hip and pulling out a badge with ‘C & R, Best Friends 4eva’ written on it. I’d made that for her when I was seven years old when I got a badge maker as a gift for Christmas. She laughed and pinned it on the front of the hospital gown I was wearing.

“I was such a dork as a kid,” I admitted, laughing at it. That’s actually pretty embarrassing that she’d kept that all these years!

She smiled, “You’re a dork as an adult too!” She stuck her tongue out at me and went to grab the shoe box that she’d tossed against the wall earlier. I scooped up all of the worthless crap that was spread over my lap. There were things I don’t even remember, some stuff I couldn’t even understand why she’d kept it. I held up a pebble, looking at her curiously.

She smiled and took it off me, putting it back into the box. “You brought that back from the beach for me when you went on vacation one year,” she stated shrugging.

I grinned, she was so freaking sweet to have kept all of this stuff. It made me feel incredibly special that Riley had kept all of these things, just because they reminded her of me. She was almost done putting it back into the box. I grabbed a bundled up wad of tissue.

“Please tell me this isn’t from when I had a cold or something…..” I looked at it disgusted.

She laughed, shaking her head. “Nope! Open it and see.”

I frowned and opened the tissue, praying there wasn’t something gross inside it. A little white thing was nestled in the middle, I looked at it, having no idea what on earth it was. I prodded it with my finger tip, it was hard and smooth. “What is this, Riley bear?”

She laughed and bit her lip. “That’s your tooth.”

I dropped it on the bed and pulled my hands away quick as I could, wiping them on my clothes. “Seriously? That’s gross! Why did you keep my tooth? Where did you even get it from anyway?”

She smiled and took the tissue, scooping the little while lump back inside without touching it. “You gave it to me. Remember when I was saving up for that Malibu Barbie doll? I was whining that it was taking me forever to save my allowance money and that the stores would sell out……. Well you went home and pulled out your wobbly tooth, you gave it to me and told me to put it under my pillow and pretend it was mine, so that the tooth fairy would give me some money to put towards the doll.”

I laughed, did I? I don’t really remember that, sounds like something I’d do though I guess! “Wow, I was a good friend, huh?” I teased.

She smiled and put the box on the chair, climbing back onto the bed with me, wrapping her arms around me gently. “The best,” she whispered, kissing me again.

We laid there for a long time, looking through all of the worthless crap that she called treasure, her telling me what some of the more random things were and what they meant. Doctors and nurses came and went, I was given painkillers which I was grateful for.

After about two hours of small talk she turned and looked at me thoughtfully. I gulped, was she going to take it back now? Was she going to tell me that she wasn’t sure she could love me now that I couldn’t walk?

“Baby, can I talk to you about something?” she whispered, looking really uncomfortable.

I nodded, unable to speak through the lump that was forming in my throat.

“Ok so….” She started, her nose crinkling slightly like it did when she was thinking about something really hard. “I was thinking about your parents.”

I felt my body relax, this wasn’t about us, it was about my parents! “I don’t really want to talk about it, Riley bear.”

I was too pissed off with them to talk about them right now. They’d come here earlier and I couldn’t even bring myself to shout at them, to blame them for leaving the surgery and potentially ruining my chances of walking. I didn’t want to see them, I didn’t want to talk to them, I couldn’t even be bothered to argue with them about it. Their decision had left me in this situation, I know I would have never known if the surgery would have worked if I’d had it hours earlier, but those precious few hours might have made all of the difference.

She stroked her hand across my chest, playing with the badge. “Clay, I know that you’re angry and god knows I’m angry too…… but they weren’t stopping it to hurt you. Look, I don’t want to fight their corner, I’m so angry at them that I actually can’t believe I’m even talking to you about it. But….. just think about it for a couple of days, don’t do anything irrational, they love you.”

I sighed and nodded, “Let’s just leave it Riley, ok? I just don’t want to be thinking about them right now.” I patted the bed next to me. “Come lay with me for a bit.”

She smiled and immediately laid down at my side, she was being so careful of me, every move was slow and deliberate like she was afraid to shift the bed in case it hurt me or something. I smiled down at her, trying not to laugh at the pained, worried expression on her face.

“What?” she asked, when she caught me staring at her.

I sighed, “You don’t have to be so careful of me Riley bear. Its not like it’s going to hurt me or anything is it? You could drop something on my foot and I wouldn’t know unless you told me.” I tried to make it sound like a joke, but even I could hear the sadness in my voice. I was trying to stay positive, I really was, but I had no idea how I was going to cope with not being able to walk again. Not being able to do little things for Riley, like carrying the groceries when we went to the store, pushing the shopping cart, things people took for granted and never even thought about until you couldn’t do them anymore. Everything was going to change now, nothing would ever be the same again.

She frowned and looked down at my legs, “Clay, stop thinking the worst. Give it a little while, ok?” she pleaded.

I nodded and kissed her forehead, putting on a fake smile. “Ok. I’m pretty tired Riley, want to sleep with me for a little while?” I asked, stifling a yawn. From what she’d told me I’d been in a coma for 27 hours straight, then knocked out for six hours, then slept the whole night, I should have had enough sleep by now but I could feel my eyelids getting heavy.

“Sure, baby.” She kissed the side of my neck, her hand finding mine, holding tightly. I couldn’t stay awake even if I wanted to.

I woke up with something heavy on my crotch, I groaned a little as the throbbing pain started to get worse in my back. My whole body was starting to ache, I guess it was time for more pain meds. How long had I been asleep? I shifted my arm, tightening it around Riley, trying to get her closer to me. I could tell she was still asleep because of how deep her breathing was against the side of my neck, I knew this girl like the back of my hand.

She snuggled into me tighter, the heavy thing on my crotch moved and went further down, pressing on my thighs, making the pain in my back worse.

I groaned and was just about to wake her up to ask her to get the doctor, when I realised that I could actually feel a weight on my legs. I raised my head and looked down a little shocked. Riley’s leg was on top of mine. I could actually feel the weight of her leg that she’d casually slung over me in her sleep. I could feel it! Holy shit!