Back to Normal: Chapter 4
When I woke, I was lying on a cold hard surface floating on the water. I opened my eyes and Eric was under me and we were in the yellow raft. I started crying from the relief that Eric was alive, obviously. How else could we have gotten into this raft? I sat up and tried to rouse him, but he was unconscious. I could see the lights of the shore and started to paddle with my hands in that direction, tears of joy streaming down my face. He was alive.
As we neared the beach, I tried to wake Eric. I didn’t want to slap him like I did in Rhodes because his skin was so burned, so I just started yelling into his ear. He came around, and I said, “Can you help me? Can you hear me? We have to get to the house.” His eyes opened and he leaned forward and started to paddle as well. Within minutes, we were on the beach headed towards our house. He was leaning on me, but walking on his own. We staggered through the back door and towards the steps. I got behind him and pushed with all my strength as he climbed the steps one at a time. When he finally fell onto his bed, I ran back downstairs and took out two True Bloods and heated them up. I raised his head and placed pillows underneath so he could sip the blood from the bottle. I got him to finish both of those, and went down and got two more. After the fourth one though, he pushed my hand away and said, “Enough,” before closing his eyes again. Then I went down to the kitchen and drank a bottle of the best tasting water I had ever had and ate a banana while I heated some oatmeal in the microwave. As I peeled the banana, I noticed how much my hands were shaking. I examined my jaw in the mirror and decided that it was not broken, but just severely bruised. I managed to take a shower and pull on some pajamas before crawling into my bed. I made a few preparations for Eric and then I was out.
I woke with pain, but felt Sookie’s sleepy hum and fell back onto my pillow. We were home and she was sleeping. I remembered walking with her along the beach and up the steps. She must have given me blood because I could see that the skin on my hands was already starting to heal. The fingers would take much longer, of course, but I’ve dealt with worse. I was starving naturally, and needed blood, but I wanted to check on Sookie first. I found her sleeping on her back on her bed. Her jaw was bruised, and there was a dark scab on her wrist but she looked otherwise unharmed. I smiled at the piece of paper taped to the front of her pajama top. It was from the pad of paper that I used to leave her daily notes on her mirror. The note said, “You love me. Please don’t drain me.” And there was a six pack of True Blood on the night stand.
I took the bloods down to the kitchen, heated and drank three before fixing Sookie scrambled eggs and sausage and toast. I took the food, a glass of water and some orange juice up to her on a tray and set the tray down beside her. I kissed her forehead and watched her eyes open slowly. I can only imagine what a sight I must have been, but she just smiled and sighed a deep breath when she saw me.
“Oh good, you got my note.”
“Yes, lover. Now sit up and eat something for me, okay?”
“Okay.” She took a sip of orange juice and said, “Would you mind if we cancelled our trip, honey? I think I’d just like to stay home for now.”
“That’s fine, lover. I just want you to be happy.”