My breathing sped up. My pulse quickened. It had been almost an hour since my girlfriend had said she would be there. Where was she?
Suddenly, I heard the familiar tune of my cellphone ringing. It was a special ringtone. Her ringtone. I flipped the phone open frantically, hoping for an explanation as to why she was so epicly astronomically late. It was so unlike her to be this late without any sort of explanation.
"Hello?" I answered, my breathing slowing down a bit.
"K-Kiku..." A melancholy voice came through the tiny phone. It was not my girlfriend's voice, but that of her brother, (brother's name). The sad tone in his voice sent a deadly chill down my spine, and my pulse quickened once again. I froze in fear for a moment, I just knew something was wrong. Terribly, horribly wrong.
"H-hai?" I stuttered, barely able to hold the phone to my ear because my hands were shaking so violently.
"K-Kiku, it's bad, it's really bad."
At this point I was nearly dying of shock, worry, and fear. "What happened?" I whispered, bracing for whatever bomb he was going to drop on me. I held my breath as worry swept over me.
"I'm... at the hospital. Kiku, there's been an accident. And it's bad." His voice quivered a little.
"Stop, I don't want to hear anymore." I said, covering the phone speaker with my hand, tears brimming in my eyes. I couldn't possibly withstand to hear whatever he was going to say next. I had to hear it in person. "I'm coming over there right now." I hung up without giving him a chance to say more and slid the phone back into my pocket.
I drove to the hospital as fast as I could, holding back tears. I had no idea what had happened, or if she was still alive. The thought of her being dead shook me to the core.
You drove happily towards the park where you would be meeting your long-time boyfriend, Kiku Honda, also known as the country of Japan, without a care in the world. It was your 1-year anniversary and you just couldn't wait to see him again. Little did you know that would all change in less than the blink of an eye.
"You seem chipper." Your brother, (brother's name) said. You were going to be dropping him off at work before heading over to the park to see Kiku.
"Yup." You replied, giving a wide grin. You began to turn a corner at an intersection when you caught glimpse of something that would wipe your grin straight off your face. Another car was speeding right at you at full speed. You didn't even have time to react or scream when it hit you straight in the driver's side, ejecting you from the vehicle and sending you flying through the window and out into the air, finally plopping you rather ungracefully onto the cold, hard asphalt with a sickening thud.
"K-Kiku..." You murmured, barely conscious. "I just want to see you, one more time..." Your vision clouded with tears of both pain and sadness. You tried to reach a hand up to wipe away your tears, but soon found you couldn't move. You didn't dare glance down at your tangled and mangled body. You felt something warm and wet glide down your forehead – Blood. You also started to feel a warm moist liquid flow down your cheeks, tears mixing with blood.
Your brother was the first to run to your side. "_____!" You heard him call. "_____! Are you alright?! Can you hear me?!" He glanced down at your wounds. "Oh my god, _____..."
You gasped for air and mustered what little strength you had left to curl your fingers around the silver locket that you wore everyday. It was your treasure. You carefully removed it from your neck and held it out to him. "H-Here..." You murmured, your voice escaping you. "Give this... To Kiku... Tell him... To open it... When the sun sets."
Your brother wasn't quite sure what you meant but he obeyed and took the locket in his hand.
"B-brother..." You rasped, barely breathing. "Please... tell everyone... and especially Kiku... how much... I love them..."
Please God, let me see Kiku one last time. Please...
"No, _____, Don't!"
His voice faded and everything just went black.
I burst through the hospital doors and ran towards the emergency department. I caught a glimpse of (brother's name) and made a beeline for him. "Hey!" I yelled. "Where is she?!"
He just looked at me with sad eyes.
"Where is she?!" I repeated, raising my voice and rapidly becoming more desperate.
He shuffled his feet uncomfortably, avoiding my eyes.
I grabbed him by his shirt collar even though he was taller than me and gave him a piercing glare. "JUST TELL ME."
He sighed and placed a hand on my shoulder. "Kiku, sit down."
I did as I was told like a good little boy and waited impatiently for him to tell me the news. "_____ was in a car accident on the way to see you, and it's bad..."
I could feel all the color drain from my face. My heart felt it was going to tear into tiny bits and wither away at any moment. "Is she alive?" I asked bluntly, unable to withstand the tension any longer.
"Yes, but just barely," he said.
I let out a loud sigh of relief. At least, she was alive. There was still hope. "Thank Goodness..." I sighed.
"Please, let me finish." he interrupted. "Her condition is very critical. She's got multiple broken bones, a vast multitude of cuts and abrasions and she's lost quite a bit of blood... Not to mention organ damage..."
"I don't care, as long as she's alive, I'm okay." I said, standing up. "So, can I see her?"
"She's still in surgery... could be a long time to fix everything... Plus, there's no guarantee..." His voice cracked a little. "That she'll make it out alive."
I felt my heart drop down to my toes. "How long has she been in surgery so far?"
He bit his lip. "I'm not sure. About an hour, maybe?"
I walked over to the big double doors that led to the operating rooms. I pressed my face and hands to glass. Just this lock separates us....
Suddenly, a doctor wearing pale blue scrubs walked out towards them. His face looked serious. I held my breath and clenched my fists in anticipation. "Are you (full name)'s family?"
"Yes." (brother's name) responded.
"How is she?" We two asked in accidental unison.
The doctor sighed. "Well, it appears her organs are more badly damaged than we'd thought."
My heart sank even further. "Will she be okay?" I whispered in a voice barely audible to the human ear.
"It's only an hour in, and there's no way of being sure that her organs aren't permanently damaged," The doctor began. "However, it seems that her external trauma is not as bad as we'd anticipated. Her condition is still highly critical and it will take quite some time to patch everything up. It could be anywhere from another 2 hours to another 2 days... I'll continue to keep you updated on her condition."
Two days?! I thought. I can't wait that long. My heart can't stand it.
"Thanks, doc." her brother said. "Take good care of her."
I looked at the doctor in the eye with desperation. "Please, bring her back."
"We'll do everything we can..." he said dryly before walking off through those accursed double doors.
It had been nearly twenty-two more hours since I had last heard from the doctor. I was growing frantic and anxious. I just know it, somethings terribly wrong and they're afraid to tell me. A million and one thoughts raced through my head. Every now and then I would fall asleep in the waiting area but I would always awake at the thought of _____.
"Oh, Kiku, I almost forgot..." (brother's name) said as he placed a hand on my shoulder and looked me dead in the eye. "_____... wanted you to have this." He held out his hand and gave me the thin silver chain with the little heart-shaped locket attached. I gasped at the sight. This necklace was her most prized treasure. "She said something about telling you to open it when the sun sets, or something weird like that." he said, rubbing the back of his head.
I caressed the tiny ornament and clutched it tightly to my chest. "When the sun sets..." I repeated, tears welling up in my eyes. I knew exactly what she had meant, and it rocked me to the core. It took everything I had to keep myself from breaking down and sobbing on the floor right then and there.
"So, could you tell me what 'When the sun sets' means?" he asked obliviously.
"It means..." The tears were impossible to hold back now. "I used to call her my sunshine. So when the sun sets, she meant..." I fell onto my knees, unable to carry my own weight anymore. "She meant that she's dying." I felt like I, the land the rising sun, had just had it's sunshine jolt out of orbit and explode into nothingness to shine no more.
(brother's name) put a hand on my shoulder. "She'll be alright... and, no matter what, you'll see her again someday..."
Somehow, I didn't find his words very comforting at all.
Realizing his words weren't helping, her brother said, "Hey, why don't you try opening it? It might make you feel better..."
"No." I responded. "I'm not going to give up just yet."
Then, as if on cue, the doctor walked out of those double doors again. We both hurried over to hear the news. "Do you want the good news or bad news first?" he said with a serious look.
"The good news." I replied.
"Well, the surgeries were considered a success." He said, giving a little smile. "She is currently in recovery in the I.C.U. She's got a long road ahead of her, but she's very lucky to be alive."
"And the bad news?" I asked anxiously.
" She's still in very critical condition, and she's slipped into a coma. We don't know when or if she will wake up."
Another devastating blow. I hung my head and stared at the ground. All day it was one crushing blow after the other, each one leaving me more afraid and worried. I couldn't take much more of this.
"When will I be able to see her?" I asked, hopefully.
"The nurses are still settling her into a room in the I.C.U," the doctor answered. "But, since you've been waiting for nearly 23 hours now, I'll let you go ahead and see her."
Finally. Some good news. I would be able to see my dear _____ again.
I felt a little glimmer of hope as we made our way down the hall until we finally stopped at a door that had _____'s name on it.
I practically burst through the door. I was shocked when I saw all the noisy machines hooked up to her and all the scars and bandages that littered her body. "Oh _____..." I sighed as I brushed my hand over her (h/l)(h/c) hair that was now messy and matted. I brushed away some of her bangs and kissed her forehead softly. I gently took her hand and gave it a loving squeeze. "I promise... I'll stay here... by your side... until you wake up."
POV CHANGE! YOU ARE YOU AGAIN... FINALLY.
You felt something warm in your hand. Was someone... holding your hand?
Kiku? You thought hopefully.
You tried to open your eyes but found you could not. You tried to move but couldn't do that either. You scrambled for memories as to what had happened. Piece by piece you slowly put together the memories like a puzzle and remembered that you were in a bad car accident on your way to a date. It all seemed so long ago... yet, at the same time, like it had just happened a few moments ago. You remembered the last thing you saw was your brother holding the locket you gave to him. Oh yeah, I wonder if he ever gave that to Kiku...
Suddenly, you heard a slight rustle beside you. "_-_____-chan..." He mumbled.
Kiku? You asked, but no words escaped your mouth.
"_____, Aishiteru." You heard him say, tenderly planting a kiss on your forehead.
Kiku? You tried to mutter again, but to no avail.
KIKU!! You practically screamed, but once again not a sound escaped from your lips. You tried with all your might to at least squeeze his hand. You weren't quite sure if he felt it or not, though.
"_-_____?" He asked, shocked.
Yes! He definitely had felt it.
You didn't know what to do next, you seemed to be stuck in some sort of half-consciousness where you still couldn't open your eyes or move very much and you didn't know how to pull yourself out of it. Suddenly, a little idea struck and you bit your tongue as hard as you could, hoping the pain would awaken the rest of your body.
Your eyes slowly lifted open, to see Kiku sitting patiently in the little green chair beside your bed, holding your hand. "Kiku?" You whispered, removing the ventilator from your face so you could talk properly.
"_____? You're awake?"
"I suppose so." You said, sitting up to take in your surroundings. It was so strange and surreal to be attached to tons of noisy machines and to be covered in bruises and bandages. You were sore all over, and in quite a bit of pain. Not that you'd ever let Kiku know that.
Suddenly he pulled you into a hug, careful not to hurt any of your wounds. "I'm so glad you're awake. You have no idea how long I've waited to able to look into your (e/c) eyes, bright as the sunshine, once more."
You collapsed into his embrace and muttered, "I wanted to see you too, one more time."
"I love you, _____-chan." He whispered, placing a kiss on the top of your head.
You looked up into his soft chocolate-brown eyes before kissing him softly. "I love you, too, Kiku." You smiled at him and he squeezed your hand.
"Hey, Kiku, have you opened the locket yet?" You asked.
"No, why?" He asked curiously.
"But, the sun hasn't set yet... In fact, it's just arose." He replied swiftly.
"Open it." You insisted.
"Alright." He said, taking the locket out of his pocket. "If you insist." He slowly opened the little heart-shaped piece of silver. Inside was a picture of you, and of him, and a tiny piece of paper that had 'I love you' written on it in your most beautiful handwriting.
"_____..." he smiled, tearing up just a tiny bit. "This is... so... cute."
You giggled and returned his smile. "I bet I'm not that cute anymore now, huh? Now that I'm covered head to toe in bandages, scars, and bruises."
He leaned forward and kissed you again. "You'll always be beautiful to me, no matter what, sunshine."
Suddenly, the doctor walked in carrying a clipboard. "Oh good, you're awake." He actually seemed a tad surprised that you were awake so soon. He walked over to your bedside and quickly examined your vital signs. "Well... everything appears to be normal." He sounded a little baffled. "Which is a good sign. A very good sign."
"Really?" Kiku asked optimistically.
"It's very good." The doctor nodded. "_____ is a very lucky girl."
You glanced around the room, first at the doctor and then at Kiku. You were in fact very lucky, in more ways than one. First you had survived a bad car accident with minimal permanent damage, and then you had a boyfriend who loved you enough to stay by your side throughout the whole ordeal. "I am." You agreed.
Very lucky, indeed.