I know this is a day late, but Spring Break started and the kids hogged the computer *sigh* Today, I'm taking then on a picinic so we can all get some sun and fresh air.
Maria and Zack sat in a comfortable silence. His good hand was still clutched in her hand. He didn’t know what to say. Didn’t know what to think or even feel. What was next for him? Surely he would have to appear in court when the date came around. He would have to face Rob. Was he strong enough to do so?
Zack let out a long defeated sigh, leaning his head back and closing his eyes. He had no choice. If he didn’t Rob would go free. Free to harm someone else. Zack was sure Rob wouldn’t let him get away with this.
The sound of the door opening caught Zack’s attention. Thinking it was a doctor or perhaps someone from the police department, he opened his eyes and felt his blood run cold.
Zack gasped before nearly choking on his words. “No…please. Get away. Leave me alone.” He was pleading, tears rushing from his eyes. He didn’t care how he looked as fear took hold of him. He tried to get out of the bed, to flee, but the movement only made him cry out in pain and tangle in the lines that he was connected to.
“Zack, sshhh…it’s okay,” Maria tried to sooth him, but his brain wouldn’t have it. Again he tried to move, to get away from the man standing in the doorway. It was all his brain could focus on. Pain kept him from moving much. Even his fear couldn’t override the agony riddling his body.
“Don’t let him hurt me,” Zack whimpered, clinging to Maria. He didn’t know what else to do. He couldn’t run, he couldn’t fight. His only option was to depend on someone else.
“Get out!” Maria screamed at the man still standing just inside the doorway. He’d yet to move since Zack first caught sight of him.
The night flashed in Zack’s mind again. The ache of the punches. The snap of his arm filling his ears. And the pressure of the blade as it slid across his skin. The warm gush of blood as it ran from his body. He may have been nearly unconscious by that time, but he still remembered. He would always remember.
“Get the fuck out of here. Now!” Maria screamed again.
Zack’s eyes were locked with his. The same familiar gray color, yet there was something different in them. But his panicked mind couldn’t comprehend the change. All he saw was the man who’d nearly killed him.
Slowly, the man turned and left without a word. Only a glance back to show those gray eyes filled with an unidentifiable emotion. It wasn’t anger. It almost looked like misery.
“Zack.” Maria called his name and managed to cradle his face with her palms. She turned his head from the door so that he had no choice but to look at her. “Come on, sweetie. It’s me. You’re safe. There’s no one here to hurt you.” She soothed him.
Slowly, Zack fought his way out of the panic, his heart still speeding, body trembling, but his mind could think again.
“Maria,” he sighed. “That was him. You said he was in jail. But he was right there. Feet from me.” His words came out in sobs.
Maria shook her head, her thumbs caressing his cheeks, being careful of the cuts and bruises. “No, that wasn’t Rob. That was Ryan. Rob’s twin brother. He’s the one who saved your life. It was he who stopped Rob from killing you. Who got to you in time.”
“Ryan?” Zack’s brows drew together in confusion. His mind felt so hazy. Rob had mentioned once or twice a brother, but he never said that they were twins. Just that they’d had a falling out years before.
“Yes. He’s been here since you were brought in. He refused to leave until you woke and he made sure you were all right.” Maria stared into his eyes. “Ryan won’t hurt you. He’s concerned about you.”
Zack gave in and broke down. “I’m sorry. I’m just so scared.” He closed his eyes and let all the pain and pent up grief finally go. Maria let go of him, but only long enough for her to climb into the bed with him before gathering him in her arms like a mother would do with a child. Zack laid his head on her chest and cried like he had never cried before.