Anonymous of Holland            -A Dutchman in Korea-

    Helo welcom 2 my websight

Remembrance (3)

This is a continuation of an ongoing story. Read the first part here and the second part here.

Chapter 2

When I came to, she was there, as she always was, a frightened and concerned look clearly visible on her otherwise so bright and beautiful face. My head hurt. When my vision became clearer, the other five people standing around me slipped into focus. They were looking down at me. I took a moment to calm myself. I was laying on the floor of Soo-Min's office building, a small trickle of blood running from my nose into my mouth. The taste was unfamiliar.
"Leon! Oh Leon I am so glad you're awake!"
Her voice made my headache worse. I tried to stand up, holding on to the arm one of Soo-Min's male colleagues had extended. I couldn't stand.
"Uh…" I grunted.
I felt tears dropping on my lips.
I tried to raise my hand to comfort Soo-Min, to tell her I was alright, but it wouldn't move a muscle.
She pulled me up and hugged me tight, but I couldn't feel the warmth of her body.
For some reason, I wasn't panicking. I felt completely calm as the paramedics hauled me up from the floor and rolled me into the back of the ambulance, Soo-Min refusing to let go of me as she struggled to keep up. I felt no fear. I felt like all of it was happening as it should have. Something did worry me though; I also felt no love for Soo-Min. As she sat next to me in the ambulance, panting and sweating from rushing along, my heart seemed like an empty void. For the first time since the dreams had started, I felt like she was really being taken away from me, and there was nothing I could do about it. Tears rolled down my cheeks, but I was unable to wipe them away. Soo-Min kissed my forehead, but I could not feel her lips. Then, she was halted by hospital staff as I was wheeled into a diagnostic room.

I must have lain there for hours, unable to move or speak, as doctors shone light into my eyes, stabbed needles into my skin and electrons into my brain. They looked worried at first, but after a while they looked considerably more relaxed.
After the last doctor had left, a nurse guided Soo-Min into my room. The man quietly stood in the corner while my girlfriend dropped to her knees at the edge of the white hospital bed and grabbed my hand.
She wanted to speak, but her tears were not letting her.
"As we told miss Park," the nurse started, moving slightly closer to where I was lying, "it appears that you have passed out as the result of a high dose of tranquilizing medication, more specifically Pancuronium Bromide, a drug we use in this hospital to sedate violent patients. The paralysis will wear off shortly, but we would like to keep you here for observation until we can find out how such a high dosage of it has ended up in your system."
Soo-Min finally found the strength to raise her head and speak: "I..I was so worried…" she sobbed, "I don't want to lose you, Leon, I don't ever want to lose you. You have to stay with me forever, Leon, I won't let you go."
I wrapped my hand around hers, touched her thumb with mine and extended my pinky. She locked hers firmly into it and helped me rotate my wrist.
"It's a promise," I wanted to say, but I couldn't move my lips. Instead, I cried as I felt my feelings for Soo-Min slowly returning, together with my mobility. I felt her strong grip on my hand, as if she would never let go of it, and unable to keep my weary mind awake, I closed my eyes.

I must have kept on crying during the dreamless sleep that overcame me for the next few hours, since my pillow was soaked when I woke up, the feeling of half-dried tears staining my skin. Soo-Min was still holding onto my hand, but she had also fallen asleep in a chain the nurse must have prepared for her.
I relaxed my mind, the image of this frail woman sitting there hunched over, clasping my hand in hers as if it was a lifeline flooding my thoughts. I couldn't tell her about what I experienced while I was unconscious. In fact, I shouldn't tell her. It would only worry her even more, and I had already been such a burden on her.
That was what I was thinking when I noticed Soo-Min's head slowly rising from the corner of my eye. Her eyes were puffy, like little fish eyes, and it reminded me of how beautiful she was even when she just came out of bed with no make-up on.
"Soo-Min," I said, now in full control of all my muscles, "I..I'm sorry."
The beautiful fish eyes stared right through me, and Soo-Min punched me hard on my shoulder. I was just happy I could feel the sting.
"Don't say you're sorry, you…idiot." Tears welled up in her eyes, but she quickly wiped them with the sleeve of her blouse.
"But I am," I continued, "I'm sorry for being so weak…and I'm sorry for making you worry so much."
Her face started to show even more frustration. "Didn't you hear what the doctors said? This can't be your fault. Did you inject yourself with that stuff?"
"No..no, of course not. I didn't even know a drug like that existed."
"The police have been alerted. They said they'd try to find whoever did this to you, but since there's not much to go on…
The doctors said the drug only takes a few moments to take effect, so they think it might have been someone at our office. Who would do something like this, Leon?
The police officer will probably be visiting soon…What time is it?"
I got up and kissed her on the forehead.
"Honey, relax." I placed my hand on her head and pulled her towards me. "At this rate, you'll be the one who'll end up in a bed like this." I could feel her sobbing over the slow movement of my chest. "Everything is alright; there's nothing to worry about anymore, I'll be fine."
After a short silence during which Soo-Min regained her composure, she said: "When you were asleep just now… what did you dream?"
I held her by the shoulders and slowly pushed her away from me, looking her straight in the eye so she'd know I wasn't lying.
"I didn't dream of anything." I said, slowly and deliberately.
Soo-Min looked down at the hospital floor. Then she looked back up at me, a wide smile playing along her lips. For the first time since I had woken up, she hugged me tight.
"Maybe this was just what I needed to get my brain sorted out," I lied.
I was even more determined than before: I shouldn't tell her about what happened after I passed out. I decided to start keeping my nightmares from her as well; to pretend this episode had somehow magically fix whatever was wrong with me. The best decision would have been to leave her, of course, but I was selfish. I didn't want to live without her, even if it would have made her able to live a happy life with someone more stable than myself. So I did what I always did: I chose the low road.

I stayed in the hospital for two more days as the doctors ran tests on me and police officers asked me for my statement. In the end, I ended up with a 'You appear to be perfectly healthy, so there's no reason to keep you here any longer,' and a 'We're doing the best we can,' respectively.
Of course I was worried, but I had the distinct feeling there was nothing I, or anyone else, could do about it, so I quietly thanked the hospital staff for their hard work and returned home with Soo-Min, who hadn't left my side
for more than 20 minutes while I was at the hospital. She had even eaten the same crummy microwave meals I had, and had planned to sleep in that same chair until I invited her to sleep with me in the hospital bed. I hadn't had any nightmares since the incident either. Perhaps it really was the end of my fragile state of mind?

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This entry was posted on 25 March 2011 by in Original Content, Stories.

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