Happy Birthday

AN: Part 3 finally done! Sorry about the wait. Also, while you read and scratch your head in confusion, bear in mind that I haven't ever tried writing in first person before. Sorry if I made a mess of it. :)

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Beep. . . Beep. . . Beep. . .

Ok, That's starting to get annoying. Hey! There is an afterlife. . .why is it beeping. . .? Maybe I'm in hell. . . The bible says people who commit suicide go to hell.

"I think he's coming round!"

"oh, Richey, baby wake up, I'm right here, everything's going to be alright."

"Don't crowd him, Elizabeth!"

"I'm sorry young man, It's family only!"

"I just wanna know if his alright-"

Jordie? Mom? Dad. . .?

Beep, Beep, Beep, Beep.

I'm in hell.

I'm. . .Alive.

Just as Richey Page came to realize this, along with the fact that he was lying on a bed surrounded by his parents, presumably a doctor and possibly Jordan, The fact the he'd have to explain himself struck him like a bucket of cold water. "What am I gonna say?"
Mercifully, he was spared from saying anything for the moment, because the second he opened his eyes and a blurry image of the hospital ceiling swam in to view his parents smothered him with concern and affection. "my dad is hugging me. He *never* hugs me. Maybe I should try to kill myself more often."

He saw the look of concern melt in to one of anger on his mothers face just moments before he was sure she would demand an explanation.

-Mom, Dad? Can we talk later? I really tired. . .

Mr. Page took a step back from the bed. He too had that look on his face, but in the face of his sons pleading eyes he relented that any explanation could wait until later.

-Of course, son. You should rest now. Come on, Liz.

His mother hugged him one more time and kissed his forehead.

-We love you honey. Do you want us to stay?

Mr. Page shook his head glancing at his writs watch.

-No, It's late, we'll come back tomorrow morning and bring a few of your things with us. The doctor says you might have to stay here for a while.

Richey decided that his father was definitely not pleased with him at the moment. He'd probably get a lecture about it later. He was about to ask how long a while but decided against it, in case they changed their minds about leaving him alone for now.

Richey watched as they walked out of the room, turning to speak to a balding man in a white coat, presumably the doctor. The light was off, but it was bright enough to see with the window being open and the glowing monitors humming all around him that he was beginning to tune out. Except that left him with no distraction. He'd only been alone for ten seconds, and already he was desperately trying to listen to the sound outside, the beeping of the heart monitor, Anything! Anything to keep his mind occupied. To keep him from thinking about *it*.

"What am I gonna do?"
That was the only thought that filled the void of his carefully blank mind, but it was enough.

I was going to yell at him! I was going to help him out with what he'd so nearly accomplished himself and strangle him for doing this! I was at least going to ask him why!? I wasn't going to creep in to his room, see the tears rolling down his pale face while he stared at the wall and I wasn't going to hold him and let him bury his face against my shoulder and cry silently. But that's exactly what's happening.
The nurse wouldn't let me in to see him before, and I'd sat there for six hours waiting to see how he is and I wasn't about to walk away without seeing him being "fine, just fine" for my self. So, after his parents left I snuk in to the dark little room and he didn't even notice. He was just lying there propped up on about ten pillows, staring blankly at the wall, hooked up to a myriad of noisy machinery that ticked and beeped a formless melody.
I didn't even say a word. Just walked over, all questions forgotten and sat on the edge of the bed, and then, he looked at me. Not like he was looking at the wall, no, really looked at me. His eyes, so full of pain and confusion stared at me for a moment as his lips soundlessly formed my name.

And I couldn't do anything other than pull him in to my arms. He's sobbing softly, not really crying, holding back.

-It's alright, Richey. You're alright. I'm so sorry. Oh, god, you're alright. . .

I don't realize I'm saying these things but he does. He looks up at me again, and I'm tempted to hold him closer, not let him go, and I don't understand.

-That's kind of the problem. . .

He says. He's smiling, only a little, but the corner of his mouth twitched up slightly just now, It breaks the tension. I smile back and realize I have tears in my eyes too.

I'm not going to yell at him or strangle him now. I realize it's not what he needs and I don't even want to anymore.

-Richey. . .

I trail off. I don't really know what to say, I just wanna help.

He looks away, playing with the edge of the hospital regulation faded orange quilt.

-Jordie, what are you doing here?

He asks. Not a challenge, just curious. I smile and move back to a more comfortable spot on the bed. When I do this he almost reaches for me and I feel a pang in my chest as he catches himself and pulls back.

-Well, I had to come in. when I found you *I* almost had a heart attack.

I'm trying to lighten the mood, and I don't know if it's the right thing to do.

-You? Found me. . .?

This must be confusing for him. Fuck, it's confusing for me.

-Yeah. I came to your house, to, apologize for earlier. You know, saying that. Those guys are idiots, and I'm a bigger idiot for talking to them in the first place, well, I don't think that'll be a problem now, seeing as I told them to fuck off after you left. . .

And here I am trying to make excuses, make myself feel better. I'm a jerk.

-Well, anyway, your mom let me in, and I went up to your room and. . .

I trail off. Not because I meant to stop, but because I just remembered what I was reading for half an hour before I left.

-You fond me.

He says after digesting what I'd said.

I nod. I'm still trying to decided weather to bring up the note of not. He's looking at me as I fiddle with a lock of hair and chew on my bottom lip.

-I. . . I d don't know what to say. Thank you. But I don't

He looked down fighting tears for a moment.

-I don't know what to do now. God, I'm so stupid!

I reach up and wipe a tear off his face. I don't know what I'm doing, just that if he starts crying again, I'll hold him and get that feeling again, and I can't deal with that now.

-Hey. It's gonna be alright now. They wanna keep you in hospital for a few days, for observation, you know? And then they'll let you go home.

Ok, that was meant to come out more reassuring than it did.

-Yeah, so that my parents can tell me what a selfish piece of shit I am and send me to a shrink! *There's* something to look forward to.

He looked at me, paled a little more and bit his lip.

-Jordie, I'm sorry, I know you-

-It'd alright!

I interrupt him as he's about to apologize for lashing out at me, and he plops back against the mountain of pillows in resignation.

I just think about how he always calls me Jordie and I don't mind and if anyone else did it I would brake their nose and how I came very close to never hearing it again.

-You have no idea how scared I was.

I blurt out. And now he's looking at me askance.

-When I couldn't find a pulse. You were lying there, and I couldn't find a pulse and I thought. . .

He knows what I thought.

-I wish I was.

His voice is so flat when he says that and I want to scream at him again, and he's looking at me as if he knows and is waiting for me to do it!


I take a deep breath and bite my tongue. I don't trust my self to say more because my heart is beating a mile a minute and all I want to do is shake him until he realizes that he matters, to me, to his parents, to his friends, God, he is stupid! Can't he see how amazing he is?! And this is why I'm keeping quiet. I might just say all that to him and then he'll tell me that no, he doesn't believe a word of it. On top of that, I'll have to admit to myself that I *do*.

-You know why. You read it. . . didn't you.

I nod slowly. I can't think anymore.

-And now, mom and dad are gonna read it and I'll have to explain-

-No. They wont.

He looks at me, startled and then understanding dawns on his face.

-Thank you.

I don't acknowledge him for a minute, waiting for an explanation. It's probably unfair of me, and he is upset enough as it is, but I want to know. Not for me, but I just want to know what stupid reason he came up with so I can *tell* him it's stupid!

-You never answered my question.

He just looks at me.

-Why? I mean really?

Sighing in exasperation he turns away and mumbles about how he explained everything in the note.

-No, that, was an excuse! I don't believe you'd try to kill your self for fuck sake because you think no one cares!

I'm yelling. I can' help it now, and he has tears in his eyes, but he's angry at me too.

-So what?! It doesn't matter now does it! I know, you don't have to rub it in, I'm an idiot for doing it!

I didn't mean that at all.

-And maybe it was an excuse! But trust me, my life that way it is now, is even more of a lie!

He's crying openly now. Gut wrenching sobs shake his thin frame as he tries to catch his breath and I'm about to yell some more, but I stop myself. I can't be angry at him when he obviously feels bad enough as it is.


-No! You're right! Anyone else would be able to deal with it, but I can't alright!

There *is* something more.

-Deal with what, Richey?

I ask quietly, all I want is for this to be over, but he needs to get it out of his system. He's so quiet now, still, as if he's realizing something for the first time.

-It jut got too much. I think I could deal with the rest of it, but Em. . . she, she thinks

Oh is that what this is about? God, how could I be so stupid!

-Hey, don't worry about that, Richey, man no one really thinks you're gay!

He looks at me, wet eyelashes sticking together framing his too blue eyes.

-You do.

I was stumped for a moment. I do, don't I? I'm about to deny it of course, he wouldn't understand that I won't care if he was, I like him. . . and now I'm stumped for a whole different reason.

First, he's not bothering to deny it, and second, I don't want him to. I reach out to touch his face but he jerks away from me. I give him a pleading and very meaningful look, and hope he understands because it's the best I can do for now and reach out again. He is still and unresponsive, but then I pull him closer again and he is in my arms and I just hold him. He's smaller than me, he fits there perfectly and I rock both of us gently, without saying anything more until he falls asleep.

I touch my lips to the side of his face, half unintentionally as I ease him back down on to the pillows. He doesn't stir, just somehow manages to garb hold of my hand a wrap his delicate fingers around it. I guess I'm staying.

I smile to myself, glad I remembered to call my mom and tell her not to expect me home and settle on the chair next to the bed.

-Good night.

I whisper softly to the sleeping boy next to me. I can almost make out his face in the near darkness and there is a faint smile on his lips. I start to wonder if he's really asleep.

I think he likes me.

I think. . . I don't mind.

I think I like him too.


AN: Well, that was it. It's sorry if anyone wanted some kind of resolution with Richeys' parents and what happened after and all, but this story isn't really about that. It's about how difficult it can be to deal with change when you feel like you're on your own. Thank you for all the support.