So sorry if this has mistakes. It's getting late (ok so 10:30 isn't exactly late, but I have to be at work by 6) and I wanted to get this out. It should have been edited better, but sue me. I'm addicted to reviews. Tell me one writer on here that isn't and I'll seek help ;) Anyway if you find anything that need clarified or corrected let me know please.

-Chapter 3-

-Hospital Explanations-

I woke up and it was dark outside again. I couldn't tell if it was just because the blinds were shut or if I had been out that long. It was starting to get to me that I didn't know the time. The last time I knew anything for sure was one thirty Saturday morning.

I was in the process of looking for a clock when my eyes landed on somebody sleeping in a chair in the corner of the room. My heartbeat quickened and my breath caught before rationalization took over. I knew this boy. "Josh?" I whispered, sitting up. I didn't necessarily want to wake him up. I didn't even know what time it was so who knows when the last time he slept was.

I waited patiently as he stirred in the chair. When his eyes finally focused on me, he sat up straight, instantly alert. "What? What's wrong? Do you need me to get a nurse?" Josh was already standing making his way to the door.

"Josh, no. I'm fine. Just come back."

He looked at me hesitantly before going to sit in the chair again. We' were silent and Josh just stared at me. I had so many questions a minute ago, but I didn't know how to bring them up; where to start.

Josh broke the awkward silence by stating the obvious. "Your dad's not here. We sent him home . He's been up since yesterday morning. He didn't go willingly by the way. We had to literally force him out the door.

"We?" I looked around. It was only josh and I in the room now.

"Um, yeah. Austin and Tyler are getting drinks. I should call them all to let them know you're awake." he began to get up again. Why was he acting so nervous. It scared me. Josh never acted this way around me.

"let them go for now. They're just going to bombard me with questions I don't know the answers to," I mumbled the last part as he sat back down, across the room. "Josh why wont you talk to me?"

"But, I am talking to you," he trailed off, confused.

"Yes, but your not really talking to me. Did I do something? I'm sorry I was a bitch earlier."

"What? You didn't do anything. What gave you that idea?"

"You're sitting all the way over there. Usually you're right beside me. I thought I did something wrong. I understand if you're disgusted. You can leave. You don't have to stay. I don't even know why you did. I couldn't even handle one party." I looked down at my hands, ashamed.

It looked almost like he was shocked about this, but that couldn't be right I had just said what he was feeling out loud. His silence confirmed it. He was disgusted with me. I heard him stand up yet again, but I didn't expect the bed to sink with his added weight as he climbed on with me or to feel his arms wrap around me, holding me tight. I curled into the embrace, hugging myself to him. This wasn't right. He hates me. He can't stand to be around me. This is just pity.

We were silent for a long time, but I didn't want to let him go. More importantly, I didn't want him to let me go. Eventually, he spoke softly, his words muffled by my hair. "No, Kenzie. I was so scared when I found you. I didn't know what to do. You were in pain. I've never seen you like that in my life. They told us, that with everything that happened, that you might not want to be around us. You might be scared of us. I was trying to give you space. I didn't want to scare you. I'm sorry if I gave you the impression that I didn't want to be here. None of what happened way your fault."

"Josh, I don't even know exactly what happened. I remember some, but there's huge gaps. I was dancing and got dizzy. I looked around, but I couldn't find any of you so I was just going to wait in your car. I dropped the keys trying to unlock the door, then, some guy came up behind me. He hit me over the head with something. Next thing I remembered was when you showed up." I shrugged trying to remember anything else.

I deliberately left out the details I remembered in the emergency room. Keeping that form josh was shot to hell. He looked at me with his eyebrows raised, "Something else?"

I just shook my head back and forth repeatedly, eyes closed. He stopped me by putting his hands on either side of my face.. I opened one eye skeptically and he was still staring at me, but now instead of serious his look was understanding and kind of sympathetic. He looked almost sad. I opened both eyes when he began to speak. "I get that you don't want to tell me-" he clenched his jaw like he didn't like what he was saying, "because in it's own sick way, what happened is personal… between the two of you." He trailed off like he was trying to think of a better way to phrase that.

My jaw dropped and my eyes widened. "You think I didn't want to tell you because it's too personal?"

He nodded, confused by my question. "Well, I mean, yeah. It had to have been traumatic. I didn't think you'd want to talk about what exactly happened with anyone, let alone me."

"Josh, it was fucking scary. I had no clue what was going to happen. I've read the stories about how girls aren't always lucky like I was. Really all I could think about in that moment was that I wouldn't get to apologize to you. I wasn't lying when I said I didn't remember. You can fit the entire Atlantic ocean in the gaps in my memory. But, when they started taking my clothes off here, I remembered him doing it. He said things about you and Austin, and Tyler, but he didn't use names. I knew he was talking about you though because he referred to you as my boys. `Where are those boys of your's when you need them?` I knew, logically, I was here but it just felt so real again. I panicked. But, Josh, I didn't want to tell you, not because it was too personal, but because I didn't want you to pity me. I know you all already know what happened - hell, you probably even know more than I do. I'm not weak. I will get over this on my own, in my own time. If I knew the bastard's name I'd be shouting what he did to me. But I don't and I don't want anybody's pity," I finished in a defeated whisper. It was all quite frustrating.

I relaxed in Josh's arms again. At some point during my speech I had tensed without realizing it. We laid back in bed, my head on Josh's shoulder and his arms around my waist. "I'm sorry," Josh whispered after a few moments of silence. Honestly, I had thought he had fallen asleep.

"Sorry? For what?" I tried to sit up to look him in the face, but his grip tightened slightly, holding me firmly to his side.

"That this happened to you; for not being there when you needed me. It was my fault you were at the party in the first place."

"It wasn't your fault. I agreed to go and I had a good time. I want you to know that I had a good time before… it happened. You were having a good time too, like you were supposed to. Guilt is just as bad a pity, Josh, so get it out of your system now." I signed. I seemed to be doing that a lot.

"You'll have to deal with Austin and Tyler too, then. They feel like they should have protected you too."

"Ugh, I don't need protecting," I grumbled as Josh yawned. "Josh, when's the last time you slept?"

"Um, I was sleeping before, when you woke me up."

"Yeah, in a chair. When's the last time you slept in a bed?"

"Thursday night."

"And today's Saturday? Why didn't you go home?"

"Because I wanted to be here."

"Nobody wants to be in a hospital one way or another," I said matter-of-factly.

"I know you're alright so I can sleep now." He yawned again and stretched out beside me on the bed.

"What if I made you go sleep in that chair again?"

"You wouldn't do that. You love me too much." His words were softer with sleep but still cocky.

"So you think." He chuckled and kissed the top of my head. His breathing evened out within seconds after it became silent.

xxx

I stared around the room. There was no way I was getting back to sleep. It would be sheer luck if I could get back into there routine of sleeping at night when I got home. The clock on the wall told me it was after eleven and it was Saturday night from what I had gathered from Josh.

Wait a minute. Visiting hours ended at six or eight or something like that. I don't know. Definitely before eleven, that's for sure. And yet, Josh is here and he said that Austin and Tyler were around somewhere too. Oh, God, they're wreaking havoc in a hospital. The very hospital where my father works. They can't even survive a few hours without me. They shouldn't be here in the first place. They should be home in bed, sleeping off hangovers and forgetting everything they did the night before.

"Ugh." My face was angled towards the ceiling but I let my eyes drift shut, frustrated that I'm in this predicament, bound to a bed with two overgrown children running around, probably terrorizing sick people. "Stupid morons," I muttered. And they think they have to watch out for me? My eyes flew open and my head snapped up at the sound of two very annoying - and very familiar - snorts of laughter.

"Sorry, Sis, didn't quite catch that." Austin said and came to kiss my forehead before sitting on the bed, successfully sandwiching me between him and a sleeping Josh. Tyler went to sit in the chair Josh had vacated earlier.

"I called you both stupid morons," I repeated stubbornly with my chin angled upward.

"Oh, and your little boy toy over there isn't" Austin nodded his head at Josh.

"Yes, he is, just… he's behaving right now." I smile at my brother then mumble, "and he's not `my little boy toy` either."

"Well, duh, Mack. He's sleeping. The boy's practically passed out in your bed." As if to prove this, he leans over me and goes to shake Josh. I swat his hands away before he can touch him. He sits back and grins at me. I scowl back. "And I didn't mean he's your sex slave. Ugh, don't make me picture it. God, get your mind out of the gutter." Austin shakes his head before continuing. "I just meant that he is male and you've got him wrapped around your finger." he twirled his pointer finger in the air and stared at it to demonstrate.

"Leave him alone, Austin. Jesus, what is with you? What are you even doing in the hospital anyway?" He stared at me like I had finally lost my mind and then deliberately looked at my condition - the ugly blue checkered gown, wires and tubes coming out of my body and the monitor beeping beside my head - before I chose to elaborate. "I mean, what are you doing here when you should be home in bed. How are you even here when visiting hours are over?"

"Why go home when you're perfectly willing to share your bed here?"

"Because there's not enough room for all four of us and you have a comfy king-sized bed at home."

"As, but who said anything about the four of us sharing? Tyler's fine on the chair over there, a light push and Josh could be on the floor and out of the picture, and I'll even be nice and let you stay."

"Oh, how nice of you to let me sleep in my own bed. Or the bed assigned to me. You never answered my other question."

"Well, you know, we just hid in the broom closed down the hall."

Sighing, I pushed myself up on my arms enough to see over Josh. Surprisingly, he'd been quiet this whole time. "Your dad said we could stay. He got it cleared."

I relaxed back to see Austin's smile fade into a frown and mutter "traitor." I smiled. "How are you so chipper anyway?"

"The beauty of coffee, my dear."

"So I thought y9ou were all supposed to keep your distance?"

"I saw Josh when we walked in so I figured it was alright. You're strong. Plus, I'm your big brother." his smile disappeared and he looked away from me. He got quieter towards the end and I wondered why. Then, I remembered what Josh had said earlier.

"I don't want your pity. Either of you. I already gave Josh the lecture. I will get over this in my own time. None of this was anybody's fault. None of you could have protected me."

"But-"

"No buts. Just say `yes, Mack.`" Austin stared at me. I stared back unwavering.

He gave a dramatic sigh. "Yes, Mack."

"Tyler?"

He chuckled. "Yes, Mack."

"Damn, I should have come up with something better. `Yes, Mack` just didn't do it for me." I smiled when Austin rolled his eyes. "Now, go home and sleep. Josh will be right here for the rest of the night." I poked Josh in the side and laughed when he stirred slightly in his sleep.

"Fine, Mom." This time Austin smiled when I rolled my eyes. He kissed my forehead and whispered, "Love you, Sis. I'm glad you're alright."

"Love you too." Austin and Tyler made their way to the door. "Tyler, don't I get a goodbye?" Austin continued out as Tyler leaned down to kiss my cheek. "Stop worrying. I'm fine, I swear." I turned to lightly press my lips to his cheek.

"It was just scary."

"I know what you mean." I smiled reassuringly. He finally caved and smiled back. "I love you."

"I know. Love you too." He pressed his lips firmly to my forehead once more before he left. I relaxed back against Josh. Surprisingly, I was exhausted.

"Do you think you could refrain from making out with Tyler with me in your bed? It's now exactly nice to kiss other guys while somebody is sleeping next to you." Josh's groggy voice whispered, his eyes still closed.

"That was nowhere near making out. I'm disappointed if that's what you think that was. What happened to all the girl experience you have?" I yawned, closing my eyes.

"Maybe you'll have to show me some time. Give me some real experience." I halfheartedly slapped at his shoulder as his arms settled around me and I fell asleep again. It felt like all I've been doing was sleeping and yet I can't seem to sleep enough.

AN: What did you think? Reviews, please. Help feed the addiction ;)

Mucho thanks to KrystalAnnette and NotSoOrdinary for reviewing last chapter.

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until next time,

ashley