The Secret of Ella and Micha Chapter 21
The hospital lights are bright and the air is a little cold, but Ella’s warm hand in mine is comforting. The doctor doped me up with a sedative to ease the pain and then I lay down on the bed, waiting for them to come clean the fragments of the branch out of my wound.
I was scared shitless when I crashed into that tree, worried I was going to die and leave Ella behind with no one. But now, I’m feeling pretty good.
Ethan peers over me and scrunches his nose at the wound. “It’s gnarly looking.”
I shove him out of the way and pull Ella down beside me. “Hey there, pretty girl, come sit with me.”
She giggles, then glances at someone and laughs harder. “I think you might be better off trying to shut your eyes,” she tells me.
I shake my head from side to side. “No way, all I want to do is stare at you all day.”
She snorts a laugh and then smoothes my hair back from my head. “Quit talking, before you say something embarrassing.”
I search my brain, not finding anything embarrassing stashed away inside. “I’ll be fine.” I reach over with my good hand and find her leg. Grabbing hold of it, I pull her over toward me so she falls onto the bed.
“Micha,” she says, her green eyes so wide I can see my reflection in them. “There are people everywhere.”
I glance from left to right, not seeing anything but blurry shapes. “I think we’re good.” I move into kiss her and she gives me a quick peck on the lips, before leaning away.
“How about you rest your head in my lap,” she says. “And I’ll rub your back until you go to sleep.”
“But what if I wake up and you’re not here?” I ask, sounding like a little baby, but not giving a shit.
She presses her lips together and sighs. “I’m not going anywhere.”
She sits up and I rest my head on her lap. She rubs her fingers up my back and through my hair. I hold onto her as I drift into unconsciousness.
Micha is lying on my bed without a shirt on, fiddling with the bandage covering the hole where the branch stabbed into him. The doctors couldn’t stitch it up because it was too wide of an injury, so he has to keep it covered and is not allowed to take showers, something he had jokingly griped about at the hospital as he winked at me.
It’s been a few days since the accident and the Chevelle is parked out in his garage in ruins. When I saw it in the light, I practically passed out because it doesn’t look like an accident anyone would walk away from; the driver’s door is caved in and the front fender fell completely off.
“This is going to leave an awesome battle scar.” He pushes the bandages back down over the wound.
“I’m glad you think so.” I read the email that showed up in my inbox the day after the accident. Turns out, I got the internship at the museum and now I have no idea what to do. I want to do it – it’s a great opportunity, but I also don’t want to leave him.
“What are you reading?” he asks, sliding his legs off the bed, starting to get to his feet.
“Nothing. I was just looking through my emails.” I shut the computer screen off, climb onto the bed with him, and lean back against the headboard, stretching my legs out.
He points at the drawing of the broken mirror on my wall. “I like that one. Especially the guitar part.”
It turned out to be my best piece, full of memories, and a future I wasn’t able to see until I finally let go. A freedom given to me by Micha because he refused to let me go.
“Me too,” I agree. “I think I’ll probably turn it in as one of my art projects one day.”
“It’s got a lot of meaning in it,” he comments.
I smile and slide down, putting my head next to his. “I know.”
He rolls to his side carefully, so he doesn’t hurt his shoulder and we’re lying face to face. “Where’s your head, Ella May? Ever since the accident, you’ve been really quiet.”
I’m so close to him I can see the dark specks of blue in his aqua eyes. I’ve been quiet because that night made me realize something important. For a split second, I thought I’d lost him and it opened up my heart and freed what I’d buried deep inside me that night on the bridge.
I look into his eyes, no longer afraid of what’s in them, but afraid I’ll lose what they carry. “I just don’t ever want to lose you.”
His eyebrows dip together as he props up onto his elbow. “Is that what it’s been about? The accident? Because I’m fine.” He points to the bandages. “It’s just a tiny scrape.”
“I know you’re okay,” I say, sounding choked. “But for a second I didn’t think you were.”
“Hey.” He cups my cheek and kisses me tenderly. “I’m okay. You’re okay. Everything’s okay.”
I take a deep breath and let it out before I can suck it back in. “Micha, I love you.”