“Ouch, what was that for? And what the hell did you blow on me last night?”
“It is about damn time.”
“Did you really have to slap me?”
“I did not see you this morning and I could not get you to wake up.”
I gazed around the room. My fingertips traced a line up my scars.
“I’m back! It was that powder you blew in my face wasn’t it.”
“You are, and the first thing you’re going to do is get into the shower. You stink.”
If he didn’t want to admit to bringing me back, it was fine by me. It wasn’t important. I knew he had.
I grinned, “Thanks a lot, Doc.”
He nodded, wrapped my robe around me the best he could, and headed downstairs to get Chase.
“You’re up!” Chase almost screamed.
His high energy and emotions made me cringe. No wonder I’d left my body for so long. I’d forgotten what it felt like.
Chase started to lean down to give me a hug when the Doc put his hand on Chase’s shoulder.
“Tone it down about twenty notches,” he said, pointing at me.
“Oh shit, I forgot. I’m sorry.” His emotions went from excitement, to anxiety, as he bolted out of the room.
“Give him a moment to collect himself,” Doc said.
“So how do you do it?” His energy was calm.
“I will teach you along with your physical therapy. I have not found anything in your blood work, so I cannot give you a cure-all shot. It will take patience and practice.”
He said it like I was the most impatient person on earth. Well, maybe I was, but I’d find the patience to have the calm that he carried.
Chase walked back up the stairs more grounded than the first time, strode over to me, and squeezed me so hard I thought I might pass out.
“Get on the other side of her. We are going to help her up.”
I finally got my bath. I leaned against the tub while the Doc filled it with water. He helped me into the tub, turned on the jets, then gave me Alexis’ product to add. I slid into the water, covering my head, and stayed there for a moment, letting the hot liquid sooth my stiff muscles. I vowed to never take my Jacuzzi for granted again.
I reveled in the tub until I was a prune, dressed in sweat pants and a shirt, and let Doc help me back into bed. The sheets were clean, the pillows fluffed, and I almost felt human again.
“That is enough exercise for right now. We will work on your muscles again in a few hours.”
The Doc left as Chase walked in, carrying a tray. He grinned wide, and placed it on my lap. I scanned over the food, lightly buttered toast, water, and espresso. My mouth watered. My stomach growled.
“The Doc says to take it slow. He’s not sure how you’re going to do with real food yet.”
“Okay,” I tried not to cram the whole piece of toast into my mouth, but it tasted wonderful. I sipped on the coffee between bites, and finished the water.
“Where’s breakfast? I think you brought me up an empty plate,” I grinned.
“You don’t get anything else right now. Let’s see how that sits.”
My stomach growled, louder this time. “Do you hear that? I’m starving.”
Chase laughed and handed me my smokes.
“Thanks.” I lit one. “Have you talked to Max yet?”
“No. He’ll call me later.” Chase shrugged his shoulders. Then went into detail about how they’d woken up late the next afternoon, way to groggy to realize what had happened.
I cringed, “I’m sorry, Chase.”
Chase gave me a half hearted glare. “By the time we shook off the drugs it was late. Max searched the house. When he couldn’t locate you he went outside to search. He found your backpack and gun buried in the snow. I think he was about ready to panic. By that time it was dark and starting to snow again. We couldn’t do anything. He paced all night, periodically checking the GPS for a signal on your phone. We hoped the storm blocked the signal, and nothing else. The next morning blizzard conditions covered the mountains, but we headed back out to the spot where he’d found your backpack anyway. He dug up the fresh snow, hoping there would be something there to lead us to you, and found blood.” Chase glared at me.
“Max just about hit the roof, Montana. I’ve never seen him so pissed and scared at the same time. All we could do was go back to the house and wait for it to stop snowing.” He took a deep breath. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen it snow this much in one winter. After the storm blew over we were able to pin point where you were located, but we still had to plow ourselves out of the house. We ended up hiking over to Max’s house, through knee deep snow, to pick up the snowmobiles. Unfortunately, once we arrived at his house we needed to change, warm up, and eat. Then the snowmobiles wouldn’t start. When we finally got them up and running the sun was setting. We ended up driving the snowmobiles back to your place, and waited until sunrise to leave. What happened up there? When we arrived there was blood everywhere. It looked like you almost escaped. We followed the trail you both left in the snow on our way up to the cave.”
He gave me a questioning glance as he waited for an answer.
“I got tired of being starved to death, so I fought back.”
“Well you did a damn good job.” He sighed. “It’s too bad you were badly injured in the process.”
I smirked. “I still bagged the bad guy.”
“A big part of me wants to yell at you for pulling that stunt, but after talking to Max I’m kind of glad you did.” He held up his thumb and finger, separating them a little, to show me the amount he was glad. It wasn’t much.
“Any how we brought you home, and you’ve been out of it since.” Chase went on to describe everything that happened since I’d been on “vacation,” which I pretty much already knew. I decided not to tell him about my out of my body experience, but was tempted when he omitted Blake staying at the house.
After he finished the story I opted for a short catnap, before the Doc came back to begin my physical therapy.
Physical therapy provided to be excruciatingly painful, instead of giving me a break after; Doc went straight into meditation mode.
“Once you are very good at meditating I will show you how to use it all of the time. It will help you keep other people’s emotions away from you.”
I feigned napping when Chase entered my room with Max on the phone. I knew I owed Max an explanation for finding me, and a thank you for bringing me home and hiring the Doc to take care of me, but I was still pissed at him and his government world. After Chase left I called my family and assured them I was fine.
It only took a few days before I was up walking on my own, and a few more before I could manage the stairs more than once a day. I was determined to get healthy again.
I began practicing Yoga after a week of physical therapy, and began to utilize it with the meditation. Every once in a while I’d open myself up to get a glimpse of other peoples emotions, but like the Doc kept saying “other people’s feelings should be their own.”