Rating: PG-13 to start, for violence (non-sexual) and language. I am not any kind of a medical expert so if there are some glaring errors, please forgive me.
Disclaimer: I don’t own the Guiding Light characters, they belong to CBS and Proctor and Gamble.
Summary: This is set in the spring of 2009. I’ve taking some liberties with the storyline, mainly Natalia never slept with Frank, hence no engagement etc. So our girls have been just continuing forward raising Emma and getting closer to each other though they are still technically just friends, but that will change… This is a hurt/comfort story so they are headed on a rough ride.
Author’s Note: This is my first fan fiction so please be gentle. This would not have been possible if not for the persistent nudging and awesome editing of my beta/great friend croftlara. Comments are welcome.
( Part 1 ) ( Parts 2 & 3 ) ( Part 4 ) ( Parts 5 & 6 ) ( Part 7 ) ( Part 8 ) ( Part 9 ) ( Part 10 ) ( Part 11 ) ( Part 12 ) ( Part 13 ) ( Parts 14 & 15 ) ( Part 16 ) ( Part 17 ) ( Part 18 ) ( Part 19 ) ( Part 20 ) ( Part 21 ) ( Part 22 ) ( Part 23 ) ( Part 24 ) ( Part 25 ) ( Part 26 ) ( Part 27 )
Frank walked down the hall of the hospital with a small bouquet of flowers in a thin vase and a smile. He could not help it, he was grateful for any chance he had to see Natalia. Olivia would probably be there but maybe she would leave them to go see Emma or something.
Coming upon Natalia’s door, he paused and knocked. Then hearing Natalia quiet “Come in”, Frank opened the door and entered the room.
“Hey Natalia, I brought you some flowers. How are you feeling?” No Olivia, that’s strange.
“Hi Frank, I’m fine. Thanks for the flowers, they look lovely.”
Frank put the flowers down on the table next to Natalia, “Where’s Olivia, I figured that she’d be here?”
He doesn’t need to know, he wouldn’t understand it anyway, “Jeffrey took her home so she could rest.”
“Ah, well probably a good idea, I imagine she hasn’t had much sleep. Well since you’re alone, why don’t I hang around for awhile and keep you company?”
What Natalia wanted was some peace and quiet. Today had been just a little too exciting for her taste but instead of hurting the man’s feelings she smiled and agreed. Just what I need, an evening of small talk with Frank. Considering what we’ve been going through… hang around Frank, really? The only person I want to ‘hang around’ with right now is Olivia, she could spend the day reading me hockey scores and I’d be happy.
Table set, dinner just about ready, Reva entered the den to get Jeffrey, “Dinner’s ready, do you want to wake sleeping beauty?”
Jeffrey answered, “Sure, I’ll get her.”
The two walked back together, Reva to the kitchen to put the food on the table and Jeffrey over to the couch.
Jeffrey noticed the sheen of sweat covering Olivia’s skin and how pale she looked. Glad that the nightmare seemed to have stayed away Jeffrey was reluctant to wake her. This is the first deep sleep you’ve had since this started isn’t it? Though he really hated to do it, he leaned over and touched the sleeping woman’s shoulder, “Olivia? Wake up, it’s time to eat.” After a moment she began to stir.
Olivia blinked her eyes open, “Jeffrey?” She reached up to scrub her face with her hands trying to wake herself up, “What’s going on?”
“Hey sleepyhead. Dinner is on the table. Let me help you up.”
Dinner? Still a little groggy from sleep, Olivia instinctively allowed Jeffrey to pull her up and guide her to the table. Oh right, I’m at Cross Creek.
The three of them sat and Jeffrey and Reva started to put food on their plates while Olivia just sat looking at the food.
“Not a fan of chicken and rice?” Reva asked.
Absently Olivia answered, “No, I love chicken and rice. Just not sure I wanna eat after the way I was feeling earlier.”
“You should try to eat something. Are you worried you won’t keep it down because I’ve made it quite bland and hey, if it comes back up, it comes back up.” Reva paused as Olivia looked hesitant, “Nobody likes to be sick but you need to keep your strength up.” Reva continued to fill Olivia’s plate, when she was finished adding the broccoli she added, “Eat. You don’t have to eat it all but I want you to eat something.”
Olivia raised her eyes to Reva and bit her tongue against the remark she wanted to fire back. I’m not a child Reva don’t treat me like one.
When it appeared that neither Jeffrey nor Reva were going to stop looking at her until she put something in her mouth, she picked up her fork and cautiously tried some of the rice. Olivia had to admit to herself that it was good, not quite Natalia’s but it was edible.
Dinner passed quietly but with a little small talk and very little of it offered by Olivia who was still slowly picking through her food for fear that she would get sick if she ate too much. She could accept though that she was much hungrier than she had expected to be even if she was too afraid to enjoy it.
Having consumed as much as she dared Olivia pushed her plate away. When Reva raised an eyebrow at how little she had finished, Olivia felt she had to justify her actions, “It was good Reva, I just didn’t feel like eating very much.”
Jeffrey looked between the two women, “Well that’s okay, it’s probably because you’ve just woken up and you’re probably still a little tired. If you want to you can head to bed.”
“No!” I can’t go back to sleep. Between the nightmare and waking up so out of it…I…I just don’t know what to do with myself.
Olivia’s emphatic response startled both Jeffrey and Reva. “I just mean, I’d like some fresh air. I think I might go for a little walk.”
“Oh, well okay if you think you feel up to it. Do you want some company?” Jeffrey asked, concerned that it might be dangerous for her in her current state to go out on her own.
Olivia watched Jeffrey and knowing he was going to insist she not go alone she agreed, she was too tired to argue about it anyway, “Okay. That would be nice.”
Reva spoke up, “Oh sure, don’t worry about me. I’ll just clean up dinner while you two go enjoy a nice evening stroll. After all it does look like a beautiful night for a walk.”
Bitter much? Honestly Reva you have no clue. “You know Reva’s right, that’s not fair. Jeffrey why don’t you stay and help Reva, I promise I won’t go far.”
Jeffrey pinned Reva with a pleading meaningful look. Well shit, don’t give me that look. “No, no it’s fine, you two go, I’ll have all of this cleaned up when you get back.”
A quick kiss to Reva’s cheek and Jeffrey walked Olivia over to the door to help her on with her shoes.
“We won’t be long,” Jeffrey called back to his wife. With his usual chivalrous charm he then held out his arm for Olivia and they left the cabin together.
“What does that taste like? Because I can honestly tell you Natalia that Jello looks like green goo.”
“Thanks Frank.” Raising her head to the ceiling in mock frustration, she exasperated, “Why must people insist on commenting on how gross the food looks as I’m trying to eat it?”
“Oh, Natalia, I’m sorry I didn’t mean…”
Natalia stopped him in mid sentence, “I’m teasing. It’s fine. The Jello actually tastes okay. It’s not an ice cream sundae but it’ll do.”
“Well, as soon as the doc says you’re ready for one, I’ll buy you the biggest sundae I can find.”
Natalia smiled at Frank but didn’t respond to the comment, “Frank you must be starving, why don’t you go home and eat?”
Natalia don’t worry, you won’t be alone, I won’t leave you yet! “I’m fine; I might run down to the cafeteria in a bit.” I’m just happy to get to stay here with you and take care of you.
“Okay, but don’t let me hold you up.” Natalia pushed the tray away, “I think that’s about all I can handle.”
“Oh let me get that out of your way for you.” Frank rushed over and picked up the tray to move it to the window ledge and out of the way.
When he moved back beside the bed, both he and Natalia looked at each other suddenly at a loss for what to say. This could be a long night, was all that Natalia could think and she gave Frank a fake smile, secretly wishing he would just leave.
Back from their walk, Jeffrey and Olivia walked into the cabin laughing lightly. Reva turned from her spot on the couch to watch them come in, “How was your walk?”
“Well you were right; it is a nice night for a walk.” Olivia answered, just a hint of self-satisfaction in her voice.
“I’m glad you enjoyed it. Can I get you anything?” Reva asked, to both Olivia and Jeffrey’s amazement.
Okay, what’s with the sweet act? Maybe I’m more concussed than I thought? Olivia considered, “I’m fine thank you. I should probably call Emma before she goes to bed though, do you mind if I just use your phone? Oh and did Natalia call?”
“Of course not, can you make it to Jeffrey’s den? There’s more privacy. And no, Natalia didn’t call”
“She’ll probably try to call later. Umm yeah I can make it to the den, thank you again.”
Jeffrey had been watching the two women a little surprised at the turn of demeanor when it had looked like they were going to start bickering when they had first returned.
Olivia left the room and Jeffrey crossed over to Reva, “Okay, I’m not sure what changed there but thanks for not getting worked up.”
“Well beating the woman isn’t going to get her out of here any faster, is it?”
“Rhetorical question, I hope?”
“Naturally,” Reva responded with a smile.
Olivia walked back into the room with a sad look on her face, concerned Jeffrey asked, “What’s wrong? That was a quick call.”
“Apparently, she’s already asleep. I guess she was pretty tired after today.” Olivia moved over to the couch and then dropped onto it.
“I’m sorry.” Reva could see that Olivia was quite disturbed at not being able to speak to Emma. “Maybe she had the right idea, you should go to bed yourself, you’ve had a rough day too. I assume your stomach is holding alright?”
Absently Olivia answered, “Yeah my stomach seems okay thanks.” Sleep? I can’t sleep, not now. “Actually I’d like to stay up a bit longer. Maybe we should play cards or something?”
“Cards?” Jeffrey questioned.
“Yeah, or a board game or we could just sit and talk even.”
“Umm, well I suppose if you really aren’t ready for bed, we could… Reva are you up for cards?” Jeffrey was quite surprised that Olivia had the energy to do much of anything, their walk had been a lot more brisk than he had expected her of being capable of.
Reva looked at Jeffrey and shook her head slightly, “I’ll get a deck of cards.” As Reva left the room for the cards she couldn’t help but feel that Olivia was definitely not okay
The three people moved to the dining room table and began a game of Euchere.
By the fifth hand Reva and Jeffrey had had enough. Reva stood, “I just can’t play this anymore. I’m really tired and it’s getting late. I think I’ll go to bed.”
No! Olivia stood up so quickly she felt dizzy for a second, grabbing the chair she hurriedly spoke, “No. Reva we don’t have to play this anymore. You must have board games.”
What is her problem? “I don’t want to play anymore games.” Reva said sternly.
“Well let’s all sit back down and you can tell me about your kids. I saw Shayne the other day, he seems happy with Dinah.”
Jeffrey walked to Olivia and touched her arm. “I think we’re done for the evening, it is getting a bit late. If you’re waiting for Natalia to call, she probably just fell asleep before she had the chance. Why don’t you go to bed yourself?”
Pulling her arm back in desperation Olivia retorted, “I’m wide awake Jeffrey.” Looking from Jeffrey to Reva, she suggested, “Why don’t we all go for another walk? I had that nap earlier so I’m not tired at all.”
“Olivia, no,” Reva couldn’t put up with this anymore, whatever this was, “It’s time for bed.”
“I’m not a child Reva, don’t talk to me like one.”
“Well you’ll have to pardon me but you’re behaving a little like a child who’s afraid of the dark or something and doesn’t want to go to bed.” Reva paused on the last word and realized exactly what was happening. “That’s it isn’t it? You’re afraid…you’re afraid of going to bed, aren’t you?”
Olivia turned away from her, “Don’t be stupid Reva.”
Not to be discouraged, Reva continued, “Did it have something to do with that bad dream you had earlier? You seemed a little upset in your sleep.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” I won’t talk about it. I can’t.
Reva closed the space between them and walked around to face Olivia, “You can tell us what the dream was about.”
Olivia shook her head, “I’m fine.”
“Yeah, I can see that.” You’re a surprisingly bad liar tonight Olivia, must be a little off your game.
“Olivia I don’t know how you’re even standing, anyone can see how exhausted you are. Why don’t you try to sleep? We’ll be here if you can’t but I think you should at least try,” Jeffrey diplomatically added.
But I don’t want to, don’t you get it? I’m terrified to face that nightmare again.
“It’ll be okay,” Jeffrey assured the frightened woman.
Olivia shook her head and released the breath she had been holding. “Fine. I’ll go to my room but I’m not guaranteeing that I’ll sleep.”
“Good. Let me walk you.” Jeffrey extended his arm but Olivia swatted it away.
“I can make my way there myself, thank you. Good night.” Shit.
Olivia marched off toward the spare room frustrated with Reva and Jeffrey but mostly with herself. She knew she was acting like a child but she couldn’t help it. As if it’s not bad enough that I feel fucking trapped out here in the middle of nowhere but now my ‘warden’s’ are confining me to quarters!
Reluctantly Olivia put on her pajama pants and t-shirt and that act, along with the walk and the emotions of the day, made Olivia feel like she could sleep for a week.
Crawling into bed, Olivia pulled up the blankets and curled up on her side. I hate to admit it but damn this feels so good. Her body betrayed her when she snuggled a little closer into a ball and before she knew it, Olivia was drawn into sleep.
To be continued...