She sniffles in her sleep; we’re taking shifts as we wait overnight. Alex is breathing heavily now, as though he was running constantly in his sleep. The nurses don’t like it, they think it’s a problem with his brain telling him there’s something wrong, and trying to fix it. Calli just reckons he’s running from consciousness, still, she doesn’t think it’s a very nice reckoning to have.
She’s lying in the bed set up next door for her. There’s one in there for me, but I’ve been half-sitting, half lying in the chair here for the past two days. Half past one comes and goes, two, three and four pass without incident, as does half five, but only just.
05:33. There’s a loud jolt as Alex goes into cardiac arrest. Everything stops in the world, and the frenzied beeping starts. I shout aloud, and the first thing that happens is Calli runs in, looks past me at Alex and shakes her head an inch to the left and an inch to the right, and runs back out, skidding as she reaches the end of the corridor. The Nurses are the next people to appear, and my heart starts to race as the room they clear the room out, Calli collapses into my arms and stares at the wooden door.
“Wh-what’s going to happen?” she whimpers.
“I don’t know.” There’s a huge silence between us, where I don’t think either of us know what to say. “Where do… we go from here?”
“I don’t know. I-if he’s g-gone…” she stumbles over the words, looks up at me, and I realise that for once, over these past few hours, there have been no tears, and for some reason, that absolutely terrifies me. I’m fighting a feeling that’s making my heart twist into a pretzel shaped knot, and I know Calli’s is the same shape. Then I feel the burning sensation behind my eyes, know I’ve turned pink, and start to sob. I’ve always depended on their relationship to remain constant, to stay strong, knowing that my best friend and my twin sister were the two people who could offer me a balanced view of any problem. Not any more. Everything has changed in this terrifying second. She pulls away from me, tries to calm me down, and then sits me down on one of the uncomfortable chairs outside on the ward. I wipe my eyes as I watch her pacing like an expectant father, trying not to laugh as she starts counting things on her fingers.
“Mrs Holloway?” the look on the woman’s face is grave; she adjusts her clothes, looks down to check the time.
“Yes?” expectantly, we both look up.
“He’s stable.” the whole earth shakes with a jolt and I look over at Calli. She smiles faintly, relief in her features, I half expect her to start laughing, but the colour drains from her face and she collapses. She’s unconscious. Well, it‘s a reaction, eh?
~Beginning. First To Last. Introductions~
She fell forwards, the blank CDs and sheet music falling to the floor with her. Swearing, she bent down and began to pick up each individual sheet, replacing and collating them, then bending down to pick up the CDs. Alex stepped from somewhere in the crowd of kids and bent down beside her.
“Can I help you?” he asked, picking up the CDs by his feet without waiting for an answer.
“Go on then.” she said back, not looking up, “I’m Calli. 11H”
“Oh, I’m Alex, 11M. I never noticed you before, how long have you been at Moorelands?”
“About four weeks.”
“Oh… well, do you know where you’re going?”
“Ye-well, no, not really…” Alex looked at her, his head cocked to the side “I’m meant to be in Tech, but I’m running a little late.” she said with a bright smile “Would you mind giving me a hand? It’s just that I’ve got to take these up there, then get this music emailed to Nicky, but you won’t know her email address, and… well, I’m a little hectic really…”
“Yeah, sure, c’mon, give me those CDs, I’ll take them, and then meet you in ICT to give you a hand.” hoping her relief didn’t show, Calli smiled and then at the uncomfortable look on Alex’s face, laughed.
“What’s so funny?”
“Oh, nothing. Look, I’ll meet you in 10 minutes, is that OK?” she started to walk away, and then stopped dead and turned around, as though she had remembered something. “Those discs are for Mrs. Reilley, OK? Tell her I sent you up to give them in.” Alex watched as she smiled a pretty smile and turned away. He blinked and she disappeared into the crowd.