I woke with a massive headache, a throbbing pain that made it nera impossible to think, and the room was blurry. Voices blended into each other and shadowy figures moved aorund at the edge of my vision. I drifted back into a haunted sleep, jagged pain running through my arm. Time dragged on, and the boat ceased rocking on the waves, a juddering running through it as it bumped against what little sense had told me was a port. I drifted off again, and next thing I knew, I woke in a room painted entirely white, with my arm wrapped tightly against my chest. Darren was fast asleep in a chair beside me, his head lolling to the side with his mouth open. A small smile came to my lips.
"You're awake," said a kind voice, and a man leane dover me. I didn't reocgnize him. He had curly white hair and a long beard tucked into his belt. His eyes were icy blue but they sparkled with encouragement. "Don't try to sit up quite yet. I don't want you to move your arm."
"What happened?" I asked, my voice dry.
"I was not told the details. You came here with your arm broken, unconscious. That young man refused to leave your side the entire time. I'm sure he'll tell you when he wakes up." He placed a pair of glasses on his nose and gently lifted my arm. I winced. The doctor clucked his tongue. "You'll be staying here a while." Then he gently set my arm down and walked out of the room. The ceiling was bare, white as everything else, and i stared uncomprehendingly at it. I remembered very little, except for falling to the deck. After that.. nothing. The time dragged, and i wished Darren would wake up, and he finally did.
"Marina," he smiled, brushing hair away from my face.
I smiled back, feeling sleepy, but not wanting to fall asleep while he was awake.
His expression changed to a more stern one. 'Why do you always get into trouble?"
"I seem to have a knack for it," I answered, closing my eyes slowly and opening them again.
"When you fell, half the crew started running towards you. The mast came crashing down a second after I tackled you out of the way."
"You knocked me out," I said, grinning.
Darren looked sheepish. "That wasn't my plan."
"It's alright." I closed my eyes. "The doctor says I'll be here a while."
"You broke your arm when you fell. But the ship's in no shape to leave soon anyways. The mast is broken and it shattered quite a bit of the starboard side. It's in repairs. The Captain wouldn't leave without you anyways."
A yawn escaped my lips. "I'm tired, Darren," I whispered. He slid his hand into mine and stroked my hair gently.
"Then sleep. I'm not leaving."
So I drifted back into sleep, my dreams simple and filled with the songs of birds and waves upon the shore.
Darren watched her sleep. She was so beautiful, her face pale with dark lashes and deep red lips, cheeks rosy, as her hair spread around her face in gentle waves. Her hand was hardened from work, but her fingers slim, nails gently rounded, clean, unlike his, jagged from years of farming and sailng. Her chest rose and fell steadily. A wave of emotion caught in his own, and he slid his hand through her hair once more, He loved her, but there was so much about him that she did not understand.