Baby, Mine. (Closed)

/ By Nullification [+Watch]

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Her father? To talk about the baby, or just a call in general? Gary wondered who had instigated the call, but he could tell it hadn't exactly been what Ariana expected. Not that she was likely to know. A kiss was pressed against the palm of his hand and Gary gave Ri a wan smile in return.
"Nurse Ari, huh?" he said fondly.
Gary watched Ri retreat into the living and sighed out. After a moment's hesitation, Gary decided he would be worth more when rested and feeling better, so made his way up the stairs at a snail's pace. With some effort, he got comfortable in the bed and closed his eyes, willing the world to just skip today and maybe tomorrow. Ri dropped in to leave some fresh water and Gary ventured a few small sips over the course of a few hours to try and keep his stomach's contents where they belonged.
He dozed fitfully, dreams and nightmarish memories haunting his rest. Sweat pearled around his hair-line and Gary alternated between feeling too hot and too cold. The blankets weren't enough and too much, often at the same time. When he finally did come around to blink at the bedroom with a sluggish grasp on reality, Gary realized it was because he needed to use the bathroom. And even that visit was less than satisfying.
He should've asked whether it was okay to mix the antibiotics with some over the counter medicine to stifle the fever. A chill shimmied up his spine and Gary shivered, washing his hands and face free of sweat. He wasn't looking forward to the last batch of these, to be honest. They'd gotten progressively worse.
Gary caught sight of his reflection and winced. He even looked sick. No wonder Ri hadn't offered up much argument to his lack of appetite. It wasn't even late yet. Curiosity won out over the bed in the end, a bored mind easy to distract. Gary picked his way down the stairs, hobbling into the living in search of some mindless entertainment. With all the sleeping he'd already done that day, sleeping through the night was pretty much out of the question regardless. Especially with the way his stomach failed to agree with him.
Maybe he'd try some of that soup after all.
He caught Ri behind her laptop at the kitchen table. The scent of soup was enough to quench whatever meagre appetite he had, even though Gary knew he had to be hungry by now. Maybe juice instead. Liquids seemed to have gone down alright so far.
"Still going at it?" Gary asked lightly, hobbling around to find a glass and some juice that didn't smell like it might tip him over a precarious edge.
"Do you want to watch a movie or something?" he asked lightly. Hopefully Ri would give in. It'd been a weird day in general. She deserved to take it easy too. No. She needed to take it easy, even.
  Gary Jenkins / THERE IS NO EXPLANATION OR REASON / Urizen / 27d 17h 19m 57s
Ariana almost dropped the phone when Gary emerged and she figured she would have been stood there looking useless for a while. She figured he wouldn’t eat, he still didn’t look great. She searched his face for w moment before letting out a held breath.
“Wasn’t much of a conversation. Dad.” She explained with a feeble wave of her hand although Gary’s hand was on her cheek and she did sense some comfort. Part of her wanted nothing more than to force him to eat but she knew it would only end in disaster. She would keep a close eye on him tonight. Instead of the argument, Ariana offered up a small, fragile smile to her husband.
“I’m alright, just don’t know what I was expecting.” She shrugged it off and turned to kiss the palm of Gary’s hand before looking to the stairs.

“Alright, I’m going to eat and do a little work. I’ll bring you some water up.” Water at the very least would sate her for now. She wished there was more she could do with half the effort but she also knew that pushing right now would only end in a solid argument. She could add a little push tomorrow if he was still adamant.
“Go on, if your still too hot I’ll even put a wet cloth to your head.” It was only half of a joke. The nurse had said to phone right away if his symptoms carried on for another two days, two days was a long time and she figured until they knew for certain m, she could hold off on the baby room decorating. It wasn’t like she was really in the mood now.

Ariana sucked into the kitchen and stirred the soup, giving it a few more minutes while she set up her laptop on the kitchen table and got herself something to drink. Keeping busy was proving to be more taxing than she would ever admit but it kept her mind busy for now. She needed something to occupy her wandering brain. She put a glass of cold water by the bed for Gary before finally settling with her laptop and a bowl of soup, accompanied with some fresh fruit juice. She had no idea what would happen when the baby was born, if they got that far, she didn’t want her child to suffer the loss of a set of grandparents but Ariana was truly frightened of exposing their future son to her mother and coward of a father.
  Ariana Jenkins / Nullification / 27d 22h 42m 30s
Voices and the scent of soup tore him away from sleep; that and the remnant images of buckled steel, flashing lights and the stab of pain echoing through his leg. Gary laid there for a while, listening to the murmurs but he couldn't quite make sense of what Ri was saying behind the closed door. Gary hoisted himself up regardless and found his crutches, then picked his way towards the kitchen. Soup, right. He found a spoon and listlessly stirred the vegetables in the pot. A yawn threatened and he dazedly looked up at the door, wondering who Ariana was calling. His eyes drifted back to the broth, trying to make sense of what he'd dreamt about. That dreaded accident again.
Each and every time it was the same thing. He'd be trapped in the car, leg caught between bent metal and the scent of gasoline on the air. Snow would drift down and there'd be people, talking. He could never make out what they were saying. Blood would drip down onto his hand, always such an incredibly rich crimson hue.

Maybe he'd have to ask Eddy what really happened that day, just to confirm whether they were memories or just fears. Gary put the spoon down and leaned against the kitchen-counter, staring out of the window. Thick, soggy snow-flakes came down. They landed and evaporated into wet spots almost immediately as they descended. How many months along was Ri now? Four? Nearing five?
Just a few more. It'd get more dangerous with each passing day, Gary knew that much. All hunger escaped him. He felt like he might be sick instead. Gary abandoned the soup in exchange of the stairs. He caught Ariana looking at her phone. She'd hung up?

"...are you okay?" Gary tried. Was it her mother? Work? Whatever curiosity blossomed quickly sank back down under a blanket of lethargy. Gary was more than done with today.
"I'm just going to..." he motioned at the stairs. He still didn't feel very well, but now that he was awake, sleep seemed distant. Gary wasn't sure what he should do, other than get warm and try not to feel as miserable as he did.
He sighed out, "I don't think I can eat, Ri. I'm just going to try and sleep it off."
Gary put a hand to Ariana's cheek. She looked like she might cry. "Tough conversation?"
  Gary Jenkins / THERE IS NO EXPLANATION OR REASON / Urizen / 28d 17h 14m 5s
Ariana looked to Gary on the couch and nodded. Sure, he could warm up some soup if he so desired but she could tell he was really beat after the treatment and she didn’t want him pushing himself. She would manage just fine, she’d rested at the hospital after all. She gave a small smile to her husband as he got comfortable,
“I’m alright, really. I feel fine.” She assured him. Taking it easy was all well and good when there wasn’t things that needed doing and people who needed looking after. Heating up some soup wasn’t going to be the deciding factor right then, anyway. Gary didn’t really offer up much of an argument anyways as he soon dozed off on the couch and she sighed out.

The television proved for background noise as she examined the cupbaords and put some ingredients into a pot to brew together for a decent soup. She figured now was as good a time as any to call her father. She sucked inna breath and picked up her phone from her abandoned bag before heading into the corridor and closing the door to the lounge. No need in disturbing Gary for this. She hesitated for a moment before finally punching in the number and holding the device to her ear.
“Ari?” Her father sounded surprised and taken off guard, but he’d used her name so she figured her mother wasn’t around.
“Yeah, hi.” Ariana said, sounding flat but she was struggling with enthusiasm.
“We found out the gender, a week or so ago... we’re having a boy.” She murmured, unable to hide the small smile at those words.

“A son? Well that’s wonderful! How are you both keeping?” He asked and Ariana paused. If she was honest her father would want to help and that would bring around a whole new set of problems, if she lied then she would have a guilty conscience.
“We just have to take things easy. If everything goes well, Gary will at least get his cast off, my blood pressure was a bit high.” She confessed and pinched the bridge of her nose. Her father was silent and it was a heavy silence.
“We’re okay.” She confirmed and sighed softly,
“I gotta go, dad. I’ll uh, keep you updated.” She said before rushing to hang up before it could get awkward. That hadn’t gone exactly well but it was better than she expected, in a way.
  Ariana Jenkins / Nullification / 29d 2h 9m 17s
The journey home washed by in a flurry of wet snow. Gary stared at the large flakes descending on the car window and felt grateful for having brought his winter-coat this time around. Despite the additional layer of insulating fabric, he still felt chilled. Ri's small smile of assurance had only aided in making him feel inadequate. And still, as he watched the snow come down, Gary felt a twinge of pain tremor through his mending leg, as if the memory of the accident physically hurt. Their drive was slow but steady. Gary zoned out half-way to their destination, lured into complacency by the car's heating, the steady roar of the engine and the simmer fever clinging to his frame.
The car came to a stop and Gary snapped out of the daze he'd settled into. Ri's words made him flash her a meek smile. He honestly didn't need her to tell him this time around. Gary felt like a wrong-out towel, ready to be hung out and dried.

After the chill, stepping into their house was a blessing in and of itself. Gary took his time getting out of his coat, kicked his shoe with its unused pair and at Ri's promise opted to crash on the couch. Much like last time, it didn't take him particularly long to succumb to rest. Gary stretched out, pulled the blanket that lived on the couch closer and had half a mind to flick on the television to provide some ambient noise.
His stomach still didn't feel the greatest, so soup wasn't really at the forefront of his thoughts. Ri was though.
"Shouldn't you be taking it easy too?" Gary said, voice a bit distant. That said, she'd rested with him for a while, hadn't she? Gary feared that the hospital's advice for Ri to slow down and rest during the day was something they already, unintentionally, did and that whatever they were doing wasn't quite enough.

It was worrying. Gary shifted a little on the couch.
"I can warm some soup," Gary offered, though not a muscle in his body right then thought the suggestion was by any measure a good idea. He sighed out and relaxed back into the couch. He should've just asked for his parents to help out already, if he wanted Ariana to take it easy too. Gary just rested then, listening with half an ear to the television programme that was on, without actually registering what was going on. With each beat, the sound seemed to grow more distant, until he was submerged in a deep sleep.
  Gary Jenkins / THERE IS NO EXPLANATION OR REASON / Urizen / 29d 18h 39m 38s
Ariana couldn't sleep, even if she really wanted to. It was probably for the best realistically given she needed some sort of pattern back and the constant napping was reserved for Gary. She glanced up when the nurse came in, sitting up slowly and listening to the exchange. More than a couple of days, right. She figured she would have to keep a close eye on him for the next two days, monitor his temperature and how he felt. She seemed relieved he could at least come home, looking to her husband.
"C'mon, you can sleep at home." She promised, although she did know she would offer him some soup or something light. He couldn't recover on an empty stomach and yogurt hardly cut it.

Ariana got to her feet and rummaged for her bag, fixing her hair to little avail as she helped Gary as gently as she could. It was soaking outside, the rain was relentless and she could definitely feel a chill in the air. Ariana settled in the driver's side, in a nick of time it seemed as thick rain drops turned to wet and heavy snowflakes. She waited for a moment to see if it would ease up and glanced to Gary with a small smile of assurance.

The drive was careful and slow, Ariana was never a fan of driving in these conditions but thankfully the ground was too slick and wet to let the snow stick but it still made things slippery. The drive took a touch longer than usual as Ariana pulled into their street and she parked up.
"Take it easy, okay?" She said to him before getting out of the car, into the cold air and she wondered what time it was. Early evening, her phone indicated as she waited on Gary, getting the door so he wouldn't have to wait out in the cold and wet. She made sure and shut the cold out once he was safely inside and looked him over,
"Go relac, I'll make some soup." She assured him, if he went back to sleep then so be it.
  Ariana Jenkins / Nullification / 30d 12h 27m 17s
A hand guided his lazy arm around Ri's shoulders and Gary relaxed a little, already feeling the soothing echo of Ariana's warmth against his side.
"You wouldn't dare," Gary protested half-heartedly to being painted. "I'm an injured man and everything," he reasoned. That said, his friends had taken the exact same approach and Gary feared some of their well-wishings were going to get painted over somehow. Probably in a shade of baby-blue. His eyes slipped closed as Ri's hot-water propensity finally warded off the chill that had settled in his bones. For a while, they were just like that, lightly dozing together.
Ri's voice coaxed him back to wakefulness as his brain slowly processed what Ariana was saying. Gary raised an eyebrow at her statement, though the act of disbelief was undone by the fact that his eyelids refused to cooperate and open back up.
"Hmm, bet you'd change more if you could," he mumbled softly.
She'd set him off the drink, for one. Maybe see to it he didn't venture off as often or something similar. Perhaps a few healthy pounds on her bones? It wasn't as if erasing their loss was going to change everything for the better. Gary was sure they'd find different hardships regardless of their fortune.

"Love you, Ri," Gary said and nuzzled her hair.
They were day-dreams, that's all they were and Gary was keen to leave them like that. There was no reason to disrupt them or diminish their meaning. His fingers idly toyed with Ariana's hair, stroking the length of it away from her face. She was beautiful in so many ways. It'd hurt to see Ariana grief-struck and depressed, knowing that nothing he could do would be good enough. He still wasn't convinced Ri was all better, but he hoped that this baby might give her the strength to carry on.
Gary dozed off a little after that, though never really fully succumbed to sleep. The bustle of the hospital slid by virtually unnoticed until a nurse encroached on their moment of privacy. Gary opened a set of bleary eyes up at the nurse, whose smile clued away she found the scene endearing. He rolled his eyes.
"How are you feeling?" she asked.
"I'm okay," Gary said and while he was a strange sort of sleepy, he didn't feel that bad. Not nearly as meek or nauseous as he had before. The nurse measured his temperature and smiled.
"Gone down a little. Doctor Sterling thinks it's okay for you to rest up at home, but if the fever lingers for more than two days, to contact us," she instructed.
Gary sighed out in relief. At least he didn't have to stay the night.
"We've set your final treatment for a week from now," the nurse said and handed him a card. "Doctor Sterling will discuss the next steps with you in a follow-up appointment," she smiled.
"Thank you," Gary breathed.
"If there are no more questions, you're free to leave now."
  Gary Jenkins / THERE IS NO EXPLANATION OR REASON / Urizen / 31d 17h 35m 12s
Ariana watched him with the yogurt, relieved he managed that at the very least. She seemed somewhat content right then, as content as she could be in the situation at hand.
“I’m alright.” She assured him, glad she had eaten earlier on. It was too warm in the hospital and Ariana was half tempted to lose another layer but she figured that would leave her open to a chill. She eyed Gary at his offer the bed and she had to admit the chairs were Hell on her back after a while as she shuffled over and tucked herself at his side, careful and discrete. He didn’t look any better up close, despite his assurances and she reached out to guide his arm around her, pausing at his words.

There was a brief spark and she giggled,
“Alright, you can sit and be the chief overseer. But don’t complain if you get painted yourself.” She remarked and her eyes slid down to his cast,
“Although I think the boys did a good job decorating you.” She pointed out quietly, amused at the lovely works of ‘art’. She was sure things would be back to their new normal soon enough. She was determined to stay awake though, despite the snug comfort found only at her husband’s side like this and the heat from the hospital. She wasn’t sure how long the hospital would want to keep him in, a few more hours maybe? The entire night? She found his hand with hers and relaxed a little.

“You know, I wouldn’t a change thing, right?” Coaxed into a sense of safety and privacy only held together by the flimsy curtains encircling his bed on the ward, Ariana spoke up.
“Maybe one, but not between us, I mean.” Of course if she could one thing it would be that their first child would never have perished but when it came to her and Gary, after everything, she wouldn’t have changed a thing. Sure he had vanished to the pubs, grieved his own way as had Ariana but there was no rule book in how to grieve.
  Ariana Jenkins / Nullification / 32d 18h 4m 57s
It wasn't quite the yoghurt he was used to. Gary made a face at the first bite, but the flavour was neutral, even if the texture was funny.
"A little," he started, still drowsy from his nap. He felt a little better, there was no lie there. Today felt like he hadn't spent any second of it truly awake, just floating in and out of awareness without actually sinking deep enough to get any rest. Or maybe he was getting rest, but also spending whatever energy he'd recovered almost immediately on combatting the drugs or whatever this reaction to the antibiotics was.
Gary spooned some more of the yoghurt away, glad to see it go. At least it was only a small cup. His stomach didn't quite know what to make of it and shifted uncomfortably at the intake of food. Gary let it. Not doing anything was just as bad, he felt.
His head felt heavy. Gary leaned back once he was finished, remorseful for having been woken up from his slumber. He could've just slept through it all and maybe felt better for it after waking up on his own. The other time it'd taken a day or so to feel somewhat normal again. Gary vividly recalled his father waking him up and sending him off.

"You look sleepy," Gary called out.
Sleepy and warm. Hospitals sort of invited that state of mind, though Gary felt a little chilled. That had more to do with his fever than anything else, he suspected.
"Do you feel alright?" he asked, a little concerned for Ariana's health. What if she passed out right there and he'd been asleep for it? What sort of husband or father would that make him?
"Plenty of room?" Gary suggested with a meek smirk, offering part of the bed up, much as he had last time. It couldn't be fun to sit on those uncomfortable plastic chairs all day with only a book for distraction.
A yawn threatened and Gary let his eyes slip closed again. The treatment simply washed energy clear out of him, it seemed. Hopefully he'd be good to go home in a bit. His intestines complained what his stomach tried to pass off, but the nausea wasn't as oppressive as a few hours ago. Nurses knew best, apparently.
Just a few more weeks and he'd be rid of the cast too. They should embrace the positives. Gary opened his eyes to mere slits and watched Ri.
"If we're painting the baby-room this weekend, I get to just sit and watch you lot work, yeah?" he joked softly.
  Gary Jenkins / THERE IS NO EXPLANATION OR REASON / Urizen / 32d 19h 1m 53s
Ariana watched Gary close his eyes and listened to his reassurances even if they didn’t help to quell the worries she felt for him. She let him sleep, thankfully managing to get her chair back once visitors had left as she settled in the plastic contraption. It really wasn’t comfortable but it beat the floor. Ariana tried to bury herself in her book, it was at least quiet on the ward with the visitors gone, too quiet almost and Ariana rubbed at her eyes to keep the drowsiness from setting in and she figured it was just because it was warm and the sound of the rain outside proved a comfort. Ariana moved some stray hair from her face and checked her phone, nothing new really. She paused for a moment and considered dipping out to call her father and explain the good news of a son but she put the phone back into the bag. It wasn’t the right time, she wasn’t sure if there would be a right time.

A nurse came in and Ariana closed her book, watching her try to wake Gary and how unresponsive Gary was. Ariana immediately felt more worry wash up on the shores of her concern but after a second try, Gary roused and Ariana sighed out in relief. He didn’t look impressed with the yogurt but Ariana figured he had to try something. What if the infection was there to stay? Then what would happen? She’d heard horror stories about amputations and such. She was overthinking again. Ariana adjusted the layers she wore, she had discarded the coat on the back of the chair a while ago and settled for the cardigan and vest underneath.

Ariana set her book in her bag and took the bottle of water from earlier, taking in a few swallows of the liquid as she cleared her throat and watched Gary. She peered at the yogurt in the cup and figured it wasn’t the most appetising of meals and it certainly didn’t look cold like it should be. She kept her mouth shut on the topic though, not wanting to put him off further.
“Do you feel any better?” She asked, he looked a touch better but she figured that was the extra rest no doubt. He was so hard to read sometimes, always wanting to keep whatever emotions or problems tucked away and it wasn’t healthy for him but she had no idea how to crack him open anymore, somewhere in the last year she had lost that ability.
  Ariana Jenkins / Nullification / 34d 1h 52m 59s
"Nauseous," Gary confirmed, feeling too beat down to fight Ariana. Either way the nurse seemed to have noticed already too, so there really wasn't fighting two women. Gary didn't like his odds in that sort of situation. Another hand to his forehead told Gary that he must've got a raised temperature to warrant this kind of concern. Ri's fingers felt cool against his skin and Gary let his eyes flutter closed. Her touch was grounding in a pleasant way.
"I had it last time too," he told Ri. Just less of it. Or maybe he'd slept through the worst of it then. One boon that came to bite him in the ass was having more energy throughout the day as his recovery progressed. Gary brought up the covers a little more and sighed out.

"It's fine, Ri," Gary declined the water. He didn't feel hungry either, though was certain the nurses would try to have him eat something.
He took Ariana's hand and just played with her fingers a little. There was little else to do in the hospital bed other than feel miserable or sleep. Reading was out of the question for now. He wouldn't be able to focus on much of anything. Perhaps the television would work.
"Relax," he admonished Ri's busy-body nature that was Ariana's worrying. He even managed the ghost of a smile at the thought that Ri would be exactly the same with their baby-boy. Maybe as the years wore on, she'd ease up a little. It crossed Gary's mind that after their first baby, Ri might want to have another. They hadn't talked about that, ever, he felt. Sure, they'd talked children and Gary had happily agreed, but it'd only gotten them this far.

It seemed most of the visitors on the ward were leaving then. At the very least it went a lot more quiet. Gary let some of the fever's drowsiness pull him into a doze, though his hand hadn't let go of Ariana's.
Feverish half-dreams ebbed in and out like the tides, carrying him off deeper into sleep and closer to waking every now and again. He was faintly aware his temperature was being measured again, but barely reacted when the nurse tried to wake him up to eat something.
"Come on, Mr Jenkins, it'll help settle your stomach," she tried a second time, shaking his shoulder.
Gary woke reluctantly, caught in the covers and stretched a little as he blinked at what he was meant to torment his gut with. Fortunately it was only some yoghurt.
"Just give it a try," the nurse tried, catching Gary's unimpressed look.
Maybe they'd let him go after he ate something. Gary hesitantly reached for the plastic cup and messed about with the spoon. His little nap had actually made him feel a little more settled, though he still didn't feel spectacular.
  Gary Jenkins / THERE IS NO EXPLANATION OR REASON / Urizen / 34d 19h 8m 10s
Ariana watched Gary and she nodded,
“I had some lunch. Toasted sandwich, wasn’t great.” She commented with a small smile. Gary didn’t look well, a little pale and she kept her eyes trained on him. She nodded again when he mentioned only a couple more weeks, although she was worried and she couldn’t bury it down. As much as she needed to take care of herself and their child, she needed to be there for Gary too. The nurse returned and Ariana watched her, trying to read her kind and professional face. Ariana always felt useless around them, they worked so hard and could do more for her husband. A little touch of jealousy lingered on the outskirts of her emotions, eating away and she knew she was overthinking.

There was concern there, she noted and the nurses added warning wasn’t filling her with hope. They wanted to keep an eye on Gary,
“Sure.” Ariana said quietly and looked back to Gary. He wasn’t ‘fine’. She sighed out softly and placed her hand atop his.
“Just take it easy, alright?” She murmured, something was just a little off. He hadn’t looked like this last time around, had he? Ariana couldn’t remember, but she was sure she would have noticed if he had looked this off and if the nurse had reacted like this. Sometimes she just wished Gary would be honest, for his sake because his health was paramount right then.

“Do you feel sick?” She asked him, knowing fine well he did. She was worried and lying wouldn’t placate her. Ariana shifted her hand up to his forehead, he was a little warm and she sighed softly at him, she wasn’t angry at all but she was worried.
“Do you want some water?” She could immediately feel herself wanting to keep busy, distract herself from sitting in the quiet and worrying for him. She shifted slightly so she was more comfortable sitting and watching over him. Nothing ever went smoothly lately, it seemed.
  Ariana Jenkins / Nullification / 35d 17h 33m 38s
The bed dipped. Ri's voice was there, soft between the chatter in their room. Gary opened a set of bleary eyes to look at her, reluctant to move and upset the precarious balance his body tried to find. The chair she'd sat on was gone. He looked at the empty spot for ages before the implications of the missing chair became apparent.
"You were gone?" Gary murmured softly, sighing out. Nausea washed through his gut, up to his throat and back. He swallowed it back and closed his eyes again. The wire was still in his leg, the bag of antibiotics almost drained. Last time they'd kept him around for a few hours after the bag had emptied and Gary assumed this time would be more of the same.

Ri's leg was warm where she sat close. It was tempting to just lure her to rest with him in the bed. Nice and warm, protected. Gary opened his eyes to look at Ariana, but she seemed alright. Colour on her cheek, eyes bright and skin glowing. His eyes lowered.
He could tell she had a bump, even if her clothes still hid it well from the untrained eye.
Gary reached out with a hand and rested it on Ri's stomach, ever so gently stroking the bump with his fingers.

"Just one more and then this part is over," Gary said, eager to be done with the nauseating drugs. They'd made his leg feel better but currently they did little to make him feel anything close to human. His hand came to rest on Ri's leg and Gary just rested, half listening in to some of the other conversation around them. Two or three weeks, then another surgery. How long would it be before doctor Sterling was going to allow him to try walking again? It became more and more apparent that he wouldn't be back to his old self by the time the baby would be born, try though he might. Of course, he wouldn't be completely useless by then either. Not the way he felt now.
Gary hoped the headaches would be a thing of the past by then at the very least. He could work around a bum leg with some adaptations to their house.

His attending nurse returned at that time to check on the drip. Gary watched her deft hands handle the wires and undo the connection to his leg. Her trained eyes regarded Gary and squinted with suspicion. A hand touched his forehead. She'd measured her patient's temperature earlier, but it was evident he was having a reaction to the antibiotics that they hadn't intended for.
She smiled encouragingly at both.
"We'll be monitoring you for another while, Mister Jenkins," she promised and started to take away the medical equipment. "Don't hesitate to call if you start feeling worse."
"I'm fine," Gary lied softly, for Ariana's sake more so than his or the nurse's.
"Don't hesitate," she said again, this time to Ariana.
  Gary Jenkins / THERE IS NO EXPLANATION OR REASON / Urizen / 35d 17h 56m 55s
Ariana watched Gary over the top of her book, letting him settle down to some sort of rest. Eventually, she realised it had been quiet for a while and Gary had resigned himself to sleep and she closed her book, tucking it back into her bag which she eventually picked up. She figured some lunch would pass the time as she kept quiet, heading down to the canteen area. She wasn’t sure what she wanted but a bottle of water and a toasted sandwich as she sat at a table, content enough to people watch as she ate a little.

The toasted sandwich was nothing to brag about but it was good and satisfied her appetite for the moment. Ariana cleared your before putting the bottle of water in her bag and heading back up to the ward Gary was on, searching out the room and stepping inside. There were more people this time, visiting hour she figured as she realised some sneaky family member had stolen away her chair, the thief. She figured it was a blessing in disguise given it wasn’t exactly comfortable. She drew Gary’s curtains and looked to him, unsure if he was awake or not as she sat on the edge of his bed. The nurse hadn’t seemed so worried this time about his temperature and everything looked positive.

It was warm, which was a stark difference from the rain lashing down outside at least. She set her bag on the floor and nudged it under the bed with her foot.
“I’d say you’re almost ready to go.” She murmured as she looked to the almost drained bag of antibiotics. This wasn’t pleasant no doubt but she figured it had to happen.
  Ariana Jenkins / Nullification / 35d 20h 11m 24s
Two or three weeks wasn't bad, Ri was right. Gary's eyes slid over to look at Ariana, a resigned expression on his face. After having surgey on his leg for the break, what had he really been expecting? That he'd be dancing around in just a few weeks?
"Yeah, probably," Gary said. Another surgery. He was already looking forward to that one. Defeated, Gary slumped back into the pillows and looked at the elevated cast, cursing the broken leg and accident. At least there wasn't as much pain involved no more. Ever since the second batch of antibiotics, the pain in his leg had declined into a slight discomfort, rather than a nagging, grating ball of hurt. He'd almost gotten used to this and now things would change again. Maybe that's what he was dreading most. Change.
Gary watched Ri's book and brought out his own. Might as well do something, rather than dazedly stare at infinity distance. Yesterday's headache faded slowly as time wore on. His leg turned cold with the fluids dripping in and the book lost its charm a few hours in.

Gary resigned himself to just resting instead, though sleep seemed evasive. He stared out at the streets. Rain came down in waves of sleet, lashing against the hospital windows. Several other patients were attended to in the room, but most had the curtain drawn to prevent any interaction.
Their nurse returned once or twice to measure his temperature and take his blood-pressure. She did so with professional kindness, working efficiently. Gary was a docile patient. His stomach felt unsettled again, much like it had last time and as a result he felt listless. When the nurse visited a third time, Gary was dozing. He barely registered having the blankets resituated to cover up his leg, mind tucked away in sleep's embrace.

Gary slept like that for a while, until visiting hour rolled by and people came into the room. Drowsy and feeling a little sick, Gary pulled up the covers and burrowed underneath them. He was sure visiting hour meant he was alright to leave again soon, but he didn't care for moving one bit right then. Last time he'd had Ri there in bed with him. Now he regretted not having invited her. He missed having her warm body pressed up against his. A shiver even crawled up his spine. Gary could already tell the antibiotics didn't sit any better with him than they had the first time around.
  Gary Jenkins / THERE IS NO EXPLANATION OR REASON / Urizen / 35d 19h 55m 3s

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