Chapter 13
The Boxcar


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General Hospital-Outside Autumn's Room
    Lucky rushed over to help his brother. He led Nikolas to a chair and they watched as nurses and doctors rushed in and out of Autumn's room for what seemed like an hour. Finally after 5 long minutes Tony came out of her room and walked over to them, "We were able to get her back, but that was no accident," he said. "What do you mean?" Lucky said. "Her respirator wasn't just disconnected, it was broken off, and the IV line was ripped out of her arm. We won't know what damage this did until she wakes up," he said. "If she wakes up," Nikolas said.
    "You won't do her any good if you have that attitude," Luke said walking up to them. "You can go in the room now, but if anything happens let us know right away," Tony said. Nikolas entered her room slowly, shocked by the bandages covering her face and neck, and the cast on her leg from ankle to waist. He sat in the chair and took her hand taking care not to pull on the stitches on her wrist. He sat and tried to talk to her, but all he could do was cry.
About a week later...
    Lucky and Elizabeth knocked on the door to Autumn's private room. She had been moved here 2 days ago after the respirator was taken out. It was a good sign the doctors said, but she still hadn't woken up. Nikolas opened the door for them and they tried again unsuccessfully to get Nikolas to go get some rest or at least some food. He had been here everyday, sitting here straight through visiting hours. Every morning he would bring a fresh bouquet of blue roses and then just sit and talk to Autumn, or cry, or both. You could tell it was getting to him by the bags under his eyes and the tired look on his face, but Nikolas was determined to atone for what he thought was his fault, by being the first person Autumn saw when she finally woke up.
    Later that day Nikolas pleaded with Autumn once more to wake up. "I am so sorry that I scared you that night, I made you run away. I just wanted you to know that I loved you and I still love you, please wake up so I can have a chance to tell you that again." Nikolas said squeezing her hand. "I am going to go get something to eat, Lucky is nagging me, but he will come and sit with you while I am gone, Elizabeth too." Nikolas said. As he started to release her hand he felt her squeeze back. Slowly her eyes fluttered open. "Water, please?" I whispered to Nikolas. He flew out into the hallway and grabbed Alan and Tony. They checked me out and gave me a small cup of water.
    "What happened to me?" I asked. Nikolas didn't answer right away. He shifted in his seat, and simply told me that "You were hurt on Valentine's Day, and you have been in the hospital ever since, it's been a week and you finally woke up," he said. "There's more that you aren't telling me, I can see it in your eyes," I said. "I just want you to get better first, then I will tell you everything," he said. "Whatever happened its not your fault Nikolas, I was just scared." I said squeezing his hand. "What do you mean, could you hear me the whole time?" he asked. "I don't know, but I could earlier, when you told me you loved me, you are the first guy who's ever said that to me...Can you ask Emily to come in here and give us time to talk alone?" I asked. "Sure, I will just wait outside," he said. "Actually, go with Lucky and everyone and get something to eat, you look like death warmed over, it will probably take awhile. I...I need to talk with her about something," I said smiling.
    Emily came into the room and smiled when she saw me awake and looking a little more alive. "How are you feeling?" she said. "I'm not sure, I'm sore, and I don't know what exactly happened, but Nikolas said he would tell me that later, I wanted to talk with you about something important," I said. "What is it?" Emily said. "How much do you know about your real father?" I said. "Not very much, he died when I was pretty young, why?" she said. "Get comfortable, I need to tell you a little story about your dad, me and you." I said, as I started to figure out how to tell Emily that we were half-sisters, and now thanks to me she was in danger. It was hard to share one of the secrets which had kept me running away for 6 long years, but now there was nowhere to run. It was time to face the truth.

Chapter 14