TWO SOULS: INTO THE FIRE
Steve came out of the steam filled bathroom, after his shower. "There's still hot water, if you want to get in there," he said.
"Ok, I will," Ghost said, getting off the bed. "Oh, here," he tossed the remote control to Steve. "It don't work very good." He went on into the bathroom, closing the door, as Steve flipped through the tv channels.
"Nope, nothing on," he said, and turned off the tv. He sighed, and closed his eyes. The bed was soft, and the quilts were fresh and fluffy. When Ghost returned, he saw that Steve was asleep. Turning out the light, he snuggled close to Steve, under the covers. He'd been wanting more, but he just lightly kissed Steve's lips, and whispered, "In the morning."
He yawned, and made himself think of home. Pictures filled his mind. He always liked thinking of home, but this time it felt different. He sensed that he needed to do this, to block other thoughts from intruding. Bad thoughts, scary thoughts, were on the edge of his consciousness. Sometime in the night, the nightmare began. Ghost flailed about, hitting Steve.
"What? Hey, stop...stop..." Steve hollered, as he came awake. Ghost was talking, and moaning. "Ghost...wake up." Steve took hold of Ghost's arms, but in the throes of his nightmare, Steve wasn't able to subdue him.
Ghost sat straight up and screamed. His eyes were open, but he wasn't seeing Steve at all. As Steve watched, as if in slow motion, Ghost turned to him and actually growled. He lunged forward, biting him hard on the shoulder. Steve screamed in pain, as he felt blood trickle down his arm. In a purely reflexive action, he hit Ghost hard across the face, to make him stop biting.
"God damn it, that hurt...get away, Ghost...what the hell is wrong with you?" Steve shouted, scrambling backwards off the bed. Ghost lunged again, his teeth bared and bloody, still in his nightmare.
Steve was frozen to the spot for a second, but managed to sidestep Ghost, as he came at him again. Running to the bathroom, he filled a cup with cold water, then threw it in Ghost's face, hoping to wake him up. It worked. Ghost was drenched, but he shook his head, looking confused.
"Why I'm wet?" he asked, from the floor where he'd fallen. He licked his lips, and rubbed his hand over his mouth, the taste of his and Steve's blood, and the smear of it on his hand, confused him even more. As he looked up, Steve could see that he desperately needed to get Ghost home, as soon as possible. He needed more meds, and the sessions with the therapist, just as the doctor in the hospital had urged.
Even in his pain, Steve's heart melted with love and worry. "Ghost, you were having a nightmare. I had to wake you up, so I threw water on you. You are awake now, aren't you?"
Ghost nodded. "I'm awake." He coughed, and spit out blood.
Steve closed his eyes for a second. How...how am I going to explain Ghost's busted lip, the blood, the black eye... He could see Ghost's eye already swelling, and it looked bad. His own shoulder was throbbing and bleeding, still. A crazy, wayward thought crossed his mind, I hope he's had his shots... He tried to muffle a burst of nervous laughter at that thought. It's the stress, that's all...shut up...
Ghost could barely see out his swollen eye, now. "Steve? What...why?" Steve reached out a hand to help Ghost up off the floor. They sat on the edge of the bed. Ghost, just noticing Steve's injury, cried out, "You're hurt, you're bleeding...let me get a wet cloth." His legs shook, as he shuffled to the bathroom.
Running water on the wash cloth, he looked up into the mirror, He had to steady himself on the edge of the sink, as he saw his own face. After a few deep breaths, he returned, to gently wipe blood off Steve's shoulder. "Steve, tell me...I have to know." He tried to look into Steve's eyes, but Steve was hanging his head down, covering his face with his hands, shaking his head. Ghost waited.
"Oh, Ghost, I don't even know how to say it." Ghost was smoothing back Steve's hair, still waiting for an explanation, and he kept dabbing the cool cloth onto himself, then onto Steve.
"You were having a real bad nightmare. Do you remember it, any of it?"
Ghost shook his head. "no, but right before I went to sleep, it felt...I don't know, weird, or bad in here."
"But we threw the holy water. You said something ran out. What? Did it come back in?" Steve asked.
Next part coming soon!
Peace, Love, & Writing