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Sunday, November 8, 2015

Wish - Chapter 12

XII

Sarita hugged her dad tighter than she remembered hugging him ever before. “I missed you so much!!!”
Ken lifted her up off her feet. “I missed you too! Skyping is just not the same as talking to you in person!”
Thomas stole a quick hug from her too. He wanted to get the hug over with quickly, but she held onto him so tightly that she practically strangled him! He made a soft noise of protest, but returned her hug all the same.
Even though there are a good 30+ people living in Liam's house – which made me feel like you were right there with me for some reason – I still missed you a ton!” Sarita informed him, then kissed him on the cheek before letting him go.
It's our turn to serve you a welcome home dinner!” Thomas announced, sweeping his arm toward the kitchen.
And I baked you a cake!” Ianto added with a chuckle.
Sarita laughed. “You guys were gone all summer too!”
Yeah, but we got back last week,” Thomas demurred.
Ken slung an arm around her shoulder and pretended to pout. “I feel a little left out. You got to go to Ireland and Thomas got to lay out on a beach in Texas all summer, but I had to work!”
I'm sorry,” Sarita comforted him with an exaggerated tone. She patted him on the back. “But hopefully you had some fun too.”
Yeah, I guess I did,” Ken admitted with a shrug.
That's good,” Sarita murmured with a smile. “And before you ask, Talya created a video you can watch called: Sarita's Summer Vacation.”
Ken laughed. “I can't wait to see it!”
They settled themselves around the table as Sarita dug her tablet out of her bag and pulled up the video. She then handed her tablet to her dad. He watched it with an interested smirk.
Shopping... eating... dancing... Is that Riverdance?” Ken asked, holding up the tablet so she could see the part he was talking about. The soundtrack to the entire video was a lively celtic tune, so that didn't help her know what he was seeing.
She looked up with a smile just before she took a bite to eat. “Yep! I'm not entirely sure if it's popular in Ireland in general, but the Caughey's sure love it! At least once a week – it seems – there was a birthday or other reason to celebrate, so they'd pull out some instruments and we'd dance til the wee hours,” Sarita explained, trying to imitate the Irish accent at the end.
Ken paused the video and held it up for her to look at again. “This is a group of very beautiful women... who's that one in the middle?”
The one in the middle is Soirse, Liam's mom. The rest are his aunts. The Clan is enormous! It seemed like there were never less than five girls in the bathroom.” She burst out laughing. “The boys usually get so tired of waiting their turn that they still use an old outhouse in the garden!”
Was there really only one bathroom?” Thomas asked incredulously.
Sarita shrugged. “As I understand it, there are bathrooms in a couple of the bigger bedrooms, and one in the kitchen intended for the servants. There was a large room full of showers – much like in a college dorm, I would guess – but other then that, yes. There was basically only one bathroom for everyone to share.”
Soirse had a big beautiful bathroom in her room,” Indigo added, eating food he had stolen from her plate.
I can totally picture the girls hogging the bathroom,” Thomas muttered.
You were in Soirse's bathroom?” Sarita asked Indigo – which he nodded a response – and then turned to her brother. “Hey! I don't hog the bathroom!”
Poor Liam,” Ianto added with a chuckle. “How many girls live there?”
Well... he has four older sisters and six non-adult female cousins of all ages,” Sarita replied, and then laughed. “But don't feel too bad for him, there's a total of twelve boy cousins under 18!”
That must be noisy,” Ken murmured. He was now looking through her photo albums looking for any other pictures of Soirse. “What about Liam's father?”
Sarita blushed and looked down. “Apparently all of Soirse's children are products of one night stands, so...” She shrugged helplessly. “None of them know who their dad is.”
That's strange...” Ken murmured with a frown. He wasn't trying to be judgmental, just that for a family so keen on family, it seemed weird that the matriarch would remain single her whole life.
I thought so too. Apparently, she had the love of her life die when she was really young, and she never found anyone else. Their family seems really big on following one's heart,” Sarita explained.
I see,” Ken murmured, taking a sip of his drink to cover his wandering thoughts.
Anyway, enough about Ireland, how was Texas?” Sarita asked her brother and Ianto.
Thomas shrugged. “There's really not much to tell. We stayed in a nice cabin near the ocean, and pretty much lay on the beach every day.”
No wonder you're so tan!” Sarita exclaimed with a fake smile. It hurt just a little that she could read between the lines, but surprisingly, her jealousy was tiny. Instead of wanting to kill her brother – like she half expected to feel – she felt... happy for them.
She turned to her father, who was currently frowning at a picture of her dancing with Liam. Thankfully, she had hidden the picture Talya took of her kissing him in a folder inside three other random folders, and then locked it for good measure. She growled at him softly.
And before you even hint that you want to ask, let me just tell you that with over 30 people in one house, there's absolutely no privacy! Thus no, nothing happened!” Sarita insisted.
Indigo laughed and added: “Plus, more than a handful of them are seers, so they would have saw something going on and rushed to put a stop to it!”
They are?” Everyone but Sarita asked in surprise.
Yep,” Sarita confirmed. “Soirse read my future for me, but she wouldn't tell me anything other than that I will get married someday and have a daughter.”
Hmm...” Ken remarked with a thoughtful expression. He was staring at a picture of Soirse, privately thinking that she did look a lot like an old world witch.
So even Liam has magic?” Ianto asked. Now that he had gotten used to it, he was very curious about her power and magic in general.
Yeah, but it's not like mine,” Sarita answered, and then shrugged. “If you want to know any more, ask him.”
I will,” Ianto responded with a smile.
For a moment, Sarita thought he looked a bit pale, but his tan skin made it hard to know for sure. “Are you okay?” She asked with a frown.
Why wouldn't I be?” Ianto wondered in confusion.
I don't know... You just look... off...” Sarita murmured, not sure how to explain it.
Ianto shook his head and smiled. “I'm just fine.”
Had Sarita been paying less attention to Ianto, she would have seen her brother look away with a strange expression, but she missed it, so she shrugged.
Okay, if you say so! So... where's that cake?”

***

A few days after school was back in session, Liam spotted Ianto waiting for Thomas after school. Even though the high school let out before the middle school, Thomas usually did things for an hour or so each day, and Ianto waited for him. This was because they always did their homework and studied together.
Liam was basically waiting for Sarita, but he felt drawn to Ianto. Not having seen him for months, all the strange and warm feelings flooded Liam in a sudden rush. He gasped, calling Ianto's attention to him.
Oh, hey there, Liam,” Ianto greeted him. “I hear you had an interesting summer. Do you mind if I ask something?”
Liam couldn't speak at the moment, his face inexplicably red. He nodded, torn between moving closer to Ianto and backing away from him. Ianto noticed this and smiled encouragingly.
After looking around and seeing no one else within earshot, Ianto leaned forward to murmur in Liam's ear. “What exactly does your magic do?”
Liam gasped in dismay, feeling panicky. His heart raced as an urge to run slowly overwhelmed him. “Y-y-y-you know?!?!”
Ianto nodded, looking around again. He continued to whisper simply to soothe and calm Liam. “Just as I know that Sarita has a talking cat and grants wishes.”
Liam took a deep breath. “W-w-well... I... I... I can...” It was seriously frustrating that he couldn't speak around this guy! He really wanted to hug him and bury his face in Ianto's chest until he could remember how to talk. “Plants!” He finally blurted out. “Herbs and stuff.”
That's cool,” Ianto murmured with a smile. “Can you, like, make them grow and stuff?”
Liam shrugged. “Sometimes...” Realizing that it was slightly easier to talk, he continued. “But usually it's easiest to just let them grow on their own. Then I make ointments and tinctures and things.”
Can you make something for my grandpa? He has a bad heart,” Ianto murmured, looking off vaguely into the distance.
Liam took some time to think about this. “I could try. The best I could probably do is a tincture that could calm and strengthen a weak heart. Something I know could do no harm. If I used some of the more potent herbs, I might just make him worse – magic or not!”
Ianto sighed in disappointment. “Well... make him what you can. If it really won't harm him, then it's worth a try. Right?”
Feeling like the sun had just burst out from his heart, Liam nodded. Grinning, he exclaimed. “Right!” Since the first moment he had met Ianto, he had wanted to do whatever he could to make him happy, and now there was something he could do.
Talya and Sarita walked up behind them, holding hands and smiling. It was Talya that actually talked to him though. “Hey Liam. You feel like coming over to my house today? I finally finished the new costumes I was working on.”
Liam took a couple of steps back from them, not trusting the look on Talya's face. “You didn't make anything weird, did you?”
No...” Talya purred in a tone that completely reversed her statement.
Sarita giggled softly. “I think you'll like this one.”
Liam looked back and forth between Sarita and Ianto, torn between going with her and staying with him.
You should go,” Ianto stated patiently. “I see Thomas coming, so I'm going to be leaving with him anyway.”
Talya pulled her hand free from Sarita's and took hold of Liam's. “Come on!”
Sarita slipped her hand into his other one. “I'm kind of excited about this costume.”
Okay...” Liam murmured, letting them pull him toward Talya's limo.
As they walked away, Sarita waved to Ianto over her shoulder. “Later!”
Thomas arrived at Ianto's side when the trio was about halfway to the Limo. “What's that about?” He asked with a frown. “Did Talya decide that she likes boys after all?”
Ianto smiled softly. “I think that Talya is as much in love with Sarita as she ever was. It's just that Sarita seems to like Liam. Perhaps Talya is just trying to give Sarita what she wants,” he suggested. Then he sighed. “But Liam was mooning over me again today. I'm really worried that he might not like Sarita as much as she hopes.”
Nah,” Thomas denied, sounding grumpy. “I've looked through the pictures Talya takes of them modeling her costumes. He's definitely falling for Sarita. It pisses me off!”
Ianto laughed. “It's not healthy to be so fixated on your sister!”
Yeah, well, he's a punk as far as I'm concerned! I don't trust him around her!” Thomas growled unhappily.
Ianto chuckled softly but didn't say anything. With a sigh of aggravation, Thomas let go of his frustration. “So... you ready to go back to my house?”
Yep!” Ianto stated eagerly. “Too bad that Sarita won't be there to bake some brownies or something.”
Thomas rolled his eyes. “She baked about six dozen cookies last night, so I think you're in luck.”
It took less than ten minutes for Thomas to drive to his house. When they got there, they immediately went to the kitchen and loaded up on cookies. Ken laughed as he watched them juggle cookies and tall glasses of milk.
Oh hey dad, you're home early today,” Thomas remarked.
Just stopped in to pick up a change of clothes,” Ken informed him. “I'll be working late on a report and plan to just sleep in my office.”
Uh-huh,” Thomas muttered suspiciously. It was true that his dad did occasionally sleep in his office, but this time, he had spots in his aura that Thomas associated with lies. “And... who's the woman?”
Ken actually blushed. “None of your business!”
Ah, so you're not serious about her,” Thomas stated, and then shrugged. “Whatever. Have fun!”
I will,” Ken replied, and then changed the subject. “Sarita texted me to say that she might spend the night at Talya's. I told her to text you if she decided for sure, that way you'd know not to worry.”
Thomas harrumphed. “You should make her come home and do her homework for a change!”
Ken laughed, sensing that his son was upset about something else. “Well, I have talked to all her teachers, and she's clearly the smartest student in her school. She took some practice tests for the SATs and ACTs that you're studying for, and got scores so high that her guidance counselor wants to send her to a special school for gifted kids. What good would making her do busy work be?”
Thomas perked up. “Do you know what her scores were? I wonder if she beat me...” He had naturally taken practice tests too. His own guidance counselor wanted him to consider doubling up with college courses.
Ken laughed again. “You'll have to ask her that!” He ruffled his son's hair affectionately, and then left, calling out a goodbye over his shoulder.
I'm so jealous of her right now!” Ianto exclaimed once they had successfully carried their burden to Thomas' room. “I'd love to be that smart! As it is, my scores on the practice tests were barely better than average!”
Thomas looked away to hide the guilty expression on his face. Ianto saw it anyway and laughed. “Even you must have done pretty well!”
Well enough,” Thomas replied evasively. “But let's not talk about that. It's your birthday.” He walked over to his dresser and opened the top drawer. “I got you a little present.”
I told you that you didn't have to,” Ianto murmured. “I would have been fine with our date this weekend.”
You idiot! Of course I'm going to get the guy I love a present!” Thomas roared, shoving a small shiny box in Ianto's hands.
Ianto opened it slowly because the box was obviously a jewelry box, and he was nervous as to what it might contain. Thomas chuckled. “It's not that.”
A moment later, Ianto discovered a sturdy gold chain with a charm that said Thomas. He was speechless. Shocked that Thomas had gotten him such a thoughtful gift. Thomas helped him put it on.
There, now we match,” Thomas murmured, stroking the Ianto charm he wore.
It's perfect!” Ianto cried out. The two of them threw their arms around each other and tried to devour one another. Thomas slowly veered them toward his bed, but it was Ianto who pulled him down onto it.
I want to try again,” Ianto murmured.
Are you sure?” Thomas asked. “How's your heart?”
It's fine,” Ianto assured him.
About a half an hour later, Ianto clutched his chest and made a strange noise. Thomas scrambled to sit up and cradle Ianto in his arms. Ianto clung to him.
Ianto!” Thomas cried out desperately.
My medicine...” Ianto barely managed to whisper.
Thomas scrambled find the tablet in Ianto's bag, giving it to him with a shaky hand. Ianto slipped it under his tongue, still clutching his chest. He waited a couple of seconds for it to do it's job.
I think I need to go to the hospital this time...” he whispered.
Thomas felt like crying. “I'll drive you!”
Ianto faintly shook his head. “Ambulance...”
Thomas snatched his cellphone out of his bag and dialed 911. As he answered all of the dispatcher's questions, he pulled some clothes on. Then he helped Ianto put on his boxers and a robe.
The dispatcher stayed on the phone with him until the ambulance showed up, and thankfully, that took less than five minutes. Each minute seemed like a hundred years to Thomas. He held Ianto tight, afraid that he was going to actually die before the ambulance arrived.
The EMTs took charge the moment they arrived, loading Ianto onto a stretcher and asking him questions. Ianto told them that he had taken his medication, and that it seemed to be helping a little, but he was still having major pains. His pallor and vitals confirmed that something was wrong.
Thomas refused to let go of his hand until they reassured him that he could ride in the ambulance with Ianto on the way to the hospital. In the ambulance, the two of them held hands as the EMTs gave Ianto pure oxygen and attached sensors to him. Ianto did his best to reassure Thomas that everything would be alright, and Thomas did his best to remain strong. He wanted to be the rock that Ianto leaned on for support.
When the ambulance arrived at the hospital, the stretcher was rushed down a hall to a room where doctors waited to fuss over Ianto. Thomas was allowed to hold his hand until that point, but then he was forced to go wait in a waiting room. As a nurse was literally pushing him out of the room, Ianto called out to him.
No matter what happens, know that I love you!”
Thomas choked back a sob and swallowed until he could speak. “I love you too! Please don't die!”
With a bit more sympathy, the nurse continued to push him out of the room. “We'll do our best, but to do that, you need to wait out here.” She pointed to the waiting room. “Go.”
Thomas trudged to the waiting room and slumped into a chair. This was a big waiting room that was full of people waiting to be seen by the triage nurses, so Thomas had to find a modicum of privacy in a corner. As he was looking around at all the other people, a nurse came up to him.
A patient by the name of Ianto insists that we let you know if anything happens, so I need to take your name and contact information. Also, we're already calling his parents – in case you planned to do that.”
Thomas gave her his information. Something on his face made her want to help him. She put a comforting hand on his shoulder. “There's a couple of private waiting rooms and a chapel you can use.” She pointed out the rooms, and then a sign that pointed the way to the chapel.
I'll wait here for his parents to arrive,” Thomas murmured.
Okay,” she replied softly, leaving him alone.
Thomas clasped his hands together and rested his elbows on the arms of the chair. Then he rested his forehead on his clasped hands. Never before in his life had he considered himself to be religious, but at that moment, he was willing to try it.
Dear God, please don't let him die,” he whispered. “I was stupid! I shouldn't have listened to him! I shouldn't have...” his voice cracked and tears came out of his eyes without permission.
His phone rang, jarring him out of his own private hell. He wiped his tears away and sniffed before answering his phone.
Hello?”
Hey Thomas, I think I might spend the night at Talya's after all, so don't worry about me,” Sarita informed him.
Thomas sniffed again and cleared his throat. “Uh... okay...”
Whoa! What's wrong?!” Sarita demanded. She wasn't completely sure, but she strongly suspected that her brother was crying.
Ia... Ianto...” Thomas tried to tell her.
What about Ianto?!” Sarita asked insistently.
He's in the Emergency Room. I don't know what's going on yet. I'm stuck in the waiting room...” Thomas murmured.
OH MY GOD! ARE YOU SERIOUS?!” Sarita burst out. “I'll be there as soon as I can!”
In the background, he heard Talya ask: “What's wrong?”
Ianto's in the ER!” Sarita cried out.
I'll have Deborah get you there on the double!” Talya promised.
I'll be right there,” Sarita repeated to assure her brother, and then hung up the phone.
To Thomas' surprise, she arrived right as Ianto's parents did. They were naturally brought back to be with Ianto, so Sarita sat next to her brother. Without even asking for permission, she grabbed his hand and squeezed it tight.
What happened?” Sarita asked.
I don't know, exactly,” Thomas murmured, trying to keep Ianto's secret since it wasn't his to tell. “But I think he's having a heart attack.”
Oh my God...” Sarita whispered.
I was hoping I'd get a chance to talk to his parents when they got here, but they were rushed back there,” Thomas pointed in the general direction were Ianto was.
Thomas...” Sarita murmured in sympathy. She kissed his hand. “I'm sure he'll be alright. He has to be!”
I just wish he would get better,” Thomas mumbled miserably.
Sarita closed her eyes and let her power flow. “Me too...”
Indigo sighed and whispered so that no one would wonder where his voice was coming from – he was invisible on her shoulder. “That may be a wish you can't grant. If he already... or if he's meant to...” He couldn't say the word out loud because he could sense that it would devastate both of them to no end.
Please no!” Sarita cried out softly. “Please don't let that be the case!”
Dear God please...” Thomas added, squeezing Sarita's hand again. He covered his eyes with his other hand, resting his forehead on the wall.
Sarita wished there was something she could do for him, but knew better than to try and grant that wish.

Go To Chapter 13 

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