His Every Word Online - Kelly Favor
Too many people were talking to her.
First it had been the police, and her brother, and the EMTs, asking her questions and assessing her amidst the carnage and wreckage of the restaurant.
Then they’d taken her by ambulance to the hospital, where Kallie had gotten her ears and head checked. She had some temporary hearing loss in her right ear, which consisted mostly of just ringing—which the doctor who’d examined her claimed would go away in the next day or two.
He’d had to stitch one of the cuts on her left hand. The other cuts on her hands were minor--they were from crawling on the shattered glass that had been all over the floor of the restaurant.
She had other minor cuts and bruises and abrasions on her knees and legs. None of them mattered.
The minute the doctor was done with her, she’d gone to wait in the surgical wing of the hospital. By this time, she had a small coterie of people following her around and trying to talk to her.
Her brother Sean, a police officer, and now a hospital counselor, were all basically making sure that she couldn’t just sit still and have a moment to herself.
She sat in the bland, whitewashed waiting room while an episode of The Golden Girls played on one of the television sets on the wall, and tried to ignore the young man sitting next to her.
“I understand how hard this must be for you right now,” the young man said, softly. He was probably just a year or so older than her, with hair that looked as though a relative had cut it for free.
He was a counselor but he might as well have been a tailor, for all she cared.
Kallie glanced at him. “You don’t understand how I feel right now, because if you did, you’d leave me alone.”
“We don’t think this is a good time for you to be by yourself,” the counselor replied.
“What did you say your name was again?” she asked.
“Listen Ryan, I know you’re just trying to do your job—but what I need right now is information about Hunter. Can you tell me anything about him?”
Counselor Ryan gazed momentarily at the floor. He shook his head. “No, of course not. I’m not privy—“
“Exactly. But that’s the only thing that’s going to help me right now.”
Her brother Sean was talking to the police officer in the corner of the room, but keeping an eye on her at the same time.
She shook her head at him as he met her gaze.
“You’re going to be experiencing a lot of different feelings in the next few days, I suspect,” Counselor Ryan continued. “Anger, fear, worry. All of these feelings are normal, and nobody expects you to be anything other than what you are.”
“If you don’t expect me to be different, than why do you keep trying to make me talk? I told you, I don’t have anything to say,” she told him, her voice rising precipitously.
The counselor drew back as if she was a cobra that was suddenly in range to strike.
“I was asked to be here,” he said, his voice betraying the first bit of impatience.
“This is my job.”
“I get it. But you’re not helping me.”
Ryan nodded and sat back heavily in his chair, his shoulder slumping. “Well, I’m going to stay close by, regardless, and when you feel like talking—“
Suddenly, the doors to the waiting room opened and a doctor walked briskly into the room. Kallie looked up, hopeful that he might have information for her.
But he was there to speak with someone else. A woman and her daughter went over and began consulting with him. Their voices were low. Everyone in this room was somber, as if nothing good could ever happen in this place. Nobody laughed, nobody joked. Just low voices and murmuring, that was all you could do here.
They wouldn’t tell her anything. That was another problem, Kallie thought, as she played with one of the small scabs forming on the palm of her hand.
The constant attempts to force her to talk was one thing—but the steadfast refusal to give her any information on Hunter’s medical status was infuriating.
The problem was, she wasn’t family and she wasn’t a spouse. She had no rights, apparently, to be informed of anything about Hunter’s condition. Which essentially meant that she knew nothing, other than what the police had told them, which was that Hunter was in surgery.
Sean crossed the room a moment later and sat down on the other side of her.