Music – Elsewhere by Sarah McLachlan
Alex had awakened once in the early hours, figured out where she was, and drifted off again, even though Christian was snoring. She was awakened again later – alone - by people coming. Coming into her home. Her sanctuary. Her place of peace. With him.
I love the time and in between
The calm inside me
In the space where I can breathe
I believe there is a
Distance I have wandered
To touch upon the years of
Reaching out and reaching in
Holding out holding in
Familiar voices. Oh yes, she remembered now, groggily, her mind slowly clearing. Sam and Dean had come. And Christian was there. And all of them were here to help. She had known they would come. Oh, between all of them, they could find Nick, couldn’t they?
This is heaven to no one else but me
And I’ll defend it as long as I can be
Left here to linger in silence
If I choose to
Would you try to understand
She would do whatever it took to bring him home. She would call everyone she knew – over and over until they forbid it – anything to find him and bring him home. She would hunt that park every day looking for a sign, waiting for someone else to disappear, something to appear, yard by yard. Do anything, say anything, whatever she had to do.
I know this love is passing time
Passing through like liquid
I am drunk in my desire...
But I love the way you smile at me
I love the way your hands reach out and hold me near...
Unconsciously her hand strayed over to his side of the bed. Empty and cold. Tears welled in her eyes. This was why she hadn’t slept in this bed, she thought, pulling his pillow to her. He wasn’t in it. She could still smell him on the pillow, and she buried her face in it.
She wished she could just do something. Do something successful, find something that showed her she was close, and accomplish something, anything. She’d worn herself to a thread – doing as much research as she could, searching the site over and over, calling other hunters, calling her friends for help, thinking he’d be found soon. She’d found nothing. And still, he was missing. And she felt so very alone, even with a houseful of people. She felt lost, helpless, like she was letting him down, wherever he was. He was counting on her, and she was failing him.
She wiped her face, the sorrow retreating but never vanishing, the familiar need to take action beginning to well in her. If the group assembled downstairs couldn’t find Nick, he was beyond finding, and she once again wanted to dive into the hunt with their help. Her eyes felt swollen, and she felt grubby and a little hungry, although not nearly as exhausted as earlier. Of course, Christian had filled her full of sugar to keep her from passing out from hunger altogether. She should have known he would take action; she’d just felt so disconnected from lack of sleep, the burn off of adrenaline, the wearying fear. She’d gotten past the point of knowing what else to do, and that in itself was the most crippling feeling of all. And in that state, she’d neglected herself.
As if her thoughts had drawn him, Christian came knocking on the bedroom door; she knew his eucalyptus scent as he approached.
“Hey,” he said, sitting down on the edge of the bed next to her and using a tissue to wipe her teary face. “How are you feeling?”
“Better,” she admitted, wanting to tell him he was a comfort but not sure how. And the rest of the group, here to help – what a blessing they were.
“Good,” Christian said. “I’m sorry I pulled that stunt on you but I was scared you would do some real damage to yourself.”
“Now, listen to me, honey, okay?” Christian said. “We’re going to find him, honest. Ladona’s got a whole team downstairs working hard, and they’d love to get some details from you. But first I want you to eat something. Will you do that?”
She knew he was talking to her in a voice reserved for a slightly stubborn child, but she nodded anyway.
“Toast?” she said, offering it up as a compromise. Who knew what he’d make her eat otherwise. She still remembered the wheat grass juice he’d made her drink once. Ugh. She’d felt like a grazing heifer.
“Toast with peanut butter,” he amended, knowing how much she loved peanut butter. “You need protein or a substitute. Toast alone won’t cut it.”
He brought her up some food and then when he’d made sure she’d eaten every bite, he told her to get her ass in the shower.
“You smell like death warmed over,” he said. “Go. If I hear you fall down I’ll send Ladona in after you.”
“Oh, I’m sure she’ll be thrilled,” Alex said dryly, which meant she was feeling better.