TITLE: Sunshine


SERIES: Elements #7


SUMMARY: Sometimes new challenges confront us...Sometimes we confront them.

DISCLAIMERS: I don't own them, please don't sue.

When I woke up, the first thing I saw was all white. The opposite of the black I'd been seeing as I heard snatches of conversations. I'd heard Josh's attempts at encouragement, Mallory trying not to cry, Toby's low mumbles...Even Leo at one point.

When I woke up, it was Mallory's voice I heard.

"Sam...Sam? Oh my God...I'm here, Sam, I'm here...c'mon, wake up..."

"W...ter..." I rasped. She grabbed a cup and held it for me. It was luke warm but...well...it was wet, which was better than nothing. I couldn't see much of her – just her eyes, which were glistening with restrained tears. "What happened?"

"You caught pneumonia and you passed out...Josh and Toby called an ambulance...and so here you are..."

"What day is this?"


"Last I knew it was...Wednesday..."

"Yeah," she murmured, her latex-clad hand grazing the top of my head – still bald, I noted grimly. "Josh and I have been here – Dad and Toby, too, the President wanted to come but the Secret Service..."

"I heard you," I whispered. "...I could hear you guys some – it was...fuzzy...but I heard you..." She was starting to cry. "I'm sorry..."

She shook her head. "...Thank you..." she whispered so I could barely hear her.

"When do I get out of here?"

"Prob'ly next Wednesday or so."

I nodded. "...That long?"

"Yeah...Dr. Carroll said probably a week or so..." She glanced to the side and, surgical mask or no surgical mask, I swore I saw her smile. "Listen – I'm gonna go for just a little bit...So Josh can see you...okay?" I nodded and she squeezed my hand, then left and Josh entered after a few moments, suited in the same way Mallory had been.


"Hey..." I said, realizing I still sounded pretty weak. "How ya doin'?"

"No fair, that's what I was gonna ask."

"I'm...I'm okay."

"You were out of it..."

"For two days, Mal said..."


"And I really can't get out 'til Wednesday?"

"Probably not, no..."

"I really do feel better..." I stifled a yawn.

"You should sleep – I'll go..."

"No, I'm fine..."

"I'm gonna let you sleep."

"...Okay..." I said quietly – I really was tired.

By the time Wednesday rolled around, I was bored out of my mind. There was nothing to see but white, nothing to do, nothing to feel other than rubber gloves...I was so tired of seeing Mallory and Josh for ten minutes each every couple hours...I couldn't wait to get out.

A light layer of snow dusted everything as a nurse wheeled me out of the hospital. Mallory had brought over clothes and my nice warm coat so I wouldn't freeze. And as we exited the hospital – Josh, Mallory, the nurse, and I – I was struck suddenly by all the things to SEE.

The sun shone brightly and glistened on the snow, like glitter on a kid's craft project. There were differently coloured cars and bricks that weren't exactly the same tone and evergreen trees...So bright and not at all like the stark-white world I'd grown accustomed to.

And the things to hear...the cars on the street and the wind whistling by...It was so wonderful to hear anything but slightly-muffled voices that I didn't mind that the wind also caused a little chill to run up my spine.

It was like being suddenly awakened again.

Signs that I was alive. That I wasn't dead – that I was ALIVE.





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