[HANSON STORIES]

Here In My Heart

By Kris



It only briefly crossed my mind at how uncomfortable this chair was. It was really starting to put a strain on my lower back. How long have I been sitting here? Hell if I know. I lost track hours ago. Sighing, I look back towards the door that I know I need to go into. That Iíll have to go into. Looking back down towards the floor, I rub at my pounding temples. Iím really giving myself a headache with all of this thinking that Iíve been doing. Maybe Iíll ask a nurse for some Excedrin. Ha, yeah, right. How can I possibly do that when I can't even ask what the hell is going on?

I hardly remember what I was doing when I got the phone call about the accident. All I know was that as soon as I found out, I bolted out the door, not even bothering to explain, straight to the airport. With a gut wrenching feeling in the pit of my stomach, I knew that I needed to get there, and quickly. With the time slowly drifting away, I knew that I didn't have a moment to lose. It was now or never.

When I finally got to my destination, I wasn't given much information about what was going on. What had happened and what condition she was in. But from what I could tell by the looks on their faces, the way they spoke and the look in their eyes; I knew that it wasn't good news. They told me that they needed to took her into surgery and that they would let me know when I could see her. So I waited. And that's what Iím still doing now; waiting. They had brought her back a little over forty-five minutes ago, but I still wasn't allowed to see her. Still consumed with thought, I kept silent, letting my mind wander. I couldn't seem to keep my mind from spinning around, to stop thinking. Really, with the things I was thinking, I was doing nothing but a pretty damn good job of scaring the hell out of myself.

It was only when I felt someone tap me on my shoulder that I realized I wasn't alone. Looking up into the face of the man I had talked to earlier, I slowly stood up, not sure if I wanted to hear what he was going to say and what he was going to tell me. Slowly saying a quick prayer, I crossed my fingers and hoped that it was good.

"She lived through the surgery. But as sad as it is... it seems as if it wasn't enough," he told me slowly. I looked at him, not sure of how I should take what he had just told me. Exactly what did he mean by that?
"Weíre not sure how much... longer she's going to be alive. But from the looks of it, it will only be a short few hours before her heart fails. I wish there was more that we could do, but we did all that we can.,Ē he said in almost a whisper. I felt like I had just been slapped in the face.
"You can go see her now if you'd like," he continued, still looking at me. I couldn't speak. Because I knew that if I opened my mouth, Iíd do nothing but scream. So I did the only other option; I nodded. I followed him as he turned around, bringing me down the hallway and around the corner, to her room. The room I knew she was going to die in. I stood in front of the door, unsure if I really wanted to go in or not. I wasn't sure if I wanted to see what I would find in there.
I jumped slightly when I felt a hand on my arm. Looking back towards the doctor, he gave me a reassuring smile.
"Youíll be fine," he said to me. It sounded so far away. Nodding slowly, I took a deep breath and slowly opened the door, stepping inside.

The room was dimly lit by a lamp on the table. I could hear the heart monitor beeping slowly and in the distance, the faint sound of the radio. I tried to look everywhere, but at her. But knowing I had no choice, I slowly adverted my eyes over to her. It took all that I had in me not to pass out myself. She was so pale. Her face was almost unrecognizable. I could hardly believe that it was the same person. Biting my lip, I slowly walked over to her. I wasn't sure if she was asleep or awake. She looked like she was sleeping. I wasn't going to wake her up if she was. Grabbing one of the white plastic chairs in the corner, I put it beside her bed and slowly sat down. I wasn't sure if I should touch her or not. She looked so fragile. I was afraid that she was going to break if I touched her. Thinking that I was somewhat losing my mind, I shook my head and looked up at her. Sighing, I slowly put my hand over hers and watched her.

********************


I knew he was there. I could feel him beside me. I wanted to open my eyes, to look at him. But I was afraid of what I would find in those crystal blue eyes when I did. Would I see pain? Anguish? Sorrow? Or would I see nothing? Nothing except emptiness? I wasn't sure. I vaguely remember the doctors saying what lay ahead of me. I would be dying in a few short hours. The thought alone terrified me. God, why am I doing this to myself? I need to stop thinking about it and enjoy what time I do have left.

I smile inside when I feel his hand go over mine. Iím glad he's here. Glad that I don't have to go through this alone. Iím glad that he came when I begged for someone to get hold of him. I knew how hard it would be to do so. But Iím glad that he's finally here, beside me. Taking a deep breath, I slowly open my eyes. Looking to my side, I see him sitting there. Heís looking down towards the floor. I wish he didn't look so sad. Should I even let him know that Iím awake and spare him the pain of having to say goodbye? No.. I can't take that away from him. He wouldn't be here otherwise. Squeezing his hand, his head pops up. His eyes are glazing over. I squeeze his hand again to let him know that Iím here.

********************


I thought I was feeling things when I felt her squeeze my hand. Her eyes barely looked open when I looked up at her. But when she squeezed my hand harder, I knew she was with me.
"Kris..." I whispered, moving my chair closer to her, putting her hand between the both of mine. She gave me a small smile.
"Iím glad you're awake. I was afraid that it would be too late by the time I got here..." I started to say, but stopped shortly when I saw her shaking her head.
"Youíre not too late, Taylor." Her voice sounded so... so... unlike her.
"Iím glad that you're here," she started to say. "I wasn't sure what I would have done if you didn't make it in time." She finished, casting her eyes downward. This was as hard for her as it was for me. Hell, it was probably a lot harder than anything that I was feeling. Moving my hand over to her face, I made her look at me. I looked back and forth for a few moments before I finally spoke.
"I would have gone through hell and back to be here with you." I said, kissing her hand slowly. A lone tear fell down her cheek. Leaning over, I kissed her tear away. I could hear her taking in a sharp breath. I knew she was crying.
"Iím here." I whispered into her ear. "Donít cry. Iím here. Iím not going anywhere."
I sat back down and continued to look at her. I felt like such a child. I felt so helpless, knowing that I couldn't do anything. Feeling like an idiot, knowing that I was about to cry, I looked down. Before I could stop it, the tears started to fall. I was losing her. Damn it, I was losing her and I couldn't do anything. My best friend was leaving me. I felt her hand on my arm and looked up.
"Come here," she said while trying to pull me towards her. Laying my head on her stomach, I let the tears flow. My eyes fluttered closed when I felt her fingers running through my hair.
"Donít cry," she whispered. I felt like a moron, seeing as how I said the same thing to her moments before. And here I am.. eating my own words.

Somewhere in the background, I heard a familiar song come on the radio. I smiled slightly, thinking how perfect this song was for this specific moment.
"Taylor?" she said slowly.
"Hmm?" I replied, looking up at her. She looked at me for a few minutes before she finally said anything.
"Sing for me." I continued to look at her. Your wish is my command. Before I started to sing, she spoke again.
"Sing the song that's on," she said, turning the volume up slightly. "And whenever you hear this song, I want you to think of me. This is my song to you. Think of this. Think of this moment. And carry it with you... always."
Laying my head back down on her stomach, I thought about all of the memories we had. The fun we've had together. I feel her grab my hand and squeeze it slowly. Clearing my throat, I start to sing.


Come, stop your crying
It will be all right
Just take my hand
Hold it tight

I will protect you
From all around you
I will be here
Donít you cry

I pause for a moment, unsure of whether I can continue singing or not. I feel her put her arms around me. Taking a deep breath, I continue.

For one so small
You seem so strong
My arms will hold you
Keep you safe and warm
This bond between us
Canít be broken
I will be here
Donít you cry

I could feel myself starting to choke up. I look up at her and she's smiling. She grabs my hand and places it over her heart. Is she trying to tell me something? She nods, telling me to continue.

Cause you'll be in my heart
Yes you'll be in my heart
From this day on
Now and forever more
Youíll be in my heart
No matter what they say
Youíll be here in my heart
Always

I could hear that it was becoming harder for her to breathe. Please, not yet...

Why can't they understand?
The way we feel
They just don't trust
What they can't explain
I know we're different
But deep inside of us
Weíre not that different at all

She starts to cough slightly and I quickly look up at her, eyes wide.
"Kris?" I said. The panic could be obviously heard in my voice. Again, she just smiles.
"Iím okay..." she says, while moving my bangs out of my eyes.

Donít listen to them
Cause what do they know?
We need each other
To have, to hold
Theyíll see in time
I know

When destiny calls you
You must be strong
I may not be with you
But you've got to hold on
Theyíll see in time
I know
Weíll show them together

Her breathing was becoming very shallow now. I knew it was time. Any moment now, she would be gone. She would be out of my life. How could I live without her?

Cause you'll be in my heart
Believe me you'll be in my heart
Iíll be there from this day on
Now and forever more

I hear her gasp and quickly look up at her. Sheís having difficulty breathing. The squeezing of my hand is becoming more and more faint. Iím losing her. Leaning up and putting my forehead against hers, I speak softly to her, while holding her hand.
"Hold on Kris.. please... hold on a little bit longer.. please.." I feel myself slowly losing it. No. I have to keep it in control for her. I can't lose it now. I give her some time to respond, knowing how hard it is for her. I see her look at me.
"I can't hold on much.. much longer. Just remember.. that Iíll always be here," she puts her hand over my heart. "And wherever I am, you will always be here... in my heart." She puts my hand over her heart. Leaning up, I kiss her forehead. Remembering what she asked, I finish singing the song.

Ooo you'll be in my heart
Youíll be here in my heart
No matter what they say
Iíll be with you
Youíll be in my heart
Iíll be there always
Always, Iíll be with you
Iíll be there for you always
Always and always
Just look over your shoulder
Just look over your shoulder
Just look over your shoulder
Iíll be there
Always....

As I finish the last note, I hear the heart monitor go flat. Closing my eyes tightly, I let out a loud sob. She died in my arms. She was gone.

********************


The funeral was nice. As nice as any funeral could be. I was one of the people to speak that day. It was pure hell. I had never been more scared in my life. I had never cried so hard in my life. I was lucky that I was able to get through my speech before I finally broke down. A lot of people lost it then.

Itís only been a few weeks since she's been gone. I haven't gone to visit her grave yet. Today, however, I am. Somethingís been calling me to it for a while, but I ignored it. I can't ignore it any longer now.

Keeping my eyes to the ground, I slowly walk over to where she was buried. Even when Iím standing right in front of it, I still can't look up. Why? I have no idea. I only just noticed how shaky I am. I feel the wind ruffle around me and the sense of knowing. Knowing she's here with me right now. Slowly, I look up at the gravestone.

KRISTI ANN DLOUGHY
December 22, 1984 - August 11th, 2015
You'll be in my heart
Yes you'll be in my heart
From this day on
Now and forever more

I smile to myself, feeling my eyes glaze over. Putting my hand over my heart, I finally understood the meaning of the song. The message she wanted to give me. Making sure no one was around, I started to sing.

Cause you'll be in my heart
Yes you'll be in my heart
From this day on
Now and forever more


We will always hold each other in our hearts. From this day on, now and forever more.


THE END


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