22 Dec How I Lost my Wife- CreepyPasta
It was a sailboat, coming back into the bay.
My wife had asked me to stop on our way home, and so we pulled into the small scenic area on the cliffside road to watch the boats. She would often sketch them, and she did so then, on her notepad. I remember eventually looking away from the sailboat to instead admire her, and she, deep in her drawings, didn’t see the truck. I saw it only in a flash, over her shoulder. I know it hit her, and I must have been thrown onto the cliffside. That was the last thing I remember. The sailboat… and then I was here.
The doctor nodded, finally looking up from his notes. He clicked his pen absentmindedly for a while. I shifted my weight in the stiff hallway chair, and moved the ice pack from the bruise on my head to those on my lower back. I had only suffered a mild concussion, and miraculously no broken bones. In the time I had been unconscious and examined, my wife had been taken into emergency surgery. It was for this reason my gaze again shifted from the doctor to the surgery ward doors behind him.
He gave his notes one last look, and finally seeming satisfied, returned his pen to his coat pocket and followed my gaze. He answered before I asked, and told me my wife was still in critical condition but they would let me know as soon as there was a change. The same answer the nurses had given me. It was already dark outside, and I sat there, worrying for hours, questioning the nurses and doctors until they began to avoid me, their answer always the same. The morning light had just begun to appear when I met him.
The foreign doctor came in from somewhere, and after questioning a nurse at the desk, she pointed me out to him. He approached me in a great hurry, handing me a stack of papers and speaking with a slight accent that I couldn’t quite place. His words were short and blunt.
“Your wife is dying. I may be able to help her.”
He spoke briefly of her condition. That she had lost motor function, that she wouldn’t be able to breathe on her own soon, that she had brain damage. He wanted to perform an experimental procedure he was pioneering, saying it could at best return her motor function eventually, that she would live. He hesitated to explain further, but as I began signing every form and waiver he had handed me, he instead simply pointed out where I had to initial as well, and then took the forms and quickly went into the surgery ward.
Eventually he came out of the ward wearing a surgeons outfit, still moving with great haste. He was moving to another area of the hospital, and a retinue of other surgeons and doctors followed him with equal speed. I stood then, thinking to call out to them, but they moved quickly, fussing about with a tangle of wires and small machines, passing them to one another as they moved, and there in between them, underneath the mess of wire and machines, on a narrow operating bed I saw her. My wife. I cannot describe how she looked lying there, because I cannot allow myself to recall the image. I was certain she was dead. She was broken so terribly that there could be no way she still lived. And in a moment of noise and and a clattering of wheels, they were through the next doors and gone.
I stood there for some time, numb. Eventually a nurse called out to me, rousing me from my shock. I turned to her, but could not answer whatever she had said to me. She looked at me kindly, and said I should head to the cafeteria to get some food. She said they would page me over the hospital’s intercom when something changed. I didn’t respond, and simply stared at as my reeling mind made sense of what she said. No words came to me, and before she could speak again, the surgery ward doors were again thrown open by a team of doctors.
I spun, not knowing what to expect, but expecting something nonetheless, but it was not my wife. Instead a team of surgeons similar to the last group came from the ward moving in the same direction my wife had gone. This time however they were hampered by a large man strapped down to a hospital bed. He writhed and struggled against his restraints, his eyes wild. Every part of him seemed strained, the veins and tendons standing out starkly underneath his skin. He twisted roughly, seemingly trying to fight the doctors off as they cursed and struggled to keep the bed straight. The man in the bed saw us as he went past, and through his roughly chewed mouth restraint he called out to me.
“Help me! Stop them!” he cried in a harsh voice. But a moment later he was gone, through the next doors, still fighting all the while.
The nurse hurried after the group of doctors, and left alone there, still numb, I decided to wander.
I don’t know how many hours I spent in the winding hospital corridors. I passed through the cafeteria several times but I ate nothing. I had no appetite, no energy, my bruises ached and I had lost my ice pack somewhere. My phone had died long ago, and I marked the time passing as I walked by windows, morning became afternoon, afternoon threatened to become night again. Eventually I found myself near the surgery ward where I had started, and the memory of my wife fought its way through my clouded mind.
How do I describe losing her? How can words describe the death of one so dear? I was unthinking, marveling at the world as if through glass. The world I had lived in with her, now on display in front of me, untouchable. Her death was incomprehensible, too large for the mind to fully grasp. Her’s was the death of a nation, the loss of a war, an event that would stand out in mankind’s history. A tragedy. If you can grasp even a portion of how I felt, of how deep my loss was, then perhaps too you can imagine the height of spirit I felt seeing her in a wheelchair when I finally returned to the surgery ward.
She smiled, weakly, but she saw me and smiled all the same. I rushed to her and the colors of the world flooded from her, relighting the world. I wept, and though the doctor’s spoke, I could only look towards them through tears, reverently, as they talked. Ever so gently, trembling, my wife’s hand came to my face, and I took it in my own. I felt the roughness of a bandage and I truly looked at her. She was completely covered in bandages, stitches and dressings. Her hair had been shaved and the scars formed a web around her head, face, and neck. Reason began to return to me.
“…of blood transfusions, all after 13 hours, she is a miracle.” The accent tinted the words as he spoke them, and I looked to the doctor that I had signed all the paperwork for. The experimental procedure.
“It worked.” I said it dumbly, still stunned.
“Yes, but this is beyond my expectations. For her to regain this level of motor function should have taken months. She has not even begun to heal. She will have to be studied, as you agreed to.” He said the last few words with emphasis, but I had no intention of refusing. He had saved her from certain death.
She would remain at the hospital for several days, but I could visit her. With the weight of her death lifted from my shoulders, the weights of hunger, exhaustion, and my own injuries fell on me heavily. I returned home, and the days passed by in a blur of paperwork, phone calls, and hospital visits.
Her recovery was miraculous. Every day she made incredible strides in her strength and motor skills. By the end of the week she was her old self, smiling, talking, laughing. Her drawings were as sharp and beautiful as they had ever been. With the agreement that we continue to return to the hospital every other day for study, she was given leave to return home.
The joy that came back into my life was greater than I had ever known until that point. Our marriage had always been happy, but having nearly lost each other, we took nothing for granted. We spent all our moments together. I played music for her in the evenings while she used the large canvases she had always been so afraid of wasting. Family on both of our sides came and visited, doing everything they could to make her recovery easier, and for those first two weeks back from the hospital I was perhaps the happiest I have ever been.
Once she had most of her stitches out, the recovery process slowed. Then worsened. She was beset by headaches that seemed a little worse every day. Small things would affect her severely, such as frequent muscle cramps and bouts of fatigue. It took its toll on her mood as well, and sometimes she would withdraw from me completely, or instead cling to me as if for safety. She began to speak less, and at times became unresponsive. The frequency of our hospital visits increased, and seemingly every one of them involved an MRI or scan of her head. The foreign doctor answered few of my questions, and I began to fear her recovery was at risk, that she was in danger.
Things continued to worsen until one day, when I was in another room, I heard her scream from the kitchen.
I ran into the room to see her on the ground, blood spilling from a clean cut angled across her arm. She was hyperventilating, looking through me instead of at me. I went to her and tried to calm her, asking her what had happened.
“He attacked me.” She said it shakily, fear plain across her face.
“Who? Who attacked you?” I asked. Looking around the room I saw no one, no open door or windows, nothing.
“Troy,” she said it in a whisper. Tears forming in her eyes, she pointed a shaking hand towards the bloody kitchen knife, laying near the wall as if thrown.
“He wants to kill us. He wants revenge. He said…” Her hand went to her mouth, covering it, and for a moment she looked scared before doubling over and crying out. Her hands went to her head.
“Who is Troy? Is he still here?” I asked, my eyes darting between her and the doorways.
“Yes.” she whimpered.
I gathered her in my arms and went to our bedroom, placing her gently on the bed and quickly locking the door. She cried softly as I got my handgun from the safe near the nightstand. I turned to comfort her, and the words caught in my throat. The cut had been deeper than I originally thought, and bright blood had already begun to pool in the folds of her clothing. My mind raced. We had to get to the hospital.
Quickly, I tied off a handtowel to her arm to staunch the bleeding, and carried her to the car, not daring to wait for an ambulance. I spoke with the emergency operator on the phone as I sped to the familiar hospital, and thanked any higher powers that were listening for each green light and the closeness of proximity from the hospital to our home.
Staff met us as we pulled up to the emergency room entrance, and my wife was in poor shape. She convulsed, skin pale, veins standing out against her skin. She moved stiffly as the staff transferred her to the wheelchair. I had taken the gun from my waist and tossed it quickly into the car, leaving the vehicle parked halfway on the curb. Inside I saw the doctor waiting for us. I followed the foreign doctor deeper into the hospital.
My wife was treated for the cut, but she was faring poorly. The convulsions had turned to fits, and she clawed at herself, drawing more and more blood. Eventually she was sedated. As the doctor began calling for another scan of her head, I stopped him. He made to move past me, and I grabbed him by the coat, my fear and anger becoming strength, and turned him roughly to face me.
“What is happening to her?” I demanded.
He looked at me with disdain. “She is getting worse.” He tried to pull my hand from his coat but my grip was like iron.
“Why? What is happening? I think she cut herself.” I said.
He gave me a puzzled look.
“With a knife in our kitchen. She said Troy attacked her.” I said.
The puzzled look vanished from his face, and instead his eyes widened, color draining from his face.
“That’s impossible.” he whispered.
I watched him as he lost focus on me, he was deep in thought, my grip on his coat suddenly forgotten.
“Who is Troy?” I asked.
He hesitated, and I redoubled my grip, pulling him towards me. I repeated my question, and held his gaze. He seemed to crumple a bit, the hesitation giving way to answers.
“He is gone… Your wife, her brain, the nervous system, some parts…” Here he hesitated again, searching for the words “Parts of her brain were destroyed, they were dead. My surgery, it takes the parts from a good brain, and… it makes them work together. Troy was the other half, a prisoner with the death sentence, but it was not the parts controlling memory, only motor function and feeling, it doesn’t make any sense what she said.” His confusion seemed genuine.
“His brain? How can dead parts replace dead parts? Why his?”
“No, no, a living brain. Living parts.” He said it, the look on his face sparking my memory. The other man, strapped to the hospital bed that day. The one who had called out to me. I couldn’t believe it. I hadn’t read the forms at the time, I simply signed them.
“He is dead, he cannot hurt her” The doctor said. His voice was strained and he struggled against my grip, which was now near his neck. I had tightened my hold on his coat without having realized it. I released him, my mind still racing.
The crashing of broken glass broke my train of thought, and there was yelling in the waiting room we had come through earlier. I left the doctor and went to see what had happened.
There through the broken large pane window was my wife, still in her bloodied clothes, hospital restraints hanging limply from one of her wrists and legs. Blood speckled the pavement as she walked, stiffly, towards our parked car. I raced after her, forgetting the doctor.
By the time I made it through the panicked lobby and out the door to join her, she was crouching next to our car, its passenger window smashed in. I called to her as I ran, and as she stood, I saw for the briefest moment the flicker of a memory in her strained muscles, in the way the tendons and veins stood out on the broken, bloodied arm that had smashed the window. She turned to face me, lifted her good arm, and before I could say anything, the world spun.
I didn’t hear the gunshot, I didn’t feel the bullet hit me, I didn’t hear or feel anything at all. I was on the ground, paralyzed, my vision blurred and went in an out of focus. She was talking, yelling at someone. Was it me? More gunshots. Suddenly I could only see out of one eye, and as I lay there, dying, I saw her, or someone within her, put the gun to her head. My scream died in my throat, trapped, and as the gun went off, as I watched her fall, darkness came, and the light of my world went out a second time.
I awoke to my wife’s voice. She called my name softly at first. Then louder, and louder still, until it shook me and I jolted awake. The light above me was blinding, and as the vision in my single eye came into focus, I saw the two surgeons standing over me. I was laying down.
I sat up quickly, my vision swimming, my head aching. I tried to speak but my lips moved numbly, fumbling my wife’s name. I tried again with more success, I still heard her. I called out to her again.
The surgeon nearest me had dropped the bandages he was holding, and was backing away from me.
“Impossible” the words came from the surgeon behind me. The accent.
I turned to him, but my wife was screaming now, the panic in her voice so vivid. I actually felt it. I looked around for her, calling out again.
“Where is she?” I asked the doctor.
He met my gaze, “She is dead. One hour ago.”
“No, she’s here, I know she is.” The panic of my wife’s screaming bled into my own voice. Another voice was rising against hers, rougher, deeper, angrier. It threatened to drown her out. I tried to stand but my legs wouldn’t support me. I fell awkwardly to the hard, cold floor. Around me the surgeons and assistants moved away from me. I pulled myself up hurriedly to the bed next to mine.
“I know she’s here!” I yelled it, trying to be heard over the horrible rough laughter that now echoed through my very body, my wife’s calling seemed further away.
“She’s here!” I screamed, and with a great heave, I pulled myself upright, over the adjoining bed. Over the body covered by the hospital sheet.
“Yes.” He said it meekly.
I felt my strength drain. This was wrong. I slumped back to the floor. Pain overcame me. I just barely heard him, the accent was audible over Troy’s accusations, over his rambling threats and laughter. My hands clutched at the hundreds of stitches winding around my head. I felt the blood. Was it mine? Who’s blood was this? I stood on unfamiliar legs. On my own legs.
“In a way, she saved your life.” the doctor said. His hands were clasped in front of him. I focused our eye on him. I could see the shame, the regret, the pain the doctor felt was plain on his face. I turned, my hand brushing the sheet hanging off the nearby hospital bed. Perhaps he truly did regret what he had done. He never intended to hurt us.
But despite all of this, my wife was dead. And so when Troy lunged at him, I did not stop him.
I don’t know how many days, months, or years have passed since that day. Time is hard to keep in the asylum, depending on when I have more control. Sometimes I miss meals or periods of the day when Troy is stronger, but on days like this, when I have an arm unbound, and can write on the big sheets of sprawling paper with the waxy little charcoal bits they give me, I can pass the day in relative peace. I haven’t heard my wife since that day, and at times I feel myself losing control in greater amounts all at once. But on days like this, when I can write, the day sometimes passes me by completely.
But when I have control again, I find there sometimes in the corners of my paper, a little sailboat, crudely drawn, as if from a long ways off, and on those days a little bit of happiness comes back to me.