Another short story.
Written be myself and my co-writer Lovely.
Updates will be pretty steady, let us know what you think.
Cristof Grandie stared out the window from his room with a pleasant smile. He had a slight sway in his posture he couldn't seem to help. The gentle rocking back and forth was calming and he didn't even notice he did it. He never had.
The Blaren's Psychiatric hospital had been his home for some time. It was a small place but more then adequate to deal the number of patients it had. He liked the place fine at first, and would have liked it better had there not been so many neutral colors. The whites, browns, and grays became tiresome and he'd taken to staring out the window for color. He liked color.
He began to hum when his eyes lost focus and instead of peering outside he stared at his own reflection in the glass. He had to grin as if it were a secret for him alone. He had broken the last mirror placed in his room and since then he hadn't gotten another. He laughed as if it was a secret only he knew.
He pressed his cheek to the window, ignoring the rapping at his door. He wasn't concerned about it since he had no control over who came and went anyway.
"Hey you, brought your meds, and some lunch since they said you wouldn't come down. For some reason they think you'll eat for me. So now you gotta or I'll get heat, what do you say?" It was the voice of one of the nurses who had started fairly recently. Nurse Black. Though she insisted she be called Adia by everyone.
"Nippy out, the glass is chilled." He chuckled in response, breathing on the window so his breath steamed across it. He reached up to run his finger across the glass to draw a picture before it disappeared.
"You wanna go out we can get that fixed, food first though." She said, sliding the tray onto the desk before walking over to him to touch his arm, "C'mon sweets, I even got you somethin` special. Snuck it in just for you."
She reached in her pocket and pulled out a muffin still wrapped in plastic.
Cristof's eyes moved to her to the muffin and back to her again before he smiled. "Adia knows the food here is icky, right?" he said in an amused tone, reaching out for the muffin.
"You still need to eat sweets, promise?" She pulled the muffin out of his reach.
"I want the muffin." He pouted, for a moment looking much younger then he should have at twenty-three. He suddenly gasped dramatically. "Where did Adia get it?"
"Who knows, food time." She chuckled, not letting herself get sucked in. The boy had a way of talking circles around people and getting them confused.
"Adia stole it." he said knowingly and laughed. He turned back to the window and blew on it again to finish his picture before turning back to his food tray. "I didn't order this."
"Sure you did, you just don't remember. C'mon, eat half and I'll give you the muffin that I bought." she grinned.
Cristof snorted. "I remember. I remember very, very, very well. Yep. It's everyone else who is forgetful." He finally took a seat to eat, ignoring the medication completely.
"If you say so sweets." she leaned on the window, smiling lightly as she watched him, "Take the pills too."
"No." he said stubbornly, sipping from his plastic glass. "I'll take them when I wanna take them." He turned to look at her. "Can we go outside?"
"After you take the pills" she crossed her arms.
"Hn." he muttered, biting his own bottom lip hard for a moment. "When I feel like it."
"Alright then sweets." she walked over to put the muffin next to him, "And when you do and you've eaten some we can go out for a walk. You have a coat right? The extras they have smell funny."
He blinked slowly, swaying back and forth as he ate. "I don't like the extras. I have mine. It's old but it's not an extra."
"Well good then," she rubbed his back lightly. She liked that she could touch him. Several patients had a serious problem with being touched. "So's your brother coming to visit this week? He missed last week."
Cristof paused for a moment, mulling the words over. "At least Ezra does come." He stopped eating abruptly, and grabbed the muffin to bite into. "I dunno. Should I know? People always think I know."
"It's good that he comes, I didn't mean that sweets. I keep missin` him is all. Figured I ought to meet the relative of my favorite patient, specially when you talk about him so much." Adia offered.
Cristof laughed happily, clapping once. "Ezra is good. You know why? Ezra thinks that Ezra is older then me sometimes, but I don't mind that." He took another bite. "Ezra can be older if Ezra wants to be. That's what I said. I told Ezra to be what Ezra wanted. If Ezra wants to be older then fine. You know, Ezra doesn't look at me like I'm..." He made a gesture towards his head. "That's nice too."
"He shouldn't, there's nothing wrong with you and you're his brother" she said softly.
"Oh Adia." Cristof chuckled. "Adia is silly to think that." He licked his fingers as he finished the muffin and reached for the little paper cup that held his pills before swallowing them. He was used to taking them by now. "No more." he announced with a grin.
"Well let's go then." she smiled, not offended as some might have been at his comment. She knew he meant well and that was good enough even if he couldn't always manage the right wording.
He hummed softly for a moment, walking back to the window to peer outside before walking to his closet and pulling out his lighter coat. "It's gonna snow early." he mused. He moved closer to her, entering her personal space more then most liked. "Snow?"
"Probably." she shrugged, "I like the snow, don't you?"
"Used to." he answered vaguely, pulling wool gloves out of his pocket to put on despite it not being cold enough to need them. "I scared Ezra with snow once. I don't like it much anymore."
"That's a shame. I like taking walks in the snow, snow men; it's just a beautiful time of the year," She nodded for him to follow as she started out into the hall.
"I don't like white." he continued. "It's so white. I like green better." he pointed to the color of his coat.
"Green's a pretty color. What about read and gold. Like autumn. That's pretty too." she offered. She was sporting a red pair of scrubs herself.
"I like gold. Red is so red though." he said, sighing as if his commented had actually made sense. "But I like it more then white."
"Gonna make me pout over here. Red's one of my favorite colors mister." she chuckled.
He reached out to poke her cheek lightly. He normally kept his hands to himself unless he liked the person he was talking to. The more he liked them the more comfortable he felt with contact. "Have I hurt red's feelings?"
"Lil bit" she grinned slightly, "She's feeling slightly blue."
He shrugged then. "Then be accepting as blue and forget about what was said as red. Do you like blue now? Blue's nice."
"Nope, I'm pretty good with red. I'm headstrong like that." Adia mused as they walked up to the reception nurses station. "Hey Jean, I promised him a walk outside is Jim around to take him out?"
Cristof made a face. "I don't wanna go with him."
"Sweets, you know you need an escort and I'm not qualified." Adia offered a soft smile, "C'mon, it'll still be fun."
Jean smiled kindly between the two of them. Cristof was well liked considering what he was like sometimes. "I can have him paged if you like. I'm not sure if he's with a patient now or not. Gonna be another arrival or two in the next week."
Cristof was already shaking his head back and forth. "No, no, and no. Adia will take me out." He leaned over the desk and took the phone from Jean to hang it up before she could make her call.
"Cristof, honey, I have a bunch of work to do around here and you know I'm not big and strong enough to escort you outside." Adia tried to reason.
He visually winced. "I don't hurt people. Adia don't have to be big to talk to me."
"It's not you and you know it, it's those stupid rules." she reached out to rub his arm, "You're a sweetheart, sweets, we all know it but there are still rules..."
Jean picked up the phone quickly to continue the page quietly but Cristof was to busy pouting to care what she was doing.
"Adia will take me outside." He said, looking at her. He was actually frowning. "I don't want the others. I don't want them to walk with me."
Even Jean looked concerned. He wasn't dangerous so much as; he would shut himself off for days. Adia looked to Jean hesitantly, "You think he's with a patient?"
"Well..." Jean looked at the phone. "He didn't respond as quick as he normal does. He certainly could be. It is about that time he starts his afternoon rounds."
"See, he's not coming. Adia will take me. Please?" He reached out, very gently touching his fingers to Adia's arm.
"Yeah. I'll sign him out. He's not going anywhere, are you sweets?" Adia mused, approaching the desk to fill out the book used to account for patient outings.
Cristof smile brightly again. "Not today."
Adia shook her head, smiling lightly; "Can you hand me my jacket Jean? It's on the chair."
"Best keep it a short walk." Jean advised as she handed Adia her jacket. "You never know how they'll react." She continued in a quiet voice. "Some days the doctors are worse then some of the patients."
Cristof bounced a little on his feet, obviously excited. "Walk, walk, walk, walk."
"I know, thanks though." Adia nodded, pulling it over her arms before taking Cristof's elbow and leading him to the door. She had to swipe her key at two doors before they were able to simply walk out the front. They considered the facility fairly secure but then no one had ever tried to escape so no one knew so much.
"Oh, it is cold!" He said once they'd gotten outside. He looked delighted despite his apparent dislike for the on coming threat of snow. "Good! Very, thank you Adia. It's pretty out today."
"Good to see you so peppy." She rubbed his arm, "Just around the garden though, it's colder than I thought."
"Once, twice, three times." he sand softly to himself as he nodded to her request. "One, two, three. Adia likes the cold. One, two. Not the freeze, but the cold."
"Adia likes not being sick." she chuckled, "One time around."
"One, two, three." he laughed. "The cold makes Adia smile. Reminds her of things, right? Bright eyes in the cold." he touched her cheek again before letting his hand drop. "One. Two."
"Reminds me..." she repeated softly, "sometimes."
"Happy memories are good." he smiled happily. "One. I have them too. Memories and thoughts and smiles and a time probably forgotten by everyone other then myself. I don't forget."
"Gonna remember this then?" Adia asked teasingly.
Cristof laughed, spinning once. "Of course." he tilted his head back to look up at the sky. "Won't Adia?"
"More than likely. You're hard to forget sweets." She tucked her hands behind her head.
He laughed softly again. "Lock this away in the special place where Adia keeps all Adia's special memories." he said, dragging his feet as they walked. He leaned down suddenly to press his palm to the ground to see if it was too cold to sit. He leaned up again, wiping his hands on his pants with a sigh. It was so much nicer outside then in.
"I will do that just for you." she promised, "C'mon you."
"Adia walk too fast." he whined.
"You walk too slow." she whined back.
He pouted. "Adia gets to go home. I go back there." he pointed to the white-bricked building. "I get to walk slow."
"Hey I don't wanna get sent home permanently okay?" she laughed, "But fine. We can walk slower."
Cristof smiled at her fondly before looking around his surroundings once more. "Thank you. Just a little longer. A little longer."
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