TITLE: No tomorrow.
DISCLAIMER: I do not own any of the characters or anything else connected to the show. I simple just borrow it to have some fun.
SPOILERS: There isn't anything to spoil anymore but if you haven't seen season six you will be spoiled
SUMMARY: What if Bosco didn't make full recovery….
WARNINGS: Another sad, shipper story.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: OK, this is another sad story and I'm sorry, but the depressing end they gave Bosco and Faith in the show made me think this wouldn't be so bad. Maybe even better….
Thanks goes to Joey for helping me to correct this and to Bee for telling me it was good enough and finally to Swamy, who's great video's inspired me when I was working.
"I'm telling you, Faith, you're eating way too little," Jelly says in a slightly concerned voice, "I really thought you would eat more when Boscorelli is out of the hospital and you don't have to worry about him so much."
I just snort in return. What does he know about worrying? Not a thing; that's obvious because truth is, I'm worrying even more now that Bosco is home alone than I did when he was in the hospital. I can't shake the feeling that this isn't over yet. I'm not so sure he's doing as well as the doctors claim.
The sound of my cell phone ringing makes me jump. It has been this way ever since he got shot. I always fear it's bad news.
I press the talk button. "Faith."
"Hi, Faith. It's Rose."
I smile at the phone. Rose is such a sweetheart, although she talks everybody's ears off.
"Hi, Rose. What's up?"
"I was just wondering if you've seen Maurice today." She sounds worried.
"No, I haven't. But I talked to him this morning and he said he felt fine."
"But you haven't seen him in person?"
I sigh lightly because her question makes me feel guilty. I haven't seen him for four days. There just aren't enough hours in the day, but I have spoken with him on the phone at least once, sometimes twice, a day and he seems fine every time.
"No, Rose, I haven't. I'm sorry, but work has been crazy lately."
"I know and I'm sorry to bother you, but I'm worried about him."
I squeeze the phone harder. "Why, Rose? What's up?"
"I think it's something wrong with his head.
"What do you mean?"
Rose hesitates for a few seconds and that scares me more than anything. She usually talks insanely, without even stopping to catch her breath, and the fact that she actually seems to choose her words carefully is more than frightening.
"He doesn't seem to be able to remember things."
I swallow hard. "What kind of things?"
"Ordinary things – like eating. He called me yesterday, complaining about a bad stomach-ache and when I asked if he had eaten, he couldn't even remember. I went over there and cooked for him and he got better. He was starving, Faith, and he didn't have a clue!"
I feel a knot forming in my stomach. It's like a nightmare and the phrase "long-term neurological damage" is echoing in my mind. But I'm not ready to accept it – not yet. Instead, I try to find a natural explanation.
"Maybe he's just tired. He seemed OK when he was in the hospital."
"Yeah, I know. But then they told him when to eat and sleep and stuff like that. Maybe no one noticed. I'm so worried about him, Faith, and I can't check on him myself today. I just have to work. They are going to fire me if I don't. Can you do it for me, please? Maybe you can talk to him and see if he's just tired or depressed, or if there's something really wrong with him. Please, Faith. "
"Sure, Rose – no problem. I'll check on him right away."
"Thank-you, sweetie," she exclaims happily. "Call me and let me know how he's doing and what you think, OK?"
"Sure, Rose, bye."
I hang up the phone and stare out into space with a feeling of dread inside. I really hope he's just really tired or depressed. I never thought that I would wish that he'd suffer from depression, but anything is better than the alternative. Because the alternative means that I'm never going to have the old Bosco back.
"Something wrong, Faith?"
Jelly's uncharacteristically soft voice brings me back to reality.
"I don't really know. Bosco's mother thinks something is wrong with him."
"Wanna check on him?"
"Want me to come?"
"No offence, Jelly, but I don't think Bosco would appreciate it."
He nods knowingly. "None taken. How about I drop you off there and go and have something to eat while you're checking on him?"
I smile weakly. "Sounds like a really good plan to me."
I stand outside Bosco's door feeling like I'm about to face my death sentence. I tell myself that I need to get a grip and take a deep breath before knocking.
I knock again – a lot harder this time. Still nothing.
OK, so now I'm really worried. I search my purse for his key and find it almost immediately. I unlock the door and go inside. The apartment is dark and quiet.
"Bos?" I call softly and make my way though the hallway. There's no answer and I'm just about to call his name again when I spot him on the couch. He lies completely still and his face is ghostly pale. At first I fear that he's dead but then I see his chest rise and fall. I run to his side and drop down on my knees. His forehead is covered with a thin sheet of cold sweat.
I run my hands though his damp hair. "Bos?"
"Umm," he moans faintly.
"Bos, what's wrong?"
"Hurts. Hurts so bad," he whimpers painfully.
God, what's wrong with him? My heart is throbbing hard in my chest as I start to search for the source to his pain and agony.
"What, Bos? What hurts?" I ask, pulling up his shirt to check the bandage on his stomach. It looks OK – no blood.
"Everything," he states weakly.
I run my hand through his hair again. "What exactly do you mean by 'everything?'"
He opens his eyes and looks at me. They are clouded with pain.
"My back, my stomach, my leg, my cheek – everything."
I put my hand on his forehead to check for a fever but he's so sweaty it's hard to tell whether he's hot or not.
"Is the pain in your whole body? Do you feel achy, like when you got the flu?"
"No," he moans. "Just my wounds. My wounds hurt so bad. Faith, please help me."
I'm starting to feel desperate. I have no idea why he's in so much pain. The pain killers have always helped before. Sure, they have lowered the dose recently but this still doesn't make sense. Wait a minute…he has to actually take the pain killers to make them work and Rose said he's having trouble remembering things. What if he never took any today? What if he forgot? That would explain why he's in so much pain. I find the thought very appealing, although that means that Rose is right and we have a very serious problem on our hands, but at least that means I can ease his pain.
"Bos," I say softly and stroke his cheek. "Did you remember to take your painkillers today?"
He opens his eyes again and I can tell that he's trying very hard to remember. A few moments later he closes them again and whispers, "I don't know. I can't remember."
His voice sounds tired and defeated and I get the impression that he's aware of his memory problems.
I squeeze his hand reassuringly. "Don't worry about it. I figure something out, OK? But you have been taking them on a regular basis, right?"
He nods slightly and looks pleadingly at me. "Please, Faith, help me. Make it stop."
I squeeze his hand again. "I will."
I go out into his kitchen to look at his prescription bottles. I read the labels carefully, trying to do the proper math in my head. Then I dump the whole bottle on the counter and start counting the pills. When I'm done I do the same with the other bottle, and then – just to be sure – I count both bottles again. It doesn't add up. I was right. He has forgotten to take them – at least once, probably twice. I take the prescribed dose and one pill from the bottle marked "to take if needed," fill a glass with water and go back into the living room.
I kneel down beside him again and carefully squeeze his shoulder. "Bos, I have your meds here. Can you please try to sit up so you can take them?"
He opens his eyes and the pain-filled, desperate look in them is like torture to me. He has suffered enough by now. He doesn't need this.
"I didn't take them."
It's more a statement than a question. I brush his sweaty hair away from his forehead.
"No, you didn't."
"I'm turning into an idiot."
He closes his eyes and a few tears escape from behind his eyelids. I run my hand along his unharmed cheek in a gesture way too intimate for us, but I can't stop myself. I love him and I hate to see him suffering like this. Especially, since it's all because of me. I wonder if he would be pissed if he knew how much I wish that he had let me die that day, instead of putting himself though all this.
"Come on, sit up." I urge softly and put my arms around his shoulders, pulling him forward.
His face contorts in pain and he gives out a moan but he manages to pull himself up enough to be able to take the pills without choking. I put them in his mouth and hand him the water. He quickly downs them and carefully eases himself down on the couch again. I go into the bedroom and fetch a pillow and a blanket. I want him to be as comfortable as possible. I fuss around him for a few minutes and when he's settled; I sit down on the floor and start running my hand through his hair repeatedly.
The look on his face is still pained but he seems slightly more relaxed, probably because he knows there's now hope that the pain will come to an end, or at least ease up a bit. After a couple of minutes I take my hand away and start to get up.
Bosco's eyes opens briefly. "Don't go."
I smile reassuringly. "I won't. I'm just gonna call Jelly and let him know I won't be in anymore tonight."
I walk out into the kitchen and dial the number to Jelly's cell phone. He picks up on the third ring. He sounds annoyed and his voice is muffled. I guess I interrupted his meal and for a second I feel bad. But only until I realize it's almost impossible not to do that.
"It's Faith," I declare shortly.
To my surprise, his tone of voice changes completely and is now one of concern and compassion.
"Yokas, how is he?"
His kindness catches me off guard and I almost start crying. "I'm not coming back tonight."
There's a brief moment of silence and then Jelly replies, "That bad, huh?"
I bite my bottom lip, telling myself I need to keep it together for Bosco's sake. "Yeah."
"Is there anything I can do?"
"Just cover for me, will you?"
"Sure thing, are you at the hospital?"
"No, but I can't leave him alone."
"OK, see you around."
I hang up the phone and go back to sit by Bosco's side. This time, I'm content to just hold his hand. Just as when I left, he opens his eyes briefly when I sit down and take his hand, but he says nothing. I feel like I should do something more to ease his pain, but I know there's nothing more I can do. So, I just sit here on the floor, holding his hand, trying to figure out exactly what this means.
It's obvious that Rose is right. He's having problem with his memory – but why? And how severe? Could he really be that depressed? I don't know much about depression but I realize that it has to be very serious to cause these kinds of symptoms. I close my eyes and try to remember how he has been acting lately – if he has seemed depressed. From what I remember from our conversations the last couple of days, there's nothing indicating that, but – on the other hand – this is Bosco, and he could very well be covering it up. Especially since I have been busy and may not have been listening closely enough. I sigh. There's no way for me to figure this out on my own. I have to talk to Bosco about it. But whatever the reason is to his current state; I know it's serious and that I need to get him to a doctor as soon as possible.
About half an hour later, he's fast asleep and I feel incredible relieved that his pain and agony has come to an end for now. I let go of his hand and stand up. My whole body feels stiff from sitting on the floor for so long. I stretch my back and then bend down and kiss his forehead before sitting down in his armchair to try to get some rest myself. I know I should probably take his bed instead – or even better – make him take it. But I don't have the heart to wake him up – or enough energy to stand up. So, I remain where I am and close my eyes, allowing myself to drift off to sleep, knowing that he's safe and comfortable for now and that I will notice if something changes.
I slowly open my eyes to see what's tickling my cheek and find myself staring into Bosco's concerned eyes.
"Faith, what are you doing here?"
I sit up a little straighter and try to stretch out my sore muscles. I'm starting to get old – that's for sure.
"I came here last night to check on you and you were in a great deal of pain, so when you fell asleep, I decided to stay the night in case you woke up and needed something."
"That's nice of you but you don't have to baby-sit me. I can take care of myself," he says slightly defensively.
"I know that, Bos. I stayed just as much for my sake as for yours. I would never have been able to sleep if I was at home."
"You worry too much," he replies and smiles fondly at me.
I smile back. "I know. So how are you feeling today?"
"Do you remember what happened last night?"
"What kind of question is that? Of course I remember what happened! Why wouldn't I?"
He sounds both angry and offended and I almost feel bad, but only until I remember how much pain he was in last night.
"So what happened?"
"I was in too much pain to move. You came by and fixed it. End of story."
"Do you remember why you were in so much pain?"
"I had forgotten to take my pain killers."
His voice is quiet, almost a whisper, and I know he knows just as well as I do that something is wrong with him.
"Why did you forget?"
He looks away. "I don't know."
"Bos," I say softly. "What's going on?"
"Come on, Bosco. Don't give me that crap. I've talked to your mother. She's worried about you and after seeing you last night, so am I. So you better tell me what this is all about."
I expect him to be angry and tell me to mind my own business, but he doesn't. Instead, he sits back down on the couch and puts his head in his hands. I move to sit beside him and carefully rest my hand on his shoulder.
"Come on, Bos. You can tell me."
"I don't know, Faith! I really don't know why, all of a sudden, I can't remember ordinary things – like eating. I just don't."
He looks up at me, his eyes shiny with tears. "I'm turning into some kind a freak that can't take care of himself anymore. I'm turning into an idiot, aren't I?"
I pull him into a hug. "No you're not. But something sure is wrong with you and we need to figure out what, so we can get you some help, OK?"
He sighs heavily and slips out of my embrace. "OK."
"Did you take your pain killers today?"
He nods. "Yeah, did it first thing when I woke up."
I smile. "Good. How about I fix you some breakfast and then we try to figure out what's wrong?"
He nods again. "OK"
I watch him while we're eating. He sure looks tired and he isn't eating much, but nothing is new there. It has been this way since he woke up.
He looks up and catches me staring. "What?"
"How you feeling?"
He shrugs and looks down again.
"You look tired, Bos."
He looks up again. "I am tired."
"More tired than when you were in the hospital?"
He shrugs again. "I don't think so."
"I haven't been going much."
"Because I don't always remember what time I'm supposed to be there!" he shouts angrily, but I know he isn't really, because the look in his eyes isn't angry. It's scared.
I don't really know what to say, so we sit in silence until he looks up at me again.
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to yell at you."
I cover his hand with mine. "I know, Bos."
I bite my bottom lip, hesitating, because I know my next question is going to make him angry. He hates to discuss his mental health.
"Do you feel depressed, Bos?"
"Of course not. Why would I? I have been shot four times. I don't know when – or if – I'll be able to go back to work. I have a scar on my face making me look like a freak and my brain is melting or something. I'm happier than ever!"
"Bos," I say pleadingly. "Don't act like that. I'm just trying to help you. We need to figure out what's causing your memory problems so we know what kind of help you need."
"You think depression could cause this?" He's calm now and sounds curious, almost hopeful.
"Maybe. So, do you?"
He runs his hand through his hair. "I guess I do – at least a little bit. It's kind of depressing sitting here all day, you know. Thinking about you being out there alone and whether I come back or not, we will never be partners again."
A lump is forming in my throat. He's not the only one who gets depressed by that thought. I regret taking this promotion more and more with every passing day, and I wish I had never listened to Sully.
"I'm not alone and I miss you, too," I whisper.
He takes my hand and squeezes it reassuringly. "I know, and I didn't mean to make you feel bad. I just…."
I give him a shaky smile. "I know. So, you think you're depressed?"
He looks down. "Maybe. I feel low but I haven't had any panic attacks or anything."
I try to figure out whether the fact that he's admitting it is a good or bad thing. Do you really realize that you are depressed if you are as bad off as you have to be to get memory problems? I don't really know. Maybe I should make him see a shrink and see if it gets better.
I sigh, knowing that, although it sounds kind of promising, I can't stop here. I better cover all angles so I don't miss something. It's time to move on to the physical part.
"Have you been feeling strange lately?"
He looks confused. "What do you mean?"
"I don't really know…felt dizzy, having headaches, anything like that."
"I have been feeling kind of out of it from time to time since I got home, but I'm so tired all the time so I can't really tell for sure…."
We look at each other for a few moments and the phrase "long-term neurological damage" is hanging between us like a curse. I sigh inwardly. This is too hard. I better take him to both the neurologist and to the shrink and see which of them that has a cure to offer.
"OK, you know what?"
He shakes his head.
"I think we better call both your neurologist and O'Malley and let them take a look at you."
"Sounds like a plan," he answers quietly and swallows hard. "Umm…do you think…umm…that you could come with me?"
I reach out and squeeze his hand again. "Of course I will."