Newest production of Jen's mind...This came flooding out while listening to Face Down by The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus...yes...that song sparked yet another story. :D I hope you enjoy, just remember, I don't own anything, just the story plot.

And as always, don't forget to review ;)

Sorry about the length of this chapter, it's meant to be a bit of the background for the rest of the story. The length will improve...by a lot..I've got a lot running through my mind for this story.


Never The Same

Chapter 1

We were married for seven years before it happened. It was pouring down rain that evening. It was a night that we should have been curled up together, alone, watching movies. I can't remember now why she had been out that late. Most likely a meeting with her racing managers or something. I told her to be careful on her way home. The road she always took from the track was full of hills and curves. Whenever it rained water would get trapped on most of those turns.

I was snuggled up on the sofa. I had a fleece blanket wrapped tightly around my shoulders, waiting for her to get home. I think I was even in and out of sleep. Then the phone rang.

"Hello?"

"Mrs. Tenou?"

I frowned, not recognizing the voice on the other end. I knew all of Haruka's managers and we were all on a first name basis. "Yes...This is her."

"Mrs. Tenou, I'm officer Kimura with the Tokyo Police Department...I've got some bad news regarding your wife, Haruka."

The only other part of the phone call I heard was what hospital my Ruka was in. I struggled to pull on my jacket as I ran from the house. I don't remember the 20 minute drive from our home to the hospital, it was probably pure adrenaline leading me. The inner need to be with Haruka must have been what got me to her.

The image of her in that bed, I fear, will always be plastered in my mind. There were bandages covering ninety percent of her face. It looked like an oxygen tube was attached to her nose. My heart leapt into my throat as I looked at her. She looked so...helpless. So peaceful. From what it looked like, she was asleep. Unconscious maybe.

"Mrs. Tenou?" I jumped at the sudden appearance of a male voice behind me. I couldn't find a voice to speak. I was able to nod my head to him. "Haruka hydroplaned and slid off the road." I bite my lip as I listened. "She's very lucky her injuries aren't any worse."

"How bad?" Any injury to her is bad. I just wished at some point she'd never have to drive again. No matter how much I lectured her, she never slowed down as she traveled. Especially in inclement weather. I told her over and over again to save it for the race track.

I shook my head as he spoke again. "Two cracked ribs and severe head trauma. She's still unconscious now."

"What kind...of serious head trauma?"

"Cracked skull, she flew through the windshield. She's lucky she didn't break her neck. The office said she was 10 feet away from the car."

She never listened to me about wearing her safety belt. If she wasn't so injured right now I'd strangle her with the remains of the one from her car. "Is she going to be alright though?" I clutched the jacket closer to my body as I looked in on her motionless body.

"She'll have to remain here to be monitored for a few more days. Just to make sure there's no brain damage."

She spent six days in that hospital room. I spent each of those days with her. At first she didn't remember anything from the wreck. She even had a hard time remembering who I was. The first day she stared blankly at me. She had to ask four times what my name was.

The doctor told her she wasn't allowed to drive until she finished her physical therapy. The therapy was to make sure she didn't lose any motor skills from the head trauma.

It all went by smoothly. She had all of her mobility, just as I had prayed for. The day she was cleared to drive again was also the first time we had traveled down that road where her wreck was.

There was something wrong though. Most people at least have some kind of reaction when they pass the spot where something traumatic happened. I reacted more than she did. She just looked at me funny and asked why I was so paralyzed with fear. Even after I explained it to her, she looked like she didn't understand. I even pointed out the guard rail that she went through. The city still, at that time, had not fixed it. It was a tangled mess of metal. Metal that should have kept her from going so far off the road.

Something in her mind was blocking everything out. She was...never the same after that...