Eve slowly managed to prop herself up on her elbows to get a better look at her surroundings. 'Yep. Definitely the farm house. But why am I at the farmhouse, and why don't I remember coming here?' Suddenly she became aware of some light snoring off to her side. Don was laying on his stomach, in a deep sleep. A hint of a smile crossed her lips. 'Of course, Don. He knows how much I like it up here away from the city.' She frowned as the unnerving thought hit her once more. 'But that still doesn't explain why I can't remember the trip.' Eve eased the covers back and carefully swung her legs over the edge of the bed. She startled at the sight of the medical equipment on the stand next to the bed. As she followed the line of the IV bag with her eyes, she realized the end of it was inserted to the back of her hand. A sudden wave of nausea hit her and she shut her eyes as her free hand clasped over her mouth. She was never good with needles, and this one had to come out pronto. After a few minutes of gathering up her nerve, she once more directed her attention to the IV needle. Biting her lip, she carefully pulled it out, nearly flinging it as far away from her as she could once it was removed. She rubbed the back of her hand where the needle had been inserted. 'Hmm…should probably put a band-aid on that just in case.'
Eve tentatively got to her feet. Her legs were a bit wobbly, but she managed to make it to the bathroom without them buckling on her. Only after retrieving a band-aid from the medicine cabinet did she notice her appearance in the mirror. She frowned, 'Geez…talk about a train wreck. What's with the white patch on my forehead?' She swept her bangs to the side and lightly pressed down on the bandage with her fingers. 'Ah! Okay, not good. Man that's tender. Hmm, when was the last time I brushed my hair? For that matter, when was the last time I changed my clothes?' she thought as she looked down at the baggy T-shit and sweat pants she was wearing. 'Not my usual sleepwear.' Eve shrugged to herself as she started to run her fingers through her hair, 'Oh well, no use worrying about it…I'm sure Don will be plenty informative when he wakes up.'
After finishing up in the bathroom, she quietly treaded down the hall to the room where the twins were likely to be. Peeking in from the door, which had been left ajar, she had found her two little ones sound asleep. She smiled as she slowly turned around and softly headed for the stairs. Once at the bottom of the stairs, she made her way to one of the windows. 'Oh, it's going to be a beautiful day. I can't wait to get out there.' She glanced back at the stairs, half wishing she'd see her family coming down to join her, and half glad that she had a bit of this time to herself. Eve turned to look at the clock on the wall. 'After 7:00. Funny…they're usually up by now.' She looked out the window, then to the stairs, then back out the window. Every fiber in her being was crying to get outside and into the sunlight. Biting her lip, she looked back at the stairs. Considering everything she encountered since waking up that morning, Eve knew she really shouldn't venture outside before finding out what's going on, but she certainly wasn't going to go wake Don up just to find out. Besides, something told her that if she did go wake him that he wouldn't let her go out anyway. And she so desperately wanted to. Turning back to the window, it only took an instant for the pull of the outdoors to win out. Eve grabbed the blanket that they used for picnics, and quietly headed outside. Deciding it was best to stay close to the house, Eve only went around to the side of the house. She spread the blanket out on the ground, then looked around, taking in all the sights, sounds, and scents of her surroundings. She closed her eyes, and took a deep breath. Grinning she thought to herself, 'It doesn't get much better than this.'
Little Yoshi awoke to sounds of birds chirping. He crawled out of bed and scampered the short distance to the bed his sister was sleeping in. Yoshi climbed up beside her and nudged her shoulder.
"Tori, up. Sun shinin'."
Tori fussed a bit as she sleepily tried to swat her brother's hand away. "Go 'way." She grumbled. Yoshi hesitated a moment, then slid down off the bed and headed for the door. Realizing her brother was leaving the room, she called after him, "Where you goin'?"
He turned toward her as he reached the door "I goin' to see Momma."
"Wait for me!" Tori shouted as she hopped off the bed and ran after her brother who had already made his way out into the hallway. She caught up with him as he was about to push open the door to their parents' room. "Yoshi, no!" she whispered in warning. "Daddy say we no sposed ta go in there." He glared at her. She wrapped her arms around her stuffed toy bunny as she looked around the hallway. "We go in there, and Daddy be mad. We be in trouble."
He looked to the floor and sighed sadly. "Kay, we not go."
They went downstairs, and their daddy was no where in sight. So Yoshi sat down on the floor in front of the couch and just hugged his teddy bear. Tori climbed up on the couch so she could look outside. There were some squirrels bouncing about the yard. She watched as they made their way to the side of the farm house, and that's when her eyes caught sight of other motion.
That got Yoshi's attention, and he hurriedly climbed on the couch and joined his sister at the window. "Lemme see." He looked out the window. "I don't see Momma nowhere."
"Over there." Tori pointed to the side.
Sure enough, there she was. Yoshi bounded off the couch and dashed for the door, with Tori close on his heels. Out the door, and down the steps they scampered. As Yoshi made to round the corner to the side of the house he shouted, "Momma!"
Eve had decided to do some stretching—more specifically, yoga, but realizing that she didn't have quite the usual stamina, she stuck with positions that keep most of her body in contact with the ground. She thought she heard a bit of movement in the house, and the sound of her son's voice calling out to her a short time later confirmed her suspicions. Eve smiled as she turned around and held out her arms to the two lively youngsters. It was fortunate that she was seated on the ground because Yoshi threw himself into her arms with such force that she nearly toppled backwards. She laughed at the unusual excitement her twins were displaying as she hugged them tightly. "Well, good morning. And just what are you two so in such a hurry about?"
Eve continued to smile as she nodded in confirmation to her daughter's statement. "Yes, I am better."
"You was sick for a long time." Yoshi added.
"I was?" The twins nodded in response.
"Daddy not let us see you very much." Tori said.
"Aww, I'm sorry sweethearts. Mommy didn't mean to be so sick, and Mommy feels much better now." Eve said sympathetically.
Yoshi had begun looking around. He seemed a bit puzzled. "Momma, why you outside?"
Eve chuckled, "Because it's a beautiful morning and I couldn't wait to be in the sunshine."
Eve couldn't help but half smile. Little Yoshi was quite the inquirer. "Because I love being in the sunshine. Now come on you two, let's have some fun."
Don started to drift into consciousness as the morning sunlight decided to shine brightly on his face. He rolled onto his back and rubbed his face in irritation. He was not ready for another day, nor would he be until he got some coffee in him. He sat up and looked at the clock. Finding it was after 8:00, he was surprised to note that the twins had not come in to wake him up. Of course, he had stressed to them the importance of them staying out of the room until their mother was conscious again. Don yawned and stretched, leaning his head back against the headboard as he absentmindedly reached out his hand to check Eve's temperature. Thinking he merely misjudged the distance when his hand landed on a pillow, he looked over to find that she was gone. That jolted him wide awake as panic instantly set in. He scrambled out of bed and paused in the doorway as he looked around the hallway
'Bathroom.' He thought. But as Don approached the bathroom, he noticed that the door was open. Don quickly reached in and turned on the light switch, half expecting to find her unconscious on the floor. He breathed a sigh of relief as he discovered that it was empty, but the thought that she could be lying unconscious elsewhere lingered in the back of his mind. His eyes settled on the twins' room. Again he found an empty room, as he opened the door to the twins' room. 'Where else? Where else?' His eyes settled on the stairs. 'Yes, surely she'll be downstairs.' But as he reached the bottom of the stairs and looked around the room, he found it too was empty. He found the same lack of life in the kitchen as well. Upon reentering the living room, Don noticed each of the twins' favorite stuffed animals on the couch. About that time, he heard the faint sounds of his children squealing with delight and the sound of Eve laughing. It sounded as though they were outside. Don's eyes widened 'Outside?' Don spun on his heel and raced out the door. 'Surely she wouldn't have ventured outside this soon.' He looked around as he reached the bottom of the porch steps, but his family was no where in sight. Then he heard the sound of voices drifting from around the side of the house. Don was just about to round the corner when his daughter ran into his leg. She had tumbled backwards onto the ground from the impact, and Don knelt down.
"Baby, are you ok?" She nodded. "What are you doing out here?"
She smiled brightly, "Playin'."
"Tori, you know you shouldn't be out here by yourself."
"I not by myself, Daddy. Yoshi and Mommy are over there." Tori said as she turned and pointed in the direction she had come from.
Don picked her up, and walked around the side of the house. Sure enough there they were.
Eve was having a blast playing with her little ones. Somehow their little game ended up in a tickling session. She would trade off tickling each of the twins as one would come and try to help the other get free. Tori had just escaped her grasp, and ran to the front of the house as she latched onto Yoshi and tickled him mercilessly, which caused him to squirm and squeal. Eve laughed as he finally managed to wriggle his way out of her reach and continued to giggle. She looked up as the sight of someone's shadow appeared on the blanket. Don stood with a squirming Tori in his arms. He let her down and she came dashing back to her.
"Hey, you're up." Eve said to him as she wrapped her daughter in her arms. "Sleep well?" Don just stood there almost mesmerized with an odd look on his face. Her beaming face fell to one of concern. "What's the matter?" Don sat himself down in front of her. He cupped her face in his hands and continued to study her eyes for a moment. Then suddenly he moved a hand to her forehead, and then continued to check her vital signs. She pulled back from his reach slightly, "Don, what are you doing?"
"What am I doing?" He echoed in disbelief. "What are you doing? Why are you out here?"
"Mama's all better, Daddy." Yoshi interjected as he crawled next to his sister on his mother's lap and Eve wrapped one of her arms around him. "See?"
Don sighed as he shook his head and rubbed a hand down his face. "Eve, what's the last thing you remember before waking up this morning?"
Eve looked at him confused for a moment then dropped her gaze as she tried to remember. "Well, I remember us walking in the park. You waking me the next morning…um…being late for breakfast, going into the kitchen and," she flinched slightly as she remember smacking her head off the edge of the counter when she fell. Eve reached up and gingerly touched the bandage on her temple. She looked at Don. "I hit it pretty hard when I fell?" He nodded. "So, what, I was out for a few hours, a few days? I don't remember the ride up here and-"
"Eve. You were out for two weeks."
"Two weeks?" She asked, shocked. "Th-that can't be I-" she cut herself off as the words of her children drifted around in her head. You was sick a long time. Daddy not let us see you very much. 'Could it really have been two weeks?' she thought. She looked down at the faces of the little ones she was holding.
"Come on…let's get you back inside."
"But, Don-" He gave her a look that said he absolutely was not going to budge on the issue. "Alright. Up, up you two…it's time to back in the house." The twins crawled off her lap and Don helped her up.
As they made their way around the house, Yoshi slipped his hand into his mother's and asked, "We gonna come back outside later?"
Eve glanced at Don, and from the look on his face it was doubtful he would allow her outside anytime soon. Nevertheless, she looked down at her son with a small smile. "We'll see."
Breakfast went almost as usual, though Eve had to settle for the broth that Don gave her since he wasn't sure what her stomach could handle after two weeks of not eating. However, the rest of the morning was rough. Eve was feeling a bit claustrophobic with Don constantly hovering over her, barely letting her do anything. That made it particularly difficult to much more with the twins than read or play a simple board game. The twins were also sticking to her like glue, rarely leaving her side. The few attempts Don had made to get them to go play by themselves for a while did not go well. Yoshi particularly seemed set on staying close to his mother at all times. Don was glad when the twins went down for their nap because then he was finally able to get Eve alone so he could look her over and run a few tests while they talked.
"How are you feeling?"
"Fine. A bit tired and sort of…confined…but otherwise just dandy."
Don studied her face looking for any sign that she might with holding back something. He held her gaze. "You sure? No dizziness or anything else I should know about?"
She rolled her eyes. "Don…don't you think you'd have noticed if I was having a dizzy spell or something? I'm telling you I feel just fine." As if to pointedly show that she wasn't just fine, Don chose then to check the bandage on her forehead, which was still very tender.
"You were unconscious for two weeks. That's nothing to take lightly. So, for now," he said as he put his hands on her shoulders to emphasis how important it was that she listen, "you are to take it easy. You're not to do anything even remotely strenuous."
Eve make a slight clicking sound with her tongue, "Darn…and here I was planning to go mountain climbing all afternoon." She said sarcastically.
Don scowled. "That's not funny."
"Oh, come on, Don. You can't keep me cooped up in the house all the time. We don't get up here very often, and I'd like to spend as much time outside as I can before we go back."
"And you'll get to as soon as I'm sure you're well enough." Eve opened her mouth to speak again, but Don covered it with one of his hands before she could start. "Please, don't fight me on this. You have no idea what it's been like the past couple of weeks. I would rather not have to tie you down, but I will if I have to." He lifted her chin. "Just promise me you will take it easy for now."
"Don, I can't-"
She sighed. "I'll…do my best. It's not going to be easy though."
He pulled her into his arms. "I know. But it's for your own good. We need to figure out what's going on and why this happened." He hugged her tighter. "I don't want to have a repeat of the last few weeks anytime soon."