This is my second alternate ending to the amazing Lucy Christopher's Stolen. As I explained in my first alternate ending, I really liked the idea of Gemma and Ty ending up together, so I decided to make my own ending. Actually, 2. :) In contrast to my first alternate ending, this time Gemma actually does go to hospital, but unlike in the actual novel, Ty stays quiet while Gemma gets treated instead of turning himself in. I decided to begin with Gemma waking up in the hospital room after her treatment. Please R&R! :)
The first thing I felt was coldness. I slowly opened my eyes to a completely white room. To my right, a white light bulb burned beneath a plain white lampshade. I focused my eyes beyond the lamp to the window and the dark glass told me that it was night.
I tried to prop myself up in the stiff bed but my muscles would not cooperate. My elbows bent and I collapsed back into my original, helpless position. I knew that there was no one in the room with me. This thought, plus the chill from the ventilation system gave me the goosebumps. It wasn't until I reached for a full glass of water on the bedside table that I realized how badly I was shaking.
I needed water. My throat felt like someone had poured a pot of freshly-made tea down it, and my tongue was seared like sand grains scorched from the sun. Sand. Sandy Desert. You. This new thought caused my shaky hand to tip over the glass, and it fell to the floor, shattering upon contact.
Immediately I heard the hasty squeak of sneakers on the tiles outside the white door. A woman burst through, panic visible in her eyes even through her thick glasses. She saw my mess and pressed her hand to her heart with a sigh of relief. "I'd thought the worst, dear." She bustled over a corner and pulled out a dustpan and broom and started to sweep away the remnants of the glass.
I tried to speak, to tell her I was nearly dying of thirst, but nothing came out. She wasn't even bothering to look at me, too busy with her work at hand.
"She's trying to tell you something," a new voice at the door spoke firmly.
I looked up to the source of the voice, and at the sight of the speaker, I wanted to cry. I forgot all about the fire that was burning in my throat and instead just stared at you, at your beautiful eyes. They were the only color in this room; the only thing real.
The nurse whipped her head to the sound as well, with a different reaction. "So now you talk?" She turned to me and pursed her lips. "This young man hasn't said a word since you've been in here. He's just been sitting out in the waiting room all night. Is he family?"
I looked to you for guidance. For once though, your eyes were giving me the choice to decide. I thought about turning you in, I really did. If I only told her, "No, he kidnapped me and took me away from my family," then you would be locked up in a cold, dark cell for a very long time, just as I had been imagining for so long. What you did was wrong. I knew that, and that would never change. But you, you Ty, you were right. I hadn't understood that until we had kissed. You had once told me that you loved me, but of course I dismissed it as a strange obsession. Your kiss had explained everything, though. I had felt your love. I had felt happiness, relief, passion, peace, ache. I had never in my life experienced anything so powerful, so true, so right. Now that I had that, I couldn't live a day without it.
I looked deeply into your eyes. What I saw was nature, the pure beauty that had surrounded me for the past month. I thought about my family and friends at home, who were most likely desperately wondering where I was, if I was okay. But the thing is, I was okay. I'd never felt safer in my life than right there with you. I belonged here; my heart was here, with you. You stole it. My heart was no longer restricted to the confines of my body. It was deep within the warm sand, nestled in the tree branches, and cradled in your hands. I couldn't live without my heart.
I nodded to you, and to you alone. With intense physical, burning pain, yet complete emotional peace I whispered, "He is my husband."
Right then was the only time I can remember that I still cannot describe the look on your face. It was as if nothing, yet everything in it had changed. I recalled the tangible emotions of our kiss and found a place for each of them in your expression. You stood there still in the doorway, frozen by my words.
The nurse, of course, only heard the words I had said and nodded to me and then to you. "Ok, I'll leave you two alone, then since you're plenty awake now, honeybear."
You stepped aside as she left the room, closing the door with a soft click. I smiled faintly and you rushed to the side of my bed, your eyes never leaving mine. You took my small hands in your strong, calloused ones and stroked away my shivers. Your glistening eyes asked me many questions, so I tightened my grasp and took in a shaky breath.
"I love you." It was nothing more than a breath, practically inaudible, but it was the most important thing I had ever said in my life. And I meant it with every fiber of my being.
A single tear ran down my cheek and rested between my lips. Tenderly, you moved it aside. I attempted to lift myself up to you, but my body would not comply. As if you could feel my weakness, your arms were instantly wrapped around me, lifting me to your warm chest. I looked up and closed my eyes as you leaned down to kiss me once more. I felt everything all over again, the passion, the relief, the love. This was where I belonged. In your arms.
We pulled away and I suddenly recalled our present situation. I looked up at you with concern; I didn't think we could keep this charade up for much longer, especially with no money or identification. "What can we do?"
You glanced to the window and back to me. "May I steal you, Gemma?"
I raised my eyebrows for a few seconds, and then smiled in reply. Already in your arms, you stood up with me as if I were a feather and unlatched the window. The night air was cold yes, but familiar. Easing us out through the opening, you dropped like a cat to the dirt below. I tucked myself into your body and could only feel you moving through the night, opening the car door, and placing me inside like a child. The car purred to life and we were off. Before I fell asleep again, I looked out the window and up at the stars, bright, like your eyes. They were the first sign of the beauty that I was going back to: home.