I wrote this at the end of last year, it was a very sad time in my life, and I kinda abandoned this story when all 5 chapters were nearly done. But I've been reading Bree fics all spring, never really read them before even though I've been following the show from the beginning, and she's my all-time favorite TV character. And I noticed there are not enough stories out there;) So I figured I might as well edit and post this. No point in keeping it stored on my computer anyway. I got the idea for this from a Korean TV drama called 49 Days and decided to do a similar thing here. Let me know if there's a direction you'd like me to go, I'm not very confident in my writing and I'm not even a native so feel free to tell me if something is terribly wrong:D
It's strange how one can spend hours in that sweet toxic state of mind and yet it can all fade away in a fraction of a second - as if your mind is asleep and only a shock truly devastating is able to spring it back into action. Bree felt she had shifted through two very different and equally depressing worlds as she clutched at the wheel her eyes fixed on the dark shape laying at the side of the road. She had no question of who it was, somehow she knew all too well. Her hands were shaking vigorously as she grabbed her phone to dial 911 and gave all the necessary information to the person at the other end of the line. Minutes later she would fail to remember a single thing she had said during that phone conversation but it was not a time to come up with alibies or explanations. Had there been someone else in her place, someone she loved, and had she simply been a bystander things would have been very different. She would have quickly found a way out it for both of them but this however, was all her fault. There was nothing she could do but to wait for justice to run its course and then she would finally pay for everything she had done, such a sweet relief.
Still motionless at the driver's seat she watched the emergency personnel arrive and then the police came as well. They made her step out of the car and from the corner of her eye she could see the paramedics move Orson's lifeless body on to the stretcher and into the ambulance.
"He is not dead yet." The thought entered her mind and she could barely hear the police as they were questioning her, or attempting to do so. She had been so sure it was the end. Did this mean she had another chance? As long as Orson was living and breathing it meant her life would go on, God had given her yet another chance to make it right. There had to be a reason for all this, there just had to be. Bree couldn't help but smile a little at her sudden enlightenment.
"Yes, it's all very funny. Do you have any idea of what you are facing here, madam?"
Bree snapped out of it and reality started to dawn on her. In a desperate attempt to gain some kind of control over the situation she chose to momentarily let go of all her fears and act calm.
"I am perfectly aware of everything that has happened and I am willing to co-operate with you officer. So please, do whatever you want." She didn't know why she couldn't help but smirk a bit. Maybe all that wine was finally taking its toll on her sanity.
"Can you tell us your name, please?"
"Oh you know me, Bree Hodge, the delightful town drunk."
"We would know who you were had you given us the license and registration we asked for several times." The policeman seemed tired and annoyed. He had probably been hoping for an easy shift. "Do you have them with you?"
"I do, just a second."
Bree handed out the license from her purse and quickly got the registration document from her neatly organized glove compartment that still had a faint vanilla scent from the last time she had cleaned it. She inhaled the sweetness of it hoping some of it would stay with her where she was going. And then she was quickly brought back to reality.
"Mrs. Hodge, we will need you to blow into this now."
Bree looked at the breathalyzer in disgust but knew better than to start an argument over whether the equipment was truly sanitary. She gave them the result they had been expecting and was arrested on the spot. This was the point where all her efforts to distance herself from the situation started to disintegrate into an uncontrollable mess. The dark thoughts of guilt and self-hatred haunted her all the way to the station. As she was sitting there Orson's face kept appearing before her, he was in everyone who passed her by but worst of all was when she tried to close her eyes and all she could see was him staring back at her saying every horrible thing he had ever said about her in the heat of an argument. Was her mind incapable of forgetting? There was no escaping but she would push it back as long as she could. The wall she had spent such a long time building was thicker than anyone would know but even that barrier was not strong enough to hold everything back. The shaking just wouldn't stop and she wondered if she was going to have a heart attack there and then or at the very least faint before see would even see the inside of a cell. Nevermind if it was all part of a greater plan. How was she ever going to make up for this? And how was Orson? She desperately needed more information but her phone had been taken from her and whatever phone call she would be allowed to make would be to Andrew for him to help bail her out. He had already seen Bree at her worst and therefore one further humiliation hardly even counted. At this stage she would have given anything for a drink, or two. Her mind couldn't handle it all and she wanted release badly from both, the cell she was being walked to and her restless mind.
It had been a very quiet evening in Fairview, as always. Bree had finally been allowed to call Andrew and after carefully explaining to him how to cosign the bond, even though the process wasn't at all unfamiliar to either party, all she could do was to sit and wait for what seemed like forever. She was all too aware of her own presence and how each detail was starting to fall apart. First it was the loose strands of hair that would fall on her face from the otherwise perfect bun she had so effortlessly thrown together earlier that day. Then there was the wrinkle that would appear on her red knee-high skirt over and over again, no matter how many times she would try to straighten it. If only she had something to fix all that, just to have her appearance intact would make all the difference. Bree sighed, got up and started pacing around the cell impatiently, thankful for the officer being too busy with paperwork to give her any of his knowing looks. Sometimes she wondered if despite all her best efforts to hide every gruesome detail of her life people still knew more about her than any other Fairview resident. Before she realized it her thoughts had taken a dangerous turn and she was close to having Orson fill her mind again. No, she would fight back as long as she could because there was nothing she could do to fix things while she was stuck in jail.
The bail was eventually posted and Bree was free to go. She called a cab and left for the hospital the earlier interrogation weighing heavily on her mind. What had she said? She was positive she hadn't lied. But maybe she should have? And what exactly did the police ask her? She was thankful for the rather quick drive and as she got out of the cab after paying and tipping the driver she felt weak at the knees. Every step towards the hospital took all her strength and the shaky feeling had returned too. She had never had a panic attack before but she was now slowly forgetting how to breathe and wondered if this was what it was like. It had to be stopped and so by slowly inhaling and steadying herself Bree finally managed to take those final steps, heavy as they were. Once inside she calmly explained the situation to a nurse and felt as if she was watching someone else do it all. Even after all those times she had been at that hospital to visit a loved one it still didn't get any easier. She had always felt that sting of guilt as if she had sent the person in question there. Rex had a heart attack after they fought, Karl died and Orson got into a wheelchair after they fought over her, Lynette got shot after she had provoked the crazy lady, Susan got trampled on after Bree had caused the riot…She figured it might be best to stop there. The only thing that ever enhanced was the control she had over her own behavior. She would know where to find information, when and how to comfort everyone and find the appropriate time to bring their belongings and small gifts to show her concern. This time however she doubted anyone would want to see her there and therefore was glad the word had not spread around yet. The room was empty apart from Orson who was laying at the back hooked on a ventilator. Everything was exactly as Bree felt her life had become: dark, empty and seemingly close to an end. She re-gained her posture and quickly took light steps towards the bed. Then she carefully took the medical records in her hand and examined it. She wanted to know as much as possible before she would talk to the doctor. Most of it she didn't understand but what she did see almost immediately was the words "vegetative state" and "unlikely to ever regain awareness". Bree gasped as she stared at the chart, then at Orson and then back at the chart again. If her heart had been racing before it was now close to punching its way through her chest. She had desperately needed something to hold on to but there was nothing, nothing but emptiness ahead. How had it come to this? She had tried so hard to live her life in the most appropriate way but all she had got in return were men dying on her. And had they not died by themselves she sure had found a way to make it happen. Everyone else would go on living but everything she touched would eventually turn into a tragedy. She wanted to cry but no tears came out, it was as if her body would sooner explode than to shed a few tears.
"Where did I go wrong, Orson?" Bree whispered quietly as she sat on the chair by the bed holding his hand. "How could I let this happen? I was so angry at you but your faults will never measure up to mine. All you ever wanted was love from me and I became the end of you." Her eyes welled up but the pressure was as unbearable as ever. She clutched onto his hand harder hoping it would send a shock through his body and miraculously awaken him. "Please Orson, if I could go back I would do everything differently. I would never have gone behind the wheel in such a state. I know you would have stopped me even if I'd tried, if you'd only been there. I always loved you and I still do." Bree buried her head in her hands and sobbed quietly feeling the last remains of her energy slowly drain out.
"You still can."
And just as had happened after the crash the worlds seemed to shift around Bree. She was sure she had heard the words being spoken and there was something familiar about the voice. Too scared to speak she started to scan the room with her eyes and in the end they fixed on a spot on the other side of Orson's bed. She squinted her eyes and made out a figure. Yes, she definitely knew this person.
"Mother?" She exhaled shocked.
"You could say so, although I am not really here." The young woman spoke the tone of her voice sad.
"You came back for me?" Bree didn't know how it was possible but right now she was ready to believe in anything.
"I didn't. I am only here to give you one last chance to make it right."
"You mean about Orson?"
"Yes, in a way. You will go back to re-visit three determining moments of your life that were witnessed by an outsider and by taking the form of that person you will make yourself choose forgiveness over anger, you will learn to let people in and you will learn to let go when it's time. If you succeed in all those, this accident might never happen. I am saying might because the human mind sometimes works in an unexpected way that makes it impossible to control the future."
Bree nodded over and over again taking it all in and never once questioned the existence of her dead mother in the room. She had always known someone was watching over her and heard her when she felt alone. There wasn't a doubt in her mind and she didn't even try to touch the woman for she knew there was nothing but spirit left but in her opinion the human soul was everything there was to a human anyway.
"So, shall we go? We don't have much time to re-visit these moments. The more time we spend the weaker Orson grows."
With one last longing look at Orson Bree took a step forward. "I will do my very best."
"I know you will." Her mother sighed. "It's the Bree from the past we'll have to worry about."