Here goes another one of my solo stories. This one is not a sequel to any other series I develop on fan fiction net, so there isn't any previous information concerning my other stories that you should know to start reading this one.
Thanks in advance for following this one and I hope you like it!
The small city located 50 miles from Utah had awoken with a scenario that was far too different from its usual one. Bathed by gentle sunrays in the spring and summer, carpeted with yellowish and golden leaves in the fall or surrounded by deep white snow in the winter, Bontiful was always charming and cosy, and one of the most tranquil towns to live in. For decades, its inhabitants and occasional visitors could contemplate God's wonderful creations just by gazing up at the majestic mountains, placid lakes and exuberant forests, and would never get tired of so much beauty. A blessed place where anyone could feel closer to the Creator and give thanks for what they had or find hope and inspiration in difficult hours.
That very morning, however, people turned their eyes to the sky and lifted their prayers for help. A fire in the building of St. Patrick's Elementary School had called the local and national news full attention. At the time of the fire, most students, aged from six to eight years old, were at their break hour and even though the flames consumed an entire classroom in a matter of minutes, there was still time for them to escape without any injuries.
The little ones, however, were in their rooms and removing them from the building when the only corridor that gave full access to the main gate was blocked due to the fire was far more dramatic.
But tourists were not the only ones to visit Bontiful, especially on that very morning, for a God's angel had been sent to help avoid a great tragedy. When part of the ceiling of one of the classrooms collapsed, the lovely teacher, with Irish accent and captivating smile, had already managed to remove the students and school staff through an old door overlooking the garden she herself had insisted on opening as soon as she started working there. The garden itself used to be nothing more than a small piece of land right next to the kindergarten classroom. But being so eager to show the little ones all the beauty that Mother Nature could offer, "Miss Monica" was quick to go up to the school owner and present her idea to open the door that had been long forgotten in the corner of the classroom so that the children could learn how to grow flowers and vegetables in a funny and educative way. Despite Mr Parker's initial resistance, the door was fixed and open, and now it was used to save 32 lives.
Monica helped remove the children from three classrooms but when everybody thought all the students had been saved, the angel in human form noticed that two boys and a girl were still missing. Firefigthers had already been called and although they would take less than a few minutes to get there, the wait could be too long for the children. Monica returned to the building and put herself at risk to look for the five-year-olds from room 1, which was almost destroyed by the flames and filled with smoke. Sarah, James and Nicholas were so scared that they hid themselves under the teacher's room and when Monica found them, they were holding each other and coughing. One by one, the children were taken by the teacher and guided up to the door overlooking the garden.
But when Monica helped the last child get out of the building, an explosion was heard, followed by the collapsing of the other part of the ceiling. The beloved teacher was severely hurt and lost consciousness, and the paramedics took her to the nearest hospital in critical condition.
A few hours were enough for the news to be spread all over the city and now a crowd stood in front of Lakeview Hospital wanting to know more about the three little ones who had been saved and especially about the brave young teacher, who practically gave up on herself in order to rescue them. Mothers, fathers, co-workers and city locals started to form a vigil and gave thanks to God for the children's welfare at the same time they asked for His intervention to heal their saviour.
Comments of how fast and brave "Miss Monica" had been echoed outside and also through the hospital halls, and it was listening to them that another angel walked with hard steps along its corridors. The expression on his face was a worried, tense one and his green eyes scanned the area in search of someone who could clarify to him the terrible, nearly absurd news that he had just been told.
In human form, Andrew felt the palms of his hands were cold and even though he was desperately seeking for information about what had happened on that afternoon, the angel of death also feared the answer. After Monica's name came out of his mouth almost in a whisper, the hospital receptionist told him to go look for the doctors who were treating his dearest friend on the second floor, where the Intensive Care Unit was. Andrew did not remember how he managed to get there when a turmoil of confusing and terrifying thoughts crossed his mind.
An angel of God had been deeply hurt and now she was lying in a hospital bed fighting to keep her human form alive. How could that be possible if as heavenly beings they had the ability to stay immune to the earthly dangers? Andrew had never heard something like that could happen to a co-worker and tried to hold on to the belief that there should be a reason for that which would be yet revealed to him.
Personally, however, he was devastated. To perform his duties, the angel of death had been to a number of cities since early that day. And even though he had busied himself to escort God's children Home and almost always comfort them during their crossing, the angel of death had been feeling that strange sensation that something was not right. A twisted feeling that seemed improbable and frightening at the same time.
After a wait that seemed an eternity, a young man came along the corridor towards the blond angel and shook hands with him.
"Good evening, I'm doctor Richards. I'm taking care of Monica."
"Good evening, doctor. My name is Andrew…" he replied, when even words were hard to come out of his mouth. "How… how is she?"
"Please, come with me."
The man took him up to an adjoining room and asked him to sit. "Are you her husband?" he wanted to know, taking a seat across from him.
All the times humans confused him and Monica with a married couple, Andrew would chuckle, finding it funny. This was the first time he did not smile at that question. "No. Monica is my friend. My dearest friend."
The doctor seemed surprised – judging by the great amount of people who were standing outside the hospital, praying for Monica's health, he was expecting relatives to come to look for her but so far only that blond gentleman had appeared. "Oh, I see… Actually, I was wondering if I could contact a family member. Isn't there anyone who I can talk to?"
"You can talk to me, doctor. Our friend Tess and I are Monica's family."
The man was sorry for his patient. So young and yet with no blood related relatives was far too sad. "Okay. Well, Andrew, I'll be honest with you. Monica's condition is serious. Fortunately, the burnings in her hand and arm were superficial and we managed to suture the cut in her forehead."
Andrew nodded his head in understanding; hearing that piece of news did not put Andrew's heart at ease, though.
"But she inhaled too much smoke. And the concussion in her head made her lose consciousness."
"And how serious are the consequences of her injuries, doctor?"
"She is in an induced coma and breathing with difficulty but with the help of machines we're making it less suffering for her."
"She's…she's in pain?"
"As I told you, we induced the coma so that she doesn't suffer that much."
Biting his lower lip and feeling his heart beating faster, Andrew conjoined his hands over the table. "I understand. And what else can be done now, doctor? Is there anything she needs? Anything I can do?"
"Well, Andrew, I've been told that she's much loved at St. Patrick's and there are many people outside waiting to hear good news. And this is all we can do for a while: wait to see how she reacts to the medicines and the treatment."
"Monica... She's a fighter." The blond angel spoke, with emphasis and the certainty proper of someone who knew the young Irish teacher very well.
Doctor Richards smiled and nodded. "This lady has been here for less than a day but I'm already under the impression that she's an extraordinary person."
"Can I see her?" Andrew finally asked the one thing he had been waiting for since the moment he heard something wrong had happened to the little angel.
"Monica is in the ICU so she cannot have any guests, but I'll make it an exception since you're the only 'family member' to come to see her." He said, not missing all the distress in his interlocutor's face. "You can stay for five minutes but before that I need to ask you a few questions so that we make sure we're giving her the appropriate medicines."
To Andrew's relief, Doctor Richards' quest on Monica's eating habits and health records did not last too long. Plus, there was not much to be said besides the fact that he was actually treating an angel in human form – and that particular fact had to be omitted at least for a while.
When the blond angel entered the cold ICU room he felt his heart grow ten times heavier than it already was. His dearest friend was lying in bed with a series of different machines connected to her human body and the injuries on her forehead and hand looked more serious than what the doctor had previously explained. On top of that, Andrew could feel deep inside his soul that even unconscious she was in pain.
Overwhelmed with emotion, he stood by her bed and took her free hand with infinite care, fearing that such a simple and tender gesture could hurt her even more.
"Baby... I know it all must seem scary and confusing right now but please don't be afraid." He whispered, stroking her cheek with the back of his fingers. "You know that the Father is always taking care of His precious angel, so don't you ever feel alone, okay? Besides, I'll be here all the time, I promise. I knew in my heart since earlier this morning that something wasn't right, but I'm just so sorry it took me so long to find out what was making me feel so terribly worried."
Andrew stroked her hair while he searched every inch of her face, so pale right now that it caused him to tremble. Then, he closed his eyes and murmured the question that had he had been keeping in his heart since the moment he was informed about the accident.
"Father... why is this happening to her?"