Broken Heart: Stitched

I'd first like to thank my amazing reviewers for their thoughts. They are much appreciated and make me want to get the story out faster :D Anyway, with that out of the way, here is the next chapter!

One Color at a Time

The next morning, I awaken with a new admiration for my surroundings. I take an extra moment to examine all the colors around me, wondering how I lived with only two colors for almost my entire life pre-Storybrooke.

Due to my new appreciation to color, I decide that I need to put it into my wardrobe. Instead of my usual gray suit, I raid my closet for an outfit void of anything white, black, or gray. I'm starting over... one color at a time.

The only shirt I can find is a red polo that Whale had bought years ago with Ruby in mind. I take a deep breath and pull it over my head, looking in the mirror, enticed by the stark contrast between my usual gray and the bright color. Next, I find a pair of blue jeans I forgot I even had, and am unable to remember when or where I even bought them. Shrugging, I pull them on also along with brown shoes.

I know I may look ridiculous compared to how I usually dress, but I am utterly determined to have a new beginning. Without giving myself a chance to back out, I rush outside, avoiding the coat closet since its contents contains no color.

For some reason, the world seems to welcome my new attire since the sun shines bright enough for me to not need a coat. However, I can't shake the thought that I am dressed like a clown and everyone is staring, pointing, and laughing at me... even if no one in their right mind is out at this hour. Unless you work at Granny's that is.

Once I make it to Granny's, I hesitate at the door, my arm stopped in mid-air as I look inside at Red, who is presently standing behind the counter reading a magazine. What will she think of my attire? Will she be angry and think that I stole her color? I take a deep breath, knowing that it's now or never, and push the door open. The bell rings, Red automatically looks up, and a seemingly genuine smile appears on her face when she sees me. I nervously pull on my collar as it seems the temperature is rising, but brave the walk to my usual place at the counter.

"Goodmorning Victor," she says cheerily, closing the magazine and pushing it aside, "Love the outfit. Red suits you."

I hold back a blush, still fiddling with my collar, "Goodmorning Red... and thank you."

"You aren't wearing this color for me now are you?" she asks playfully, raising an amused eyebrow at me.

"N-no, it's just... um... the only colored shirt I own," I admit as I stop playing with my collar, looking down somewhat embarassed, and ask dejectedly, "I look ridiculous, don't I?"

She shakes her head immediately, "No! You honestly look good... it's a nice change from all the gray you wear," she says with a reassuring smile.

"Thanks," I reply dumbly, unsure of what else to say. I've never actually gotten many compliments, not even as Whale. As myself, I was always shunned for not being a good enough son or scientist. So much so that my father continuously tried to force me to be a soldier like Gerhardt. As Whale, I was a womanizer, and none of the women in this town appreciated that. The only praise I ever got was for Whale being a doctor, and now I'm not even technically a real doctor in this world.

"You're welcome," she replies, and for a moment I could sware she was checking me out, but then I just file it away as my imagination. She then continues, "So what can I get you?"

"The usual please," I order, and watch as she nods and goes to the back to put the order in.

She returns with a large cup of coffee and a danish, and sets it in front of me. A comfortable silence encompasses us as I take a long sip of the coffee and a bite of the danish and she returns to her magazine.

However, the silence is broken when she comes back over, an expression upon her face I can't quite place as she asks, "So, um, have you heard anything new about Belle yet?"

I shake my head morosely, "Not much as of yet. She's fine physically, but it seems that since she passed the town line, she reverted back to the unbalanced mental state Regina imposed upon her when the curse was still effective."

She nods sadly, "I just feel so bad for her, y'know? Her and I were becoming pretty close before this even though she is... was... in love with Rumplestiltskin. And who is this Hook guy? I mean, if the outsider hadn't run over him with his car, I'm pretty sure I would."

As I listen silently to her speak, I take a sip of my coffee, trying to intake all she says, and try to find the words to console her, but since I've never been good with words, I just stick to my basic thoughts, "I'm truly sorry for what happened to your friend, but I know you wouldn't have done anything to Hook. You're too good of a person."

She sighs audibly, and her beautiful features suddenly turn sullen, and she whispers, "I've got blood on my hands already."

I frown, and take one of her hands without thinking, looking her in the eye as I attempt to reassure her, "That's not your fault. Now you have control over it, and you would never do anything to hurt anyone without good reason."

She smiles sadly at me, shaking her head, "I wish I had as much faith in myself as you do."

The bell above the door rings, signalling new customers. Before I have time to say anything back to her, she squeezes my hand one last time and walks off toward them with one last glance over her shoulder. I finish off my coffee and danish, and leave the appropriate amount of money for my meal plus tip and then some before heading out to the hospital, knowing I have a long day ahead of me.

After I make it to the hospital, I change into my scrubs and begin to make my way to my office. However, on my way there, Mary-Margaret and David stop me, a look of panic in their eyes, and I soon register that Emma and Henry aren't with them.

"Um, can I help you?" I ask awkwardly, knowing that they aren't exactly members of my fan club; especially David.

"You already let Hook out of the hospital? He was run over! And shot Belle!" David exclaims, throwing his arms up in the air. For some reason, he avoids the topic of why their child and grandchild are not with them.

I squirm uncomfortably, "He was healed enough to be let out of the hospital and transition to bed rest at home. Also, since Belle has no remnants of being shot, and no memory of it, I couldn't exactly hold him."

Mary-Margaret cuts in before David could continue, calmly speaking to him, "David, he did all we asked him. He saved the outsider and a vengeful pirate... I think we should cut him some slack."

Her husband visibly calms before turning back to me, "I'm sorry for losing my temper." He then rushes off, and Mary-Margaret follows close behind him, leaving me alone once again.

Before I have time to ponder over the whereabouts of their kin, I am called in for surgery, and I push my questions to the back of my mind. Perhaps I could ask Red about it later...

So this is my next chapter. The story should pick up within the next two chapters. Thanks again to all my lovely readers and reviewers! And remember to review because that's what motivates me to continue!