My hearing was the first sense that returned to me. I could hear the sound of papers shuffling and fingers tapping to an unknown beat on a desk, impatient and anxious. I could hear the howl of the wind, throwing sand and dirt against the walls of the cave. I hear heard my name being cooed over and over. It wasn't my name that made my eyes flutter and my heart beat faster. It was the voice that spoke. I could hear him swallow deeply and hold back his sobs of joy. I know that my Jared was the one gripping my hand and begging me to come back to him.
I opened my eyes and focused them on the elated face next to me. Feelings and memories filled my entire body and I threw my arms around him. Jared pulled me into a deep kiss, ignoring the fact that Doc was watching. We stared into each other's eyes, lost for words at the miracle. I was back. I was human and I was here to stay. A deep pain overwhelmed me, and I thought of Wanda, my sister, who was now gone. Though I was happy to be back and be with Jared, a sob of remorse choked out of my mouth. "Wanda. I should have stopped Wanda." I cried.
Jared pulled me into his chest and held me there tightly. As I pulled away to look at his face, his expression shocked me. A grin stretched across his face as he stared at me. I knew he was happy to see me, but I couldn't help but be disgusted at the fact that he didn't miss Wanda. Wanda did bring me to Jared, and helped save Jamie's life! I thought he would miss her, even if it was just a little bit. "Mel, don't worry. Wanda is still here. She is still with us." He pulled out a crytotank that hummed quietly and burned red, signaling that it was occupied.
"Wha-What?" You didn't let Wanda die?" I asked Doc in between my sobs.
"Everyone in this cave may say I am a man of my word, but I am also a man that loves my friends."
"And of course, I threatened him to put Wanda in a crytotank." Jared said, smiling like it was one of his favorite memories.
I blushed slightly. How could Wanda and I have been so stupid? We didn't even notice that Jared guessed our plans and followed us down the tunnel to the hospital. Wanda must had been too absorbed in what she was about to do, that she didn't notice Jared. I knew that when he wanted to, Jared could be absolutely silent, but it bothered me that I didn't notice his change in heart when he kissed Wanda before she left. I winced slightly. I wish all of those memories could be erased. I wish I could forget all of the memories of Walter's last night, of Jared slapping Wanda, of Jared kissing Wanda, and of Ian kissing Wanda while I was tortured through it. I knew that when Jared kissed Wanda, even though I was there and I could feel it, I knew he felt like he was cheating. But when Wanda kissed Ian, I felt worse. Ian had kissed my body; Ian felt my lips on his and said I love you while I was in this body. I felt slightly disgusted.
I threw my arms around Jared on last time and stood up. "Thank you for saving my sister." I whisper into Jared's ear and began to kiss along his jaw until I reached his lips again.
"Thank you for letting her save you." Jared whispered. I laughed slightly, and I felt like everything was glowing. It must be the No Pain. I laughed again, much louder as hung onto Jared.
"Does anyone know that I'm myself again?" I asked Jared.
"Everyone knows except Jamie… and Ian." Jared made a face. "But I figured Ian would only be a little angry at us. I mean, after all, now he can be in love with a girl that has her own body." Jared said his face suddenly serious. Doc stepped out of the room, leaving me and Jared alone. We kissed until both of our breaths we ragged and our lips were swollen.
"I'm going to go and surprise Jamie." I said, already planning the homecoming with her brother.
"Okay, I'm gonna stay here and help Doc clean up. Meet me in our room when you're done, okay?" Jared smiled.
I spun around and run out, enjoying the feeling of having my legs back. I knew my way around the cave and I knew everyone in here too. I knew it would only be a matter of time until they knew me too. I was too focused on the feeling of running that I slammed into someone on my way out of the tunnel.
I stumble backwards a little but then someone reaches out to pull me into him. I can tell, just by the gesture and the feel of the hands that it was Ian. "Oh no." I thought to myself. I hadn't planned on what I was going to say during this homecoming.
"Oh Wanda, I was looking for you! I thought you went to Doc and-and…" Ian said, unable to finish his thought. Before I could interrupt, Ian's lips met mine and he pulled me into a deep kiss. I gently pulled away, not knowing how to continue.
"Wanda is something… NO!" Ian stared at me, his face a mixture of pain and anger. I knew why. The sunlight was shining through one of the small holes, directly in my eyes. My eyes weren't reflecting silver.
"NO! Melanie where is Wanda! I can't believe you let her do that to herself! You sent her off to another planet!" Ian's face was contorted with pain. He put his hand on the cave wall, as if he would collapse if he didn't.
"No Ian! She is still here! She is in a crytotank!" I yelled over his sobs. Ian stood up quickly.
"Melanie Stryder you will not send her somewhere else. She is not leaving me!" Ian yelled as he gripped my arm tightly.
"Shhh. Don't worry. We are going to find her a new host. Now you'll get Wanda all to yourself." Despite the tears still dripping down Ian's face, he smiled one of the happiest smiles I have ever seen.