Rock hard, p.20
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       Rock Hard, p.20

         Part #2 of Sinners on Tour series by Olivia Cunning
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Page 20

  Author: Olivia Cunning

  “Is he okay?”

  “He’s not quite awake yet, but he’s starting to stir. Get dressed. ”

  Jessica slipped into her wrinkly clothes from the night before. Oh yay, a day without panties. Sed had a similar problem.

  “I don’t have a shirt. ” But he looked damned fine in those leather pants without one.

  “We could stop by the tour bus and change clothes,” Jessica said.

  “No time. ” He shrugged into his black leather duster and reached for his boots.

  At least he gave her a moment to use the bathroom before rushing her out of the room and into the nearest cab outside the hotel. She was surprised by how bright it was outside.

  “What time is it?” she asked Sed, thinking there must be a law against starting the day with no caffeine.

  He glanced at the screen on his cell phone. “Almost noon. ”

  “Noon? Jeez, I slept like a rock. ”

  He smiled at her. “Me too. I can’t remember the last time I slept that good. Months? Two years, maybe?” He ran a hand over his shorn hair and found the roof of the cab incredibly interesting. “You hungry? We missed breakfast. ”

  “I’m okay. Seeing Trey is more important. ”

  Sed grinned and lifted her hand to his lips. “Brian was all excited when he called. Something about Trey flinching. ”

  In the ICU, they found Brian and Myrna at Trey’s bedside. Dare slept in a chair at the end of the bed. Jessica doubted he’d left his brother’s presence since the night before. Rumpled clothes, tangled hair, and a growth of beard shadow on his strong jaw, Dare looked about as scruffy as Jessica felt.

  Myrna chuckled at something Brian said. She patted Trey’s hand. “If you don’t wake up soon, sugar, Brian’s going to tell me all your dirty little secrets. ”

  The black staples that ran along the left side of Trey’s scalp in a semi-circle stood in stark contrast to his unnaturally pale skin. Jessica noticed that only a single wide strip of his hair had been shaved along the left side of his head. How had he managed to get away with not having his entire head shaved? Oh wait. This was Trey. That explained it.

  Jessica glanced at Trey’s monitor. As far as she could tell, his ECG, heart rate, and breathing rate looked normal. The tube up his nose did not.

  “I don’t think even Brian knows all of Trey’s dirty little secrets,” Sed said. “How’s he doing? Brian said he was waking up. ”

  Brian scratched the back of his neck. “I got a little over-excited. ”

  Myrna smiled a greeting at Sed. “When Brian told me how Trey lost his virginity, he flinched. That’s the only response we’ve gotten. ”

  Sed cringed. “No wonder he flinched. Sheesh, Brian, give the guy a break. He just had brain surgery. ”

  Jessica’s curiosity stirred. “How did Trey lose his virginity?”

  “Let’s just say he’s been with an older woman,” Sed said.

  “Much older,” Brian added.

  “There’s nothing wrong with older women,” Myrna said defensively. She patted Trey’s hand again. “Besides, it’s sorta sweet that his grandmother’s best friend helped him out. ”

  Brian and Sed shuddered in unison.

  “I’m sorry I asked,” Jessica murmured.

  Sed glanced at Dare, who would need a chiropractor after sleeping in a chair in such a position. “Is Dare dead or what?”

  “He keeps passing out from exhaustion, but he won’t leave,” Myrna said. “His band couldn’t get him to leave. His parents couldn’t get him to leave. Even the doctor and nurses couldn’t talk any sense into him. The only one who will get him out of that chair is Trey. ”

  “Trey, you selfish prick,” Sed called to him. “Wake up. Look what you’re doing to your brother. He’s a train wreck. ”

  Trey’s eyebrow twitched.

  “See, I told you he’s trying to wake up,” Brian said. “Aren’t you, buddy? How about we tell everyone about New Year’s Eve three years ago? I still don’t think the police report had all the details right. ”

  Dare sat up in the chair, instantly alert. “Is he awake?”

  “No. He just twitched a little,” Myrna said.

  Dare darted across the room and grabbed Trey’s shoulders firmly. “Terrance, can you hear me in there? Wake up! Terrance!”

  “Fuckin’ quit calling me Terrance,” Trey mumbled, his voice slurred but coherent. “You know how much I hate that name. ”

  “Thank God,” Dare whispered. His head dropped against Trey’s shoulder, his body trembling uncontrollably.

  “Are you crying? Jesus Christ, Dare. Who replaced my big brother with this pussy?” Trey placed a hand on the back of Dare’s head and offered him a weak, yet comforting, pat.

  “How do you feel?” Brian asked.

  Myrna pushed the call button to alert the nurses. Her smile was infectious. Even though Jessica felt like an outsider, she smiled too. Sed just stood there, looking dumbstruck.

  “I am feeling no pain. ” Trey grinned his irresistible smile. “Good drugs. ”

  A physician’s assistant entered the room. “Is our guitar hero finally awake?”

  Dare lifted his head, wiped his eyes with the heels of his hands and looked down at his baby brother with a most serious expression. “If you ever scare me like that again, I will fuck you up beyond recognition. ”

  Trey grinned at him. “I will try to keep the brain injuries to a minimum, boss. ”

  Dare planted a big wet kiss on Trey’s forehead. “I’d better call Mom and Dad. They went downstairs for some food. ”

  The physician’s assistant asked Trey a series of questions and wrote his responses on a paper affixed to a clipboard. His full name. What day it was. Who the president was. The last thing he remembered. The PA smiled and blushed each time he answered. Besides thinking it was a day earlier, Trey didn’t seem confused at all. Jessica took that as a good sign.

  “My turn to ask you a question,” Trey said to the attractive brunette.

  She paused in mid-scribe. “What?”

  “When will you give me my sponge bath?”

  She giggled and slapped his shoulder. “Mr. Mills. ” She glanced around the room with a blush staining her cheeks. “That’s an LPN’s job. ”

  “Call me Trey. And I wasn’t assuming it was part of your job. ”

  She shook her head at him. “Is he always like this?” she asked Brian.

  It would have taken a pressure washer to remove the grin from Brian’s face. “Yep. ”

  The PA tugged the covers off Trey’s feet. “Can you wiggle your toes?”

  Trey scowled as he concentrated on moving his toes. His movement was sluggish at best.

  “That’s okay,” the PA told him. “Try to make a fist. ”

  His fingers curled inward slowly, but his hand never completely closed. Everyone in the room held their breath.

  “I can’t,” he said breathlessly, allowing his fingers to relax again.

  “You just woke up. I’m sure you’ll get full mobility back with time. Keep working at it. You just have to retrain your brain to move your fingers,” the PA said.

  “Retrain my fingers?” His incredulous gaze moved to Brian. His breath hitched. “What?”

  “I’m sure your fingers will be fine,” Brian said. “It’s okay. ”

  “How is this okay?” Trey flexed his fingers slightly. “I can’t play guitar like this. ”

  The PA took his hand and squeezed it. “Don’t panic, Trey. Give yourself time to recover. You just woke up. ”

  He pulled his hand away from her and rolled onto his side, presenting his back to everyone. “I don’t want to see anyone right now. ”

  “Trey. ” Brian touched his friend’s shoulder.

  “Go away,” he said. “I fucking mean it!”

  “Why don’t you all give him some time to himself?” th
e PA said, herding the group toward the door.

  “I really don’t think we should leave him alone right now,” Jessica said. Her heart was breaking for him. What must he be feeling? And Brian? And Sed? She was just an unwanted band accessory. They had a huge stake in him getting better. Watching a friend struggle was bad enough, but if this physical problem turned out to be something permanent, it could affect their entire livelihood as musicians.

  The PA had somehow corralled them into the hall.

  Jessica glanced up at Sed, who hadn’t said a word since Trey opened his eyes. He looked like a mule had kicked him in the gut. “Are you okay?”

  He shook his head slightly.

  Dare lowered his phone and grabbed Sed’s arm as they were ushered past him. “You’re not smiling. Why have we stopped smiling?”

  Sed shook his head again.

  “Trey’s having some mobility problems,” Jessica informed Dare. “Nothing serious. ”

  What would happen to Sinners if Trey couldn’t play guitar? They wouldn’t abandon him, would they? As she watched the emotions play across Sed’s face, she had to admit she wasn’t sure.

  Chapter 16

  Sed stared out a window in the waiting room, not really seeing the cars in the parking lot far below. His mind was full, his heart empty. Jessica placed a hand in the center of his back and leaned her head against his upper arm.

  He glanced down at her, unable to express his gratitude. She’d sat with him for hours and had even made a trip to the gift shop to buy him a hospital logo T-shirt and a cup of coffee. He wasn’t sure why she hadn’t left him there on his own to stew. Brian, Myrna, Trey’s parents, and even Dare had eventually left when Trey continued to refuse any company. But Sed couldn’t desert his duty. He’d just wait Trey out. How long could it take?

  “Go talk to him,” Jessica said.

  “He doesn’t want to see anyone. ”

  “Since when do you do what people want?”

  “Since never. ”

  “Exactly. ” She squeezed his arm. “Go talk to him. It will make you feel better. ”

  “I don’t know what to say to him. ”

  “You’ll think of something. ”

  She was right. As usual. He turned away from the windows, kissed her brow, and then headed down the hall toward Trey’s room. Sed entered the open door and peeked around the corner. Trey’s bed was fixed in an upright position. The tube that had been up his nose was now gone. Progress. Trey repeatedly tried to pick up a spoon from the tray in front of him, his tongue worrying his lip. Despite his extreme concentration, he ultimately failed to grasp the utensil.

  Sed took several steps back and knocked on the wall. “Are you decent, man? I’m coming in. ” When Sed entered the room again, Trey was staring fixedly at the far wall, his hands buried beneath the covers.

  “I said I want to be left alone. ”

  “You know I never do what people tell me to do. ” With a loud screeching sound, Sed dragged a chair across the tile floor to the side of the bed and sat.

  “Sed, I honestly don’t—”

  “Those staples in your head look bad ass. You should keep them permanently. ”

  Trey ran his hand over the shaved side of his head, his slightly curved index finger brushing over the arc of black staples. “I don’t know. I don’t think this haircut is me. ”

  Sed chuckled. “Looks more like Eric’s style. ” Sed dropped his gaze to meet Trey’s eyes. “I’ve been thinking. ”

  “Always a bad thing. ”

  Trey lowered his arm to rest on the bed beside him. Sed forced himself not to fixate on Trey’s fingers, which he continually bent and straightened in sequence. He was trying his best, God love him, but Sed didn’t see any thirty-second notes in his immediate future. And the band was on tour. They needed him. Now. Not in a month. Not in six months. Now.
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