Title: Be Careful What You Wish For...
Summary: Patrick Sykes was having a bad day until an accident shoved artist Cylean Bartlett into his life making all his dreams come true overnight, but is everything really that simple?
Chapter One Chapter Two
It seemed to Patrick that having to fight through cotton wool to regain consciousness wasn’t the sign of a happy awakening, so he was a little apprehensive about opening his eyes in the first place. If he’d known the turmoil that was waiting for him when he came round fully, he would have just stayed in the dark.
He could hear the bustle of a busy place over the pounding in his head, which ruled out a hangover and the fogginess of painkillers that he recognised from when he broke his ankle some years before. This only led him to conclude he was currently being held hostage in a hospital. While he couldn’t quite grasp the memory of what had actually happened to him, he wasn’t exactly trying very hard.
He tried to discreetly move as if he was shifting in his sleep, but that just made the pain worse and he let out a whimper that would have made any damsel in distress proud. He hurt absolutely everywhere!
“Hey, try and stay still, moving is not going to help right now.” The voice was unfamiliar but as smooth as cool silk. Definitely not what he was expecting to hear but he wasn’t exactly complaining about it. He would complain even less if he had an idea of who was behind the voice, so he struggled to get his eyes open.
The minute he did he felt a sharp lance of pain go through his eye and into his brain. Slamming his eyelids shut seemed like the best option so he did it without delay. The pain stayed though and he figured he didn’t have a lot to lose with them open, and he was curious about the voice.
He forced his eyes to open again, and for a second everything was so white and blurred that he had the sinking sensation he’d died. On the day his boyfriend broke up with him he had died, and surprisingly gone to heaven.
He focused on the other figure in the room. Maybe Angels all had voices like liquor sin, and while he was no expert, Patrick thought that the stranger next to his bed would qualify for divine status hand down.
Shaggy black hair fell across his forehead and curved over the collar of his suit jacket, just long enough to look like it was messy on purpose. His strong jaw and lush lips were set into a concerned countenance and looked as though they had been chiselled out of stone, and his skin was a lightly tanned colour of fresh biscuits.
Although considering his head was splitting like a motherfucker and the rest of his body felt like he’d fallen down a long and jagged cliff, he was sure that he was firmly on the earth.
“Who are you?” He croaked out, and then the memories came rushing back. Marcus, the fog, and then the pain and blackness with a voice of an angel telling him to stay still. His fuzzy head put two and two together and came up with a sort of wonky four.
“You’re the guy in the other car.” He groaned, head sinking further back into the thin hospital pillow. Why the guy that ploughed into him was currently at his bedside, he didn’t know, but his head was a little too fuzzy to care very much.
He was really pretty though.
“Guilty.” He really did look it too, which was a little bit gratifying considering his head felt like it was about to fall off. “Well, sort of. I wasn’t driving or anything. How are you feeling?”
“Like I’ve been hit by a truck.” He croaked, his mouth feeling as dry as the Sahara. “Or a stray Beemer. Shit, I have to talk to the cops.” He felt so tired he’d probably end up telling the police that his car had been kidnapped and mutilated by aliens and be convinced that it was true.
He wondered what the time was and remembered that he never actually wore a watch. God and the hospital security team only know where they had stashed his phone which is what he usually used as a time piece.
Bits and pieces came flooding back to him at far too quick a pace, making him groan out loud as his headache increased tenfold. Marcus, and the accident and now the thought of losing his phone and having to later explain to work why had was god and the hospital staff only knew how many hours late he was.
He would have said he needed a drink if the painkillers weren’t industrial strength. Thankfully the drugs were doing their level best.
“It’s all sorted.” Patrick flopped his head over to look at the stranger beside him. He didn’t even know the guys name. He struggled to slide up on the bed so he was at least looking the other man in the eyes, but pain flared through his wrist, muted by the drugs but still enough to make him yelp in a manly fashion.
The stranger plumped up another pillow for him, helping him sit up, which was a little bit humbling. Patrick had been looking after himself and everyone around him for long enough that even that small piece of aid made him a little nervous. He cleared his throat.
“Look that’s nice of you and everything,” He said, trying to think through cotton wool that was crowding through his head. “But I have a brand spanking new car that’s just been totalled cause of you. Forgive me for not having too much faith in your organisational skills.”
He belatedly looked down at the wrist that had caused so much trouble and raised his eyebrows at the cast that he found there. When the hell had that happened and had he been conscious for it?
Flashes of the whole affair were starting to come back to him, along with a snapshot of the silky voice he’d been listening to since he woke up.
Below the antiseptic smell of fresh plaster and hospital he caught a faint whiff of paint and expensive cologne from the general vicinity of the man next to him. Having visitors that smelt that good when the patient himself smelt like week old laundry was surely a new and unusual form of humiliation torture. Sort of like the stocks; render a man immobile with painkillers and wrist plasters and put him in a room with a strange, annoying, but undeniably attractive god.
“That’s fair.” The dark haired stranger said, “Look, you can check if you want, but everything is sorted out. My insurance will pay for the damages and everything.”
“Look, that’s nice and everything…” Patrick said, mimicking the other mans words and casual tone. His slight attraction in the wake of the messiest day of his young life making him angry to the pit of his stomach. He clutched hold of the feeling, just grateful to be feeling something of anything. Anger was the emotion of choice and that was absolutely fine with him.
He made to rise since being prone was not helping his position in this argument any, but the wave of dizziness had him slumping back into his pillows and blinking away the double vision.
Firm, strong hands capped his shoulders and eased him back so that his head hit softness instead of wall or metal bed head. He breathed in the warm scent of the other man and wished e could see less than three of him.
“Look, don’t get up.” He said in a pleading tone that made the anger throw up its little hands and give up. “Please don’t get up; I hurt just looking at you.”
Gorgeous, empathic and hits people with cars. Definitely torture.
“How come I got this and you don’t have a scratch on you.” Patrick asked, lifting his cast to illustrate his point, while running his eyes up and down the trim, fit frame next to him just for fun.
“If it helps I can’t turn my head all the way round.” He said, demonstrating the aborted head turn and then settling his elbows on his knees. It seemed like the air had all rushed out of him at once and he looked smaller and defeated.
Blue eyes that were clearer than any summer sky Patrick had ever seen looked up through a fringe of dark, silky hair and he could feel his breath catch. He suddenly knew what people meant by feeling like they were the only one in the room.
“Look, I wanted to say that I’m sorry for everything.” He could have whispered and Patrick would have heard him clearly. Every part of his was focused; his eyes on his lips, his ears on his voice, his heart on his words.
What the hell did they give him for the pain, morphine?
“It was just the perfect end to the perfect day.” Patrick confessed. He felt like they were in a little bubble, and it was ok to tell the truth. It was ok to admit that it hurt like hell his boyfriend had thrown him away like a crisp packet and that the fact that car he had only just started paying for was never going to be drivable again was the icing on one really shitty cake.
“It was the morning.”
“This should tell you about the kind of day that I was having.”
“Mr Sykes?” And just like that, the bubble burst as a doctor pushed his way past the privacy curtain.
“That’s me.” Patrick confirmed, shifting on the bed so that he could take in the wizened old face of a medical practitioner that had worked one too many days and nights in A&E.
“Well young man, you’ve been extremely fortunate.” He said his coconut coloured skin showing every wrinkle in the neon lights. Gold framed glasses sat perched on the end of his nose and a shock of salt and pepper hair stood straight out like he had been electrocuted. “A slight concussion, a hairline fracture in your wrist and some bruising around your chest and hips from the seatbelt which should fade if you take it easy for a while.”
“Define a while.”
“I’d say in a week or two you’ll be coughing and sneezing like a normal person.” He shuffled around with the charts from the end of the bed, reading over things that made no sense to Patrick, and nodding decisively at the gibberish. “I’m going to sign you off work for seven days. You need to rest, head injuries are quite serious. Do you have anyone we can call to come and get you?”
“I can discharge myself, right?” He thought about his mother and her inability to drive, his brother and his inability to do anything that didn’t directly involve himself, and his flat mate who would be at work by now. His other friends were all either carless or careless or working as well. His lack of available people in an emergency was disheartening to say the least.
It would be a cold day in hell before he called Marcus.
“I’m only sending you home if you have someone to keep an eye on you for twenty four hours.” The guy didn’t look like he was going to be persuaded, but since there really was no one, and he hated hospitals with a fiery passion, he was just going to have to do what he did best and take care of himself.
“Look, doctor…” He had a carefully prepared speech for situations such as these. It included things like he was a big boy now, and what did he think Patrick was going to do without supervision; start wearing tin foil hats and covering the furniture in cling film?
The speech never played out.
“I can keep an eye on him.” Prince Fucking Charming to the rescue once again.
“Hang on…” Patrick tried to counter, but the doctor signed the chart with a flourish, ripped off piece of paper and handed to it to the other man as if Patrick himself were just vapour in a bad hospital gown.
“That will be fine.” He said in his peculiar accent and finally turned to face his patient. “I’ll have some scrubs sent up so that you don’t have to go home in a dress.”
“Just wait a minute…” But the man was gone, taking with him every last shred of normalcy and decency that Patrick had left.
“I told you I’d deal with everything.”
“Look, whoever you are…”
“Sorry, so rude of me. Cylean Bartlett.” The guy held out his hand to be shaken, and Pat looked down at the solid silicone cast surrounding his wrist. Cylean followed his gaze and switched hands smoothly. There was nothing about the guy that wasn’t.
“Right, whatever, you’re not responsible for me.” Patrick swung his legs over the side of the bed, and sat there while the ringing in his ears faded and he could hear his heart beat through his skull again.
“Maybe I just want to help.”
“Well…um…” He genuinely had no idea what to say to that. Surely this guy wanted something; no one did anything anymore without an ulterior motive, and while the guy hadn’t been driving, it had most certainly been his car that had put him in the hospital in the first place.
Helping; who did that anymore anyway?
“Look, at least let me spring you from this place and take you home.” Cylean said, coming round to stand next to the bed so that he was finally looking at him eye to star gazing eye. “A ride is the least I can do.”
He thought about the lack of phone, the lack of wallet and therefore the lack of money. There was a distinct lack of anything that he could do independently in the situation he found himself in, so for once he just gave up and let someone else take care of him.
“Ok.” He said, resigned to his fate. “Just a ride.”
“Just a ride.” Cylean repeated. His smile, all teeth and innocence said otherwise.