From the Rubble Up
by Lacorra12

Chapter 12

"Morning, Alexis," Emily said from the doorway. "I'm making my rounds; how's Sam this morning?"

"No change." Alexis sighed. "I was hoping she'd wake up during the night. I kept waking up to see if her eyes were open. She looks so peaceful though. Like she's in a really good sleep."

"That's a nice thought. Keep thinking like that. It helps you both."

"Emily, can people really hear what's being said around them when they are in a coma?" Alexis asked as she closed the lid of her laptop.

"Studies say yes; I believe it too. But it's not one hundred percent," Emily replied.

"I was afraid of that." Alexis sighed. "Ric came in here and started bashing Sam. He called her all these horrible names. I defended her, of course. She's my daughter. I'd never want to call any of my girls what he called Sam. I'm afraid that she doesn't want to wake up. Maybe she thinks I think those things of her."

Emily shook her head. "No way, Sam knows that's not true."

Alexis was about to say something when the machines around Sam started making unusual noises. She rushed over to her and took her daughter's hand. Sam's eyes fluttered open. After a minute two identical sets of brown eyes locked onto each other, studying each other.

"Hi," Alexis said softly as she wiped a tear away. "I'm so glad to see those big brown eyes. Do you know who I am, sweetheart?"

Sam gave a slight nod. "Ah ah ah," she struggled to form words. Sam closed her eyes slowly and reopened them. She tried again. "Ah ah …" She closed her eyes tighter as tears began to roll down her cheeks. "Mmm mmm …" She left her eyes closed.

Alexis put her hand over her mouth to keep from gasping out loud.

"Mmm mmm ooomm," Sam managed to say what sounded a lot like 'mom'.

Alexis's own eyes had filled with tears. She leaned forward, kissing Sam's cheek. "That's right; that's good; I'm Mom. It's okay, Sam, I'm right here."

"I'm getting my mom," Emily said to Alexis after seeing Sam's struggle to get a simple word out.

Alexis' eyes remained on Sam who was looking up at her with fear. She attempted to sit up but she could barely lift her own head. She let out a soft cry and closed her eyes.

"Shh, don't get upset," Alexis whispered as she took a tissue and began to wipe Sam's tears away. Alexis could tell her words were not soothing Sam's fear. She began humming Kristina's favorite song as she ran her fingers through Sam's hair. It seemed to do the trick, and Sam's tears slowed down just before her breathing got out of control.

Monica rushed into the room. "Alexis, can you step outside?" she asked calmly.

"I'll be right outside," Alexis promised. "I'm not going anywhere, Sam."

Alexis stepped out into the hall and started to pace back and forth.

"Alexis!"

Nikolas had arrived.

"Emily called me told me she was awake. I got out of meeting."

"The brain injury," Alexis stammered. "It's the brain injury."

Nikolas put his hand on her back to calm her.

"I was praying there was a mistake, that she was fine." A sob escaped her lips. "But it didn't happen. Something is wrong. She can't talk; she can't even lift her own head up. My daughter is in there scared, and she can't even say, 'I'm scared, help me'."

Nikolas pulled Alexis into a tight hug and held her as she cried into his shoulder.

Monica stepped out a minute later. "We need to talk," she said with a glum look on her face.

"It's bad, isn't it?" Alexis whispered.

"I won't lie to you; it's not good."

Alexis took a deep breath. "Okay, tell me straight up."

"The brain injury Sam has is called Traumatic Brain Injury. It was caused by the hit her head suffered. The brain injury she has affected the way her brain sends signals. You have to se her as a new born baby; everything she learned as a child she doesn't know how to do anymore. She has hardly any control of her body. The good news is that ninety percent of people that have this recover within a few months after they learn things over again through rehabilitation. Her short term memory may also be affected; you may have a full conversation with her and two hours later she may not remember it. Sometimes her brain will send signals to her body that are wrong. For instance, she may think she is very itchy and will start scratching like crazy. That's a common one. When that happens we will have to restrain her hands -she will scratch all of her skin off because she won't know to stop."

Dismayed, Alexis walked past Monica and looked through the window of Sam's room; Sam was blankly staring at the wall.

"She knows who I am," Alexis said. "Does she knows what is happening to her?"

"To an extent, yes. She will get flustered easily; you have to be patient with her. Remember, she is like a new born baby. If you get annoyed with her, leave the room, take a break."

Alexis nodded as she watched her daughter. "I have two babies now, cancer, a six-year-old, and a jackass of a husband. Sure, I can handle all that."

"Just remember that Sam's going to advance faster than Molly. As long as we make her feel she can do it, I believe she will. Sam's a fighter; you know that. I'm sure in no time at all you'll have your normal, spunky, adult daughter back."

"Spunky she is." Alexis laughed. "I'm going to sit with her."

"We sedated her," Monica said. "We want her to sleep a bit since she's anxious."

"Okay," Alexis said absent-mindedly as she headed into the room.

"We have a long road ahead," Nikolas mused.

"And a rough one," Monica added. "One that Sam and Alexis can get through if they work together instead of against each other."

"That will be their test." Nikolas sighed as he watched his aunt through the window run her fingers through his cousin's hair, trying to calm her back into sleep.

chapter 13