Chapter 6

The flat was dark and quiet. Phil walked inside, finding himself gently pulling a hand along each wall, taking in these familiar, and distressing circumstances with his hands. His parents were on the way to see him, but he knew it would be a few days before they could come. Not because the journey was particularly long, but because they had things to sort out at home, and at work. They had promised to be there as soon as possible. He was actually glad they weren't driving that night. He was craving the comfort of his parents, but he also craved isolation.

He'd wanted to stay at the hospital with Dan, but was sent home by the nurses. Linda had ordered a taxi for him to take him back to the flat, finding money from his wallet for him and giving it to the taximan. Before he knew it he was standing by the front door in a daze. They'd told him that he'd be more use once he'd had some rest, but Phil knew that no amount of rest would ever make him feel less useless.

He turned the lights on and looked at the chaos that had been left. The floor was wet, puddles and splashes clinging to the floor and soaking through his socks. He curled his toes away from the water, and tiptoed past them carefully. He could hear the sirens and the questions and the madness of earlier echoing through the empty flat, but he wasn't aware of them. They'd been looping through his head all night, the panic, and flashes of Dan turning blue. He was too numb and tired to try to block them, so he let them stay there, but he didn't acknowledge them. Turning the scenes into his invisible sick and twisted company for the night.

He walked so softly through the flat. Not wanting to disturb the eerie silence that had fallen. It was dark, but the city lights came through the windows. Giving him enough light to see without it hurting his head.

He moved swiftly past the bathroom and bit his lip, trying to hold back the wave of emotion. He fought against it, pushing it down for another time. He was too exhausted to feel and remember properly.

He pushed the door to Dan's room open gently. Taking in a deep breath as he stood in the doorway. He stepped inside tenderly and exhaled. He stood in the same spot for what felt like hours. He had no concept of time really, but he didn't care. He let his eyes roam over the items in Dan's room. Smiling occasionally at memories that flickered in his head, before remembering what had happened that night.

Finally he moved, shuffling to the bed. He collapsed in a heap on it, and curled up into a ball. He felt wrong being on Dan's bed without him knowing, but he wanted to be able to feel the presence of his best friend around him. He felt exhausted, but unable to sleep, but gradually he felt himself slipping down into that blanket of dreams and darkness, as sleep found him.