Paris was woken by the obnoxious ringing of her phone. She groaned and scrabbled about for several moments before managing to latch onto it. "Hello?" She grunted into the phone.
"Yes, who is this?" Paris was instantly annoyed by the unfamiliar voice. She didn't want to be talking to some random stranger right now, she just wanted to get back to her nap. "If this is some telemarketer wanting to sell me something, I'm hanging up now!"
"Oh no," The voice seemed startled at the very idea. "I'm calling because you were listed as Asher Fleming's emergency contact."
Paris' stomach dropped, she felt suddenly nauseous. "What? What's happened to Asher?"
"He's had a heart attack. He's dead."
The words were blunt, painful. If she hadn't been sitting in bed she was sure her legs would have buckled under her and she would have fallen to the floor. Her mouth flapped like a fish, not even a squeak coming out. She wished she could claim to have misunderstood the British accent, but there was no denying the news.
"Miss Gellar? Miss Gellar? Are you still there?"
Paris regained herself enough to ask. "Where is he?"
"He's been taken to the hospital."
"What's the address? I need to make sure he's been identified correctly." It sounded stupid even as she said it, but she wasn't going to trust anybody to id a dead Asher unless she saw him with her own eyes. She had to make sure some idiot intern hadn't made a mistake.
"Of course," The lady quickly rattled off an address.
Paris hung up, not caring if the woman had any more to say. She scrambled around frantically and grabbed some clothes to wear for the day. She worked to dress as quickly as possible but swore as she struggled to fit into her pants. What ridiculous timing for her clothes to decide not to fit!
She grumbled in exasperation. Despite her frustration, eventually she did get the pants on.
Speeding through the city in a taxi, she had to fight not to chew on her nails the whole way. She was terrified that it would all turn out to be true. She couldn't bear the thought of not having Asher in her life anymore.
"Can't you drive any faster?" She snapped at her cab driver.
He shrugged unconcernedly. "I have to obey the speed limits."
"Well I have to get to the hospital!" Paris snapped back. "It's an emergency!"
"I can't break the law, I could lose my job. You'll just have to be patient." The driver remained remarkably unflustered despite Paris' attack. Why did he have to be the one person in the world she couldn't cause to be flustered enough to do what she wanted?