Got No Strings - Part 1
Matthew slowly opened his eyes, the intense light burning his retina, his eyes blurred and unable to focus on his surroundings. The gentle weight he had felt pressing on his chest rose as the narrow hand moved to his own, gripping his fingers.
“Matthew? Oh my god Matthew… Nurse… someone please, he´s awake.”
The soft tones of the female voice sounded familiar, comforting, even through her animated cries. As she moved her face closer to his, he tried to blink away the daze, the face of his wife finally coming into focus. Her face was exactly as he recalled, soft, delicately curved, with a smile that was infectious, dimples causing deep craters into her cheeks. She was smiling now, her eyes wet as a single tear escaped down her face. She lent forward, kissing him hard causing his stomach to skip, he could taste familiarity.
As she stepped back slightly, Matthew blinked heavily again, the world still a slight blur, familiar, yet different. He raised his hand to his face, feeling the gentle pull of the catheter, as it stretched to its limit, with it, a slight pain stabbing into the back of his hand. He rubbed his eyes. Still there was something wrong. He could now see everything clearly, it was all in focus, yet, there were lines coming from his wife´s limbs, dozens if not hundreds of tiny narrow threads. The lines, as thin as fishing line stretched upward and disappeared into the ceiling. He rubbed his eyes once more, this time bringing his other hand upward to help, again he felt the same restriction, something pulling against him, but this time there was no needle, no tube. He turned away from his wife, holding his hands out before him. He too had strings, fine threads coming from his fingers, more from his hands. Wiggling his fingers, turning his hands, he could feel the threads pulling against him. It was as if each limb was fighting a tug of war against an invisible force.
“What is this?” he spoke, his voice a crackle, unused. “What´s happened, what are these strings?”
He looked to his wife, hoping for some reassurance. She only returned the gaze, still trying to hold her smile, her face began to mirror the confusion on his own. As the nurse came running into the room, his wife looked to her, expectantly.
“Please someone tell me what they are.” Matthew continued, his voice stronger, more irate. His hands still above his face. He moved one and tried to touch the threads that hung over the other. His hand passed straight through the lines; it was impossible yet despite another try he could not touch them.
“Please calm down Mr Stiles.” said the nurse who had now moved to his side, his wife lingering behind. “I know this must be very strange for you, and this may be hard for you to hear, but there was an accident. You have been in a coma for nearly nine months Mr Stiles.”
Matthew remained silent, allowing the news to wash over him, waiting in hope that the revelation would some how explain the strings. Despite the news filling each crevice of his skin, the question remained unanswered.
“But what are the strings?” his voice was now soft, less erratic.
“Sorry Mr Stiles,” the nurse responded, “but what strings?”