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Do You Ship Us? - 28. Hospital Trip

“Beth, thank god. Can you drive us to the hospital?” Blake asks urgently as he and Jasper drag Ryan towards the front door. Beth looks at the three horrified, taking in what she was seeing, Ryan’s face was pale, his lips a tinge of blue and his body completely limp in their arms.

“What happened?” She asks about to step forward when Ryan suddenly starts making a chocking noise, his body shuddering.

“Put him down!” Jasper says quickly and he and Blake lower Ryan to the ground and onto his side.

“Sounds like he is going to be sick.” Beth steps past them, finding an empty container and bringing it over to them. Jasper hits Ryan’s back a few times, trying to help him bring whatever was chocking him up and with a dramatic gag Ryan starts throwing up into the container Beth was holding. She gags and looks away quickly, feeling sickened by the sound. “I’ll get some, water.” Beth stands up and walks away to the sink, washing her hands thoroughly before getting a clean glass and filling it with water and heading back towards the three men on the floor. Ryan groans and tries to lie on his back but Blake was kneeling behind him to keep him safely on his side, Ryan’s breathing finally back to normal but he still didn’t seem awake.

“He’s your boyfriend, you can clean that up.” Blake gestures at the vomit and Jasper just sighs, taking the container to the bathroom to wash it out.

“What the hell happened?” Beth asks, crouching beside Blake.

“We were all drinking, but he’s on meds that he isn’t meant to mix with alcohol. He went to bed a while ago but when Jasper went in he was unconscious.” Blake explains.

“He mixed medication with alcohol and you didn’t call an ambulance?” Beth takes her phone out and calls them immediately. Jasper returns hearing Beth place the emergency call. “They are on their way.” She sighs. Jasper just nods, he was pale and clammy, his face seemed absent of expression as he stared at Ryan on the floor. Beth stands up and gets two water bottles from the cupboard, she passes one to Blake then walks over to Jasper, takes his hand and leads him to a chair at the table, she pulls it out and he sits. She takes the lid off the bottle for him and places it in his hands. “He’ll be ok Jas. Have some water, I’m sure you will want to go to the hospital with him, so it’s a good idea to take this time to sober up.” She encourages kindly. Jasper nods blankly and lifts his bottle in trembling hands to his lips, takes a small sip and lowers it again. “Any time you feel overwhelmed or worried, have a sip. Just small sips ok?” Beth looks at Blake who was watching her intently while she was by Jasper’s side. A few minutes of silence pass before they hear voices outside their door. Beth rushes over and opens the door letting the two ambulance men carrying a stretcher inside. After a quick assessment of his vital signs, they decide to take him to the hospital for monitoring as a precaution, concluding that he seemed otherwise fine ad would likely just sleep it off. Blake hands them the pill bottle he’d found and he and Jasper try to remember how much alcohol he had.

“Are you all just friends? No family here?” One of the medics asks. Blake and Beth look at Jasper who gulps.

“Just friends yeah.” Jasper answers.

“Ok. We’ll take him to the hospital. You’ll be welcome to wait up there if you want but there’s not much you can do. If he has overdosed between pills and alcohol, they will just want to monitor him for the night. Usually if the user has thrown up, and been breathing as normal, it’s a good sign that their system is fighting it and they may have just mildly overdone it, shouldn’t be many lasting effects if that’s the case but we won’t be able to know until he’s awake. If you don’t want to wait up there for him to wake up, I can pass on a message to call you as soon as he has woken up so you can visit as soon as possible, or hopefully, just come and pick him up.” Jasper gives the medic his name and phone number, watching as they take Ryan away on the stretcher.

“You should have said he is your boyfriend, they probably would have let you ride there with him and stay.” Blake comments.

“I couldn’t. If this ends up in the news somehow, the last thing we need is a speculator story that after I was outed as being gay, my band member and boyfriend tried to overdose on anxiety meds and alcohol. This is already going to be a nightmare if it finds it’s way into headlines, he doesn’t need to be linked to me and my drama right now.” Jasper turns away from the door, tears welling in his eyes. “This whole situation pisses me off!” He snaps. “How do I do this? How do I be supportive of him, when all I want to do is punch him in the face.” Jasper tries to blink back tears, looking up at the ceiling and taking a few deep breaths to calm himself.

“Maybe you should just work out whether or not he meant to do it first.” Blake shrugs.

“What difference does it make?” Jasper asks annoyed. “He either did it on purpose, so he’s a dick because how dare he put me through that? He is supposed to care about me! If he didn’t do it on purpose, then how dare he be so careless. He would know not to drink while taking those meds and yet he was doing just that. Which means obviously part of him didn’t care if he lived or died tonight. I am trying so hard to be good at this handling depression thing but I didn’t even know he was that upset tonight so how great of a boyfriend am I that he can be wanting to kill himself and I don’t even know.” Jasper covers his face with his hands and sinks into the seat in the waiting room beside Blake. “I feel like I completely failed him.”

“Jasper, depression isn’t something you can blame yourself for. Whatever he thinks and feels is his mental illness, not you’re doing and barely even his.” Beth tells him comfortingly pulling him into a hug, she reaches out for Blake who comes over and hugs Jasper too.

“Yeah it’s not your fault Jasper, don’t let that thought even start to get to you because it’s absolute trash. You can’t ‘fix’ someone else’s depression. No matter how much you try.” Blake rubs his back.

“Do you guys have milk? I can make some hot chocolates for us while we settle in and wait to hear more.” Beth offers, making her way to fridge and finding what she needed.

“Thanks so much for this Beth, it means a lot that you are here.” Jasper tells her sincerely. “It’s not what you need after what I put you through but...”

“Jasper I am sorry for how I reacted. I’m sorry that I was rude rather than supportive at that time. You didn’t mean to hurt me, and it wasn’t your fault that you didn’t know sooner. We were friends more than anything when we ‘dated’ you shouldn’t have to lose that friendship over something that you don’t have control over.” Beth smiles over at him. “How are you doing anyway? I was coming to check on you after reading some of the posts today. Sounds like you’re fans are behind you.”

“Thank you, you really don’t know what it means to have your support. To be honest I’ve been avoiding reading anything about it, since I’m not allowed to actually confirm it or deny it to anyone until Chris gets sick of messing with my head over it.” Jasper sighs and slumps onto the couch.

“I am interested to see what you and Ryan are like together. That kiss looked like it was a very loving one. Are you in love with him?” Beth asks, bringing over the hot chocolates.

“Uh, we’ve not even been dating that long. I can’t say we’re in love or anything but I really do like him, and I really, really hope he feels the same way. But this whole thing has me really wondering. I can’t imagine putting someone I cared about through what he just did to me, so maybe I’m not that important to him. Maybe it’s all too much for him and even though he begged for this relationship, he’s not feeling as into it as he thought he would.” Jasper smiles as Beth passes him his drink then snuggles against Blake at the other end of the couch.

“He doesn’t usually drink, maybe this is the first time he’s risked it with his medications and he honestly didn’t know how dangerous it was. Loads of people get drunk while they are taking depression or anxiety meds and they are fine, it’s obviously not recommended for a good reason, but most people get lucky mixing them.” Blake shrugs.

“I don’t know.” Jasper sighs. “I didn’t tell anyone this, but he actively tried to kill himself last month. He called me to say goodbye and I had to run to the train station in the early hours of the morning to stop him stepping off in front of a moving train. That was the same night as that kiss happened that the photos are from. We were good, obviously. Something else happened and he left with his Mum and then he called me hours later claiming I didn’t care about him and all this stuff that came out of seemingly nowhere and telling me he wanted to die. I seriously got there just before he was about to do it and he just collapsed in tears. Then he was numb to it for a while, then we talked more and he calmed down and things just went back to normal. Maybe tonight he just had another moment thinking for whatever reason, that no one would care if he died, and just decided to overdose and hope for the best. That way I couldn’t stop him again.” Jasper explains while Blake and Beth both look at him with a mixture of sorrow and confusion on their faces.

“You.” Blake licks his lips and gulps. “You didn’t have to go through that alone Jasper. You never have to keep that stuff to yourself, that’s way too much to carry.” At the sight of tears in Blake’s eyes, Jasper breaks down, remembering that night felt like telling a story now, he’d tried to separate his feelings from it as much as possible but hearing Blake made him realize how traumatic it had been for himself to hold onto that on his own.

“Shit, is he seeing someone? It sounds like he needs professional help Jasper, like Blake said, that’s way too much for just you to carry. I couldn’t imagine how that would have been for you. You could probably do with seeing someone yourself after experiencing something so intense. Oh, Ryan is so lucky that you care so much about him because it doesn’t sound like he sees much value in his own life. It’s not fair of you to feel that you are his life support though, you can’t put that on yourself.” Beth leans forwards, hugging Jasper again while he sobbed in her arms.


After the emotional exhaustion hits everyone, they all sit in silence together. Too tired to speak or move. Jasper’s phone goes off, waking him, Blake and Beth who’d all been asleep on the couch together huddled under one blanket. Jasper grabs his phone and answers, listening and smiling to himself then asking when he could see Ryan before hanging up and turning to his friends.
“He woke up and all their tests have come back really good so they reckon he is going to be fine. They said I can come see him now if I want.” Jasper looks at the time, realizing it was 3am and considering how he’d get there.

“I’ll drive you.” Beth offers, getting up from the couch and stretching her arms out with a yawn.

“Oh you don’t have to.” Jasper shakes his head.

“Please, I’ve been here for the drama, I might as well take you to the hospital too.” Beth states, pulling out her keys. “It’s not an offer, it’s a demand. Get in my car. We’ll go.” She starts heading for the door. Blake gets up, following Jasper out and down to Beth’s car. The drive to the hospital was silent as they were all so exhausted from the night. Beth pulls over in the drop off bay at the front and lets Jasper and Blake out while she goes to find a park.

“Hey, Beth’s always been a real kind soul, don’t think this is anything special for me.” Jasper assures Blake who just shrugs and puts an arm around his shoulders.

“It is special for you though, she’s probably always going to have a soft spot. Like she said last night, when it comes down to it, you were close friends. Driving you to visit your boyfriend in hospital doesn’t concern me, nor does her comforting you after the trauma of seeing him in the state he was in. She’s been good at handling things and knowing what to say, so I’m glad she could be there for you tonight. God knows I wasn’t thinking straight enough to be much help and I had no idea what to say or do to comfort you.” Blake sighs as they enter the bright hospital emergency room, heading for the triage desk to find out where Ryan was. “I’ll wait for you out here.” Blake tells him as a nurse comes around to show Jasper to Ryan’s bed.

Jasper nods at Blake and hurries off behind the nurse, in through the emergency ward and to a curtained off hospital bed with a heart monitor machine beeping rhythmically and a drip bag almost empty feeding water back into Ryan. Ryan’s back was slightly elevated in the bed and his eyes were closed until the nurse pulls a chair over to the side of the bed for Jasper. The moment his eyes open and he sees Jasper his heart rate rises slightly and he breathes a sigh of relief.

“You’re here.” He smiles and yawns. “Jasper, I am sorry but I promise I didn’t mean to do this.” Ryan starts explaining, his words were slow like he wasn’t really aware of what he was saying.

“You need help Ryan, the kind of help I can’t give you. Please see a professional.” Jasper sighs, sinking into the chair beside the bed with a heavy sigh.

“You want to break up with me?” Ryan breathes. “That’s totally fair, I’ve put you through too much, this isn’t what you deserve. You’ve got enough going on and I...”

“Wow. You really just leapt from ‘you need help’ to ‘well it looks like we’re breaking up now’ out of nowhere. If you think I’d be here by your bedside after what we spent the last few hours going through, breaking up with you then I really wonder what kind of people you’ve had to lean on before now. Obviously your ex was trash but I’m not, I’m not breaking up with you because you’re struggling. I really want to be here to support you, but I’m not the person to help you in the way you need to be helped. I’m not qualified in mental illness therapy, I’ve never had to deal with it myself and I haven’t had to support others in your position before so I don’t know how to do it properly and I’m shit scared that if I can’t help you, and you’re not getting proper help, you’re not going to get better and you will do it on purpose. I can’t handle the pressure of keeping you wanting to live, I can give you love, but I can’t make you want to live if you’re in a dark place. I don’t know how to do that, the best I can do is insist on you finding some help for the things I don’t understand.” Jasper sits beside his bed and holds his hand, he had tears in his eyes as he looks around the sterile area of the ward they were curtained into.

“Thank you. You do so much more for me than you realize though. And you are a very good reason to live.” Ryan squeezes his hand, he was riddled with guilt for what he’d put Jasper through.

“You say that, yet you just put your life at risk, thus proving my point. I’m not enough of a reason to keep you wanting to live. I can’t find you in that position again so I want you to take steps towards getting professional help. I’ll even come with you to an appointment to get an idea of how to help you through this. But at this stage, a mental health professional needs to intervene. I’m even thinking of seeing someone just to get an insight into how I can be more aware of your emotional and mental needs. I want to support you as best I can, and I think for that I need help myself.” Jasper suggests with a sigh.

“You blow my mind Jasper. I’ve really never had anyone care about me like this. It means so much.” Ryan squeezes Jasper’s hand.

“Oh please, your Mum would be mortified if she knew what happened last night. It’s not like I’m the only one that cares aside from her either, Blake was by my side the whole night worrying about you, he’s in the waiting room right now with Beth who drove me here. You may feel like there’s no one, but you are a part of so many people’s lives Ryan, when you aren’t careful with your own life, you hurt the people who care about you the most, and I know that’s not something you want to do or aim to do.” Jasper turns to the nurse as she walks into the room at the sound of the IV machine beeping.

“All done. I’ll just check with the doctor about having you released.” She says as she switches off the machine then looks at their hands. Jasper looks at their hands too then over at Ryan who gives him a small smile before turning his attention to his nurse and thanking her.

“Did you get much sleep?” Ryan asks Jasper as he notices him stifling a yawn.

“What do you think Einstein?” Jasper smiles at him.

“Sorry I put you through this. I thought I could get away with drinking just this once. You were planning on getting drunk and I really wanted to be able to get on that level with you.” Ryan sighs, rubbing Jasper’s hand with his thumb.

“The medication bottle Blake found empty, did that have anything to do with it?” Jasper asks.

“I have actually been out of my meds for a few days, trying to get by without them. I had an emergency stash in my wallet and took one last night after I got stressed out reading some of the negative comments about you. I only took one, I promise.” The doctor walks into the room and smiles at Ryan as he pulls out his chart. “Mr Kurtis, how are you feeling after that IV bag and rest?” He asks kindly.

“I feel fine.” Ryan shrugs.

“No blurred vision, dizziness, headaches or nausea?”

“No.”

“Dry mouth?”

“No.”

“This question can be a little triggering so let me know if it’s the question that makes you feel this way or if you were already feeling this, but any sense of anxiety or confusion?” The doctor asks, eyeing the heartrate monitor as it increases slightly at the mention of the word anxiety.

“I think, just that you mentioned it.” Ryan shakes his head. “I hadn’t noticed feeling it before now.”

“Well it sounds like you’re good to go, I would recommend more rest and definitely more water as you were quite dehydrated. If you are feeling anxious and having any of those symptoms at all, call your doctor. We're releasing you with one of our sample packs of the medication your doctor has previously prescribed, you will need to go to your doctor for a full refill and script, make sure you’re only taking one a day, around the same time every day to reduce risk of any kind of overdose. Keep up the fluids but no alcohol and if you are planning to cut back on your medication, as always, talk to your doctor before you do so just to get an idea of how that may also affect your health and your mental state. We never recommend going off any long term medication without consulting a doctor first. Some of these kinds of medications can have withdrawal symptoms that can cause serious issues, especially in your case where you have been suicidal in the past. If any of those feelings or thoughts start to occur again, you need to definitely talk to your doctor. We’re also arranging a mental health plan, which is free sessions with a mental health professional. They will be in contact with you in the next few days and you are required to attend the first session and be signed off for attending or you may be visited at home for an assessment on your mental health and if deemed necessary, brought back to the hospital for observation. This is a condition of your release, do you understand?” The doctor explains to Ryan who looked both sad and stressed about it all.
“I understand. Thank you very much.” Ryan accepts what he’s told with a sigh.

“Right, well in that case, you just need to sign these forms stating that I have informed you of things to look out for, you have received medication and you understand your obligation to attend a single session of your mental health plan to assess your state.” The doctor hands over the forms and a pen, then places the small container of pills on the desk beside the bed. Ryan quickly signs everything then passes it back, thanking the doctor again then waiting while the doctor disconnects the heart monitor and the IV drip. “Take care Mr Kurtis, we don’t want to see you back here.” The doctor pulls back the curtain and Ryan and Jasper walk out, Jasper leads the way back to the waiting room where Blake and Beth were sitting clutching coffees.

“You’re alive!” Blake grins at Ryan.

“It was never my plan not to be, I’m sorry you guys were all put through that.” Ryan apologizes, taken aback when Blake puts an arm around him to hug him.

“Dude, you scared the shit out of us. But I will accept your apology, on one condition. That you accept my apology that I didn’t think to bring you any shoes and you have to walk out of here like a homeless man.” Blake jokes, patting him on the back.

“Yeah sorry Ryan, we didn’t really think to dress you for your emergency visit.” Jasper shrugs.

“It’s all good, you did more than what’s expected of you just by being there for me. To be honest, I can go without shoes, but I apparently threw up a lot last night and am consequently starving so if we drop by the apartment so I can grab shoes and my wallet I will shout you all breakfast for your troubles.” Ryan offers.

“Uh yes please. I’m getting that hangover need for greasy food and some electrolyte filled drink.” Jasper agrees and nudges Ryan as they head out the door and back to Beth’s car.

@Copyright (2018), Claire Rosalind; All Rights Reserved.
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Beth has gotten over her anger at Jasper and proves instead that she is still an excellent friend. Likewise, Blake shows his ongoing support.

More importantly, Ryan did not intend to kill himself.  That said, his ego is still incredibly fragile:  He is certain that Jasper wants to break up with him after the unintended self harm. Jasper's reassurances and caring will make it easier for Ryan to recover and to get the care he really needs going forward.

So, did any of the press get a scoop? I guess we'll find out with the morning papers.

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I really hope Ryan gets help and goes to those therapy sessions. It'd be nice if Jasper accompanied him.

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I love how the band have rallied around each other with unconditional support & was pleased Beth came around, too.

Chris needs to meet with some type of “accident” or an ass beating at the very least.  What a despicable individual;  It is very disheartening to think there are other people of such an exploitive nature waiting to prey on the unsuspecting in the entertainment industry.

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