Alyson smacked the side of her work computer which caught the attention of her housemate and work colleague Toadie.
“What is wrong?” He asked, looking at her.
“No-thing.” She was gritting her teeth.
“Aly, talk to me.” He reached over, putting his hand on her shoulder.
Alyson didn’t answer and Toadie noticed that her service dog Apollo was not with her.
She met his eyes and there was a look of distress in them. Alyson had been his friend since Sonya dumped him and went overseas to join a terrorist group called Untamed Dragons Riders.
“Can’t tell you.” Alyson whispered despite she moved closer to him. Without thinking, she kissed him. Toadie froze and pulled away fast.
“I….I have a meeting.” He rushed out of the room.
Alyson went home and wrapped her arms around Apollo. A few hours later past before Toadie got home. Alyson was in her room brushing Apollo’s fur.
She heard footsteps coming towards her bedroom, she didn’t look as Toadie walked in.
“Aly, let’s talk.” He took Apollo’s brush out of her hand.
“I think you made things clear. When do you want me to move out?”
“I don’t.” Toadie made her look up. “Aly, I wanted to kiss you back but I am afraid.”
“Afraid of what?” Alyson asked as Toadie sat next to her on the bed.
She moved away a little but Toadie pulled her into his arms.
He stroked her hair while trying to figure out his feelings when there was a loud crash from downstairs.
Toadie got up and he told Alyson to stay put. He walked downstairs and as he walked into the living room, he saw a bloke wearing a black mask going through his work bag.
The guy looked at him before tackling him. Alyson heard screams of fear and pain, she run down, only to see Toadie gone and blood on the floor, lots of blood.
Alyson called triple 0 but her fear and anxiety made it hard to talk,
Ten minutes later, police arrived at the property. Her brother Brad and niece Imogen rushed over hearing the sirens.
“Come here, sis.” Brad took her into his arms and Alyson began to cry.
“What if…Brad…” Alyson shook and Apollo nuzzled her hand.
“If it is the cult then Toadie will need lots of psychological help.” Brad shivered at the thought. “But I know you will be there for him.”
“If he forgives-” Alyson trialled off as she passed out in Brad’s arms.
Pain shot through Toadie’s head and he struggled against the chain that held him on a metal bed. It had been a month, he had bedsores on bedsores.
He threw up and began to shake, he couldn’t remember the last time that he slept and the ghosts that visited every ten minutes caused Toadie to have migraines.
Two guys walked in; the older guy tapped a metal pole on his left leg which made Toadie whimper like a dog. He kept arching his back trying to get away, pain run up and down his body.
Pain rang through his brain as the metal pole was slammed into his leg, breaking when he heard sirens but were the sirens real?
Alyson was figuring out her argument for court, she was preparing to put an guy who tried to drown his dog in jail.
She glance up as police officers Mickey and Derek walked in.
“We have found your housemate Toadie Shade.’ Derek told her.
“Oh okay. Is he alive?” The reply sounded robotic.
“Yes he is and wants to see you.” Mickey replied. “I can take you to the hospital to see him.”
Despite Alyson shook her head, she said yes.
Toadie looked around his hospital room, as he tried to sit up, he threw up.
Alyson walked in with her new service dog-a Brittany called Star. Apollo retired and was now a pet. She swallowed back a sob but the tears fall as she sat down next to his bed.
“Come here Aly.” Toadie patted the side of his bed. Alyson slipped on the bed and Toadie wrapped his arms around her. He brushed her hair from his face and kissed her. Alyson deepened the kiss when pain shot through his body and he gave a whimper.
“Lean into me Toad.” She held him close, hitting the nurse button.
“Aly, it really hurts.” His voice was full of pure exhaustion. He laid in his arms, his body felt like it was full of boiling water.
“I know. I am so sorry-” Toadie kissed her again.
“It was not your fault Al-” he bit back a scream as the doctor Karl walked in.
Karl frowned before saying “It is too soon for more pain relief. I am sorry.”
Toadie began to gag and Alyson handed him a sick bag.
“I am..hurts.” Toadie began to dry retch but there was nothing in his stomach. He let Alyson lay him on his sid and she stroked his hair until he fell asleep.
“You mean lots to him,” Karl commented as Alyson laid into the pillows and she moved Toadie so he was lying against her.
Toadie woke up in a panic a few hours later but calmed down as he saw Alyson. She was asleep with Star lying near them, he sat up slowly which woke her up.
He reached for the water on his hospital table but his hand was shaking as he tried to grip it.
“Can I help?” Alyson asked as she sat up.
“I need some space.” Toadie sighed and Alyson gave a nod before she left just as Karl walked in.
She frowned as she overheard Toadie ask Karl to make sure that she was banned for his room for the next day at least.
“Come on Star.” She whispered softly, she drove to her office where she had been sleeping.
As she did some paperwork, she began to talk to Star.
“Oh pup, I don’t know what to do. Maybe accepting the job in Jet Moon-“
“It is not a good idea.” Alyson looked up as Karl walked into the office, she had forgotten to lock the door. “Toadie has been through hell. He still needs you.”
“No.” Alyson sighed. “He…Sonya, He needs Sonya.” Alyson stroked Star’s fur quietly.
Karl frowned as he wondered just how much Alyson had been comparing herself to Sonya and how long it had been going on for.
“There are things about Sonya, you probably don’t know.” Karl sat down across from her. “Toadie is scared and confused. He wants you there but thinks you’ll run if you see how much it has effected him.”
“I want to be there for him-‘ Alyson was cut off by Toadie stumbling into the office, he gripped the side of her desk. He reached for her and Alyson took him into her arms. Karl looked PISSED as he shook his head in disbelief.
“How did you escape?” Karl demanded. “You need to be in hospital!”
Toadie gave a shake of his head and he held onto Alyson tightly. Alyson rubbed his back a little bit before grabbing some bandages and bandaged up his hand where it was bleeding from the ripped out cannula.
“Toads, you need some hospital time. You need some antibiotics given through an IV drip.” Alyson tried to encourage him.
Toadie gave a sigh before he replied; “I want to go back to normal life, not just be lying in a hospital bed.” He paused for a few seconds. “I think too much about what happened in the hospital.”
Alyson gave a concern looked at Karl while she sat down on her chair while Toadie slumped on the couch. She tapped her pen thoughtfully and Toadie could almost see the gears turning in her mind.
“Alyson, what are you thinking?” Karl asked, trying to figure out what her plan was.
“Could we set up our bedroom to meet Toadie’s medical needs?” Alyson asked but froze as the office phone rang.
She flinched which Toadie noticed, he patted the couch. Alyson walked over to him and settled against him. He wrapped his arms around her in worry.
“Who is calling?” Toadie asked. “The greyhound trainer?” he began to stroke her hair.
“Yes.” Alyson whispered before she closed her eyes tiredly.
Alyson was feeling so sad because since Toadie had gotten out of the hospital, he had been very distant and she feared he might not feel the same for her anymore.
She was working on some paperwork in their living room when she heard Star yelp from the backyard. Fear pickled through her body as she run to Star’s side, she was lying on the grass and her eyes went to Star’s right paw that was bleeding.
“Toadie!” She began to scream, her mind blanked on her. “Toadie!” fear shook as Star laid on her side.
Toadie ignored her so Alyson lifted Star into her arms. She rushed into the kitchen, grabbing her keys. Glancing at Toadie hurt, he was taking his medicine.
“I guess, we are over. I’ll call Brad to get my stuff.” Before Toadie could answer, she had rushed Star to her car and placed her down in the back seat. Jumping in the driver seat, Alyson pleaded “Star don’t give up.”
Apollo, her other dog now lived with Brad and her cousin Imogen whom had became good friend for Apollo.
Alyson had to force herself not to go over the speed limit as she drove to the nearest vet. As she rushed in, Dr. Connor run to meet her and Alyson placed Star into his arms.
“Please..please help her.” Alyson’s voice shook.
Dr. Connor came out after ten minutes and gave her a smile as he reported “Star will be quite fine. She had a thorn in her paw but I’ll keep her overnight to keep an eye on her.”
Alyson thanked him as she nodded before going out to her car when her mobile rang. It was Toadie. She ignored the call, if he wanted to be an asshole, he could go and join Sonya for all she cared.
Toadie was freaking out before he burst into tears, he began to search for Alyson. He ended up going to their office rushing into Alyson’s room. Alyson glanced up as he run in.
“I am sorry Aly. I am sorry.” Toadie began to cry as his legs buckled and he fall to the ground. “I am sorry. Please don’t leave me.”
Alyson let out a sigh before she said “You need to talk to me instead of pushing me away.”
“It is hard to talk.” Toadie blinked at her tearfully.
Alyson held her arms out to him and Toadie hugged her burying his face into her shoulder.
“I know Toads. I know.” She held him close and whispered “I am not leaving you.”