Mr. Basketball Ch. 14

Big Tits

My fingers slid smoothly over the beard that covered my chin as I knelt on the sideline and thought. I glanced over my shoulder and looked at the faces of my players as they sat there on the bench and watched the events of the final regular season game unfold. I turned away from them and looked up at the scoreboard to see that the score hadn’t changed any since the last time I looked at it. We were still down by ten with five and some change left to play in the fourth.

My competitive side was telling me to win the damn thing even though it was a meaningless game. It wasn’t a big deal if we lost. We had already secured the number one spot in the district tournament that would start on Monday. Losing would mean we wouldn’t finish undefeated in the regular season.

I glanced at the girls again. Taylor was focused on the game and trying to give direction from the bench. Nikki and Tessa talked and pointed about something. Tracy yawned and covered her mouth as she saw me looking and smiled. Bree was at the far end of the bench getting a drink. The five of them had been sitting here for most of the third and all of the fourth thus far. I was giving them a rest so they would be ready for Monday.

I stood and turned to them. “What do you think girls? Do you want to win this game and finish undefeated or should we let the underclassmen finish it out and take the loss?”

Taylor spoke quickly. “I’d like to win and finish the season perfect.”

The rest of the girls agreed and added their two cents in as they echoed what Taylor had already said.

“Alright,” I sighed as I glanced at the clock again. “The next stoppage in play, you five get back in there. If you girls don’t have this lead cut in half by the two minute mark I’m pulling you out and we will take the loss.”

“Two minutes,” Nikki half joked. “It’ll be tied up by the three minute mark.”

“Fine,” I smiled. “If not, its extra leapers tomorrow.”

“Let’s go,” Taylor called as they left the bench and headed to the scorer’s table to check in.

It took another possession for the ball to bounce out of bounds and stop the clock. There was four and some change left on the clock now as my starting five returned to the floor and attempted to make good on their promise.

“Texas,” I called and twirled my hand around.

Taylor repeated my call as I turned to Rob. “Hey, get me the grease board please. I just thought of something.”

I turned back to see Taylor slide to the left of her defender and take the three. It flipped the net and cut the lead to seven. She barked out orders for a full court press with the trap. I turned back to Rob as he grumbled about something then pushed the chair out of the way to reach the board. I heard the distant sound of something pop then a shrill cry of pain. I turned to see what the commotion was about but the lights in gym went out. All I could see was the dim red exit light at the far end of the gym before that faded away too.

I could hear a voice calling my name in the distance. I tried to stand and move towards the sound but I couldn’t get myself going. I couldn’t stand, my legs seamed helpless as I tried to go but nothing was happening. It was the last thing I could remember happening to me.

*

“Mr. Tillman.” The voice registered in the back of my mind as somebody spoke. The voice seemed so distant and muffled. It was like I was underwater and somebody was shouting my name from the surface. It echoed before it faded away.

“We are going to pull the breathing tube shortly. You might feel some discomfort as we remove it.”

Silence filled my head now. I could hear the voice but my mind didn’t understand what was being said. There was no conscious thought or understanding right now. There was just the thinnest sliver of light entering my eyes as I tried to open them.

“Do you really think they can hear you?” another voice asked.

“I don’t know?” came the reply. “I’ve been doing this for a long time, maybe it’s more of a habit to say it then anything.”

“I like to think they can,” another voice said.

“Are we ready?”

“Ready when you are, Nancy.”

“Alright, Mr. Tillman. You might feel some discomfort, just relax and it will be over in just a second.”

Whatever they did, I didn’t feel anything. The sliver of light was gone now, just blackness surrounded me as I heard the voice for the last time.

“You are doing good Mr. Tillman. Just breathe for me. Keep breathing…”

*

“Mr. Tillman, I’m here to check your vitals,” I heard echoing through my head again. “I will be done in a minute.”

My eyes opened to the blurry image of someone standing near me. I couldn’t make out skin color, eye color, hair color, or what she was wearing. The only thing I knew for certain was she was a female by the sound of her voice. It was like I was still underwater in a pool with my eyes open trying to see somebody from ten feet away.

I didn’t panic at the feeling of not knowing. It was the euphoric feeling I had been through a few times in my life after I had woken ataşehir escort up from the surgeries. Everything was slow and peaceful right now. You couldn’t take in much of your surroundings, you just knew you were waking up. I blinked a few more times and tried to get my vision to clear up further.

“Nurse Nancy,” I heard. “He’s waking up, his eyes are open and he’s blinking.”

I heard footsteps faintly until they grew louder. They stopped right next to me before another soft voice called my name.

“Mr. Tillman, can you understand me? Squeeze my fingers if you can understand me.”

I felt her fingers touch the palm of my hand and rest there for a moment. My fingers moved and curled around hers to give my answer.

“Go make the call Gertrud,” she ordered. “She will be thrilled he is starting to wake up.”

“Mr. Tillman? Are you still with me?”

I squeezed again.

“Ok Mr. Tillman,” she cheered. “You were…”

I faded before she finished. I shut my eyes and drifted off.

*

Conscious thought filled my mind as I opened my eyes again. This time my vision was clearer and I could take in where I was and my surroundings. My eyes focused on the ceiling first as the sounds of the machines beeped around me. I glanced around more and saw the source of the noise next to my bed. I followed the cords that hung from it back to my body.

It registered now that I was in the hospital. I had no idea why I was here and how I had gotten here. I was afraid now. Why was I here? What had happened to me and why was I here? I thought I was at a basketball game but now I was here. It confused and agitated me as I moved my hands and looked down at them. I had to get out of here. What the hell was going on? My arms felt so heavy right now, like I was strapped to the bed even though I wasn’t. Why can’t I move?

The machine next to my bed started to beep faster as my pulse quickened. Come on arms, move! I tried again and got one to slide across my body and touch the IV line that was in my arm. I couldn’t coordinate my fingers enough to grab the line though. That made my pulse race more and the machine beep quicker. There was a shadow in the doorway as I tried to get my fingers to function and pull the cord.

“Mr. Tillman,” I heard a voice. “Please don’t pull that out.”

I stopped what I was doing and looked up at her. She gave me a soft smile as she came to the bedside now and put her hand on mine.

“I’m glad you are awake,” she smiled still.

I looked up at her and gave my own soft smile. I didn’t know why I was smiling really. I was still scared to death. She moved my arm back to my side so I would stop trying to pull the IV out.

“Do you know where you are Mr. Tillman?” she questioned.

I didn’t give a response. My eyes searched the room as I took in more of what was around me. She must have taken my silence as my answer.

“You are in the hospital,” she answered. “You were in a pretty bad car accident a few days ago. You’ve been in a coma for about a week now. You suffered a pretty serious blow to the head.”

I nodded softly as I processed the information she was telling me.

“You started waking up yesterday so we pulled the tube to see if you were going to breathe on your own. You might be in and out for the next day or so as you continue to recover and come out of it. You will probably be very sore from the accident too.”

I nodded again and looked around the room a little more.

“I’m going to take a set of vitals while I’m here.”

It finally started to sink in about what she had said to me. I was in a car accident. How the hell did that happen? I thought I was in the gym watching a basketball game. How the hell did I end up in a car? I glanced to my side as she wrapped the cuff around my arm and started pumping it up to take a pressure. I saw a picture in a frame. I couldn’t make out who it was other than the brown hair. My first thought was Taylor. Fuck, was Taylor ok? What happened to her? Was she with me in the car?

“Taylor?” I grumbled. My throat was very scratchy and weak. It barely came out.

“I’m sorry,” the nurse said.

My first thought was she was sorry she had to tell me some bad news. She was going to tell me something horrible had happened to Taylor. How could that be? I just went through…

“I didn’t hear you, Mr. Tillman,” she said breaking my thoughts. “Can you say that again?”

“Taylor?” I grunted a little more clearly this time.

“No, my name is Nancy.”

“The picture,” I groaned. “Her? Taylor?”

“Oh, the picture. That’s Teagan.”

“Teagan?” I asked confused.

“Yes,” she smiled. “That’s your wife, Teagan. Do you remember her?”

I nodded yes as she pulled the cuff off my arm and went around the bed to get the picture. She brought it closer to my face and let me look at it. Yeah, it was her. It left me very confused though. I thought she was gone and Taylor and I were…

“She should be in first thing in the morning,” the nurse spoke. “She’s been here every day waiting kadıköy escort bayan for you to wake up.”

I nodded and looked at the picture again. It didn’t look familiar to me but I knew it was without a doubt Teagan. I was very confused now. Teagan was gone. How could she be coming to see me in the morning?

“Alright Mr. Tillman,” the nurse spoke. “I have to make my rounds. Please don’t pull the IV out. I really don’t feel like sticking you again.”

I shook my head. “No,” I said weakly. “Taylor?”

“Mr. Tillman,” she said calmly. “I don’t know about a Taylor. Is she somebody you know?”

“Yes,” I said quickly. “Where is she?”

“I don’t know,” she sighed. “I’m not always assigned to this floor so I’m not sure who has been in to visit you other than Teagan. Teagan is your wife, you remember her, don’t you?”

I nodded but sighed at the same time.

“Let me go and ask the other nurses and maybe they can help me,” she offered. “I’ll be right back.”

I nodded and started thinking as she left my room. How the hell could Teagan be coming to see me in the morning? I tried to process everything but I couldn’t at the moment. I was still doped up and everything was slow and clouded in my mind. Somewhere in the back of my mind I knew this wasn’t a dream but I couldn’t bring it full circle to understand how it wasn’t. Maybe I was dead and this was the afterlife. This sure wasn’t the way they made it sound in Sunday school. I pictured things differently. Before I knew it I was out again.

*

I woke up sometime later with somebody softly touching my face. My eyes opened and blinked to clear the sleep from them before I focused on the person sitting with me in bed.

“Jake? It’s me baby.”

I knew that voice from anywhere. It was that soft and calm voice that had been a part of my life for so long now. It scared me now. I blinked hard and focused on her face.

“Teagan?” I asked.

“Yes baby,” she cheered. “It’s me, I’m here. I’m right here.”

I studied her clear green eyes as she looked right back at mine. They started to cloud with tears as she smiled and spoke again.

“You were in an accident, baby,” she continued. “You’ve been in a coma for a week now. They said it might take a little while for things to come back.”

“Am I dead?”

“No,” she smiled softly. “You are alive. You are just in the hospital.”

“What about you?” I asked confused. “Are you dead?”

“No,” she said softly. “I’m just fine.”

“But you were with me in the car.”

“No baby,” she sighed. “I wasn’t with you.”

“But… I thought…”

“How is he doing?” the nurse asked as she walked in.

“He just woke up and has been asking some questions,” Teagan replied. “He seems very confused.”

“That’s very normal,” the nurse offered. “When somebody goes into a coma it takes some time for things to come back. The accident itself might be giving him some short term memory loss. Hopefully, it will come back in the coming days. He had a lot of activity in his brain when we did the MRIs on him so that’s always a good sign. The swelling has gone down which is why he’s coming out of it.”

“Do you remember how you got here, Mr. Tillman?” she asked me now.

“I don’t recall,” I said faintly. My eyes were getting heavy and I was slowly starting to drift again.

“Do you remember anything leading up to the car accident?”

“I …don’t …recall.” I drifted again.

*

When I awoke again the room was dark and empty. It was just me and the machines again. My mind immediately went to Teagan. Had she really been here? I looked around the room and noticed everything was the same as it was when she was here. She had to have been here. But how? I thought she was gone.

I lay there confused as I tried to think hard about the past. I couldn’t comprehend anything at this point. I could remember what had happened with me and Taylor. But given the current situation and Teagan being here earlier I wasn’t even sure if that was real or if this was real. Where the hell was Taylor? Was she ok? Better yet, what day was it? How long had I been sleeping? How long had I been out?

I looked around the room again to try and find something that would help. A calendar, a newspaper, a date on the grease board, a clock, anything that might help. I found a clock on the far wall that read 1135. Under that was the grease board with some notes on it. I shifted in bed to try and sit up a little more so I could read it. My whole body ached as pain shot through my bones with the move. I gave up on that quickly and returned to thinking and trying to decipher the mystery.

I lay there going in circles for a long time. Why couldn’t I remember? What the hell was going on? Thinking about it only left me with more questions. It wore me out too. Maybe if I just went to sleep everything might be fixed. What was fixed though? I ran through everything in my head again but couldn’t find the answers. Even the stuff with Taylor over the past few months was becoming fuzzy. I came escort maltepe to the conclusion that I just wanted an answer. Why was I here and who was I with?

*

I heard footsteps just outside my door as I woke up. I looked around and noticed I was still in the hospital so sleeping obviously didn’t fix anything. My mind felt a little clearer though and I could process more. The beeps were clearer, I could read who manufactured the equipment that I was attached to now. I felt better, more alert than before, but nothing was making sense. Was I dreaming now or was I dreaming before?

The nurse walked through the door and saw me laying there with my eyes open looking around. She smiled as she rounded the bed to get closer to me.

“Good morning,” she smiled. “How are you feeling this morning?”

“I don’t know,” I said softly. “I’m not sure how I’m supposed to feel.”

“Hopefully better than yesterday,” she offered.

“More confused,” I replied. “Or still confused.”

“You were in an accident…”

“Yeah,” I groaned. “I’ve been told that and I remember that. I don’t know how I got here. I thought I was at the gym. How the hell did I end up here?”

“Short term memory lose is common when you lose consciousness,” she offered.

“What day is it?”

“Well,” she sighed. “Let me think a minute. It’s October the eighth.”

October eighth I thought. That really doesn’t make sense. Basketball wouldn’t have even started yet. How could I have been at the gym at a game?

“Are you sure?” I asked.

“Yeah,” she said confidently.

“How long have I been out?”

“You’ve been here for eight days now.”

“Gosh,” I sighed.

She started to say something but I cut her off. “Are you sure it’s October?”

“That’s what my phone says,” she answered.

“Hum,” I sighed again.

“What day do you think it is?” she asked.

“Are you sure I’ve been out for just a week?” I asked. “Feels like a lot longer if I can remember correctly.”

“What can you remember?” she asked.

I thought for a second. I dug deep into my mind now and tried to think. I was afraid to answer given that I could have sworn I saw Teagan yesterday. It was a brief moment but it felt real.

“I don’t know,” I sighed. “Is it possible…to dream while you are out?”

“There have been quite a few cases where patients say they have had vivid dreams while they were out. Others say they felt like they were in a peaceful sleep. Dreaming is possible.”

“It sure wasn’t peaceful,” I offered.

“Well,” she softly smiled.

“Was there anyone else in the car with me?” I asked. “I thought I remembered somebody else in the car with me.”

“As far as I know you were alone. Unless you had somebody in the car and they walked away before the fire department got there. But from what I heard you had to be removed from the car with the Jaws of Life.”

So I was alone I thought. I continued to think now. If I wasn’t at the gym with Taylor and Teagan wasn’t with me in the car, they both should be fine. But…was that reality or was my mind trying to trick me again?

“Who has been here to see me?”

“A lot of people, Mr. Tillman. There are a lot of people that want to see you get better and walk out of here.”

“Like who?” I almost begged now.

“Well, your wife Teagan, umm… Thom, Tammy, Taylor, Tessa, Rob, Gary, and a few others. I think a few players from your team were here too. They left you some cards over there if you want to read them.”

“Taylor was here? When?”

“Yesterday, but you were sleeping.”

“Why didn’t somebody wake me up?”

“You need your rest,” she giggled a little. “Doctors’ orders.”

I sighed in frustration but I did feel better that she was here. At least she wasn’t hurt.

“I’m sure they will be in today,” she offered.

“I hope.”

“They will,” she smiled. “They have all been very worried about you.”

“Yeah, I’m worried about me too.”

“You should make a full recovery. You will be sore for a few days but you should be fine once you get out of here.”

“That’s not what I’m worried about.”

“Oh?” she questioned.

I sighed before explaining. “I’m still trying to wrap my head around this whole thing. From what I can recall, even though it’s fuzzy, I can’t remember Teagan being in it. I mean, I know who she is and I know that she is my wife but I can’t think back over what I’ve seen and find her in it. It’s very unsettling and frustrating.”

“Short term memory loss is common,” she offered. “When they get here you can talk with them and maybe something they say will trigger a memory and it will come back.”

“There wasn’t anyone else in the car with me?” I asked again. “Teagan or Taylor?”

“No sir,” she sighed. “It was just you.”

I still couldn’t fully wrap my mind around everything. Teagan passing away and me finding Taylor seamed real even though I somehow knew it wasn’t. But I couldn’t convince myself just yet. I had to see it for myself. I had to touch it, feel it, ask questions and get some hard facts before I could dismiss the doubt I had in the back of my mind. I wanted one of them here to give me the facts so I could put the puzzle together and move forward. The nurse was helpful but not the right kind of helpful. My patients was growing thin.

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