New Winslow S5E59 – Season Finale
Two hours after getting home, Celine was back at the hospital. The House of Pizza was closed for the day and their assistant manager, Tatiana, had let Celine know she was available for anything Celine needed. The idea of working at all right now was too overwhelming to consider, so Celine could have hugged her over the phone in her gratitude. The shop would stay closed one more day, then Tatiana would take over tomorrow. From there, they’d figure it out, but Celine wasn’t too concerned. She didn’t imagine anyone in New Winslow was going to get mad at her for having the audacity to close the shop when Roman was sick.
Plus, the news was going to get around fast enough. Roman was out of New Winslow. Something that a lot of people probably never believed would happen. The town cautionary tale had finally made it out.
And he was still too unconscious to know about it.
Celine was sitting in the small, stiff visitor chair in his hospital room again, listening to the gentle beeping of the monitor and his steady breathing. Roman was still pale, with dark circles around his closed eyes. A heart attack, the doctor had confirmed yesterday. And a pretty bad one. There was no way he would have survived if they hadn’t brought him to the hospital when they did.
Celine wasn’t stupid. She knew that Roman’s decisions of the past year had caught up with him. Even after he’d calmed down and focused on staying healthy, the damage had been done.
She had no idea how he got out. Anything supernatural that could have done it wouldn’t be malicious, but Celine had to know. With no one else around, she closed her eyes and took a deep breath, trying to focus her perception on the room and the space surrounding Roman. Maybe there was something watching. Or some kind of energy that had allowed him access. But as she mentally looked around the room, there was nothing. Roman shared the space with another patient, an elderly man asleep on the other side of the curtain. But nothing else was here.
The sound of a cart arriving in the room jerked Celine back to herself. A nurse was walking in, wheeling a computer stand with her. “How’s he doing?” the nurse asked, voice hushed.
Celine looked at Roman’s slack, stubbled face, and her own heart twisted. He was alive, she knew that. But he was so still. Roman was never still.
She stepped back from the bed and let the nurse do what she had to do. The man on the other side of the curtain moaned softly in his sleep, but no other noise broke the monotony of the quiet beeps from the monitors. Roman was hooked up to so many things. Celine was no stranger to the human body or medical care, but being here rattled her more than she would have otherwise expected.
“Hon, how about you go get a cup of coffee,” the nurse said to Celine. She couldn’t have been much older than Celine, but her tone was warm and motherly in a way Celine realized she needed right now. “He’s okay, I promise. Go stretch your legs.”
She wanted to argue that she’d just gotten back, but glancing at the clock, she realized she’d been sitting here for an hour now. And Roman hadn’t changed in that time. So she nodded to the nurse, then squeezed Roman’s hand and walked out of the room.
Roman hadn’t moved in nearly a day. So of course he woke up while Celine was getting her cup of crappy hospital coffee. She walked back into the room to see it was crowded with people. There were four of them, the previous nurse, plus what she assumed were two doctors and another nurse. They were all standing around Roman’s bed, blocking her view of him. As she got closer, she looked over the shorter nurse’s shoulder to see Roman looking groggily up at them.
“Where’s Celine?” he whispered, his voice hoarse and muffled by the oxygen cannula in his nose.
“Mr. Beckett,” the first doctor, a young man, began, clearly not realizing Celine was back in the room. “Just relax, everything’s fine.”
“Who are you?” Roman demanded, his voice finding a little more strength now. “Where’s Celine?”
“Right here, Rome,” Celine said, ducking around the others and taking back her spot by the bed. “I’m here, it’s okay.”
He seemed to be more with it now as she took his hand. He looked up at her through still-foggy eyes and she ran a hand through his short hair. It was greasy under her touch and she thought vaguely that she’d get him some dry shampoo next time she left the hospital.
“You had a heart attack,” the doctor said. He was trying to project an air of knowledge and authority, but Celine could see straight through his act.
“A heart attack?” Roman murmured.
He looked around slowly, taking in the bed and the curtains and the unfamiliar space. Then he looked back at Celine as she reached out and cupped his chin in her hand. “We’re at Athol General,” she said.
She couldn’t tell if it was the drugs and fatigue or if something in Roman’s mind was trying to block out what was going on as the rest of him tried to solve it. One nurse, the one from yesterday, she realized, looked concerned as she eyed Roman’s heart monitor. The little purple zigzag was picking up speed in a way that Celine knew it really shouldn’t.
Maybe they should wait a little longer before they told him, Celine realized. But then Roman locked eyes with her. “Are we…?”
He trailed off, but stayed in eye contact with her. There was no way around it now. Celine nodded.
“Roman,” she said, “You’re out of New Winslow.”