He leans down and kisses me gently on my forehead. My sweet man who would barely leave the house is showing up once again for me. I lay my head back against his chest and soak in the comfort. I’m so used to being the one to take care of my dad alone. It’s nice to have someone already finding answers and taking control.
I know my dad doesn’t mean for it to be that way with us. He looks after me too, but when it comes to his health, I’m more on top of it than he is. It has me wondering if over the past few days I’ve dropped the ball in some way.
I try to recall if I stocked the fridge or if he didn’t have the right food. Had I forgotten and he’d gone out and gotten something he shouldn’t have? Maybe he overdid it with sweets and then possibly overdid it again with his insulin.
My mind is racing and wondering where I might have gone wrong. I don’t think I asked him for his numbers this morning like I always do when I’m making our coffee. Guilt starts to weigh me down as I replay our conversation.
“Gracie!” I lift my head to see Evy rushing in through the hospital doors. Her face is blotchy and her eyes red like she’s been crying. I’m sure I look the same way. “Have you heard anything? Lindsey called me,” she admits. I was wondering how she found out my dad was here. Lindsey works at the police station, and they’re cousins.
“No, we haven't heard anything,” I reply.
We all turn when the doors that go into the back of the emergency room open. The doctor along with our neighbor Rider comes walking out. Rider was the one who called 911. My father and Rider sometimes work on old cars together. I’m so thankful they had plans this afternoon or who knows when I might have come home to find my dad. With all the time I’ve been spending with Donovan, I’m not sure when that could have been. Oh god, I don’t even want to think about it.
“He’s okay,” Rider says the second he spots me.
“He’ll be okay,” the doctor agrees. “I’m Doctor Wilton.” He holds his hand out for me to take.
He takes mine and then Donovan’s. Evy wrings her hands together as she shifts from foot to foot. She’s as worked up as I am. The thought occurs to me I’d be a bit angry if something happened to Donovan and I wasn’t able to get answers. I’d have to wait for other people to get them for me, which would be awful.
“What happened?” Evy jumps in. Her eyes dart between the doctor and me. I know she’s not trying to step on my toes. She wants answers, and I don’t blame her.
“He became hypoglycemic.” I let out a breath.
“He took his insulin twice,” I say, connecting the dots on my own. I had a feeling that’s what it was.
“Hypoglycemic? Insulin?” Evy starts to cry. The tears pour down her cheeks. I don’t know Evy that well. She came to Hollow Oak a few years ago and moved in with her cousin. She took over at the library when Mrs. Walker retired.
“My dad didn’t tell you he’s a diabetic?” My words dry her tears right up. Her lips purse, and I know she’s pissed now. She shakes her head no.
Donovan wraps his arm around my waist in a comforting hold.
“Yes, your father said he thinks he took his insulin twice.” The doctor confirms my thoughts.
“Can I see him?”
“You can go back now, but I’m having him moved up to a room for the night to keep an eye on him.”
“Is there something else I should know?” I ask, my panic starting to rise again.
“I just want to keep an eye on him to be safe. His endocrinologist is going to come first thing in the morning.”
“Yes. When Dr. Lawing gives the all-clear tomorrow, we’ll release him.”
“Thank you, Dr. Wilton.”
“Of course. Let me show you guys back.”
We all follow the doctor back through the doors, and the second he pulls back the curtain, I run over to my dad. He’s sitting up in bed, and he actually looks fine. I wrap my arms around him in a tight hug, trying not to think about how bad it could have been.
“I’m sorry.” I fight back tears, not wanting to upset him.
“Why are you sorry? This is my fault, Gracie,” I sniffle, stepping back.
My dad’s eyes go over my shoulder and widen a bit before his cheeks flush. I peek over my shoulder to see Evy glaring at him.
“I don’t think I asked for your numbers this morning. What did you eat this morning? What about lunch? Did you have lunch? Why did you think you needed so much insulin? How can you forget you already took a dose? Why did—”