Returning New Hope
By Yuki Wildstar
The ship docked months later. Derek and Nova Wildstar stood on the gang way looking down as love ones waited to greet their family member’s home. Wildstar leaned on his wife as he held on to a cane with his other hand. It was a long recovery but his wife was there by his side helping him. Now they stood looking through the crowed for their children. Nova spotted them first. She waved franticly at them as they waved back. “They’re here,” she said out loud over the noise from below. Slowly she helped him walked down the gang way and past the crowed to their family. Miku ran quickly into her father’s arms and held him tight. The pain that ran through his body was forgotten knowing that he held his daughter in his arms. “Miku sweet heart, not so tight, your dad,”
“It’s alright Nova, no pain can keep me from holding my little girl.” He picked her up and took hold of his oldest son while DJ hugged his mother.
“I missed you so much, Miku.” Derek held her tighter. “I’m never letting you go.”
Miku laughed at her father, “Your silly daddy.”
“So glad to see you son.”
Alexander Wildstar looked up to his father and smiled. “Glad to see you too, Sir.”
“Come on let’s all go home,” Nova Wildstar announced.
“Are you sure that you’re okay. We don’t have to walk too far. I know it can be much.” Nova helped him down their stairs that led to the beach.
He limped down with her and took in the beach breeze. “I’ll be fine Nov; it’s just good to be home. Come I want to walk its good for me and my leg.” They walked down to the beach and walked slowly toward the shore line. She held him close to her and he used his cane for more support. “I don’t think I ever want to leave here again. Nova, I was thinking of retiring?”
She heard him say this a few time but this time there was something different in his tone. “Derek, maybe you should wait after your recovery. EDF council has given you an extend amount of time for your recovery.”
“Nov, I know what I want. I keep asking myself is it worth losing you or us. I have to think of our kids, especially Miku.”
She rolled her eyes, “I told you she was healthy and fine. You didn’t have to take her to the doctors to make sure.”
He grinned, “I know, and I’m sorry to put her through it. But she was really good sport about it.”
“Honesty Derek, you made me take her to the doctor and have all kinds of exams done.”
“Nov, that dream felt real to me. I could feel my heart torn apart when you said she was gone in my dream. Miku is my life and she my little girl.”
“But I had to go through it with her.” She laughed.
Derek turned her to face him and said. “Which reminds me, I ran into the doctor that treated you while you were searching for me.” Nova took a deep breath. “Why didn’t you tell me?”
“I wanted to tell you but when we found you, you were so battered. My only concern was to see you get better.”
He lifted her head and looked into her eyes. “It was my baby too.”
“I know Derek, but what would it accomplish. It would just bring back more pain. I wanted to tell you, really I did. When we found you, you were so broken. All I could think about was getting you better for the kids. When you were back on your feet I wanted to tell you then, but you were so worried about Miku I just thought best not to say anything.”
“You were alone. I should have been there for you. I should have held your hand.” He pulled her closer and let his tears run down his face. “I’m so sorry Nov. I should have been there.”
“If it would make you feel better. I wasn’t alone. Alex was there to keep me from losing my mind.”
He smirked and asked, “When did you know?”
“A week after they took you. I tried to stay calm and eat but the doctor said that I was under too much stress.”
He pulled her closer, “did you know what it was?”
Nova shook her head and said, “No, it was too soon to tell.”
“Gosh Nov, I should have been there for you.”
“It was beyond our control. Please don’t feel like it’s your fault, it wasn’t.” she said, “It’s done and over. We have to just move on.”
He sat down on the dune and placed his head down and cried. Nova sat next to him and cried with him. “If only,”
“No Derek, don’t take blame for what happen. It wasn’t meant to be. I know that if you were there you would’ve been right by my side. In a way I felt you there next to me. Alex was there and made sure that I was taken very good care of. You know we talked a lot while looking for you. I know all your little secrets, Captain Wildstar.” She said trying to lighten things up. He looked up and gave her a smile. “I love you mush, mush.”
Wildstar laugh out loud and said, “So he told you what my first girlfriend called me, huh?”
“Oh I’m not letting you live this one down for a long time. And don’t think I don’t know about all the other little secrets in your past.”
So many days Nova would come home to see her husband still in his PJ’s playing with their daughter. The first few weeks it never fazed her but after she notice that his therapist was coming to their house to give him his PT she started to become concern. It seem like he never wanted to leave the house. It became more apparent that he was never leaving the house at all. She sat with him outside their patio and looked out to the stars. “You know, after all we have been through I kind of miss being in space. We always seem to be closer. Even when we were under fire and in a battle we always seem to have a good time. Don’t you miss it, Derek?” Derek just looked out the sea and gazed into the dark waters. Nova tried to change the subject and tried another angle to the point. “I ran into Sandor today. He says they miss you at EDF. He wanted to know when you were ready to come back. But if you need more time,” she said.
“I know what you’re doing, Nov.” he said annoyed.
“What am I doing?”
“You’re pushing me. I’m not ready to go back.” He replied.
“But why? The doctor cleared you weeks ago. He said you were ready.”
“Maybe I’m not ready to go back. You said for me to think about retiring. I have thought about it and I want to retire. I want to spend my time with you and my kids.”
“Derek, it’s not that, it’s just you never go anywhere. You are always home, maybe if you go out.” She pulled at his hand and kissed it. “Tell you what, why don’t I make reservation tomorrow night at D’s. We can have a date night. I’ll call a sitter and we can stay at the Great Island Hotel. Come on we haven’t done that in forever. It will be good for you.”
“I don’t know.” He said.
“I promise I won’t bring up anything about EDF, just a nice night with my husband. Please.” She smiled looking into his eyes.
“Okay, I guess I could use some air away from here.”
Derek woke up early to help with the kids. He was excited to have his date with his wife that evening. He spent most of his time on the phone with some of Star Force members catching up to what’s been going on at EDF. He played with the kids when they got back from school. He sat down with his daughter and play tea party to pass the time until his wife came home. He helped with cooking for the kids and greeted the sitter as she began to help the kids with homework and preparing them for sleep. Nova walked through the door at 7pm on the nose and raced into their room to get ready. “Give me twenty minutes.” She yelled over her shoulder. Derek looked inside his closet for what he was going to wear when it hit him. He felt his heart race and he tried to catch his breath. He found it hard to breath and things became closer then he wanted. He raced out of his closet and ran right into his wife. Nova saw the paleness of his face and the fear in his eyes. “Derek, my god what’s wrong. You look like you saw a ghost. Are you alright?” she asked.
“Can’t breath,” he fell to the ground and passed out.
“Oh my god, Derek!” she yelled.
She watched as he opened his eyes and her heart felt a sigh of relief. “What happened?” he said as his wife stood over him.
“You passed out. Are you alright, you gave me a scare.”
“I’ll be alright. Give me a hand up.”
“Are you sure you’re alright?”
“I’ll be alright, don’t worry. It’s our night out, let me get dress and,”
“Derek, maybe it’s best to not go. We should have you looked at.”
He smiled at her, “I’m okay. I swear. I have a hard head. Come on let’s get ready.” He patted her hand and kissed her cheek. Nova watched as he walked back into his closet and began to pull clothes from the hangers.
Sitting in the restaurant she noticed how edgy he was. He kept shifting in his chair and wiping the sweat from his forehead. She tried to keep him talking about the kids or what happened during her day but he seemed uncomfortable. “Nova,” he interrupted. “Can we go, please?”
“But we haven’t even finished dinner.”
Trying to hold it together he squeezed her hand tight. “Please, I really need to get the hell out of here.” She could see his face as the blood drained and he was breathing a little harder. She nodded her head and called for the check. Derek just through money on the table and grabbed her hand and dragged her out of the restaurant.
“Derek!” she pulled her hand away and stopped. “What is wrong with you? You look like your about to pass out.”
“Please Nova, let’s just get back home.”
“Derek,” she was ready to speak when she could see someone taking pictures of them. Even thou they tend to keep a low profile they all knew that D’s was a place for them to spot them to eat. After walking through the door he race straight to their room leaving Nova there to deal with the sitter. He usually pays her and takes her home. Once she returned back to the house she found him sitting outside on their bedroom patio. She took the chair next to him and slipped her hand in his. “Talk to me.” She said.
“I have no idea why this is happening. All of sudden I can’t seem to leave the house.” He said.
“But you can be out here and walk on the beach.”
“It’s different. We are close to the house. It’s just going out there.”
“But what brought this on?
“I don’t know.”
“There has to be something that triggered it.”
“I don’t know, physically I’m good. I was going to PT but lately I’ve been cancelling.” He told her. She was surprise that he stopped going to his physical therapy sessions. She knew he wasn’t fully recovered with his leg and arm. When they found him he was in terrible shape. With broken ribs, his left leg and left arm. She helped begin his recovery on ship and set up for the remaining time on Earth with one of the best Physical Therapist on Great Island. “I haven’t gone to therapy in three weeks.” He announced. “I figure I can do it at home on my own.”
“Derek we don’t have the equipment that you need to continue your therapy.”
“I usually try to run on the beach and was thinking of ordering what I need to the house. We can convert the guest room into a gym. Maybe even extend the house to make a room for one. Babe, I’m just not ready to head out there. Not just yet.”
Nova listened to him. “Okay, if this is what you want then we can get the therapist to come here. I’ll have them covert the guest room to a gym, whatever it takes to get you back to full recovery.” She encouraged him.
“Thank you baby.” He gave her a tight hug and kissed her.
The weeks went by and Nova notice how he stay close to the house. She began to worry even more so when she ran into his doctor and announce that he had clear him to return to work with little or mild work load. She wanted to wait until she returned home to talk with him when she ran also into Sandor. “Are you telling me that you spoke to Derek and he said he wasn’t ready to come back?” she asked him.
“He said he was still dealing with his therapy and wanted to wait. Is he okay, Nova?” Sandor asked. “Is everything alright at home?”
“As far as I am aware everything is fine with us. But if he is not ready to come back I guess he is not ready to come back.” Deep down she was worry about her husband. She waited after the kids where in bed and fast asleep before she addressed him. She slipped her hand into his and smiled. “Why don’t we go for a walk on the beach?” She suggested.
“I am assuming we are going to have a conversation?”
“Maybe more.” She raised her eyebrow. Derek smiled and followed her out to the patio and down to the beach. They strolled along the shore in silence finally settle down on a dune in the distance. Nova sat next to him snuggling close on his shoulder.
“Are you cold?”
“A little.” She said.
He rubbed her shoulders and pulled her closer. “What’s on your mind?”
“SO, I ran into Sandor today. He said whenever you’re ready to come back he can get you a nice desk job until your cleared to fly. I was thinking since your therapy was going so well maybe you should start going in a couple days a week. You know nothing much until your doctor releases you. Which reminds me, when are you supposed to go back to see him so I can take the time to go with you.” She tried to keep the conversation calm. She needed to know why he hid the fact that he was clear and they were ready to bring him back.
“Don’t know, I will have to check my schedule to see when.” He kissed the top of her head and said, “So about that MAYBE?”
“Not so fast Captain, first we see about that schedule then the MAYBE.”
He looked down at her with suspicion. “Why so interested in my schedule?”
“Well if I go with you next time I will have to make sure I have the day off. I mean I’ve been so busy at my father firm I haven’t gone with you to any of your appointments. I think it’s time I go with you.” She doodled on the sand looking out to the sea.
“You don’t have too. It’s usually the same ole same ole. He checks my leg and arm. Kind of moves it around and ask if it hurts. All the waiting for a 15 minute look over.”
“I’m sure there is more to that. I’m sure he will need to take more x-rays and blood work. You should ask him about how much longer he thinks that you will be needing therapy. Plus I have my own concerns about your health.”
“Oh? Like what concerns do you have?”
“Just medical terms that you may not be familiar with.”
“Don’t treat me like a child, Nova. What’s going on?” he said annoyed.
“Nothing, just worry about your health. Can’t I worry about that? I mean you are my husband and I worry about you and the kids.”
“There’s one thing about being worried about my health and then there’s fishing for something. So what is it?”
Nova sat up and looked away. “Why didn’t you tell me that you stopped going to your appointments with Doctor Yokoshintsu? I ran into him before I ran into Sandor, both of which told me that you’ve either stopped going to appointments or decline to return to work. Derek, what’s going on with you?”
“I just didn’t feel that I had to see that old fart every two weeks. Anyway when I go there I always have to wait an hour to be seen for only 15 minutes.”
“Derek he has to make sure that you’re progressing with therapy. He is only doing his job and you not going to your appointments is only making his job much more difficult.”
“How about he comes here and then waits an hour or so for me to feel ready to be seen.”
“You’re not going to make this easy are you.” She started to become frustrated. “Okay” she huffed. “What’s really going on with you? You never want to leave the house and I know that Sandor informed you that you can come back, which you turned down. Not to mention I know that your doctor clear you to go back. So what the hell is going on?”
“Nothing.” He said with a firm tone. “I just need some time. That’s all.”
“Okay, if time is what you need then I will understand. But can you do me one favor.”
“Come with me to EDF tomorrow.”
She took his face in her hand and smiled, “because it would be nice to see everyone and get out of this house. I promise, once we are done we will be back before the kids are home from school and even have some time to play.” She grinned.
He felt his heart begin to pound and he tried to smile. “Nah, I’ll sit back here.”
“I really want you to come with me, Derek. Please just this one time.” Nova begged. She ran her hand down his chest and kissed him. “Come on, it will do you good to go into the city.” She rubbed his chest and kissed him on the neck and then whispered in his ear. “I will make it worth your wild.”
Raising his eyebrow he smiled. “You got a deal, ma’am.”
They drove into the city making small talk about their children. She kept his mind on what they were talking about. They laughed about their middle child and son on how he can be a handful. She mention on times when they separated that he always kept her laughing with his outlandish request. He would remind her how DJ was so much like him at that age, though he wasn’t as outgoing as DJ was, but did give his mother a lot of headaches. Nova laughed and told him what his brother Alex told her about him. “He told me a lot about you when you were young. Blow up the kitchen sink, did you.” Making Derek blush and laugh out lot. They pulled up to EDF headquarters and began to walk towards the entrance when it hit him hard. He stopped and tried to catch his breath. He bow down and began to hyperventilate. He began to sweat and Nova felt his hand. “My Gosh Derek! Your hands feel clammy.” She looked at her husband and saw the blood fade from his face. “Derek?”
“Can’t breathe,” he said in between breaths. “Have . . . . To . . . . .Get . . . . . Out . . . . . . Here.”
Nova took hold of him and guided him back to the car. “Hold on, I’ll get us home.” She jumped into the car and raced home as quickly as she could. He passed out in the car and woke up to her calling his name. “Derek, baby, wake up we’re home.” She shook him again and he opened his eyes. His eyes were red and blood shot as if he were drinking all night. She helped him out of the car and into the house. “Come on you need to rest.” She helped him into their room and he lay down. “Just rest, I’ll get you some tea.” Quietly she closed the door behind her and picked up her phone.
“Admiral Sandor.” She heard him say.
“Nova, what happened I was expecting you and Derek?”
“Um, we won’t be able to come by. We had a little family emergency. Sorry, but we will call you when everything gets straighten out. Sorry.” She said quickly then hung up, not wanting him to know about his breakdown. She slip back into the room and sat next to him on the bed. Nova took his head on her lap and rubbed his hair and head. “How do you feel?” she asked with concern.
“A little better.” He closed his eyes and sighed. “I’m sorry.”
“For not going in.”
“Derek, you’re not ready. But we need to talk about why this is happening.” She continued to run her hand through his hair. “This is not healthy. You can’t stay inside forever.”
“I don’t know why this is happening. Every time I leave I feel like the whole world is caving in on me. I can’t breath, I start to shake, I get clammy and I feel like my world is spinning out of control.”
“Sounds like you’re getting panic attacks. I can get the doctor here and he can prescribe something for you.”
“No, no drugs, I hate being groggy and depending on them. I can beat this. I just have to do things one step at a time.” He try to sound convincing.
“Okay, then maybe you should see a psychiatrist.”
“A SHRINK? No way. No shrink for me.” He jumped out of the bed and paced the floor. “I can’t do that again.”
“What do you mean again?” she asked confused.
“Way back when you left for New York and we finally got back together. You were so distant and I felt that you weren’t giving us a chance. I was seeing a therapist and well let’s face it she wasn’t much of a help. She actually came on to me. That was the last time I ever saw a shrink again.”
“Derek, we can get you a male doctor. I happened to know a very good one. He helped a lot of our patients work through their problems. I can call him in the morning.”
“NO! I can’t take the chance of anyone finding out. This can end my career.”
“It will end if you don’t see someone. He is very discreet; I can ask him to come to the house.” She touched his face and smiled. “Derek, you have to see someone about this. It can only get worst. I’ve seen it happen and I love you too much to let you slip down that hill. Please, let me call him and see what he can do. If you can’t do it for yourself, do it for the kids.”
“I don’t know Nov, I”
She took his face into her hands and looked him deep into the eyes. “You need help. I know that a lot happened to you out there and it has a lot to do with what is going on with you right now. I will call the doctor first thing and make arrangements for him to come here. Trust me no one will know. I promise.”
He tried to give her a smile but felt his anxiety come on again. Nova quickly ran to the kitchen and grabbed a bag. She shoved in his face and said, “Breath!” she ordered. “Shh I know, just breath.” She soothed. She held him in her arms and rocked him back and forth like one of her children. It broke her heart that he went through so much and now to come home for him to face this. “I love you Derek, please let me call the doctor.” He nodded his head and continued to take deep breathes into the paper bag.
Doctor Kobe Hashimoto arrived at the Wildstar residences within the hour. Nova brought him into their office where her husband sat waiting. Hashimoto shook his hand and said. “Captain Wildstar, how are you feeling?”
“Like shit, what do you think?” He said annoyed.
“Sorry, let’s get started. Your wife tells me that you’ve been having panic attacks.”
“Yeah, that’s what she tells me.”
“Tell me more about it.” He asked. Their session last over and hour and Derek tried his hardest to explain his fear of going out to the world. They talked about his symptoms and when it started.
“Look Doc, I am only doing this for my wife. I think eventually I will get over it. I am not into this psychiatry stuff.”
“I understand.” Hashimoto said. “It’s hard to open up to family let a long to a stranger. But trust me I am not here to judge. I just want to help you and I am bound as a doctor never to discuss anything you say with anyone. Not even your wife.”
“I don’t keep anything from her.”
“Then you will be the only one to tell her anything. What you chose to tell her will be up to you. Now are you willing to continue with our sessions?”
Derek sat in front of him and looked past him out the window. He watched as Nova strolled along the beach and even though she was too far out to see he knew that she was stressing over him. He nodded his head, “Yes, for her I am willing to continue.”
“Very well, I will be here tomorrow at 9 am, that is 0900 to you captain.” Making Wildstar smile and chuckled.
Nova walked into the house and Derek sat there waiting for her. “Well how did it go?” she asked.
He grinned and said, “I think I’m going to be just fine.”
Later that night after they all had dinner Alexander pulled his mother to the side. “Mom, is dad alright?”
“What do you mean?” she asked.
“I don’t know. It seems like he never wants to go anywhere anymore. Did he get fire from EDF?”
Nova laughed, “You can’t get fire from EDF. And no he still has his position within EDF so don’t worry about that.”
“But doesn’t he want to go anywhere? All he does is go out on the porch or down to the beach.”
Nova knew how inquisitive her son was and knew it would be hard to keep things from him. But now was not the time to let him know about his father’s fears. It will only make things more complicated for both her and Derek. “Alex, please don’t worry about your father. He is just adjusting to life back home. This mission was a little harder than we anticipated but we are here and he just wants to take as much time to spend with you guys. Okay?”
“Okay.” He grinned. The same grin of his father. She hugged him tight and told him to get ready for bed.
Derek undressed for bed while Nova sat up in bed. “Your oldest came to me tonight about you.” She announced.
“He was curious as to why you do not leave the house anymore.” She could see the frown on his face. “Don’t worry I didn’t tell him about what you’re going through. I just told him that you need to adjust yourself to being home on Earth.” She crawled up to where he stood and took his hand. “Derek, are you sure that this is what you want?”
“I want my life back. I want to be able to take you out to dinner and travel the world with you and them. As you said staying here is not the healthiest thing for me. I have to do it and I have to do it for you and the kids.”
“Well since you’re on the road to recovery maybe we should start your maybe here right now.” She purred.
“I’d love that very much.”
Doctor Hashimoto work intensely with Wildstar. He talked about his time in space and then he began to ask him about what happened to him when he was captured. “Tell me about when you were captured.”
“What’s there to tell?”
“Talk to me about what happened.”
“I was captured, thrown in a cell, beaten, thrown back into the cell, beaten again, and so on, and so on.”
Hashimoto looked over his glasses and frown. “More details please.”
“What details do you want to hear? How they threw me into the cell part? I was carried by two big guys and thrown hard into the cell. “
“Captain Wildstar that is not what I am asking. If you’re serious on getting better we have to find out why you are having these panic attacks. When did they start to come on?”
“After I came home from the hospital. Each day at home I just felt safer around these walls and the beach. I feel like I can protect my family here. Being so far away I know I will not be able to keep them safe.”
“But they are safe. They were safe when you were captured and they were safe when you returned. You found them all healthy and happy to see you.”
“I know that.” He said annoyed.
He frowned again and decided to take a step back. “Very well, let’s move on to other things.”
“Let’s” he strongly suggested to keep him off his back.
“Let’s see if we can bring you to talk about what happen
“It’s nothing to talk about. I have been hurt in battle before. This time it just took a little longer to recover from.”
“Captain Wildstar if you fight me on this, I cannot help you.”
“Then don’t help me! I can find some other shrink to spray bullshit on everything! What happen out there happened. Nothing more can be said. So stop trying to analyze me!” he yelled.
Nova heard the yelling in the other room and walked in to see if he was alright. “I’m sorry, is everything okay?”
“Everything is fine, babe. Just releasing some stress.” Derek assured her.
Nova looked from Doctor Hashimoto and her husband. “If you’re okay?”
He walked over to her and kissed her cheek. “We’re fine, promise.” He tried again to assure her. He guided her out the door and then turned to Doctor Hashimoto. “What do you want to know?”
“Why the sudden change?” he was curious.
“Because of her,” he pointed towards the door. “She deserves a better life, and she needs me as a whole not someone that can only be there half the time.”
“Good analogy Captain Wildstar. Now let’s begin, from the beginning.”
“Depends on which beginning you would like when I was five or 10 years old?”
Hashimoto chuckled. “Let’s go to the day you arrived on the planet they imprison you.”
Derek threw himself onto the sofa and rubbed his face. “I don’t remember landing. I woke up on the cot in the cell. I already woke up with pain. I black out the minute one of the solider hit me with their gun. They made me sit in the cell for a day maybe two. I lost track of time after a while. I think it was a few days later that they came to get me. I was walked to some small room and made to sit on some broken chair. Their interrogations are about the same as ours. The broken chair, the low light, the very dark room, all the same. The only thing is that they can do what they want to you. They have no laws to keep them from killing anyone. I rather have them kill me.”
“Why would say that? The fact that your home with your family should prove to you that holding on to life must mean something to you.”
He looked over to a picture of their family and smiled. “Yeah, I guess you right about that.”
“Can I ask how your intimacy is with your wife?”
“Its fine,” he blushed.
“Nothing’s changed?” he pressed.
“It is still the same with us. Like when we were younger. If not better.” He could feel his body blush.
“So everything is working with the mechanics?”
Wildstar refrain from laughing. “Yes, all the pluming is good. Everything is in working order.”
“Okay so let’s push on.”
“Are you sure you’re ready to hear all this. It’s not what everyone thinks.” He said.
“What is everyone saying?”
“That I was sexually assaulted.”
“Well were you?”
“NO! They were brutal but not in that sense. The beatings were hard. Some day’s they used sticks other days they just punch and kicked me. I was left to die in my cell and just when I thought they forgotten about me there they were ready to give me another round. They use sharp blades. I don’t have to tell you how those things sting, especially after they poured salt water on them. The days they left me alone I tried to sleep. But it was a little hard with all the pain. I don’t know when I started to give up, a few weeks, a month, I couldn’t remember. I felt angry that they left even after I gave the order. I was angry at myself and my 2nd in command. I could see Nova’s face as I fell out of the ship, the fear in her face that she will never see me again. All I can think of is her being alone to raise our kids. Sleeping in the dirty nasty cot every night didn’t make it any easier. Gosh on the nights that I couldn’t sleep I spent my time talking to some damn ghost or looking out the cell window wondering what she was doing. Did I mention it was an open window with bars, so imagine the cold bitter nights? I know I was trained for things like that but it’s different when you’re actually in that situation. You know at times I felt like Nova gave up hope on me too. I hate myself for thinking that.”
“How did you feel when you finally were rescued?”
“Hard to say, relieved, happy, mad, upset, Pissed.” Derek said and then punched his hand into the other.
“Why the anger?”
“Don’t you get it? EDF was going to leave me there! They didn’t care! If it wasn’t for my wife and brother I would be dead.”
“I see. Let’s go back to the cell.” He sat back.
“What about the cell? It was a small room. I can stretch my arms out and touch both walls. It had a dirty bed and a disgusting smell. Like some alien piss. I don’t think I can ever forget that smell. But there was one thing about that cell,” he trail off.
“What about it?” Doctor Hashimoto asked.
“I felt safe; it was the only place that they didn’t bother me.” He drifted off into space and then said. “I cried a lot.”
“It’s okay that you cried.”
“No its not, I am an officer and a Star Force member,” He drifted off again and then looked up. His eyes were full of tears.
“Captain Wildstar, its okay to let your emotions go. You’re opening up and that is good.”
He wiped the tears from his eyes and he could feel himself shake. “What the hell is going on with me? “
“It’s PTSD, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Quite common to what you’ve been through.”
“So what do we do to get rid of it?” He asked.
“Well there are drugs that can stop the panic attacks.”
“No, No drugs. I’m not walking around looking like I’m all dope up or looking all loopy. There has to be something else.”
“There is, I have a class for people with PTSD. It is good to talk with others that went through what you went through.”
“Oh no, that’s not going to work. The press would eat this up. Not to mention I can’t even leave the house or its surroundings.”
“We will walk you through it. I didn’t say it will happen overnight. First we work on getting you out then getting you to a meeting.”
“Still, who’s to say that someone at the meeting will call the press and informed them that I am going there?”
“Captain Wildstar trust me exposing you will also be exposing themselves. I keep a tight ship just like yourself.”
Derek nodded his head. “Very well whatever it takes.”
It took weeks for Wildstar to make it out the door and down town. Nova walked him through it on days that he wasn’t seeing Doctor Hashimoto. Each day she would drive closer and closer to the city until he felt comfortable. Some days he would drive to break free of his attacks. Wildstar felt his heart pound faster and faster as he walked into the building and to the doctor’s office. Nova stood by his side and she held his arm encouraging him through the long walk up to the office. She turned to him and smiled. “You’re going to be just fine. Just breathe.” She kissed his lips and fixed his collar. “I love you.”
Derek Wildstar gave her a slight grin and opened the door taking one last look at his wife as he entered the room. Taking a deep breath he looked towards the group and was surprise to see him sitting among them. He looked confused at him as he walked towards them. “Venture?”
“Welcome Wildstar. Come on and have a seat.” Mark Venture guided him to a seat next to him. “We are glad that you’re here.”
Wildstar looked around and found two more fellow crew members. “Davis! Hayakawa! You both are here too?”
Venture explained, “Well I started coming after my incident out in space when you came to the rescue. Davis and Hayakawa also suffer from PTSD when they returned back from Iscandar. It’s been a long run for them but they are doing well and come here ever so often to talk.”
“I never knew.” Wildstar finally said.
“No one ever knew. But it’s nothing to be a shame about it’s a part of all of us. We all dealt with it all differently. But the point is that we are dealing with it and not hiding from it. Let’s all introduce ourselves.”
Later . . . . .
Venture and Wildstar stood by the coffee machine and began to talk about things. “I never knew you were seeing a shrink” Wildstar said.
Venture laughed. “I was never planning on it but just after I got back I start to shake uncontrollably. I was always angry and short with a lot of people. Even Meg the nurse I was seeing was getting the end of it all. She finally left me because she couldn’t take me snapping at her. I really didn’t blame her I was impossible to live with. Right now I’m taking it one day at a time. What happened with you?”
Wildstar looked past him into nothing and stirred his coffee. “Panic Attacks. It started right after I was release from the hospital. I never thought anything of it until Nova and I went out. It hit me like a ton of bricks. I broke out in cold sweat, I couldn’t breathe and I blacked out.”
“If I know Nova, she insisted that you see a shrink.”
He smirked, “yeah, he wanted to give me drugs but you know me. I don’t want that crap.”
“Yeah they wanted to give me drugs too. No way, that is a sure way of getting medically discharge from EDF.” He huffed. “I feel better talking about it all. A few more sessions and I should be able to walk near the carnival rides without breaking into a song and dance.” He joked.
“Yeah I think I should be able to walk by my in laws house without breaking in a cold sweat.” He joked back.
“How are you and Nova doing?” Venture asked.
Wildstar smirked, “Are you going to ask me how my plumbing is also?”
Venture frowned, “What? I don’t get it.”
“Nothing. We are just fine.”
“And my god children?”
“Well Alex is still the serious one. I swear I find myself always walking on eggshells around him. DJ, hmm, what can I not tell you without making you accessory after the fact.” Ventured laughed. “He is a hand full. And Miku is just getting prettier as she gets older. I fear the day she starts to date.”
“And that will be?”
“Oh I was thinking about 30 or 35 or even after I’m dead. Al and Deej can take over from there.”
Venture laughed and felt for his dear friend. “If she turns out to be as beautiful as Nova then you my dear friend you are in for a lot of stress.”
“Please don’t talk to me about it. My panic attacks will start all over again.” He chuckled. He then turned serious, “It’s good to see you again my friend, even if it’s under these circumstances.”
“Don’t worry Wildstar Doctor Hashimoto is the best. He helped me a lot. Your wife knows her doctors. He is the best.”
Wildstar eyes narrow and said, “Excuse me?”
“She never mentioned it?”
“No she never said a word.”
“I guess she wouldn’t. It would be breaking patient confidentiality. We have to hand it to our girl she can keep a secret.”
“What do you mean our girl? MY Girl, let’s get that straight.” Wildstar said sternly.
Venture stood silent and then Wildstar laughed out loud. Venture wiped his brow and laughed with him. “You had me there; I thought I would need more therapy to our past.”
He patted him on the back and laughed. “She’s waiting outside for me. Come on, I’m sure she would like to see you.”
To be continue d . . . . .
Now home, safe and on the road to recovery. Derek Wildstar tries to settle back in to life with his wife and family. What lays ahead for the young officer and his family, read on to see what happens next……