Sequel: Bittersweet
Status: Completed! 8.09.12

Sweet Temptations

Finding Hope

The room was dark, the only light coming was from the lamp on the bedside table. Fernando looked down at his hands, covering her small one, placed on the white sheets of the small hospital bed. He fought against the tears stinging the back of his eyes. He ran his thumb over the back of her hand in a soothing manner, and brought her hand up to his lips, kissing it. He looked at her beautiful face, expressionless, blank, peaceful, unaware. He watched it for what felt like hours, or what probably were hours. Watched it intently, as if he was expecting to see her long eyelashes fluttering, or her beautiful green eyes opening to see him sitting there, willing her to wake up.

A couple of hours earlier, the doctors had explained to Fernando on what had happened to her. He had informed Fernando that Ava had been shot twice but because the bullets were stuck deep into her flesh, she was losing a lot of blood and needed surgery immediately to remove them. Ava also had the blow to her head, a few cracked ribs and a broken hand. It would take a while for her to fully heal.

From what Fernando had learnt off of the police, the suspect had been arrested and was taking in for later questioning. For now though, his full concern was on Ava. He felt so bad and he couldn't help but think this was all his fault. Latoya was partly right, if he hadn't left her unsupervised, Ava wouldn't have left the house but Ava herself was also right, she was old enough to do what she pleased. However, this was something he had warned her about; Ava just didn't listen. Fernando wasn't blaming her either for the situation. He knew how much she'd wanted to find her parents. Ava just sacrificed herself to save them.

The sound of a door opening brought Fernando back from his thoughts. Latoya entered and she sent a concerned look to Fernando."Have you been here all night?" She asked. The Spanish footballer looked truly exhausted as he nodded. "You should go rest, you looked tired."

"No, I'm not leaving her."

"Fernando, you need sleep and something to eat; anyway I'm here now so I'll take the next shift." When Latoya got no reply, she sighed. "Look, I know you care a lot about Ava and...I know you love her too but sitting here every night isn't going to make her wake up," she said. "You're going to make yourself ill and Ava wouldn't want that."

"Oh why do you care Latoya?" Fernando snapped. The anger in his voice took her off guard and she immediately felt hurt. Latoya joined Ava's bedside and sat in one of the chairs across from Fernando.

"I know I haven't exactly been that nice to you and I don't approve of this secret affair relationship or whatever you two have but the truth is, I simply act mean because I want to be liked and I'm afraid of being hated." She confessed. Latoya began to cry as she stared down at her friend who was fighting for her life. "I don't mean to act such a bitch but I know I am."

"That's not true." The Spaniard reassured.

"Si, it is. Ava was always the one to keep me in the line. She's the first friend I've ever had- we went through everything together," she said. "Ava's been there for me since day one just as was always there for her. She's the first person I've trusted with my life and I love her for everything that she's done for me." Fernando watched Latoya pour her heart out and he couldn't help but feel slightly pained to see her like this. "I'm not usually the jealous type but I envy Ava."

"Qué? That's crazy."

"No it's not." Latoya cried. "I'm jealous of how smart she is and how beautiful she looks, how nice she is, I'll never be that."

"Latoya, people can change the way they act, how they feel. There are people out there who aren't experienced as others, it doesn't matter how much knowledge you have and looks certainly don't matter either. I mean sure I got the kind of wrong impression about you but if you open up your feelings to people, they'll understand and they won't judge you." He encouraged. "I think Ava is really lucky to have you as a best friend."

"Do you mean that?"

Fernando nodded. "Of course I do." He replied softly. Latoya grinned and thanked him.

"I think Ava is lucky to have you too," said Latoya. She watched as Fernando looked down at Ava with so much love in his eyes.

"You should go."

"Will you be alright on your own?" Fernando asked the brunette.

"I'll be fine." She told him honestly.

Fernando stared down at Ava lovingly before bending forward and pressing his lips to her forehead, lingering there for a second; he then turned to face Latoya. "If anything comes up, call me."

"I will don't worry." She said, sending Fernando a gentle smile who kindly returned it.


The next few days flew by. Fernando and Latoya each shared shifts, taking turns to monitor Ava who had been taken off the ventilator the day before. The next morning at training, Chelsea's captain, John Terry had become very concerned about his no.1 striker. Fernando lacked concentration and he was more frustrated than ever. As the team entered the changing rooms to go shower, John pulled Fernando back to have a quick conversation.

"Good session today Nando but eh, I'm a little worried," he said, making Fernando knit his eyebrows together in confusion. "Is there anything bothering you at all? I don't mean to pry, it's just a few of lads, they were mumbling about a certain girl, Ava maybe?"

Fernando sighed and nodded his head in confirmation. He went to sit in one of the chairs nearby, placing his forearms on top of his knees and looking up at John. "I messed up. Ava's fighting for her life in hospital. She's in there because of me."

John looked at the Spaniard with unreadable eyes. He nodded and grabbed two water bottles from the cool box; he grabbed a chair and sat in front of Fernando, passing him a bottle.

"What makes you say that?" John asked.

Fernando stared straight ahead, huffing out of frustration. "I should have seen it coming but I ignored the signs, I should have…protected her better."

"You know, I don't understand what's gone off and I'm not going to get involved but I stick by my players who happen to be my close friends and that includes you Fernando, look at me." Fernando kept his gaze on the opposite wall. "Hey!" John said, snapping his fingers in front of Fernando's eyes. "Look at me." Fernando sighed and turned his head slowly, looking at John with a blank expression.
"She's not gonna blame you for this." John started, eyeing him for a reaction. "And neither are we, because we're your pals. What ever happened, is between Ava and whoever else she was with. That's in the past. Your concern is on her now and she's going to need you by her side, alright?"
Fernando registered John's advice and nodded again. "Everything will be okay in the end." John reassumed. Fernando hoped he was right.

Fernando and John entered the changing room and walked straight to their lockers. Fernando grabbed his phone from his locker and checked to see that he had 3 missed calls all off Latoya. He'd instantly became alerted and when he had a sudden message from Ava's friend, a smile appeared on his face.

"She's been taken off life support, Ava's awakening x"

"Hey John?" Fernando called out, looking to his captain. "Maybe you were right, everything will be okay, Gracias"

John sent him a grin and patted Fernando on the back. "No worries mate."
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Double update! Woooo!
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