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|Music of the Soul(Runaway Train #2.5) by Katie Ashley|
Jake gave me a brief kiss before heading off the opposite side of the stage for his entrance with Runaway Train. When I started off stage, the pain in my side grew so intense it caused me to stagger momentarily. Once I had regained my footing, I drew in a few deep breaths before continuing into the wings. Gritting my teeth, I wove in and out of the roadies and stage crew. As I bypassed the backstage waiting room, Eli called to me. “Where are you going?”
I glanced over my shoulder. “Back to the bus. I want to lie down.”
Eli’s brows furrowed. “You okay, sis? You look kinda pale.”
Since I didn’t want to worry them unnecessarily, I nodded. “I’m fine. I just need some more Advil that’s all and to lie down for a little while.”
“Jody, make sure Abby gets to the bus okay,” Gabe instructed.
I rolled my eyes at their being so overprotective. “Guys, I’m fine.”
“Just shut up and let Jody do his job,” Eli replied.
Since the pain had grown even more intense, I merely nodded. In silence, Jody followed me to Jake’s and my bus. Without the driver, Jody had to unlock the door. “Perry is inside with the rest of the crew. Will you be okay by yourself?”
“I’ll be fine.”
“Okay, I’ll lock the door behind you.”
“Thanks,” I murmured.
When I started up the stairs, I felt something trickling between my legs. Pain seized me so hard I bent double and screamed in agony. My knees gave way, and I collapsed onto the floor. With trembling hands, I felt of the stickiness that ran down my thighs. Bringing it up to the light I saw it was dark red blood. “Oh God,” I muttered.
Reaching out, I grasped hold of the side of the couch and tried to pull myself up. I knew my cell phone was somewhere in the bedroom, and I desperately needed to get to it. When I flung myself onto the couch, the stabbing pain caused me to shriek again. On trembling legs, I took two steps. A roar came through my head as everything grew black. I pitched forward and fell to the ground before everything faded around me, and I was enveloped in the darkness.
When I came off stage after our set, I was a sweaty, exhausted mess. Peering around the back stage room, I searched for Abby, but I couldn’t find her anywhere. During our duets, something had been off with her, and I was worried. “She went on to the bus after our show. She wasn’t feeling well,” Gabe informed me.
Icy apprehension ricocheted through me. Abby wasn’t one to ever complain, so the very fact she had gone to lie down meant there was something wrong. “Oh okay,” I mumbled, raking a shaky hand through my hair.
When a roadie thrust a clean shirt and bottle of water at me, I shook my head. “Thanks man, but I’ll grab something on the bus. I wanna check on Abby.”
The roadie nodded as I brushed past him out the door. “Wait up, Jake,” Perry, our bus driver said. I slowed my fast pace as he jogged up to catch me. “Figured I better come with ya since Jody locked her in.”
I was glad Perry didn’t give me any shit about starting out without a body guard. As I eyed the bus in the distance, I was surprised to see there weren’t any lights on. A feeling of dread entered the pit of my stomach, and I couldn’t help breaking into a run. When I reached the bus, Perry was right at my side. Once he unlocked the door, I pounded up the stairs. As I gazed wildly around the living area, my instincts had been spot-on because something didn’t feel right. “Abby?” I called.
When she didn’t answer, I started down the aisle. My shoe hit something firm in the middle of the aisle floor. I jerked my gaze down, and my world to shudder to a stop. Abby lay crumpled in a heap. I dropped to my knees at her side. “Abby?” After I pulled her into my arms, I patted her face several times, but she didn’t open her eyes.
“Call 911!” I shouted at Perry.
He ripped his phone out his pocket and was dialing within an instant. My wild gaze took in Abby’s unconscious form. At the sight of the blood on her thighs, my heart shuddered to a stop. “Oh, God. No.” I rubbed Abby’s arms and gently shook her shoulders. “Angel, please wake up. Please…don’t leave me.”
The piercing wail of the on-site ambulance filled my ears as did the glaring red and white lights. The next few seconds seemed to crawl by in a painful haze. As I cradled Abby in my arms, loud voices came from the front of the bus. The paramedics shoved me to the side as they started working on Abby. I barely felt Perry lifting me up and pulling me out of the bus. He dragged me down the stairs to where my bandmates stood.
“What’s happened?” Brayden demanded.
“I dunno,” I murmured absently, staring at the pavement.
Perry, whose arm around me was probably the only reason why I was still standing, spoke up. “She was unconscious on the floor when we got there. There was…blood.”
A feminine gasp caused met to raise my head. Mia stood beside AJ with Bella on her hip. “You need to tell them that she’s been experiencing lower abdominal pain, right flank, the last few days.”
“Could it be her appendix?” Rhys questioned.
Mia shook her head. “Not if she’s hemorrhaging. It sounds like something reproductive like a…” Her eyes widened, and she pinched her lips shut.
“Like a what?” I demanded.
“A miscarriage,” she replied in a whisper.
I sagged against Perry. How could Abby be pregnant? She was on the pill, and most mornings, I saw her take it. “No method is one hundred percent,” Mia said softly, as if she were reading my mind.