Title: Moments 2/2
Author: Darshann (Kiss)
Spoilers: Walk in the Woods
Summary : what happens right after Kerry leaves the restaurant.
Discalimer: Kim, Kerry, Carter, Abby, Benton, Malucci - don't own 'em. I own this story...
If love btw two women offends, read something else... enjoy.
Note: the title "Moments" refers to many things, many kinds of moments. Good ones , bad ones... but mostly - important ones. For both Kim and Kerry... these 'moments' will be remembered 'all of their lives'. And for those of you really clued into my frame of reference, that is an allusion to a song from Streisand's movie Yentl: This Is One of Those Moments
Moments, Part 2
The door closes behind me and I sit back into the cab seat. The cabby looks at me, waiting for an address. Dammit. I don't know where... I just want to get away. "Just Drive."
The man nods and then starts the car moving. My hand at my forehead, I sink into the safety of this space as my thoughts spin in turmoil through my mind. Ahhhhhhhhhh! How did this happen? Is someone up there laughing at me? Fuck. Just when I was getting comfortable. Reality.
Sucks don't it? Sometimes I really hate that voice in my head. I gaze out the window, not wanting to think about this anymore. Snow swirling outside, the street gleaming and slick. Glad I didn't drive tonight. I'd probably get myself killed trying to drive home in this crap right now.
The moment stretches into that familiar blank emptiness I have come so accustomed to over the years. For a brief time Kim had filled my life with light, so much light. But it comes with so much baggage. It isn't fair. All I wanted... all I want... I jerk my thoughts back to the swirling snow, ignoring the abandoned sob stuck in my throat. If I close my eyes will it just all go away? Will I wake up to her smile again? Sigh.
I feel eyes on me and glance up to see the driver's eyes watching me curiously. I scowl and he looks away quickly, but I know he'll look back again. Well, he can't just drive you around all night. You have to go home sometime. .. Do I? My heart sinks at the thought of sleeping alone for the first time in weeks.. I consider heading to Kim's and waiting... No. I'm still angry. I'm still... I don't know how I feel. So what? I have to go somewhere. Somewhere.
Does it really matter. No one is waiting. Yes, she is... besides her... I can't go to her. Not now... I lean my head back on the seat and stare at the stained ceiling. I wonder how much it costs to drive around in a cab all night...
The cab pulls away, leaving behind a cloud of steam in its wake. I crunch through the snow on the pavement as I slowly make my way to the swinging doors of the ER. I'd stopped by home, but it had seemed so empty. The idea of sitting in the darkness crying was not what I needed. No. Crying in the dark is not me. Not me anymore than cracking jokes about U-hauls and such. U-hauls. Whatever. Anger flickers across my mind. I should have strangled that woman and -then - walked out.
I stab my crutch into the snow. I should have done something. I can't believe I did that. Left her there with that look on her face. That wounded look of a five year old. But I couldn't stay. Not there in the midst of their alien words and sharp tongues. I couldn't keep up with their jokes let alone barbs. What was that woman's problem anyway? Stupid lesbian. I inhale sharply at the remark. Did I just think that? Shit. I am such a hypocrite. Who am I kidding anyway? A person who sleeps with women is a lesbian... Hello! What have I been doing every damn night for the past three weeks?! I picture Kim, soft under my touch, arching into my hands. A shiver shoots through me and I smile in spite of myself.
I stand at the doors. What am I doing here? I should go find her and talk this out. I bet she's looking for me already. Well, I did say I'd call later. Oh God what will I say. Fear and anger grips me all over again. Ok, scratch that, not ready to talk to Kim right now. What I need is distraction. I step inside. Here I am, back at work - Hell on earth, my sanctuary. Well it's not like I don't have plenty of work, I always have work I can do. After a few hours, I'll be so exhausted maybe I'll just crash on a cot in the back room. That way I won't have to go home. Won't have to stare at my empty bed and think of her across town. She'll be worried if I don't call her. I shake my head, pushing her away. I don't want to think about it.
I hear the sound of a flatline in Trauma One and muffled shouts as the doctors frantically try to resuscitate. Then a thump as a body is shocked, then shocked again. The monitor hiccups and then settles into a heartbeat. I hear muffled voices, as the doctors move back into the rhythm of their work. Another life saved, another death forestalled.
I scan the hall for people. Carter will be here still. I'll duck in the office and maybe he won't notice. If he corners me, I just might rip his head off. Actually that might not be so bad, I could use a little head ripping right now. A smile threatens to break through as I wander into the ER. Not too many cases on the board. Where is everyone?
I round the corner and see Abby just hanging up the phone at the desk. She looks worried when she looks up. "Dr. Weaver!" She rushes over. Dammit, so much for sneaking in unnoticed. "I was just calling you."
"I'm not on call tonight, Abby. I ... I just came in to catch up on some paperwork..." I scowl at her, itching to bite her head off for calling me at home. "What is so urgent it can't wait 'til the morning?"
Her face falls and she looks away searching for words. "Uh. You're friends with Dr. Legaspi, right?"
My chest feels tight as the name hits home. Uh oh. Have they guessed? A million images of Malucci gossiping about Kim and I cascade across my vision. Oh, but how I would love to give him a piece of my mind. Shit. Shit. Shit. This is the last thing I need tonight.
Oh. Smooth, Kerry, be obvious why don't you. I gaze at the admit forms, picking up a clipboard absently. "Yeah. We... We've had dinner a few times. I don't know her too well. Why?"
"Oh. Well, um, we were hoping you might know if she had any family or friends that you know of... to call...."
My head snaps up and I glare at her. What is this cat and mouse? "Why."
"Well, she was in a car wreck.. and"
My body goes cold. "Where." I squeak.
"Trauma One." Oh God. I start moving towards the room, my blood pumping in my ears. Oh shit oh shit. Let her be ok. "Weaver? Do you know?" Abby, close on my heels. God, but she can be annoying!
"What?!" I wheel around on her. The startled expression on her face brings me back. "Oh. No, I have no idea. I think her parents live on the West Coast. Her friends. I....I don't know." I reach the door to Trauma One and Abby holds it open. She doesn't have a clue. She wouldn't let me in if she knew how close I am to this. How close I was. Shit.
I see her lying there tubes everywhere. Blood everywhere. Benton is working on her, Carter assisting. A huge gash on her right side, their hands deep inside. It looks like she was ripped open. She's so pale, she must have lost a ton of blood. Her shirt is off, though her bra is still in place. For a crazy moment I want to drag Carter and Benton away from her and shield her beauty from their eyes. Ridiculous. That's the last thing they are thinking about. I glance at the monitors. Her heart beat is slow, but steady. A pile of used blood bags on the tray next to her, more flowing into her IVs. How much did she lose? That looks like ... My eyes graze over the crash cart and then jerk back. They're too close to the gurney, and the paddle surfaces are coated with gel, like they have just been used. I shudder. Oh God that was her. They've had to shock her. Oh God. What if she dies. What if she dies thinking....
"Do you want to scrub in?" Abby asks from behind. I dumbly shake my head and she moves around me. Carter notices her as she comes up to his elbow. Then he raises his eyes to meet mine. His face is filled with emotion. For Kim? He stares at me for a long moment and then drops his eyes.
"Abby take over for me for a minute, here hold this." She pulls on gloves and takes the clamp he'd been holding. Holding back a flap in Kim's abdomen, organs exposed. Oh God, I feel sick... when was the last time I felt sick looking at a patient? Well, this isn't any ole patient. I glance back at Carter.
He's removing his gloves and heading towards me. Something in his demeanor is odd. Something about the look in his eyes. Oh God, what is he going to tell me? What..? Wait, why would he be telling me anything? He stands opposite me in the doorway. He looks down at the floor and then says softly, "Kerry, why don't we go outside." I stare at him... Kerry? He notices my confusion and gently touches my arm as he turns to leave the room. "Come on."
I glance back at Kim lying motionless on the table and then follow him out to the empty admit desk. He stops, back toward me. Not meeting my eyes. "John?"
He turns, scratching his lip. "Yeah." He reaches over to the counter and nervously starts tapping his fingers on the formica. He clears his throat. Why is he acting like...? Then it strikes me and I peer closer at him. Leave it to Carter to guess. He must be disgusted. No wonder he can't look at me.
I slump against the wall and stare at my feet. "What tipped you off?" His feet shuffle and he mumbles something I can't hear. "What?" I look up at him. He's smiling sheepishly. Shit, I just confirmed it for him. Fine. Here we go. "Look, Carter, I don't want to hear about your ... dammit ... look it's none of your business. Just tell me what happened!"
He's silent for a moment. So I lay one of my scowls on him and that gets him going again. "She got in a car wreck. She came in, barely conscious, we gave her about 5 pints and she seemed to be holding ok, but then she crashed. She was losing blood faster then we could put it in... turns out her spleen was crushed and a kidney and renal artery damaged pretty badly... but we pulled her through, Kerry. Benton has got it under control. She'll be ok. It was close, but she'll be ok."
His hand rests on my arm and I look up into his eyes, intense compassion written all over his features. I look away, embarrassed. "Thank you, Carter." I gently move away so his hand falls from my arm. Tears threaten to start, but I stare hard at the ground willing them back inside.
"It's ok, Kerry. I know you like your privacy, but..."
"Don't you dare tell another soul, Carter. You hear me?" My voice chilled with rage bubbling over. I know he doesn't deserve it, but he's in the way.. and it has to go somewhere. He holds up his hands and shakes his head. I let out my breath, relieved.
"I should go back in there. You going to be ok?" I jerk my head up and down, barely holding on. He eyes me silently, not moving. I wish I could talk to him. It would be nice to talk to someone... The thought surprises me. He starts moving toward Trauma One and then stops. "She said your name when we brought her back." So many conflicting emotions. Joy, fear, sorrow, grief, anger. She almost died, you heartless bitch and you're worried if she exposed you? He half turns and glances at me. "No one else heard it." He turns away again. Kerry, you are such an idiot.
"Is that how you knew?" My voice catches, the pitch rising up too high at the end. Carter shakes his head. "How, then..." I whisper. Wanting to talk to him, but afraid of what he'll say. Afraid of what he thinks. My legs give out and I sit in one of the waiting area chairs, my head against the cold metal of my cane. I hear him move to sit in a chair next to me.
"Does it matter?" I sigh against my hands and shrug. "I could just tell. The way you were acting around her. I've heard the rumors about her, just like everyone else. I saw you leave together a few times... and you just looked so happy. You never look that happy. Usually you've bitten off half of our heads five minutes into your shift. But lately, you ask how we're doing and smile!" He chuckles.
"That bad, eh? Nice to know you appreciate me so much."
"Hey, you're the best I've ever seen at running an ER. Sometimes that means knocking heads, mine included. Course, I am glad you're happy for my own selfish reasons. I don't think you would have let me off so easy about my slip, had things been different."
"You did get off easy. Oh God, Carter, I've been conquered by a pretty face." We both laugh. When was the last time I did that with a co-worker? I look over and smile at him. "Thanks, Carter, I needed that." He raises his eyebrows as I pat his arm. "Now get your butt back in there, pronto!"
"Yes, ma'am!" He jumps up saluting and heads back to Kim. He calls back over his shoulder. "I'll come get you as soon as you can see her." He disappears in side the room.
In the silence, I hear the beating of my heart, the rhythm of my breath. You almost lost her, tonight... twice. What were you thinking? I wasn't. Yeah well, that's not terribly new lately. So I've been happy, lately? I wonder if anyone else has noticed. Stop it. Just stop it. Who the hell cares, if they did. Look how well he reacted. Hell, he was more worried about my reaction to his knowing then giving a damn that I'm... say it Kerry.. say it.. Gay. In fact he seemed happy for me. Carter is pretty soft though. Why do I care what these people think? When have I ever cared what they think of me? Half the time they must hate me, so what if ...if ... if
Dammit, there you go again, all about you. What about Kim? Please be ok, please be ok. I close my eyes and picture her smile. Picture her in the morning.
Her robe ripples against her skin as she stands in front of the mirror. As she moves, it opens slightly, hinting the slope of her breast, the smooth skin of her tummy...
She's going to have a nasty scar, now. It won't matter. It wouldn't matter if she had a hundred criss-crossing her body. She would still be beautiful to me.
... the curve of her thigh. The hot air of the hair dryer is bringing out a flush in her cheeks. Her hair blowing back from her face. She's so beautiful. What did I ever do to deserve her? Just the way she moves sends a thrill through me. Knowing I am watching her, a sly sexy smile graces her mouth and she glances at me every now and then. A myriad of emotions wander across her features as she turns to see me. Wondering. Hoping. Relieved. Flattered. Adoring. Loving. Longing . And then back to the mirror. I memorize the lines of her face over and over as I lie in the softness of her bed. Caressing her with my mind. Wanting her. Amazed she wants me back just as much as I want her. And I love her. I love her. The thought comforts me and scares me at the same time. How could I feel this so fast? It took me years to fall for my ex-husband... I push it away as the dryer stops and she turns to look at me...
I love her. I pause at the thought. Seeing her lying motionless on the gurney in my mind. Nothing else matters, Kerry. I almost lost her without telling her. I remember the look on her face from earlier. That look of utter destruction. I made her feel that. Me. How could I do that? How could I do that to her? I should of just .. just what? So her friends are jerks... some of mine are too, quite frankly... so are you at times. Can't keep expecting her to hide away like this. You were the one who ran after her... you knew what you were getting into.
I don't want to be gay.
The image of Kim's face makes me laugh. Her eyebrows raised and her mouth twisted in a half smile.
Nobody does, Kerry. I bet you didn't want to walk with a cane either.
I had gotten angry with her for that comment and the conversation had ended... but I had heard it none the less. Ok, so what if I am. Fine. So now what? Does that mean I ... I ... what does that mean? Does it really change who I am? Does it really change how people feel about me? It gives them one more reason to hate me... Boy, Malucci is going to love this... Not everyone will hate you... Carter doesn't. Sigh.
Just then Carter walks out of Trauma One. I catch his eye and he smiles. "She's awake and asking for you... course... I made sure to 'suggest' it so she wouldn't have to ask and blow your cover."
I grin up at him like an idiot. "Thanks, Carter." Great, my hero... what am I going to do with this guy now that I'm in his debt. Well, I did allow him to stay here after his slip up. I guess we're even. I struggle to stand and start moving toward the room holding Kim. I feel my insides hot and churning... what is this, nerves? Well, what if she tells you to get lost... after that display earlier and a near death experience.. who knows what she's thinking...
Benton exits the doors and watches me enter with a puzzled expression on his face. Not now Benton, not now. He shrugs and heads down that hall.
I enter the room. Abby is preparing to move her.. presumably into recovery. She'll have to be admitted. Well, Abby is going to find out a thing or two any second now. I take a deep breath and Abby looks up at the sound. I bite my lip. Shit, I'm not ready for all of this at once. "Abby, I can finish up in here, why don't you go take a break." Abby pauses, instrument in mid-air, eyes frozen in disbelief. "I'd go now, before I change my mind." Abby mouths the word 'ok' and quickly leaves the room.
I stand there, dumbly. Not able to move. Joy and fear overwhelming me. "Kerry?" Kim's voice is barely a whisper and I know it must hurt to talk right now. I rush to her side so she can see me.
"Shhhhh. It's ok, I'm here." She frantically searches my eyes. She looks so scared. Her forehead crinkles, warning of impending tears. I smooth her cheek. "It's ok. You're fine now." Her expression doesn't change... Oh. This is about 'us'. I gaze at her for a moment, gathering my thoughts as my fingers continue to caress her face. "I... I..." She starts struggling, wanting to touch me. "Kim, no, don't move. Please."
Her face crumbles like a child's. "I'm sorry." The whisper is followed by tears racing down her cheeks.
I grip her hand and shake my head, confused. "For what?"
She stares back and swallows. "Dinner?" Oh yeah, that.
"It doesn't matter anymore." Her eyes go wide and I smile. "I know, I know... expecting some big argument? I'm just glad you're ok. I almost lost you." My throat constricts and my voice rises in pitch. "I don't want to ever lose you, Kim." So many emotions push at me from all sides. I don't care what the rest of the world thinks about us... "I ... I love you." My face goes hot and I know I must be turning pink. But it is worth it for the look on her face. Sunshine through a storm cloud. Oh I do... I really do love you.
I lean down to kiss her.. and she squirms, her eyes wide. "They'll see!"
I smile and shake my head... "Yes. And I don't care anymore." The corners of her lips turn up in a smile and I again lean down to feel their softness against my own for a moment. One shining moment. The world is no longer dark and dangerous, whispers around every corner. I feel liberated, free.
This is one of those moments you remember all of your life.
Our lips part and I hover inches from her beautiful face. "I love you, too." Kim whispers, her blue eyes shining. I smile at her and the world is perfect. Who would have guessed a night like this could end with such bliss? Perhaps this was always meant to be. I don't care why.. really... but it feels good. No... it feels wonderful.
"Let's get you ready to be admitted." I start bustling around her as Kim lets out a groan. "I know, I know. Look in a little while I'll go get some of your stuff and my stuff and I'll have a cot set up in the same room. Hey, you have to have some advantages to working here, right?"
....................................................... the end...................................................
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