Racing With Secrets
Trowa sprinted into Laurel's room to find it buzzing with activity. Sally Po was trying to speak to Laurel, but the girl was apparently
beyond hearing. The child's eyes seemed blank when they suddenly rolled back in their sockets leaving only blood-shot whites showing
as she began to tremble. Other medical personnel swarmed around the tiny girl when suddenly her body began to shake violently.
Sally gently held Laurel's head in a firm grip and looked to see what else needed immediate attention. "Smith, can you watch her legs?
Be careful of the bullet wound; it reopened during an earlier seizure and is torn up worse than before!"
"How many seizures did she have while I was gone?" MacDougall demanded preparing a syringe for the child, but there was no way to
administer it with the seizure holding her in its grasp.
"Three more, doctor. Each lasted longer than the previous. The second lasted a little over 90 seconds, the third almost 2 minutes."
"Not acceptable! We've got to get this in her system or she's going to have permanent brain damage! Somebody hold down her left
arm, tight! We're only going to get one shot at this!" MacDougall quickly swabbed the arm and rammed the needle into a vein emptying
its contents as quickly as he could.
Dumfounded, Trowa simply stood in the doorway. He watched as the girl he had so many mixed emotions about struggled on the
hospital bed. What were they saying about brain damage? Was she dying? Something suddenly snapped in his mind as he realized an
overwhelming need to protect this child. He *did* love her, in spite of himself. It finally dawned on him his own fears no longer
mattered. Now all he wanted to do was to somehow, someway stop what was happening and tell her it would be okay. He desperately
wanted to tell her they *would* be a family and live together, just as she said. He realized he, too, wanted all of these things more than
he could have possibly imagined! The noise of orders given and followed continued unabated in the room as he took a few steps inside.
Sally glanced up at him. "Trowa! Get over here! We need all the help we can get!"
"What's wrong with her, Sally?" Trowa strode forward purposefully. He quickly replaced Sally's hands with his own, freeing her up to
help other places.
"Febrile seizures, Trowa," Sally shook her head slowly. "Her fever is over 105F and climbing. Her body has had multiple seizures, each
longer than those previous. She can't respond to us any more and if we can't break it in the next few minutes she'll either suffer from
massive brain damage or possibly die. I'm sorry, Trowa, I know how much she means to you and Quatre both, but this was a totally
unexpected reaction to an antibiotic used after her gunshot wound. Talk to her, maybe she'll be able to hear you since you are closer to
her! Where's Quatre? He needs to be here!"
Trowa had already turned his entire focus on Laurel. "Laurel, sweetheart, can you hear me?" Holding her head in his hands and trying to
rest her shoulders against his body, he spoke into her ear. "Trowa-daddy is here for you, baby, can you please answer me? We need
you to wake up." There seemed to be a small change in the child's facial features the minute he called himself "Trowa-daddy". Her
struggles grew less and her body began to relax.
"Time?!" the doctor demanded.
"Seizure lasted 75 seconds, ended roughly 30 seconds following injection."
"What?" MacDougall looked disturbed. "It shouldn't have taken effect that quickly! Check her vital signs, and get an EEG in here! We
may have lost her after all."
A small voice broke through the noise, "Mr. Trowa? Are you really here?"
Sally cried in relief, "Forget the EEG, MacDougall, she's speaking!"
Trowa smiled at her his heart in his eyes, "Yes, angel, I'm here. And, yes, I want to be your 'Trowa-daddy', too. Would you still like
Laurel's eyes, tired and bloodshot, were somehow filled with joy that only the two of them would ever understand. "Oh, yes,
Trowa-daddy! I want to be your little girl so very much, but where's Quatre-daddy?" Her tears fell in earnest, the child's crying was a
mixture of pain and happiness, but Trowa only had her in mind. "Daddy, I'm scared! Why does everything hurt so much?"
"Shh, there now," he soothed and kissed her gently. "Quatre-daddy will be here soon and Dr. Sally is here now. But I wont leave you, I
promise. I'll stay right here as long as you need me to, baby."
"Actually," a voice came from the doorway, "I'm here, too, sweetheart." Quatre stepped up to the child and held her in his arms as best
he could. Both he and Trowa kept constant physical contact with her to reassure her they were there. The nurses and the doctor had
backed off somewhat, but were unwilling to leave until this was resolved.
"The fever's broken," one of the nurses stated. "It's down to 104.7 and seems to be decreasing. Congratulations, doctor, whatever you
used seemed to have done the trick."
"Really? I wonder," came MacDougall's thoughtful reply watching the two young men holding the girl so possessively. "Keep an eye on
her, nurse. Dr. Po, may I speak with you?" The two physicians stepped into the relative privacy of the hallway.
Quatre looked up at his beloved and was shocked to see the faintest shimmer of tears in his emerald eyes. Trowa refused to take his
eyes off of Laurel, who seemed to be falling asleep in their arms. "Trowa, what happened to you? Are you okay?"
"Oh, koibito," Trowa finally dropped his gaze as he leaned against his love's soft hair. "I can't really explain it. Something has been
bothering me, but when I got here they said Laurel might die and I felt as if they had said the same thing about you. I couldn't stand it!"
Trowa's voice dropped away as he spoke. Slight tremors ran through his lanky frame and Quatre's confusion and fear intensified.
Without warning, Sally Po was there, gently supporting both men and easing Laurel back onto her pillows. Gently but firmly she forced
the two to step away from the child and over to the bed where Quatre had slept. Trowa leaned heavily against it, then collapsed in a
tangle of limbs halfway across the bed.
"Trowa!" Quatre exclaimed, frightened by the sudden change.
"It's okay, Quatre," Sally reassured him, checking Trowa's pulse and then lifting the boy onto the bed. "He never slept last night, Quatre.
He's exhausted and everything that happened with Laurel overwhelmed him, that's all." She ran her fingers through her hair, then looked
at him with a small smile. "Would you mind if we went and got a cup of coffee, I really need some?"
"Only if you'll explain all of this to me, Sally," Quatre's voice sounded like broken glass.
"Sure, I'll try to, but let's go. Everything here's going to be fine now." As they left a nurse announced the temperature had dropped to
Several days later, things had changed radically in the hospital.
Duo's heart transplant had been surprisingly successful and there was every indication he would have a full recovery. He wasn't able to
remain conscious for long or even remember where he was most of the time, but he did regain consciousness briefly within 24 hours of
surgery which was an excellent sign.
Laurel's frightening response to the antibiotic had been halted in time to stave off brain damage to any extent they could detect. She, too,
was slowly regaining strength. The bullet wound had indeed reopened and had required far more extensive repairs which required full
surgery; during one of the seizures, apparently an artery had been stressed to the breaking point within her thigh. Now the child was
covered in casts one on her right arm and one almost the length of her left leg. Tired and sleepy most of the time, she was content to rest
in her bed, and while it wasn't necessary, one of her two "fathers" was with her or nearby almost always. The day of the seizures, Trowa
remained asleep on the second bed throughout the remainder of the day, awakening quite disoriented around 3 the next morning.
Regrettably, one patient had shown no signs of improvement whatsoever, Heero Yuy.
Gene Starwind had debriefed the attending ICU physicians on his use of pseudodreine, and Heero's initial reactions to the drug. He had
also explained Heero's mental state and how drastically it had changed between when they met at Nambu Memorial and when they
arrived back there. They were all perplexed why the rare side-effect had lasted so long and had actually deepened into a full coma.
Gene Starwind refused to return to Tokyo until Heero regained consciousness. He felt it was his fault the coma had been induced and he
was not about to leave until it was over.
Quatre generously invited Gene to join them at the Queensberry, and it gave the tired doctor a place to catch up on his sleep, too. With
Wufei's arm finally improving, this gave them a total of five people to keep watch over the other three, something that made it easier for
all of them. Granted, Trowa and Quatre spent the majority of their time with Laurel and Gene spent most of his between Heero and
Duo; after all, he had bragged to several interns about this being his "lucky number 4" and wasn't about to let Duo slip away now! Sally
and Wufei were content to spread their time more evenly, actually spending most of their efforts "watching the watchers" to make sure
no one else would be admitted before this was over with.
On the afternoon of the third day, when things seemed to be going as well as could be expected, Wufei and Sally took a little time off
and spent the afternoon downtown. Quatre thought it was a great idea and suggested they take in a show or something as well, but the
pair simply smiled rather oddly and declined politely. When they returned that evening, they were both wearing new clothes, Wufei's
new suit was quite stylish, Quatre noted, and Sally's honey-gold dress seemed to suit her nicely as well.
Too bad no one took the time to wonder just *why* they were wearing such nice things.
The pair had brought a few things for everyone else. The guys mostly got whatever Wufei thought was appropriate, including a few
things that weren't, but no one complained. Sally slipped a small item to Trowa with a wink. Laurel received a pretty new dress that
matched her eyes to replace the one lost during the bus accident as well as some more functional wear that would fit around the two
casts she would have for some time. But what made her smile the most, was a larger plush black kitten. Poor tiny 'Shinigami' had gotten
taken by the hospital housekeeping staff when they collected her sheets that morning and the toy was lost; she'd been quite upset. She
immediately pronounced it, too, was 'Shinigami' and snuggled happily with the kitty.
The single most unhappy person in the hospital had to be Junpei "Jack" Ryuzouji, the poor fool who had thought apprehending Heero
Yuy would be such an easy task. Now, he was stationed on permanent duty watching over the ICU, bored out of his mind, waiting for
his captive to have the courtesy to wake up and go to jail quietly. Little did he know what a long wait *that* was going to be!