momentary lapse of reason
Blatantly ignoring the speed limit as he drove through the city, Heero made it across town in record time. Pulling into the parking lot, he quickly made his way into the huge hospital via the Emergency Room entrance.
Standing before the nurse's station, Heero tapped his fingers on the counter impatiently for only a second before interrupting the conversation to speak. "Excuse me, but I received a message that my friend was here.... Duo Maxwell."
The nurse nodded and proceeded to make a phone call. "Some one will be with you shortly."
Heero nodded, remaining where he stood as he took in the hectic activity that surrounded him.
Several minutes later, a young woman entered the room, offering her hand to Heero. "I'm Dr. Skinert. Are you Mr. Maxwell's next of kin?" she asked, extending her hand toward him.
Heero could feel his heart rate accelerate as the Doctor began speaking. He didn't like her choice of words or the tone her voice held as she spoke them. "He has no next of kin. I'm his best friend." Heero offered, "What's going on?"
Guiding the physically shaken young man into her office, the young doctor motioned for Heero to sit. "Your friend's motorcycle was involved in a traffic accident this morning." she began, "I'm afraid he is in very serious condition. We were able to stabilize him just a short time ago, but he needs surgery."
"What type of surgery?" Heero asked.
"The most urgent one is to repair his lung. Several of his ribs were cracked in the crash and perforated his right lung. We have him on a respirator for the time being." The young doctor looked up at Heero before continuing. "Your friend has also sustained some very serious head trauma. We don't know the full extent the injuries just yet, tests are still being conducted. There is some internal bleeding as well as several broken bones."
Heero swallowed hard and sunk back into his chair. "What do I need to sign?" he asked softly.
The young redhead removed several papers from the large pile in the center of her desk and reading them over nodded to herself.
Heero moved forward, his forearms resting on the edge of the desk.
The doctor pushed several papers toward him. "You'll need to sign these on Mr. Maxwell's behalf." Offering him a pen, Dr. Skinert gestured to where his signature was required on each of the pages. Signed papers in hand, she stood. "I'll be right back..." she looked down at the papers ".... Mr. Yuy.", smiling at him.
Heero sat back, wringing his hands together, nervously eyeing the door as he awaited her return.
The doctor re-entered the small office several minutes later and Heero looked up at her expectantly.
"Mr. Yuy, there are a few more things we need to take care of." she told him as she made her way across the room to sit behind the large desk.
Pen in hand, she began reading from a small checklist. "Does Mr. Maxwell carry any health insurance?"
"Yes, We work at Preventer's." Heero reached into his pocket, lifting out his wallet. Thumbing through the endless pieces of rectangular plastic that seemed to be so vital to one's existence in AC200, Heero produced his medical insurance card.
Placing it on the desk, Heero slid it toward the doctor. "Just the identification number should be different. Do you have his wallet?"
She nodded and began writing down the information presented. "Yes, but it's locked up for safe keeping with the rest of his personal belongings. This will do just fine for now, Mr. Yuy."
Handing the card back to Heero, Dr. Skinert waited until he had placed the card back in the wallet and slipped the leather pouch back in his pants pocket.
"Your friend has lost a great deal of blood. Would you be willing to donate some on his behalf, Mr. Yuy?"
Heero nodded. "Duo is AB Negative, as am I. It's rare. And yes, of course I will."
The young doctor looked up at him, a bit surprised. "Very rare indeed."
"Any known allergies to medications?" she asked.
"Nothing life threatening."
"Prior surgery, injuries?"
"That would be a long list, Doctor Skinert." Heero replied.
The doctor made a few notes before glancing up at Heero, the end of her pen resting on her cheek. "Mr. Yuy.... If you don't mind my saying so, you seem to know a great deal about your friend."
"We were in the war together." Heero offered.
The young doctor smiled. "I thought your names sounded familiar." she smiled. "So I guess a list his injuries and surgery *would* be quite extensive. Anything major that we need to be concerned about, Mr. Yuy?"
"Would you like to go see him before they take him into surgery?" she asked.
Walking down the sterile halls of the hospital toward Duo's room brought back a flood of painful and unwanted memories for Heero. They had been buried for many years, but they came back as if it had been only yesterday. Unable to suppress them, Heero cringed throughout the flashbacks as he followed the Doctor, the long since forgotten anesthetic smell nearly nauseating the young man.
Pausing, Dr. Skinert motioned to the room on her right. "They'll be taking him up to surgery in just a few minutes."
Heero nodded as he walked forward toward the room, remaining motionless at the entrance for a short time before making his way over to Duo's bedside.
The still form on the bed bore little resemblance to his long time friend, the vision making him weak in the knees. Gripping the cool metal rail with both hands, Heero looked more closely at the bed's occupant, saddening further as his eyes washed over the frail and unconscious man before him.
Duo's hair was still bound in its familiar braid, the visible portions dark and sticky with blood. The crown of his head was wrapped tightly, concealing a greater part of the wounds the doctor had spoken of. Several large gashes were visible on his forehead and Heero's eyes followed the trail of crimson down over his cheeks and neck, the smooth white flesh now stained pink.
There was very little of Duo's body that wasn't covered with layers of gauze or bandages, the balance of exposed flesh plastered with thick white tape and tubes that served to connect him to one of the various pieces of huge equipment that surrounded his bed.
The entirety of Duo's right arm, from his shoulder down to his hand was covered with a huge plaster cast, the appearance of water on it's surface alerting Heero to the fact that it had recently been put in place. The lower half of his left leg was similarly encased, the huge cast starting just above his knee extending downward, only the swollen digits of his foot visible beyond it.
The syncopated vertical motion and loud hissing of the respirator caught Heero's attention and his gaze followed the line of thick blue tubing until he found it's end, his eyes closing in near despair as the large plastic tube disappeared into the smooth skin of Duo's abdomen.
Jolted from the painful thoughts by nearby voices, Heero turned to find several men in pristine white jackets moving nearby the bed.
Dr. Skinert's voice spoke "We are taking him into surgery now, Mr. Yuy. The surgery waiting area is down the hall. Should be about two hours. We will let you know when we are through."
Heero nodded as he watched the two men release the wheels, preparing to take Duo from the room. Bending down, Heero kissed the thick bandages that covered the top of friend's head. "Don't leave us, Duo....." he whispered, cupping the side of Duo's bloodied face, his voice choked with emotion "please....... you can't leave.."
Reluctantly removing his hand from Duo's face, Heero watched as they rolled the bed from the room and the unfamiliar warmth of his tears slowly made their way down his cheeks. "I love you, Duo...." he whispered.
 The name of the lovely redheaded doctor who saved Duo's life is an anagram for the name of a very good friend of mine and fellow otaku. Know who you are?