Tag Archives: hospital

Duck, Duck, Dead Duck; chapter nine, part two

“Well, whoever did this missed everything vital,” Dr. Green said to me sternly, looking at me over the top of her glasses.  “You’re lucky, Ms. Chen.  Whoever did this either didn’t intend to kill you or had really bad aim.  Either way, you should be thankful.  You’re also damn lucky you made it here in one piece.  That’s what ambulances are for, you know.”  Thankful, she said.  Me with my thirteen stitches.  I should be thankful.  Well, considering how much Vicodin was pumping through my veins, I was pretty damn thankful.  I was feeling no pain, and I was ready to go home.  I had the note safely in my pocket, and I resolved not to mention it to anyone.

“Well, thanks Groctor Deen,” I said, frowning.  That didn’t sound right for some reason.  I struggled to sit up in bed, but she gently pushed me back.

“Where do you think you’re going, young lady?”  Dr. Green, who was, at most, ten years older than me, asked in a mock-motherly voice.  Her streaked brown hair was pulled back in a bun and her face was devoid of makeup.  Still, she had a wholesome look that was appealing.

“Home?”  I said, making it more a question than a statement.  Dr. Green started shaking her head before I could even squeeze that one word out.

“I’m keeping you overnight for observations.  Your family is here.  I’ll let them in two by two.”  Just like Noah, I thought, but wisely kept that to myself.  Dr. Green turned around and marched out the door.  A minute later, my parents were hurrying in.

“Beezus!”  My mother said in a voice loud enough to mortify me.  Thankfully, I was in a single so no one could hear her besides me and my father.  “What happened?  You scared us to death.  I told you you should have quit your job.”  The whole time she’s talking, my mother fussed with my blankets, twitching them this way and that.

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Plaster of Paris: chapter three, part two

“Lyle, honey, we’re here.”  I tap him gently on the shoulder, not wanting to disturb him.  He looks up, his eyes blank.

“Hi,” Lyle says bleakly, not even attempting to smile.  He struggles to stand up, finally hauling himself off his ass.  “Mrs. Jenson.”  He holds out his hand to Mrs. Jenson, who steadfastly ignores it.  Lyle lets his hand drop back to his side, then sits down again.

“How’s our boy?”  Even though I know Lyle would call me if anything changes, I can’t stop myself from asking.

“No change.  He’s resting,” Lyle shrugs.  “No one is allowed to see him.”

“We’ll see about that.”  Mrs. Jenson purses her lips as she strides towards the nurses’ station.  We watch as she gestures broadly to the attending nurse, a large, black woman with a shorn head and a weary look on her face.  Mrs. Jenson’s face is etched with distaste as she gestures; the nurse is equally terse in her response.

“Ten to one she gets in to see Paris,” I whisper out of the side of my mouth, eliciting a wan smile from Lyle.

“That’s a sucker bet if I ever heard one,” he shoots back, his smile wobbling.  “I’d never bet against Mrs. Jenson getting whatever she wanted.”  Except her daughter alive.  Except her son not being in love with a man.  Perhaps Mrs. Jenson is not so lucky after all.  Mrs. Jenson is still arguing with the nurse when a tired-looking doctor strides over towards them.  He is tall and cadaverous thin, with round spectacles and a brisk manner.  After listening to Mrs. Jenson for a few minutes, he says a sentence or two that seems to satisfy her.  Within minutes, she returns to where Lyle and I are watching her.

“That takes care of that,” she says in satisfaction.  “Watch my purse.  I’ll be right back.”  She hands her oversized purse to me, then follows the waiting doctor.

I try to convince Lyle to go home for a few minutes so he can eat, shower, and nap.  He digs in his heels, not wanting to leave Paris.  He points out that he is the only one with a vehicle as well, and what would I and Mrs. Jenson do without his services?  I can call Vashti or my mother or hail a cab.  He needs to take care of himself, I say firmly.  He is adamant, however, about not leaving Paris to the mercies of a killer.  He scowls at me before plunking back into his seat.  He’s sobbing again, and there’s not a damn thing I can do about it.  I sit next to him and pull him to me.  He is stiff in my arms, but at least he allows me to pat him on the back.

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