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Creation's Shadow
Flights of Angels
Tue Mar 14, 2006 20:05

We wish you a Merry Christmas, we wish you a Merry Christmas, and a happy New Year ...

Manhattan General Hospital was an old building, it's original foundation dating to the mid eighteen-hundreds, when a group of enterprising doctors had purchased a plot of land from the city in order to build a school for people other than extremely wealthy patrons to study the medicinal arts. Even a century and a half later, the original architecture shone through the various additions over the years. Like the curved archways in the ICU; currently festooned with garland and holly, and a big red bow in the middle.

There was also a small tree behind the nurses station, almost hidden under a large pile of presents. More were arriving hourly, at least half of them donated by wealthy patrons for the children's wing. MCH had a marvelous pediatric unit, though it would always be overshadowed by Mount Sinai. But that was alright, for today was Christmas. Hence the gaudy decor. Not everyone stopped to notice staff efforts, however. Nurses and doctors rushed to and fro down the hallways, sometimes with cots carrying patients, and occasionally with the distraught family member of a victim.

ICU was unusually full this crisp morning. Several hours early, sometime around 4 am, there had been a six car pileup on the Jersey turnpike, caused by driver error and the snow falling since late Christmas Eve. Several pedestrians had been caught in the crossfire and one county toll worker. With the chaos that holidays always created, the victims had been parted out to several area hospitals, including MGH. And if that wasn't enough, an enterprising turkey cook had accidently set her kitchen on fire in one of the poor tenements, flames rapidly spreading through the lower stories of the building.

Almost every cubicle was filled to capacity, save one. Two patients rested in the small room. One was a firefighter suffering from smoke inhalation and second degree burns from the tenement fire. The other was an NYC cop suffering from a beating barely two weeks prior. Other officers regularly stopped by during shift changes, and there was a veritable forest of corner-store flower arrangements.

There were also two semi-permenant residents, both male and somewhere in their early thirties. Handsome faces, one slightly leaner than the other, who was taller. Neither had agreed to leave Sonnet alone for any length of time, and despite occasionally harsh words exchanged between, had worked out a system of guardianship. In fact, a small couch in the nurses' break room had been temporarily set up as a bed, used by one of the two men at any given time. Both of them carried cell phones as well, regularly updating family and friends on the condition of the cop.

At the present, her condition read as such: No change. In and out of consciousness every few hours, the woman might mumble a few words if they were lucky. If not, her eyes would pass over the faces of her bodyguards without recognition and then shut again for the foreseeable future. Oxygen tubes inserted into her nose kept her breathing, and other machines did their best to keep her alive and calm. One of the men, sometime between when Lucy had run off for help and returned with Vittorio, had shoved the sharp end of a pocket knife into Sonnet's flesh several times.

The internal damage had included injury to a kidney and one of her lungs, and two rounds of surgery barely staved off a cascade failure. It was a miracle that she'd survived the beating at all, especially taking into consideration the damage already inflicted from a shooting several months prior. A human body could only take so much abuse. At least, that was the solitary thought circling through Michael's head while he sat guard on his side of the cot, nursing a bad cup of coffee.

Devon had shook him awake barely fourty-five minutes before, letting the actor stumble into the chaos of a Christmas morning onto his own. Several lovely nurses had volunteered to rummage up some fresh clothing from the lost-and-found bin on the fourth floor, and he'd availed himself of a sponge bath, of sorts, by borrowing one of the OR's scrub rooms for a few minutes in between operations. So, considering the ongoing vigil, Michael considered himself damned lucky.

" ... Mike ..."

The styrofoam cup trembled inside a suddenly unsure grip, sloshing over the side to decorate the white-shirt with a new stain, not that he cared one whit about that now. Eyes flew up to regard his sister, her own unusually clear. Sonnet was awake! Ohmigawd, Sonnet was awake. Really awake! His coffee slid to the floor, creating a lovely brown puddle just under her cot but neither noticed.

"You stay right there!", he ordered. Not that she had a choice in the matter, but it made him feel better. Oh. Jeez. Stumbling up from the uncomfortable chair, Michael repeated his demand before racing out of the room and almost colliding with a janitor. Mumbling an apology, he pushed his way through the early morning crowd to the nurses station.

"She's awake. Sonnet Tennyson, room 210. She looked at me!"

And then he was gone, darting futher down the hallway to the break room. The door was partially open, allowing for a view of one doctor slumped in the room's recliner, scribbling furiously onto what appeared to be a patient file. No doubt she was finishing up rounds, to judge by the pile of folders tucked against her side. Devon, the lug, was already asleep on the couch, but Michael knew the lack of sleep wouldn't matter now. So he leaned over and shook the cop awake.

"She spoke my name. Looked at me. Knew who I was."

No need to ask who 'she' was. Sonnet's partner was awake in a New York minute; tossing back the blanket even as Michael raced back into the hallway and down towards his sister's room. The traffic thickened the closer he got, however, but it took him a while to figure out there was a steady stream of staff flowing in and out of her cubicle.

Somebody was shouting for cc's of something, another staffer was barking orders ... it was all too much to take in. Michael shoved people out of his way, determined to get back into the room. By the huffing sounds behind him, it was easy to guess that Devon had a similar thought in mind. Together, they managed to inch themselves across the threshold and straight into Hell.

Half of the machines standing sentry over the injured officer were beeping wildly, her half of the room was full of nurses and a male doctor, whose name tag read 'Carter, John M.D.". Odd to notice something like that, the actor's brain noted quietly. To no avail, his attention soley on the woman in the bed. Her eyes were still open, unusually bright. "Sonnet?" Why was his throat so hoarse?

" . . . Dev-" Coughing interrupted the word she'd tried to form. "Someone get those two clowns out of here NOW!" the doctor barked, too busy trying to save his patient to worry about hurt feelings. Michael tried to stand his ground, knowing it was very important to stay where he was, incase Sonnet needed him.

"Get the crash cart."

Except he found himself moving out of the room when a terribly wicked looking cart arrived, full of items that made his stomach hurt just to look at them. And the paddles lying on one side ...


In horror, from his position next to Devon in the hallway, Michael watched his sister's valiant struggle to stay alive. It wasn't enough. The sudden silence, accompanied by the absence of a heart beat on the monitor, told him more than he ever wanted to know about loss. It wrapped around his innards, a chilly squeeze that left the actor gasping for air.

Oh god. He stood there, listening to the futile attempts to shock her heart back into pumping blood, watching the frantic activity around the cot. Even Devon's presence seemed to fade away into the background, and at any other time Michael would have wondered why the man was so quiet.

"I'm calling time of death. Oh-nine hundred hours, eleven minutes."

"I'm sorry, Mister Pierson. I ... we've done all we can."

Doctor Carter was suddenly standing in front of him, shoulders hunched against the spectre of another death in his ward. No matter how many he managed to save from Death's clutches, there was always one who defied all the hopeful expectations.

"I'll need to notify next of kin."

"I am next of kin," Michael heard himself saying, voice flat. Dull. It hadn't quite sunk in yet, in these scant minutes after the event, that his only sibling had been ripped from him so cruelly. He glanced away from the floor, towards the doctor and then past him to the nurses station. Without asking, he headed in that direction - 'borrowing' one of the courtesy phones without asking.

At 9:15 on Christmas morning, his father and step-father's world fell apart with a single phone call.

"Hi, Dad. It's Michael."

Even he could hear the strange edge to his voice.

"Sonnet ... she, uh ... Sonnet died a few minutes ago."

Behind him, there was the faint sound of weeping.

  • Nine MonthsHomles at Large, Mon Mar 13 13:37
    What the hell did he do in a past life to piss off a deity this badly? The day had started off so innocently, too. Caleb had woke at a reasonable time, enough to give Lucy a kiss goodbye between sips ... more
    • Flights of Angels — Creation's Shadow, Tue Mar 14 20:05
      • Sensations LostGrief Riddled, Tue Mar 14 22:23
        Merry fukkin' Christmas. Devon frowned, staring at Sonnet's prone form. Family had wanted him to be with them for the usual banquet, but he couldn't force himself to leave her side. Just couldn't,... more
        • CondolencesSniffles, Tue Mar 14 23:45
          They arrived in under an hour. Ms Isabel Marchand, Mrs Ben Adams and Hugh Pierson. None of the three looked healthy, Isabel especially had that waxy look Michael tended to associate with mannequins.... more
          • Shadows RisingOfficer Holmes, Thu Mar 16 23:15
            This was Hell. It had to be. Lucy's comfort only did a bit of good, his family feeling more the nuisance than anything else. Why she even allowed him to weep quietly into her shoulder was beyond him. ... more
            • In Memoriam, Pt 1Michael Pierson & Crew, Thu Mar 23 08:58
              Mom -- Housework is done and the trash is out. There's a pot roast in the fridge when you get hungry. Eat, please? Call me if you need anything. Love, Devon It was staring at him blatantly when he... more
              • In Memoriam, Pt 2Michael Pierson & Crew, Thu Mar 23 11:58
                Through many dangers, toils and snares I have already come. 'Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far, And grace will lead me home. Luciana Holmes’ voice gave a surreal sense of awe to the hymn,... more
                • Obligations and CommitmentsDevon Holmes, Sun Apr 9 23:23
                  He wasn’t ready for this. “Sonnet was…” Devon paused, still feeling Lucy’s song wrap about him, swaddling his body in a comforting blanket. “The worst partner anyone could have asked for.” Only his... more
                  • Final FarewellsVittorio Castelluccio & Company, Sun Apr 9 23:24
                    How the hell had it come to this? “Someone will be by shortly to retrieve your belongings, Signa Holmes,” Vittorio found himself murmuring into his cell phone. Matteo had extended his offer, via Vic, ... more
                    • Ordinary DaysLara Sorensen, Mon Apr 10 09:21
                      Standing on the edge of time Playing out a reckless pantomime And every day's another wrong to rectify I dream about a stranger's touch And voices in my head I cannot hush And every night's a hunger... more
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