As Robert walked through the doorway, his heart jumped into his mouth. He didn't know what to expect on the other side of the door. Gerry had entered before him, to let Sandra know he was there too. She was extremely vulnerable and the last thing he wanted to do was panic her or cause her any more harm. Gerry had obviously gained enough trust from her to know what was going on, and if anyone could prepare her for his entrance, it would be him.
His heart sank as he shut the door behind him. Sandra had luckily been placed in a small private room, with only the one bed and a few chairs dotted around the room. She was sat up in bed, with more pillows than necessary propping her up. Her focus was not on him, thankfully, but instead on whatever Gerry was showing her on his phone. His glasses were perched on the end of his nose, and he had a smile on his face as she carefully read the text he was showing her, waiting for the same reaction he had. A small laugh soon came from her, causing Rob to smile to himself. Despite the situation, small glimmers of the Sandra he knew shone through. Her distraction allowed him to really take in her appearance. She had a hospital gown on, which sadly allowed him to notice her struggles with her addiction. His eyes were immediately drawn to the hues of pink, red and white covering her arms, as well as the IV which had been placed on her left arm. He knew that she was in the process of having the treatment to counteract the overdose she had taken and that the drip hanging by her side was what was saving her life. He had never seen this side of her, and it scared him. No matter what had been thrown at her in her life, he had always known her as someone who could push past it and inspire others to be strong too. How wrong he had been. How wrong they all had been.
Sandra sensed his presence and raised her head to look at him. Suddenly feeling very self conscious, she began to tug at the sheets covering her body, pulling them higher in an attempt to cover her arms a bit more. Previous to this, the only person who had seen them had been Gerry, even if it was accidental. Gerry had noticed her movements from the corner of his eye, and softly covered her hand with his, knowing the panic was beginning to set in. Her eyes darted to the hand covering hers, panicking that somehow Rob had managed to get close to her without her realising. She followed the arm to its owner, sighing in relief as her eyes met Gerrys. He silently pleaded with her to calm down and acknowledge her boss, knowing it would be difficult for her to begin to talk to him.
Rob sat down on a chair opposite Gerry but further back from Sandra, not wanting to panic her by being too close. He had visited the woman in hospital before, in the aftermath of the car crash a few years ago, but Sandra was very different then. He pondered whether the very same scars lay underneath the covers and hospital gowns back then, and whether he would have noticed them if given the chance; or whether he would have been too wrapped up in what had happened. He quietly watched as Gerry began to distract her once more, he watched his slow movements and how Sandra followed what he asked her to do with no questions asked.
From the first time he met the team, he knew Sandra and Gerry had a special bond, it was apparent to everyone. When he had met with Bevan, he got the understanding that Gerry was not a good match for the team, and it would have been a good idea to remove him from the unit. However after the David Barrie case , he noticed the way he complimented the team; his personality and skills went well with the others, and everyone easily got on and were able to bounce ideas off each other. Bevan had suggested he try and encourage Sandra to fire him, but he refused. Now, he realised it was the best decision he had ever made. Without Gerry, Sandra would have died that morning. He had a way of getting through to her, making her see other perspectives and everyone knew she had the same effect on him. They were best friends, always there for each other no matter what and the recent events only solidified that.
"You really worried me Sandra,"
Rob had finally spoken up, his vision firmly concentrated on his hands resting on his lap. He could feel the couple staring at him, but couldn't find it in him to face them.
Her words gave him the much needed confidence to look up and face her. He knew she meant it; she wasn't one to falsely apologise for anything. He knew it would begin the constant arguing of who should be apologising but the words slipped out before he could do anything about it,
"No, I'm sorry Sandra. I didn't know, I should have worked out something was wrong."
He started back at his lap, knowing he could have easily prevented this.
"Sir, no one knew,"
She was cut off by his interruption, "Well Gerry did, didn't he. Didn't it occur to either of you that I should have been told? I don't care about the circumstances, I should have been told. You should have been off work, and off the case. Why wasn't I told?"
He was pissed, and both Sandra and Gerry knew it. Although his voice remained at his normal tone, they knew there was a huge degree of anger behind it.
Gerry placed his hand on top of Sandra's; a silent reminder that he was on her side. He studied her, searching for the signs she might have a panic attack, knowing this is the exact situation that could trigger one. He worryingly looked at her, his heart breaking at the sight of tears pushing their way from her eyes.
"I think you'd better go, sir."
Rob quickly rose to his feet and headed towards the door. Holding the door open with one hand and a foot in the doorway, he hesitated before turning to face them and spat "You almost died Sandra. You're off the case."