As he drove down Fifth Avenue, his mind wandered from the failing light and bustling New York life, and without realising, he began to remember times not long past. Times he wasn't proud of, times where he had stood up for what he believed in... and times where he had been more afraid than he could ever remember being.

He had been on this job for just over a year now, and already he had seen more than he had bargained for. But at least it was paying his rent and getting him through med school. At least he was making a living and doing something with his life.

As the thought finished running through his head, he remembered Vangie, or 'bus-girl' as they had so affectionately called her in the beginning. Well, the girl had run out in front of a bus. But he had started a problematic relationship with her that had been downhill from the get-go. She had scared him a little, chasing after them all day, following their calls on the scanner she had bought. Then had come the claim of pregnancy.

"Watch this guy on the left," Doc said to him, disturbing his reverie. He nodded in acknowledgement and followed the advice.

His mind soon fell back on Vangie. She had had more than a few problems. She had tried to kill herself, gone over his head and risked his job, and then showed up telling him not to worry about the pregnancy anymore.

And you should follow her advice, he cautioned himself, shooing his mind on to other matters.

The next thing that came to mind was the time when he had found that kid in the front of a car, half his head blown off. Doc had gotten so involved in that call, and he himself felt responsible for never having identified the kid in a line-up. The boy had pointed a gun on them before, and nearly been put up for charges... if only he had identified him... maybe he would still be alive.

"Pick up the pace a little," Doc advised lightly, nodding to the swift traffic that overtook them frequently.

Again, he nodded wordlessly and obeyed, applying a little more pressure on the gas.

Of course, when his mind was once again allowed to pursue its own course, there were so many things to choose from it almost made his head ache.

The shooting victim bleeding in the street whilst they sat safely in the rig; his lacking efforts in classes; the burning building where Jimmy had had to vault down to save them; his chaotic first day; the time when he had overstepped his boundaries and saved a premature baby that had ended up dying anyway; the loss of Morales to Doc; his fight with his partner; the shooting in the café where the teacher had died; prying Doc off of Boscorelli... there was so much that had happened. Too much, almost, it seemed, in such a short space of time.

It hurt to think about it right now. Each memory fought for priority, and he didn't have the patience for any of them right now. There was too much to process.

He didn't even hear Doc call his name the first two times.

"Carlos? You awake over there?"

The snapping of fingers brought Carlos Nieto back to reality, where the lamps overhead had activated, people were heading out for a night on the town, and emergencies just kept on happening.

"You okay?" Doc inquired, looking at him through rimmed glasses.

"Yeah, he replied dreamily, "I was just thinking."

Doc paused for a moment, and then asked, "About what?"

Carlos turned his head for a moment to consider his partner. "How many people do you think we've saved out here? How many have we killed?"

The questions seemed to have Doc taken aback for a while. But when he spoke, his words were compassionate and sincere. "It's not about how many we save, or how many we kill... it's about how many we help... and how we help."

Carlos let it sink in, before, with a sigh, he nodded one last time.

He just couldn't decide if he had ever helped.