Confusion and Misunderstandings.

By Sharron Ibbitson

Feedback appreciated to s_ibbitson@yahoo.com

None of these characters belong to me etc etc etc.

I promise this story did start out as a serious tale. Thanks to Mary Ann again, and I promise this isn't the story that has taken me so long to write!

Confusion and Misunderstandings

Ray Kowalski gently lowered himself down on to the nearest chair he could find. He had had a very bad day, he and his Canadian partner Fraser had been chasing after a murder suspect. Ray had caught up with the man; unfortunately they had been on a roof top at the time. Ray winced just thinking about it. He had shouted out the mandatory warning, and gone in on a rugby tackle, aiming to grab the suspect by the ankles, however it hadn't quite worked out like that. He had dived in just as his suspect had jumped to another roof top, Ray had gone hurtling head first off the roof, just managing to catch himself by one arm. Luckily Fraser had been nearby and had hauled him back up, unluckily Ray had already dislocated his shoulder and hurt his knee, meaning he was deskbound, aswell as losing the vital suspect. Ray sighed in frustration trying to gather the energy to move He took a deep breath, pulled himself out of the chair and made a concerted effort not to limp on his way to the men's room, where his partner was. He made his way into the rest room, and immediately located Fraser in one of the cubicles. Ray gingerly leaned against the basin, and waited for his friend.

"Ray is that you?" Fraser asked quietly from within the cubicle.

"Yeah Frase it's me" Ray responded tiredly, "You gonna be long in there Frase?" he asked.

"Ray, can you please come here a moment?" Fraser asked seriously.

"What into the toilet Frase? Why?" Ray asked puzzled.

"Please Ray it is important" Fraser insisted. Ray sighed, before pushing himself off against the basin and walking towards the cubicle. Fraser gently eased the door ajar, and gestured Ray inside.

"What is it Frase?" Ray asked impatiently.

"Ray there is something strange in my um er.... Anyway, I wondered if you would take a look for me" he asked blushing.

"You mean at your um....?" Ray asked and Fraser nodded.

"What sort of strange?" Ray asked after a pause.

"There seems to be a lump there, but I want to be sure"

"Um okay" Ray replied, very unsure. "But this doesn't change anything between us right?" Ray enforced.

"Of course not Ray"

"Okay, but I can't bend, so I'll have to sit here" he continued gesturing at the toilet, as he said it he closed the lid. "Are you okay to show me while you stand?" At Fraser's nod Ray perched on the toilet seat. Fraser undid his flies and pulled down his boxers. Ray shyly examined the area that Fraser described to him, there was a pea size lump on one of Fraser's testicles.

"Yeah, Frase. There's definitely a lump there. You better get that checked out" Ray responded, as Fraser did his trousers back up.

"Thanks Ray, for checking I mean" he replied flushed almost as red as Ray himself. As they excited the cubicle they discovered a crowd had gathered headed by Huey and Dewey. Dewey turned to his partner.

"See I told you they were closer than friends!"

"Na, Kowalski would never go for that, I could imagine the Mountie, but Ray's as straight as they come" Huey argued back, Ray shot him a grateful look and ignoring the stares shot his way, limped back to his desk to grab his jacket and exit the building, closely followed by Fraser. Ray dropped Fraser off at the consulate, after Ray had eventually won a long argument over who was going to drive.

"Frase, make sure you book an appointment about your little problem" Ray told him before driving off. Ray wouldn't' admit it but he was very worried about his friend, he knew the risks carried by testicular cancer, if Fraser had it, well it didn't bare thinking about.

The next day, Ray continued to nag his friend to visit a doctor. Eventually Ray booked an appointment on his friend's behalf. It was for the next day, Ray insisted on accompanying him, as he himself had a doctor's appointment for the injuries he had sustained the previous day. He swung by the consulate to pick his friend up, a good two hours before the set appointment time.

"Hey Frase! Ya ready?" he called.

"Two moments and I shall be with you Ray" his friend replied, and exactly two minutes later Fraser was in the car. "I apologise for my tardiness Ray, but I had to leave a note for the inspector to apologise for my absence" Ray nodded.

"that's cool Frase. You okay, I mean nervous or anything"

"Well I must admit to feeling some trepidation, but I believe I'll be fine" he replied.

"That's good, real good pal" They arrived at the hospital with plenty of time to spare, and took a slow walk to the relevant department, Ray went to follow Fraser into the small waiting room.

"Ray, shouldn't you be at your appointment by now?"

"What? Oh yeah, but this is more important Fraser" Ray replied, Fraser shook his head, but was so touched by his friend's words that he couldn't refuse him. They sat down together and waited in silence. When Fraser's name was called Ray gave him a wink of assurance and waited while his friend followed the doctor into the examination room.

Ray looked at his watch and could have sworn that it had stopped, no time at all seemed to have past but yet he felt as though he had been waiting for Fraser forever, finally after what felt like six hours, but in reality was only thirty minutes, Fraser returned closely followed by the doctor. Ray limped along behind him and he went straight to the car.

"Well?" Ray asked when his curiosity could wait no more. They strapped themselves into the car, before Fraser began to speak.

"The doctor performed a small biopsy and has sent it to the lab for tests. He believes that is a chance that it could be a cyst, but it could also be cancer" Fraser informed him, and Ray involuntarily gasped.

"If it is then what happens then?" Ray asked, when he could speak.

"Then if they catch it soon enough the testicle will have to be removed, if they haven't caught it in time and it has spread then radiotherapy or chemo, but first we have to wait for the tests to come back" Ray nodded.

"Well best not to worry I'm sure it's just a cyst" Ray responded, worried out of his mind anyway.

Ray dropped Fraser back at the consulate then made his way back to the precinct, he was barely in the squadroom when he was hollered into the lieutenant's office.

"Detective Vecchio, would you mind telling me where you were this afternoon?" Welsh asked.

"At the hospital sir" Ray replied, making eye contact.

"Really?"

"Yes sir."

"So how come, your doctor has just been on the phone and asking where the hell you are? Do you want to be deskbound for good? He says, you had better be there for your next appointment, or you'll miss the op. Is that what you want, if you don't get that knee fixed up you could be doing paperwork permanently" Welsh continued "Now Kowalski, where the hell were you this afternoon?"

"I was at the hospital sir, just not in the right part of the hospital"

"Oh, and pray tell, which part were you in?"

"I was at the um... I was with a friend who may have cancer" Ray replied honestly. Welsh made no comment.

"Oh and Ray, make sure you show up next time" Ray nodded mutely and left the office. Dewey, who had been standing outside Welsh's office, looked gob smacked. Ray had cancer? Sure he said it was his friend, but everyone who said they were doing something for their friend, were always doing something for their selves. He made his way quickly to Frannie's desk.

"Frannie, did you know about Ray?"

"What about Ray?"

"Ray Kowalski has cancer"

"What?! No he can't have, he looks so healthy." But then she looked at him, and he did look paler than usual and thinner. "No" she gasped, it could be true.

The day seemed to drag really slowly for Ray Kowalski, and everyone was treating him like he was going to break, he assumed word had got out about his operation, though he didn't know how, as even Fraser didn't know about that. He sighed, he was going to have to keep it from Fraser. He knew what he had to do. Sighing he painfully got to his feet and noisily cleared his throat.

"Look judging from the way you have all been acting around me today, I assume you have all heard about my condition and consequent operation" the room, gasped "Well the thing is I was trying to keep it a secret, now could you all do me a really big favour and keep this quiet from Fraser, he has something on his mind at the moment and I don't want to worry him further" he finished, after a few moments of silence everyone began talking at once. Dewey walked straight over to Francesca.

"See I told you" he challenged.

"Oh poor Ray. Why's he so brave. Not wanting Fraser to find out, poor Ray" she whispered before dashing off to the ladies. Ray limped past everybody on his way to the carpark and everybody stopped talking as he walked past them.

When he arrived at the consulate, he was met by a smiling Mountie.

"Ray, ray it's okay, the tests were clear I don't have cancer" he screamed, whilst pulling Ray into a tight hug, Ray tried not to hiss at the pain that caused his damaged shoulder, but Fraser noticed. "Oh sorry Ray, I didn't think, are you okay"

"Now that I know You're okay, I'm okay" he whispered, with tears glistening in his too bright eyes.

A week past then it was time for Ray's operation, Ray still hadn't told Fraser. Fraser walked into the precinct, and everyone was so quiet it was asthough they had lost their best friend.

"Francesca where's Ray?" he asked, she turned tear bright eyes onto him.

"He still hasn't told you has he?"

"Told me what?"

"Fraser, Ray is in the hospital"

"What? Why"

"I think he should tell you that. Send him my love" she told him. He stared at her, mouth wide open. Then he pulled himself together, and rushed to the hospital. When he got to the hospital he found Ray straight away, still under the anaesthetic, with an IV in his hand, and his leg propped up on several pillows. He was just stirring as Ray entered the room.

"Ray?" he called gently, and the confused eyes flickered open.

"Frase?" he questioned.

"Ray, why didn't you tell me?"

"Didn't want ya to worry what with everything else, ya know"

"Ray you should have told me"

"Who told ya anyway?"

"Frannie"

"Shoulda guessed"

"She seemed very concerned" He continued, but it was too late as Ray had already drifted back off to sleep.

When Ray returned to work three weeks later, complete with crutches, Frannie practically pounced on him.

"Hey Ray how's it going? Was the operation a success?"

"Yeah thanks Frannie, my leg should be fully healed and back to normal within a few weeks"

"Was that where it was then?"

"Where what was?"

"The cancer"

"What? Frannie what are you talking about? I haven't got cancer"

"You haven't? Why haven't you been at work then?"

"Because I hurt my leg, and had to have surgery, and then there were complications cos it got infected, etc etc. Frannie, what made ya think I had cancer?"

"Dewey heard you talking in Welsh's office"

"Oh did he now"

Ray cleared his throat and gained everyone's attention. "Everybody. It appears that there has been some confusion as to why I have been off sick for the last few weeks. IT has come to my attention that the great Detective Dewey overheard snatched of a conversation and from which he deduced that I had cancer, which he then decided to spread around. However it was one of my friend's that was suspected of having cancer, and incidentally he was given the all clear. I have been off sick, due to hurting my knee, and having pins surgically inserted, not through having cancer. Oh and Tom, if I was sick and I hadn't told anyone, don't you think that it was because I didn't want them to know. As for the rest of you thank you very much for your concern, but next time you might want to ask me before spreading rumours." And with that Ray hobbled out of the squadroom. Everyone ignored Tom Dewey for the rest of the day.

Ray made his way to Fraser's office at the consulate.

"Hey Frase"

"Hello Ray, are you okay? You're not overdoing it I hope"

"Na Frase, I'm good. But I have got the strangest most confusing story to tell ya. It all started in Welsh's office........"

The End

Like it Hate it??? Let me know shaz_kowalski@yahoo.com