Title:Followup to My Aim is True (1/1)
Date Written: 4/7/03
Rating: PG (language)
Summary: This is a short follow-up to the episode My Aim is True. One of the things I would have liked to have seen in this episode was a meeting between Nick and the injured Colin (his former drug dealer). Since we didn't see that, I decided to create my own version of such an encounter. This story takes place the day after Nick has told Burton that Colin was not responsible for his using drugs. NOTE: 5/1/04 We did see an encounter between Nick and Colin in a later episode. But we hadn't at the time I wrote this story.
Author's Notes: Thanks to Goldie for the beta read.
Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction. The characters in this story are borrowed from the TV show "The Guardian". No money is being made from this story. Any resemblance of a character in this story to any real person living or dead is purely coincidental. Likewise, any resemblance between an organization depicted in this story and any such actual organization is purely coincidental.
The phone rang, and Nick picked it up.
Mr. Fallin, Bill Klapperman is on the line.
Thank you. Put him through.
Nick? Bill Klapperman here. I think you know that I'm representing Colin Bennett in his civil suit against the city.
Well, Colin would like to meet with you.
Nick's face showed his surprise, but he said evenly into the telephone, That's not going to happen, Bill.
Look, the guy would just like a chance to talk to you, Nick. That's all.
I'm sorry. I can't.
Well, if you should happen to change your mind, he's at Mercy Medical. Third floor, room three-thirty-three.
When Nick didn't reply, the other attorney said, Well, I hope you'll think it over. I believe you know as well as I do that my client is getting a raw deal here.
Nick hung up the phone and ran a hand down his face. Why the hell did his father have to take the city contract in the first place, and put them in the middle of this mess? When Nick had been called to the scene of the officer-involved shooting on Monday and had learned that his old drug dealer Colin Bennett was the man who had been shot, he'd removed himself from the case. When his father had asked for an explanation, he'd had to tell him that Colin had been his dealer. Later when Nick had asked the new associate Claire Stasiak about the case, she'd told him that the cop had admitted it was an unjustified shooting, and that it looked like the city would settle out of court. Yet the next thing Nick knew, his father was refusing to settle, while at the same time pressuring the young police officer to change his testimony, to claim that the shooting was in self-defense. Nick was sure that his dad's change of heart was due to him, that he wanted to punish Colin for the part he'd played in Nick's drug use. Nick had tried to tell his father that it hadn't been Colin's fault that he'd used drugs. But his dad had not been swayed; he was going ahead with the depositions tomorrow, and had assured the city of Pittsburgh that he could win the case in court.
Nick sighed, and his frustration was reflected on his face. He knew that what his father was doing was wrong. But his hands were tied. He'd tried to change his father's mind once, and it hadn't worked. It was out of his hands now. Still, he couldn't help but feel some regret (and responsibility) for Colin being screwed out of the kind of financial compensation he deserved if the officer had shot him without sufficient provocation. At the same time, Nick knew that going to see Colin would be a bad idea. Nothing could be gained from such a meeting.
That evening Nick Fallin walked down the hallway of Mercy Medical looking for room 333. He had been thinking about the situation with Colin off and on all day. He knew this visit wasn't wise, yet...here he was. As he approached Colin's room, he saw a uniformed officer standing next to the door. He supposed that made sense. Colin would have been charged for the drug deal that the cop had interrupted, and, technically, would still be in police custody, despite being under the hospital's care.
Nick walked up to the officer, and said, I'm here to see Colin Bennett. The man looked him over, and then asked,
The officer consulted his clip board. Okay, I see that the prisoner's attorney has requested that you be allowed to see him. I'll have to frisk you first.
Nick nodded his acceptance, and raised his hands. The policeman quickly patted him down, and then said, Okay, go on in.
Nick knocked, then walked into the room. Colin was alone and awake. He was sitting in a semi-reclined position. A man in his early thirties, with short, dark blonde hair, Colin had a long face with a somewhat aquiline nose. He was wearing a hospital gown, and a sheet was pulled up to his waist. An IV line ran out of his arm. Nick noticed he looked pale.
Colin looked up as Nick entered. He offered a smile, and raised one arm in a beckoning fashion. Nick! Come on in, man. The way Klapperman talked, I didn't think you were going to show.
Nick walked up to the bed, but didn't return Colin's smile. Hi, Colin, he said quietly.
Colin's voice was hearty with false enthusiasm, This is something you probably never expected to see, huh? Me, laid up in a hospital bed like this. It's whacked.
How do you feel?
Not too bad. They're pushing some pretty good stuff through this IV. Colin smiled again, and this time Nick had to smile in return.
Colin continued. So, Nick, man, you know why I wanted to see you, right? My lawyer says your old man is playing hardball, says he won't go above twenty-five grand for a settlement. Colin's voice rose. That cop shot me! I wasn't even carrying, and he shot me! He paused, and Nick noticed that he was rubbing the sheet back and forth between the fingers of one hand in an agitated fashion. He looked up as Colin repeated in a scornful tone, Twenty-five grand. Colin's eyes fixed on Nick. The doctors say my chances of walking again are almost zero. Did you know that?
Nick lowered his gaze, and said quietly, I'm sorry.
Colin saw that as the opening he had been looking for, and quickly pounced. Then do something about it. You told your dad about me, didn't you? That's why he won't offer me more than horse shit for a settlement. That's it, isn't it?
Nick didn't reply, and Colin made an exasperated sound, then said urgently, Come on, man, I always treated you good, didn't I? Always hooked you up with the best shit and the prettiest broads? You used to have a hell of a good time at my place, Nick. Remember?
Nick just stared at Colin wordlessly.
Help me, Colin said, his tone almost pleading. Talk to your old man for me. Get him to change his mind.
Nick shook his head, a touch of his own disquiet showing in his eyes. I can't.
You can't or you won't? Colin challenged.
I'm sorry, Colin. I can't help you.
Colin's lips curled in a sneer, and he said dismissively, Yeah, I should have figured. I should have figured that a rich pretty-boy like you wouldn't have the balls to stand up to Daddy. He shook his head in disgust. Go on, get out of here. Get your sorry ass out of my sight, man.
Nick turned and walked to the door. He glanced back before exiting, and saw Colin reaching for a water glass. Just as the door closed behind him, Nick heard a loud from the other side, and correctly surmised what Colin had done with the glass. He and the officer exchanged a look, and then Nick walked away.
Author's Note: This is very likely the last story I will be posting. I haven't written any fic for TG in a year, and--right now--I don't see myself writing any more. So I hope you have enjoyed my stories, and I'm glad there's a place like fanfiction.net where they can be archived for posterity. ;-) JanetD