This story is set just after the episode Lyin' Eyes
As I enter my living room, I toss my bag and my keys down on the end table and plunk down on the couch.
"Angie?" I hear my brother's voice yelling from upstairs.
I sit up, not expecting the company. "Jerry, what are you doing here?"
He came downstairs and walked towards me, crossing his arms over his chest. "Where have you been?"
"Oh I dunno, this place called work."
"You're supposed to be resting. I've tried calling you all day and you haven't answered your phone. What gives?"
I get up and shake my head. "We're not getting into this, okay." I take a step forward to walk away but he steps in front of me, blocking my path.
"You're not ready."
I set my jaw and take a deep breath. "Jerry, please do not mother me. I already have a mother and look how great that turned out." I take another step in the opposite direction and again he blocks my path.
"What if you're out in the field and someone comes at you, huh?"
He gets in my face and pushes me back slightly.
"Jerry, cut it out."
"What if a man twice your size comes towards you and..."
With a quick motion I grab him by the wrist, spin him around and knock him to the ground. I put my knee in the small of his back as I pin him down with his arm behind his back. "Then I'd take him down." He doesn't say anything and I get up. "Don't start with me, Jerry."
I walk into my bedroom and shut the door behind me, immediately grimacing at the pain in my injured side. I ease myself down on the bed and breathe slowly as it starts to subside. "Shit," I mutter to myself. He's right and so is everyone else, I'm not ready to be back at work. In fact, I've been in pain all day and I just grin through clenched teeth and pretend the hole in my left side doesn't exist. I like to think that a bullet never lodged itself into my stomach, nearly stealing my life from me. I like to believe I'm invincible, but clearly I'm not.
Lifting up my shirt, I peel away the white gauze bandage that covers my wound. I can't help but cry at the sight of it, all black and blue and angry looking with these hideous black stitches. It's a constant reminder of Dylan even though he wasn't the one that put the bullet in me.
I snuff up my tears and wipe my eyes. "What?" I say in an obvious tear-choked voice.
"I'm sorry," he says as he slowly enters the room and then sits next to me. "You okay?" he asks as he takes a better look at my tearstained face.
I laugh but it's not funny.
"Talk to me, Angela. You can't keep everything to yourself." He looks down and notices my bandage half off then freaks out. "Dammit, are you hurt? I shouldn't have..."
"No, I'm...I'm not. It's okay. I was just looking at it." Jerry frowned and sat back down. "It's just...I can't help but think of Dylan everytime I look at it or everytime it aches. It's crazy but I think it hurts more because of him."
"No, that's not crazy. Dylan betrayed you. And everything that happened that night...I can see why it would hurt more."
"I just want it all to go away. I keep having flashbacks and then I see Dylan's face. Then I hear your voice telling me that Dylan saved my life." I stand up and run my hands through my hair. "It's too much. That's why I went back to work, to try and get my mind off it."
He got up and put his arms around me. "It's going to take some time. Give yourself a break."
"Yeah," I said as I leaned my head against his chest.
- - - -
The next morning I took a seat at my desk and as if he'd beamed himself in front of it, Gene was there.
"Good morning, Angela. We need to talk. In my office, please."
I followed him into his office and stood by the door. "What's this about?"
He shut the door and motioned for me to sit as he crossed the room to his chair. "It's about you."
"Yes. I've scheduled a counseling session for you this..."
"Oh no. I'm not talking to a head shrinker. I'm perfectly fine."
"Angela, stop it. You're not fine. All day yesterday you were white as a ghost and looked like you were ready to pass out or puke. I only let you stay here because I wanted to keep an eye on you."
"Like I told Jerry, I don't need another mother."
Gene looked at his watch. "Ten minutes, in the conference room."
"Your first session."
"I'm not going," I said as I headed for the door.
"Then give me your badge and your gun."
"You heard me," he said as he stood up and walked towards me. "I'm not going to sit by and watch you in pain, and I'm certainly not going to have you hurt out there. So the choice is yours and I suggest you make the right one."
I bit my lower lip as I did all I could not to fly off the handle and call him every name in the book. Instead, I walked out of his office and slammed the door behind me.
- - -
"How long has it been," she asked me.
"Gene tells me you haven't been feeling well?"
I watched as she jotted things down as she spoke.
"I'm fine, God. I don't know why everyone is making such a big deal over it."
She stopped writing and looked at me. "Two weeks isn't that long ago, Angela. It's okay to admit you feel pain, you're only human."
"Fine. Fine!" I surrendered as I stood up and threw my hands in the air. "If that's what you want me to say then yes, it hurts. It hurts a lot and I can't do a damn thing to make it all just go away."
"Are you still referring to physical pain or emotional pain?"
I paused for a moment to hold back the tears. I didn't want to let her see me cry. I don't let anyone see me cry. "Both. I'm mad at Dylan and I'm mad that I had no control over what happened. Some sore loser asshole decided to get revenge on me by shooting me point blank right in my own home. My home is where I have control. Hell, only those close to me know where I live. But he found me and now I have this constant reminder to carry around with me every day that I'm vulnerable."
She took more notes as I spewed forth everything and I was almost annoyed that she wasn't looking at me while I bared my soul.
"Do you know what it's like to get shot? To feel that hot, burning sensation that you can't stop no matter how hard you press down on it. And then of course there's the blood. It just gushes out like a faucet through your fingers. You can't concentrate and you can't really speak because your brain is so cloudy with pain. I remember worrying where the bullet was because I knew it didn't pass all the way through. I mean, you read about people getting shot and severing their spine, confining them to a wheelchair for the rest of their life. But I could feel it in there, just couldn't figure out where I felt it and it scared me. There. I said it. I was scared. Okay? Is that what we're driving at here?"
"It's perfectly natural to be scared. You went through a traumatic..."
"I almost died," I exclaimed. "I almost bled to death on my own living room floor. Yeah, I'd say that was pretty fuckin' traumatic."
The room fell silent as neither one of us spoke for a minute or so.
"Jerry was right when he once told me that me being a part of the FBI would come back and kick me in the ass."
"It's a risk that goes with the job."
"I know and I understood that when I signed on. Guess I never thought it would happen to me which is kind of a little cocky. I almost wish he wasn't there that night to see it all. Maybe I feel like it would have been easier if he didn't witness it."
"He needs to understand that it's part of your job. The reality is it could very well happen again."
Wow. If that didn't feel like another bullet to the gut then I don't know what. But she was right.
"Are we done? I...I think I'm gonna go home and rest."
"We can end it for today, but I'd like to talk to you a few more times. We haven't discussed Dylan yet."
"There's nothing to talk about. He betrayed me and that's it. There's nothing more to tell." I stood up and reached for the doorknob.
"Maybe sometime tomorrow?"
"Maybe," I said as I walked out the door.
Gene was standing at the end of the hallway, but I ducked out the side entrance in order to avoid him. I'd done enough sharing for one day.