"Be Still My Beating Heart"

Title:  Be Still My Beating Heart           

Author:  Casca Casccara@yahoo.com

Spoilers:  YES, major spoilers from seasons 5-6

Archive:  Not without permission from moi! J

Feedback:  Yes, please! J

            "Fine, you know what?  Forget it, Carter," Med student Lucy Knight snapped, choking on a sob.  She went back into the exam room where her patient sat, waiting.  Forcing herself to stay calm and not show any emotion to the patient, she turned to the man seated on the exam table.                        

            "I'm sorry, Paul.  It's going to be a little longer than I thought.  The . . . um, doctor that I want to help assess you hasn't gotten back to me yet."  She had wanted to say that the psychologist she'd paged to examine him hadn't responded to her page, leaving Lucy herself to rely on the residents help, specifically her resident advisor.  However, her resident advisor, Dr. John Carter did not think it important enough to listen to what she had to say about Paul Sebricki.  He seemed to think that she was not doing her job with other patients because she'd been focusing so much time on Sebricki.  But what Dr. Carter did not know was that Lucy felt that Paul Sebricki was a danger to himself and possibly others if left alone.  Correction.  Carter did know how Lucy felt about the situation, he just didn't care.

            That seemed to be Carter's theme song where Lucy was concerned. Since the first day she'd been assigned to him, he'd treated her as if he had something personal against her.  She could do nothing right with him so she'd given up on trying to impress him ages ago.  Now it seemed as if all she did was try to survive his constant neglegance in helping her with her patients.  A while ago, she'd start to consider him her friend.  But how could a person not want to help his friend succeed?  How could a teacher not want to help his student succeed?

            These were her thoughts as she checked Paul's BP for the fifth time that day.  If Psyche didn't get back to her soon, she didn't know what she would do.  Close to tears, she told Paul she'd be right back and not to move, and went out to find Dr. Carter again.  She would just have to do something drastic to get his attention.  Laughter bubbled up in her throat as she envisioned herself jumping up and down, screaming on top of her lungs at him right in the middle of the ER.  Heck, it was so crazy around there, she doubted if anyone would notice.

            "And what a pretty smile she has!" exclaimed a kind voice to her left.  She turned to look at the source of the voice, a kind man in an open supply closet.  She smiled.  "If you're talking about me, Yosh, I cannot even imagine what I look like.  Pretty smile, my butt."

            "Sounds like you're having a bad day.  Let me cheer you up!"  He leafed through a bright red bag he'd obviously been carrying around and pulled out a bright red envelope.  "Happy Valentines Day, Lucy!"

            She really smiled then.  "Thanks, Yosh," Lucy opened up the envelope to see a huge heart with mushy valentines greetings on it.

            Lucy jumped at sudden loud music coming from the ER desk.  She glanced over and saw the beginnings of the Valentines Day party taking shape.  She would give anything for a piece of that blue cake she'd seen Chuni cutting up earlier.  Then she thought to herself, why not?  If everyone else can do it, why not me?  She stepped out into the hall to go and check on Paul Sebricki before going to get cake and the music seemed to swell.  She tossed the red envelope in a garbage and as she trotted down the long hallway to the exam room.  Reading the mushy sentiments printed inside the huge red heart with a soft smile on her face, she pushed open the door to the exam room.

            She stopped short, confused.  The room was completely dark, she could barely see the outlines of the exam table and instruments.  "Paul?" she asked and turned to leave.  But something pushed her back, hard into a wall.  "What . . ." her voice was droned by the loud blaring music that could still be heard from the ER.  "Help me-" But she never got a chance to finish her plea.  Pain erupted all over as she felt herself being cut, stabbed.  She cried out, but couldn't hear her own voice.  A bright sharp pain sliced through her abdomen.  She screamed in anguish and then fear.  She was screaming as loud as she could, but all she could hear was the heavy beat of the music getting louder and louder. Pain was everywhere in her neck, chest, stomach.  The blast of the music echoed in her head, louder than ever.  She felt herself falling, falling, until she met with cold floor. 

            Her eyes opened what seemed like an eternity later, but was only a few seconds.  She lay on her stomach, on the cold floor of the exam room.  The pain was unbearable and the blood . . . For the first time she saw the blood, pools of it right next her.  Who's blood was that?  Which patient died?  She touched her throat and was met with throbbing pain.  She brought her hand down and saw the smears of bright red.  Her blood.  It was all hers.  The pain was hers too . . . this tragedy, it was happening to her.

            "Help," she tried to say, but there was no sound from her.  I'm dying, she thought.  I need help, I'm dying.  Dying . . .  She saw a thin line of light and realized that it was coming from under the door.  Desperately, she tried to move, and succeeded in inching her way forward, towards the light.  She cried out in agony as the pain tripled.  She tried again and went to move her arm.  But the pain had her stopping.  She lay there and thought . . .  I'm dying . . . My mom . . . I want my mom . . . Someone help . . . please . . .

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

           

            "Lucy didn't suture that leg lac, yet?" Carter demanded loudly over the music as he looked at the board behind the ER front desk.

            "Still waiting on a psyche consult in exam 3!"  Lily shouted and laughed as Malik pulled her into a wild tango.

            Carter shook his head and strode across the ER, making a sharp turn down the hallway where he last spoke to Lucy.  He rolled his eyes at the thought of her.  She didn't understand that being an ER doctor meant getting in as many patients as possible, not focusing all your time on one specific patient. 

            Yes, but that was you a few years ago, a little voice told him.  He laughed to himself.  Yes, it had been him a few years ago.  Getting emotionally involved with the patients was inevitable for med students.  Hell, he had a hard time detaching himself to this day.  He should have cut Lucy a bit more slack, he thought.  She'd seemed pretty stressed.  Well, he'd take care of Sebricki and then bring Lucy back to the party.  Maybe he'd ask her to dance to cheer her up.

            Reaching up, he pushed the exam room door open and strode inside.  Confused by the darkness, he looked around and didn't see anyone.  Figuring that psyche had finally made it down and brought Sebricki up, Carter glanced around for Lucy.  He saw a glint on the floor and bent down to pick up the huge red heart.  Smiling to himself, he read the Valentine Yosh had given Lucy. 

            And before he knew what was happening, pain erupted in his back, a sharp pain that seemed to slice through his body.  He stumbled and tried to focus . . . he must have had a spasm or something.  Reaching around, he started to massage the ache and the pain exploded at his touch.  He stared at the blood soaking his fingers and he knew he wasn't alone in the room. 

            The music blared on, piercing notes and heavy drums.  He gripped something for balance, but heard more loud banging noises.  He was on the ice cold floor, rolling over, trying to move so that the pain was gone.  But it wouldn't go away.  He lay still his face smashed against the floor, he tried to get up, but failed and his wieght seemed to collaspe on the cold floor.  He laid his head down.  And what he saw made his heart stop.

            "Lucy," he stammered, staring in horror.

            Her face was covered with tears and blood . . . her blue eyes were huge and unfocused as they stared at Carter without emotion.  He watched as they closed.

            "No," he muttered and began to move.  Inch by inch, centimeter by centimeter, like an insect, he made his way towards her.  The pain sliced through him like a thousand knives.  He reached her finally and had to press his cheek to the floor to try and stop the pain.  Lucy opened her eyes to gaze unseeingly at him, their faces so close their noses were practically touching.  

            "We gotta . . . get help . . ." Carter said breathlessly.  The pain was starting to go away and in it's place was a dull haze.  Lucy continued to stare at him hazily, her eyes fixed, her breathing shallow.  "The door . . ." he whispered.  "We gotta . . . the door . . ."  He felt himself slipping into oblivion, a wonderful darkness where there wasn't any pain... He felt something on his hand which was close to his face.  Lucy's fingertips were inching their way over his hand. She gripped his hand weakly.  Finally understanding why she wasn't fighting to live, he clutched her hand in return and let the blackness take over.

            Interrupting the dark oblivion was a light . . . one . . . two . . . three lights  . . . Carter flung his eyes open and the familiar pain was back.  He heard voices, loud voices calling out medical instructions, saying his name, saying other, familiar names . . . His vision came into focus and he saw a familiar face and his eyes clung onto it.  "Deb?" his voice creaked.  She was speaking to him, so were others.  "My back . . ."

            "Relax, man, try to relax."

            Carter gazed up at Benton and he knew something was wrong, terribly wrong.  A paper heart flashed across his mind . . . then the pain seemed to make sense . . . he'd been hurt . . . the blood.  Lucy's face swam in his mind, covered in blood.  They'd both been hurt.

            "Lucy," he croaked.  As if it were ment to, his head fell to the side and he saw her, across the way, laying on another table just like he was.  "Is that Lucy?" he asked, desperate to know if she were alive . . . or if she'd been consumed by that wonderful darkness where there was no pain.

            Fear was there, like the sharp knife that had stabbed him.  If he died . . . he couldn't die.  But if Lucy had to die, then he had to . . . there was no question about it . . . it would be fair.  The haze was coming back, slowly romancing him.

            "Carter,"a sharp voice said and Carter's eyes snapped to Benton's.  "Don't do that."

            "What?" he croaked.

            "Don't close your eyes . . . stay with me, man.  Look at me, look right at me."

            He nodded ever so slightly . . . he couldn't think about Lucy . . . he couldn't think about the sharp pain in his back or the fact that he might die.  All he could do was focus, focus on Benton and on keeping his eyes open.

            Lucy lay flat on her back as her eyes fluttered open.  It was strange . . . she couldn't feel her body . . . or parts of her body.  Her legs found feeling and she moved her feet slightly.  She tried to adjust her body, but couldn't . . . a huge weight was holding down her chest, an invisible force that frightened her to no end.  Lucy heard soft beeping sounds and clanging metal in the distance, but other than that it was quiet.  Nothing but the screaming pain in her body. 

            And she remembered.  She'd been stabbed . . .  She'd thought that she was going to die . . . what happened?  Had someone saved them?  Them . . . Carter.  The last thing she remembered was Carter calling for help . . . his voice echoed in her head.  Something about a door . . .

            "Lucy," a soft voice spoke and Lucy looked up into the face of Dr. Corday.  She stared.  "Do you know what happened?"

            She tried to nod.
            "Okay," Lizzie said and began to tell Lucy slowly what her injuries were.  She heard the words "aorta" and "open"and "heart."  She'd been injured near her heart and they had begun to repair it in the ER.  Now they would opperate.  She knew the odds, knew the trouble that her life was in.  She would die, probably.  It wasn't good, not good at all.

            "Don't worry Miss Knight, we put far too much effort into your training to lose you now." Her eyes slid to the side and she saw Dr. Romano gathering tools.  Dr Romano . . . he was the best ... the very best . . . if he were working on her . . . 

            But the horrible things she'd just lived through haunted her again.  She'd had a treck?  Her chest had been cut open?  Something told her that even though it was the most horrible thing she could imagine, she knew she had to accept it and try and get through this.  There was no getting around it . . . she needed to beat this, she would not give up.

            Just then she started to hear beeps of all kinds, loud, shrill noises that blended in with the loud thrash of the music that was blaring in her head.  Familiar music.  She was falling again, on the cold floor of exam three, laying in her own blood.

            As she crashed Lizzie and Romano frantically began to work.

            Many, many minutes had passed.  Lizzie had tears streaming down her face and Romano had a crazed look in his eyes every time Lizzie yelled "clear!" And they shocked Lucy's heart with the internal paddles.  Romano tried to focus, he'd never ever in his entire career felt like this.  As he held his med student's heart in his hand, as he watched her body jerk with each shock, he knew there was no hope.  "That's it we've done everything we can."  He and Lizzie shared horrified looks and help up their hands, watching the monitors with a false hope. 

            She flatlined.

            Romano sent a supplies table flying.  "Son of a bitch."

            Lizzie stood there, staring at nothing, uanable to believe.

            "No," Romano said.  "NO." he repeated it and marched back to Lucy's body.  "Another round.  Come on Lizzie, come on!!"

            "Robert . . . " she whisperred.

            "Now, Elizabeth.  Give the last eppy a chance to circulate."

            Tears streaming down her face, Lizzie held up the paddles.  "Clear."

            Beep!

            Their eyes met, horrified, glorified. "V Fib."

            "Again!" Lizzie shouted.

            Silence.  Then, Beep, beep, beep . . .

            "We've got a rythm!  Elizabeth, we've got a rythm!"

            Elizabeth just stood there, stripped her hands of her gloves and pressed her hands to her mouth. 

Lucy was alive. 

 To Be Continued . . .

Other fanfic by Casca at:

Between the Lines - A Fanfic Archive

Feedback is welcome!

Casccara@yahoo.com