Chapter 22- Strength

Hope is the belief in a positive outcome or a desirable ending to certain circumstances in someone's life. It's a human emotion which you can't get away from; when things look bleak people always have hope to fall back on. When new information is acquired and something that felt so despondent before suddenly has new light added to it, you can't help but feel even the tiniest bit of optimism. People rely on that feeling, that faith to get them through the hard times. Of course it makes it all the more painful if that hope turns out to be false.

Friday 28th March, 7.49 pm

Turk and Carla ran almost like robots through the corridors of sacred heart, bursting though doors and shoving anything that got in their way to the ground. Their movements were stiff and desperate, like they were running on some sort of auto pilot; nothing else appeared to matter to them other than reaching their destination.

The roof

A simple thing really, every building in America had one, whether it be flat, pointed, uninhabitable or made of straw, everything had a roof. Yet like the Janitor said it was the one place that was often overlooked, no one ever checked the roof. If something was missing, someone was hiding, something was lost, people automatically checked under tables and chairs, in cupboards and behind doors, yet the roof, the quietest place to go, was always at the bottom of the list. Silly if you think about it properly.

They took the stairs two at a time, missing as many steps as their legs would allow as they clawed at the banister to pull them up faster. The hope inside their chests swelled as the door which would allow them on to the roof top got closer and closer. Izzy had not left the hospital, that man had not been near the exits, that's what all those policemen had assured them. The place had been torn apart with people looking for their little girl, yet no one had found her. This was literally the only place left that he could have taken her.

Turk reached the door first and dived into the bar which would permit them access with all his strength. Carla reached it only seconds later, her eyes wide and nostrils flared as she tried to ignore the lack of oxygen which was currently running though her, all that mattered was her daughter, everything else including getting their breathe back could wait until later.

They split up in an instant, Christopher Turk going left and Carla taking to the right, their eyes desperately scanning the area, looking for a sign, any sign that their not even a year old daughter was there.

"Izzy! Izzy!" They both shouted as they shot around the concrete, looked under and around the metal tunnel pipes and blocks of cement. All they wanted was to see her sat somewhere playing with her cuddly bear, laughing as it tickled at her chin, to smell her individual baby smell and hold her so tightly so she knew they'd never let anyone near her ever again. They wanted her to know she was safe, unharmed and forever protected.

That didn't happen though, instead they bumped into each other again as they ran full circle, meeting at the doorway they had been at only moments ago, having run the lap of the tallest roof and found not even a hair.

"No." Carla said simply and shook her head, her heart feeling like it was about to be ripped out of her chest once again as she laid eyes upon her husband, his arms, like her own completely empty.

"This is just one roof! We, we still have roof B!" Turk replied in an instant, his attention falling to the roof on the other side of the hospital grounds, the biggest lump forming in his throat as he took a step forward and wrapped his arms around his hyperventilating wife.

"There's no point, she won't be there; she won't be there! They've taken her! They've taken my baby, God's punishing us; he's punishing us Turk! She's gone… gone… my baby's gone." She cried out as her legs gave way and she slid to the floor completely crushed, her whole body just going numb as she stared out at the clouded sky, her chest going tighter and tighter as she struggled to breathe.

"No! No he's not." Turk said softly as he knelt down beside her and wrapped an arm around her shoulders before leaning and resting his forehead against her own. "Carla listen to me, God would never allow harm to come to our child, we haven't done anything to deserve this and I swear to you we will find her. Hey, look at me?" He continued as he placed a finger under her chin and forced her to look up into his eyes. " We WILL find her, but we are no use to her if we just sit here, we have to get up and we have to never stop searching, hell we will never stop searching. We can cry and we can sulk and feel all the things we do, but in order to help Izzy we have to get up and get moving. We have to keep looking, we just have to."

"But what if we can't find her? I can't be without her Turk, I just can't." Carla whispered, her eyes not once leaving her husbands, even when they filled up once again and her vision blurred as more tears fell. Turk just shook his head in understanding as he reached for his wife's hand and pulled them both to their feet.

"That's not even an option, have faith baby, she will come back to us." With that, he entwined their fingers and waited for the strong, determined woman he fell in love with to return to him. It took a while, but eventually Carla gave a small, unsteady nod. Turk instantly nodded back, then turned and headed back to the doorway, leading his wife behind him as he went through it and took to the stairs once again.

The duo clung to each other for support as they entered the first corridor and headed off in the direction of the second roof top. Neither would admit it, but with each passing minute, their hearts sank in their chests more and more and that tiny fire that once burned so fierce inside of them was slowly going out. The hope inside them of finding her alive and well whilst still there, was dwindling.

When bad things happen, even to the strongest people in the world, it affects them. Some people can hide these affects well, to the point you wouldn't have been able to tell what they were really going through, while to others, it destroys their spirit, eats away at their soul until there is very little left.

The people, who are thought of as battle-axes, can lose what makes them who they are in an instant. While others, who seem weak and vulnerable on the outside can find the strength they never knew they had.

"Dr Readdon?" A young woman called out as the aging Doctor made his way down the hospital ward. He instantly turned around to the petite brunette who despite her injured shoulder and obvious bruising was carrying a smaller toddler and clutching the hand of a slightly older child.

"Yes? Mrs Leatherman wasn't it?" He said slowly as he studied the small family with a sad smile. The older child was clinging to her mother like her life depended on it and was trying to avoid any sort of eye contact as she slowly backed up and hid behind the twenty five year old. The baby boy who couldn't have been more than two years old was staring up at him with an unnerving look of distrust on his small face.

"Please call me Kerry." She said softly, before pointing to the toys in the corner of the room and encouraging the youngsters to go over and have a play.

"Kerry then, how can I help you?" he replied while watching the children reluctantly wonder off. The two of them had certainly been through hell that was for sure, it was a sad story really, a young teenager ran off with her boyfriend, only for him to turn into a violent thug and attack her and their three children. Unfortunately it was one of those stories where a happy ending wasn't going to come about, that he could say for certain, he was also pretty sure she would never find the courage to testify against the man who put them all in hospital.

"I'd like to talk to you about Tommy… and about what's best for him." She said softly, brushing her hair back with her hand and staring up at the older man who was supposed to make everything better. "I haven't been a very good mother recently, I haven't protected him or Kathy and Cain the way I should have but that stops now. It's time I stop being so scared and start fighting for them, I need to put them first, I can't be selfish no more"

The doctor could only nod as he held his hand out and indicated for the two of them to take a seat on the chairs to the left of them.

"Have you made a decision?" He asked carefully as he placed a comforting hand on her uninjured shoulder and watched her face for any indication on what was to come.

"Ye.. Yes."

Hope and personal strength go together hand in hand, you have to be strong in order to continuously have that faith that everything will work out in the end. Some days it pays off and others, it doesn't. There's not a lot you can do in between, but to keep on fighting and pray the end of the nightmare is sooner rather than later.

Friday 28th March, 8.15 pm

"Ahh there you guys are!" Jordan called out as she walked out into a corridor behind the depressed married couple having seen them from the other side of the ward. "I've been looking for you numpties."

"Not now!" Turk shot back in a high pitched yet slightly threatening tone, just daring her to start on them. Neither Turk nor Carla turned around to actually acknowledge the older woman's presence as they continued their march through the hospital, their hands still tightly clamped together. Determination to find their daughter driving them on in the hope of reaching the second roof top as quickly as possible.

"I have something that belongs to you." She continued ignoring his tone as she quickened her place slightly and shifted the weight of what she was carrying into her other arm. Again, neither of the duo turned around they just pushed forward more; Turk slamming the end door open with his free arm and letting it bang roughly into the freshly painted walls.

"Trust me on this one… you're probably going to want it." She shouted out, before coming to a stop by the nurses' station and placing what she was carrying down on it. "But I'm certainly not going to chase after you, am I Izzy?"

Carla instantly froze, the hairs on her neck sticking up on end before she span around on the spot quicker than a train wreck code and looked to where the kinda- Mrs- Cox was stood. Sure enough, sat on the work top next to the brunette was a small black child, with black hair in little pigtails and the brightest coloured eyes.

"Mama!" The baby called out with a giggle before hugging her teddy bear to her chest and starting to chew on its ear.

"IZZY!" She cried out before letting go of her husband's hand and darting back across the room to scoop the child up. Turk was by her side in seconds and wrapped his arms around them both, muttering sweet childlike words and kissing the top of the toddler's head over and over as Carla hugged her tighter than she ever had in her life.

"Found her crawling around the staff waiting room" Jordan continued as she took a step to the side to allow the family a bit of extra space, shifting on her feet uncomfortably as they continued to tell their daughter how much they loved her and how they'd never leave her alone again.

"On her own?" Turk eventually asked as he took his attention away from Izzy for just a second.

"Well if she had been with someone I wouldn't have picked her up." Jordan sniped with a roll of her eyes as she tried to act as least bothered and concerned as she possibly could. "You should really be more careful, all it would take was one wrong-un walking past and you could lose her."

With that she turned on her heels and headed back towards the exit, hesitating for a second as she took a glance back towards the Turks.

"My baby, my baby" Carla kept repeating as she cuddled them both into her husband. Too wrapped up in having her child back with her, safe and sound; to question Jordan further like she usually would have.

The mother of two swallowed hard as she alternated her attention from the phone which was currently in her hand and the happy family stood in front of her. Eventually she sighed, forced herself to hit the send button and headed off, out of sight.

Tag, you're it

(a/n) hope you all like :D Thanks for reading