A/N: A new story, something I shouldn't be doing. I just got the idea and had to write it; I figured why not post it? So, I hope to continue it, and I will keep updating I Want to Marry Edward Cullen! - no worries. :) Tell me what you think! Enjoy and review.
Disclaimer for the whole story - SM owns everything - not I. Sadly. I'm just a measly college student with a crappy laptop...
Story title from the song "Passage" by Vienna Teng.
It was another slow day in the hospital. I checked my watch and sighed. My shift was only half over. You'd think working in the ER would be a little busier, a little more exciting, but alas, not today. Usually, that wasn't a good sign.
Don't get me wrong; I love my job. Sometimes I just wished I had chosen something where I would always be doing something. Something where I wouldn't be waiting on a baited breath for something to happen or have to be the one to tell a mother that her son just died.
I followed in my father's footsteps as a doctor. He was mildly disappointed – he wanted me to pursue my music; he wanted me to do something that he knew I loved, where I could be home with my family should the need arise. But I loved medicine; I loved the thrill of helping others, of being the one to save a life. Yes, I still played the piano, but I think this is where I am supposed to be.
"Hey, Dr. Cullen," the desk assistant, Lauren, purred to me as I walked by. I gave a tight-lipped smile as I passed. I internally shuddered. In addition her fried bleach-blonde hair and orange skin, she was the epitome of every man's nightmare. She just hasn't figured it out quite yet. Needless to say, I spend a decent amount of time avoiding her and her psycho-friend Jessica, an RN on the fifth floor in the west wing (aka the plastic-surgery floor).
I looked up as my father walked towards me. "Edward, I didn't know you were on duty today. You should have stopped by."
"I didn't know if you were busy or not."
He looked around the empty pit. "Slow day."
"I know; makes me nervous." I was waiting for a bus full of injured middle-schoolers to come in on stretchers or an expectant mother in a car accident. It was making me very on-edge, to say the least.
"I wouldn't worry too much about it," my father replied, giving Lauren a weird look as she stared at me. "Admirer?" he asked, turning us away from her very creeper-esque stare.
"Hardly. If only I could get to her out with that male RN, Mike, just to get her to stop stalking me. I'm close to filing a restraining order," I muttered as we walked down the hallway.
He laughed. "Always the ladies man. You know, Alice was having weird dreams again. You know how those are."
We think my younger sister Alice is psychic of sorts. She always has these weird dreams that turn out to be true. It makes us all uneasy, especially when they become reality.
"Oh really?" I ask.
"Yeah, about you. Just something to think about."
"How can I think about it when I don't know what it's about?" His cryptic response made me wary and I couldn't help but think that my sister was meddling in my life. Again.
So what – I was 27 and had no love life to speak of. Big deal. I don't see how it matters.
"Well, I need to get back upstairs." My father worked on the children's oncology floor, something I could never do. His constant dedication and love for his job was what drew me to medicine.
"Right. Tell Mom I'll be there for dinner tonight." He smiled and nodded as he walked towards the elevators and I went to go check on my patient, Mr. Rogers. No joke. I had yet to see the red sweater, but I thought he was pretty nice.
"Mr. Rogers, how are you holding up?" I asked, poking my head around the curtain.
His wife was next to him, holding his hand. "I'll be better when I'm out of this hell-hole."
"That's the attitude we love," I said. "We're just waiting on those CAT scan results and we'll see where to go from there." I turned to leave when he asked me a question.
"Do you think I'll be out before tonight, doc? Tonight is my granddaughter's birthday; she's turning four. I haven't missed on yet."
I smiled. "I hope so. We'll do what we can."
"That's all I ask."
A nurse sticking her head through the crack in the curtains interrupted me. She looked tired, probably on an 18 hour shift; she talked quietly so as not to disturb the patient and his wife. "Ambulance on its way; accident, female. Head damage, two minutes out."
"I'll be right there." I turned to the patient, "Excuse me."
I jogged to the ambulance entrance, pushing open a door to the outside, letting the crisp October Seattle air hit me. The ambulance pulled up and I maneuvered to the door to help lift the stretcher off the vehicle. The EMT was talking to me quickly.
"Unconscious female, age 25; she was found on the pavement on a corner. It looks like a car accident, but there was no car to be seen."
The girl was a mess. Her head was badly cut, blood creating a crimson path down her cheek. Her arm was swollen; most likely broken. Her shirt was lifted slightly to show bruising; either broken ribs or internal bleeding, maybe both. She was missing a boot. What the hell had happened? And how do you only lose one boot?
"Isabella Swan is what her ID says."
"We called the last number dialed on her cell phone; it was her friend and she's on her way to the hospital."
"Thanks." I wheeled the gurney into the hospital with a nurse attaching a different oxygen mask to her mouth.
I looked down in time to see her eyes flutter open briefly. I was hit with chocolate brown eyes. I didn't notice it when I was wheeling her off the ambulance, but she was beautiful. Not in the "hot" sense, but the classical beauty. Defined cheekbones, porcelain skin, long deep brown locks.
I turned her neck gently to apply gauze to her bleeding forehead and she opened her eyes again. Her face was expressionless, a blank slate. She looked hopeless, as if she didn't care if she lived or died.
We were in a nearby ER room. "You're at St. Jude's Hospital in Seattle," I told her quickly. "Can you hear me?" Her face turned and she had fallen away from me.
"Dr. Cullen, we're losing her pulse." I started chest compressions as the nurse hooked her up to the monitor.
"We have to stabilize her to do x-rays," I muttered. I listened to the monitor while I continued compressions as the nurse warmed up the defibrillator. The nurse cut off her black tee and I was embarrassed to be seeing her like this without any permission. Usually, it was just business – I was saving their life. I don't know why it was so different here.
"Charge to two hundred," I said as she handed me the paddles.
I hated to do this to her, but it had to be done. I watched her body arch to the shock of the machine and waited to hear a heartbeat. "Again," I ordered.
I sighed at the faint beeps I heard; we got her back. The nurse gave her doses of some medicine to keep her under and stable as she wheeled her down for a CAT scan and MRI.
"I want those results ASAP," I said, washing my hands from the blood that stained my hands.
I walked out of the room to see my sister running towards me at full speed. "Alice! What are you doing here? I told Dad to tell Mom I would be at dinner tonight."
"I'm not here for you, stupid," she said frantically. "A girl was just brought in here – Bella. I need to see her, now. Edward, I have to see her!"
"Woah, Alice, wait. She's getting tests done."
"You mean she's okay? She's awake?" She sounded so hopeful, I didn't want to be the one to break it to her.
"No, Alice, she's not okay. We don't know specifics yet, so I won't worry you with anything we don't know for sure."
I watched my sister's eyes well up with tears. "Oh, Bella. You stupid, stupid girl," she cried.
"How do you know her?" I asked. What I couldn't believe what that I've never met her.
"We went to high school together, roomed together in college, she's my best fucking friend, Edward."
"How haven't I met her before?"
"You're always gone. You went to that private school in Maryland, then straight to college then med school and didn't come home much. Bella has family in Arizona so she was gone when you were home, usually."
The nurse came back, wheeling Bella into the room. She handed me her chart and the scans from the tests.
I pursed my lips. Just as I had thought. "I'm sorry, Alice, I'll have to operate."
"But…but, she doesn't look so awful. I mean, more bruises than I'd like and her forehead…"
"Alice, it's internal. Three broken ribs and punctured organs, I don't have a choice. You know how this is."
"But it's my Bella."
"I promise she's in the best hands, Alice. I'll do everything I can."
She sighed, a tear falling down her cheek. "You and her meeting was so not like this in my dream."