Just an idea I had. Please review?

Oh, and Disclaimer... I don't own Scrubs. If I did, do you think I'd be writing a stupid FF about it?

For once, JD was being yelled at by someone other than Dr. Cox.

So, he had shown up to work late a few days in a row. Really, it wasn't his fault. Stupid Turk. Stupid Carla. Stupid let's-have-sex-in-the-morning-and-make-JD-late-for-work-because-he-has-to-drive-you. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

And so, with Ted standing meekly at his shoulder, Dr. Kelso proceeded to totally eviscerate the poor resident, who stood, quaking in his boots, while an audience of enthused interns and patients circled them, holding popcorn and waving banners, cheering the enraged Dr. Kelso on.

Okay, so maybe the last part wasn't really true, but Kelso's yells had certainly attracted something of an audience. So much so, in fact, that when Dr. Cox stumbled into the hall, he only saw the backs of several heads, all crammed around the center of the action.

"What the hell's going on?" he muttered to Carla and Elliot, who stood near the edge of the fray watching with horror as JD was verbally abused to the point of near tears.

"Kelso's attacking – "

"Oh-ho-ho…" Dr. Cox interrupted. "Which little annoying intern got in the way of one of Kelso's good-intentioned lesson-building speeches?"

Truth be told, as much as Dr. Cox enjoyed torturing the newest doctors to the hospital, the way Kelso handled them made him sick. At least the way Perry Cox did it, he occasionally gave a break. Kelso was a vicious animal. If he picked an intern or resident to attack, it was a complete mental beating.

"Oh, it's not an intern," Carla muttered to Perry, and as the crowd shifted in its stunned silence, Dr. Cox caught a glimpse of the attack-ee.


"What'd the kid do?" Perry asked, his voice – annoyingly – coming out a bit distressed.

"He showed up late to work," Elliot offered.

"I feel awful," Carla muttered. "It was my fault. Turk and I – "

"Re-he-heally don't need to know the details, there, Carla," Dr. Cox interrupted. And then, he turned his attention to the scene in front of him, his arms crossed and his eyes narrowed. Just because he didn't approve of Kelso's actions didn't mean he didn't take the tiniest bit of pleasure out of it.

Now, Dr. Cox would deny this until the day he died, but he actually thought of JD as a pretty decent resident. Alright, more than decent. Truthfully, he was the best of the bunch. Proof positive – Kelso couldn't pin him for any stupid mistake he had made medically, and had to resort to nitpicking on his tardy record.

"And if you don't respect this hospital's attendance policy, I don't see why you even bother to show up in the first place!" Kelso was ranting. "You are such a poor excuse for a doctor and for a human being that I don't even want to look at you."

Dr. Cox stared intently at the look on JD's face. He was standing there, his shoulders sort of hunched over, apologetic. He was looking down at his feet, but something in his eyes – he looked like… well, he looked like he thought he deserved to be yelled at. Kelso continued to rant.

And then something inexplicable happened. Dr. Cox saw red. Who the hell did Kelso think he was? Where did he get off, yelling at Newbie like that?

And so he acted. Irrationally, stupidly, without thinking. "Hey!" Dr. Cox yelled, storming forward and turning Kelso around roughly by the shoulders.

"What the hell do you think you're doing?" he started.

Kelso's bright eyes widened like headlights. "Excuse me?"

"See, granted, Susan over here is extremely fun to torture," he seethed, tilting his head back to gesture to JD, who was now standing, shell shocked, staring at his mentor. "However, I fail to remember who gave you permission to beat the will to live out of people who don't deserve it!"

"Oh, now that's funny, coming from you," Kelso yelled back.

"Look, Bob-o. Just stay the hell away from my resident."

And with that, he wheeled around, grabbing JD by the shoulder, and steered them both out of the clearing. Kelso turned bright red. The room erupted into loud chatter.

Dr. Cox and JD spun into a patient's room.

"Newbie, I need you to run some tests on Mrs. Wheeler over here," Dr. Cox said, his voice as close to normal as he could make it.

JD just stared.


More silence.

"Why aren't you saying anything?" Dr. Cox said.


"Speak up, Delilah."

"I'm afraid if I try to thank you, you'll go crazy and start yelling," JD said, his voice soft.

There was this gaping chasm – a silence that stretched on in between them.

"Right-o," Dr. Cox finally muttered. "Don't mention it. And when I say 'Don't mention it,' I mean ever. To anyone. Ever. Honestly."

"You do realize, of course, that you just stood up for me in front of a crowd," JD said, that ridiculous grin creeping up onto his face.

"Shut up, shut up, shut up. Momentary lapse, that's all," Dr. Cox sighed, although for some reason, JD got the feeling that he was talking more to himself than to anyone else.

"Why did you do it?" JD asked. He knew he was pushing his luck, but he felt extremely grateful for what Dr. Cox had done back there. He needed to show that to his mentor.

"I haven't the slightest clue."

"You said I didn't deserve it. Kelso wailing on me like that," JD prompted.

"Newbie, nobody deserves Kelso's wrath. Admittedly, you're probably as close as you can get, but still."

JD just smirked. "Yeah, but you don't mean that. You think I'm a great resident, don't you?"

And now Dr. Cox was turning red. "I vehemently deny that."

"Sure. Whatever. You've shown your hand," JD said, shrugging. His smirk grew more pronounced.

"Listen closely, Shirley. I stood up for you back there for one reason, and one reason only."

A pause.

"Nobody's allowed to mess with you but me."

And with a coveted pat to the shoulder, Dr. Cox shoved a clipboard into JD's hand, heading for the door.

"Now, get the hell to work."