Title: #1 Thank you for caring
Rating: G - pg13 (I'm not sure how those ratings work in US, but let's just say I like to leave some things to the imagination...)
Disclaimers: What part of 'Fanfiction' isn't clear? So no, I don't own ATWT nor the characters. They own me:-) and knocked on my fantasy to keep them alive
Summary: It's thatday in the hospital where the original ATWT writers made some characters do stuff they didn't want to do (like die). So here's my version of what really happened:-)
BigThanksTo: ltklo, for dotting my i's and crossing my t's
It took him a few seconds to go from sleep to standing in the corridor. While he was trying to make sense of the nurses and doctors running around, he felt a hand on his back.
"Reid, just the man I was looking for. We have a young man, hit by a train. We expect him any minute, but the word is he's suffering major brain injuries."
Dr. Oliver nodded to Bob.
"Sounds like my cup of tea."
"My thoughts exactly," the older man smiled. "I…"
A gurney passed them at high speed and Reid saw a glimpse of a young male and blond hair. He felt a strange pain in his stomach. As if someone kicked him hard. Real hard. He stopped, tried to recall where he had seen Luke last and looked around. Luke had refused to go home, out of loyalty to Katie and him, and a nurse had found him a empty room, so he could have some sleep. What happened? Did he change his mind and was he on his way home when…
He felt nauseous and dizzy and he knew his body. This time he didn't need an elevator to experience this. It wasn't his first panic attack, but it was the worst one yet. Luke! This couldn't be happening!
Dr. Bob's calm voice brought him back to reality.
"It's not Luke."
For a few seconds Reid stared at him with empty eyes and then the message reached his brain. It'snotLuke!
The hand on his back returned and Dr. Bob pointed to one of the rooms.
"He's in 101, fast asleep."
"Thank God," Reid took a deep sigh and shifted his attention to the gurney that was pushed into an operation room.
"Let's save a life."
Bob nodded. "Let's do that."
They couldn't. Reid needed one look to realize there was nothing he could do. And his patient knew it too. He could see it in his eyes. There was a sense of acceptance. Peace, even. Words were redundant, so he just touched the young man's hand for a moment. The man surprised him by saying a word. A strange word at a time like this.
Before Reid could move, he saw a nurse already go through the personal belongings, returning with the requested item and handing it to Reid, who gave her a quick smile. He liked efficient staff like this.
"What do you want me to take out?"
Reid saw a few pictures, some cash…what did this dying man need? His hand stopped at the driving license. This man was an organ donor. Again they looked at each other and Reid knew he found what the man wanted him to know.
"Convince my mom," he whispered. "Let me save some lives."
Before Reid had a chance to tell the man he was sorry he couldn't save his, the young blond went Home. The next second the nurse stood beside him, he mentioned the time of death, she wrote it down and looked at him for instructions.
Reid realized he knew this nurse, but he couldn't remember her name.
"Please bring Dr. Dixon in here. It's a long shot, but maybe this heart can save Chris Hughes."
The nurse nodded and calmly asked: "His mother is outside. Can I let her in?"
Reid took a deep breath. He hated emotional confrontations like this. But he remembered his panic and pain in the minute he thought it was Luke on the gurney and that gave him another outlook. So he nodded.
"You find Dr. Dixon. I'll stay with the mother."
Her 'I'm not sure you're the right man for that job' – look didn't even irritate him. He gave a glance of a smile and nodded again. I'll be kind.
And he was. Without drama, but not cold, he shared her son's last moment and wishes and she didn't looked surprised.
"My boy was an angel, doctor. I never understood why he'd come to earth, because he clearly didn't belong here. He didn't fit in, somehow. He was too sensitive. So I knew some day this would happen."
Reid held his breath for a moment. So this was no accident. This was a choice.
"I'm only curious about the timing. I know Matt wanted to give life with his death…"
"I'm not allowed to give you information about possible recipients," Reid's voice was calm and understanding, "but I can assure you that Matt's gift will be received with great gratitude and the timing is always perfect."
The woman smiled. "I'm glad to hear that." She put her hand over his. "You've been a great comfort. Thank you for caring."
For a moment Reid was in shock. Thank you for caring. He saw Annie Judd's face. The little girl he couldn't save. Every time he left her room, she gave him the same line. Thank you for caring. The little girl had seen right through his keeping-the-world-at-a-distance act. She knew he cared. And he did. A lot.
Reid realized the nurse had returned and all of a sudden he knew who she was.
"Nurse Stewart, could you…"
His eyes sent out an SOS and with a warm smile she gave a quick nod.
"I'll keep Matt and his mother company," her voice was soft and loving, "Dr. Dixon is on his way and I think room 101 needs a visit."
He liked her.
"Thank you, Nurse Stewart." Wow,Lukewouldbeveryimpressedwiththisdisplayofpeopleskills!
"You're very welcome, Dr. Oliver." Alison gave him a big grin. She looked impressed too.
He was still sleeping and as softly as possible Reid closed the door behind him and walked over to this young guy who turned his world upside down. Mr. Snyder. Reid smiled. Their history was full of bumpy obstacles, misunderstandings, arguments and too much Noah – his smile turned into a grin – but at this point he felt confident about their connection and about his own feelings.
He sat down on the bed and looked at the sleeping man. A comfortable warmth spread through his whole body and while he tenderly pushed a blond lock of hair from Luke's forehead, he gave his feelings a voice.
"I love you."
After one last look, he left Luke alone to find Dr. Bob and Dr. Dixon. As much as he disliked Doogie Hughes, he didn't want the young doctor to die. Could Matt's heart save him?
It had only taken him a few minutes to get the news about the match and Chris's new hope, but when Reid entered room 101 again to check if Luke was awake, something had drastically changed. His peaceful sleeping boyfriend had turned into a sweaty, agitated bed tosser. It was obvious Luke was having a nightmare and it was devastating to watch. Not sure what to do, Reid sat on the bed again and started caressing Luke's hand. It worked. Luke calmed down and started to wake up. The minute he recognized Reid, he became very emotional.
"I'm thrilled that you're so happy about that," Reid smiled, "but why would you think otherwise?"
"I think I had a bad dream," Luke touched Reid's face to make sure he wasn't dreaming now.
"I know you had a bad dream," humour flickered in his eyes, "so it must have been about Noah…"
"No, it was about you."
The humour left.
"Okay. What made it so bad?"
"I agree. That's bad."
While they held hands, Luke shared his dream. About the gurney in the hallway, Reid hit by a train, saving Chris by donating his heart.
"Good heavens, Mr. Snyder…if you are having a bad dream, you are really having a bad dream. My brilliant heart in a guy like Doogie?" He rolled his eyes and Luke laughed out loud.
"But I do think you've turned a little clairvoyant on me, because the things you mentioned do tie in with reality."
Reid shared his last hour and Luke looked baffled.
"This is very strange," he mumbled.
"Somehow you tapped into what was happening outside this room," Reid looked puzzled. "Very strange indeed."
"But one part of the dream came out of nowhere," Luke's smile was very insecure and Reid frowned. He didn't want Luke to feel insecure ever again, so he softly touched his chin.
"Before you stepped into your car, in the dream, before the accident, you told me…"
Luke lowered his eyes.
Reid smiled. Somehow the words he had spoken while Luke was sleeping, had reached Luke's subconscious…he was sure of it. And because he was also very sure about the feelings behind it, he had no trouble repeating himself.
"I love you."
Luke stared at him with surprise and even a little disbelief.
"What? How did you…"
"I told you while you were sleeping…" Reid smiled. "And I see no reason not to tell you, now you're awake."
Before they could kiss, the door opened and Bob Hughes coughed expressly.
"Sorry to disturb you guys, but I wanted you to know that Chris is taken into surgery and John expects it will take some hours. I just sent Katie home to get some rest and I want you two to do the same." He smiled his understanding smile and added: "Or better yet…get a room."
Luke giggled when Reid gave him an intense look and then put his hand on Reid's cheek.
"I think Bob had a great idea."
"I agree," Reid rolled his eyes, "but I think I can go one step further…let's get a home."
Confusion hit room 101.
"This is not a spur of the moment thing," Reid almost sounded apologizing, "I've decided to stay here in Oakhell, so I might as well get my own home."
Luke was still not saying anything, so Reid made himself very clear: "And because I'm hoping it will become your home too, I would like you to come along and help me find the perfect place."
Reid started to get a little irritated. His "Whenever you think the time is right" sounded more disinterested than he felt. But Luke understood, pulled Reid's head closer and kissed him.
"In my dream I lost you and the thought of living on without you, almost killed me. So why wait when it feels so right?"
A bright light reached Reid's eyes. Finally!
"Not a day too soon," he replied, kissed Luke and then jumped off the bed.
"Come on, Mr. Snyder. Time to go home."