Again I find myself apologising for short chapters and sparse updates! Bah...sorry to everyone out there. Things been a tad crap recently... but this fic is by no means being left and ignored...am trying to juggle a lot of stuff at the mo ... sorry.
But please keep checking and reading and reviewing coz I aint going anywhere... just... trying to keep on track!
Hope you enjoy - better stuff on the way! Promise! -) And thank you all again for sticking with me! xxx
The kitchen of the restaurant was in full swing with busy and agitated staff requesting and ordering things across the floor at each other. Crockery piled high as hot and cold food came and went, the relentless odour of cooking hung in the air, not altogether unpleasant but a little cloying nonetheless.
Although it was early evening, a cool breeze had been hustling the rear doors of the kitchen so that a member of staff had wedged open one door slightly, to keep it from slamming shut.
Outside, a car glided to a stop and three occupants remained seated for some minutes, the engine idling quietly.
"Okay boys. Remember the new drill?" Nick turned to his companions. "And remember… no-one gets hurt, okay?" He pulled his head round to check his reflection in the rear-view mirror. A haunted soul if ever there was one. Yet, he needed to keep a clean sheet - of sorts. His own lacklustre eyes stared back at him, as if giving him the go-ahead for yet another heist.
"Are you taking your …uh… trademark with you boss?" His passenger looked meaningfully towards the dashboard, where Nick had placed his coveted pistol earlier.
Nick pondered. He really wanted to. He had grown fond of the old weapon. He felt like a latter day Dick Turpin alright, when he used it. A little light hearted gesture of mocking, at all the expensively clad folk whom he relieved of their similarly expensive jewellery. But the trip out to see Houghton had reminded him that… trademarks weren't always a good thing.
"Nah not this time mate. Okay, let's go."
The three expensively dressed men got out of the car and split up.
The doctor looked apologetically over his spectacles at the two women across the table from him.
"I'm sorry Miss Munro, Miss Duncan, but at this point, it is quite clear that Miss Garrett is not in full control of her actions. Therefore I have little choice but to have her transferred to a more … secure ward."
"Okay, okay I admit," Sabrina began, trying to hang on to what little patience she had left after recent events. "Kelly really isn't herself…" She winced as she subconsciously tried to gesture with her injured arm in its sling. The doctor looked pointedly at her arm. "…but I really think there's no need for Kelly to be placed in a … a …" She struggled to use the term that sprang to mind.
"A mental ward!" Kris butted in for her. "Kelly is not crazy, doctor, I know it!" Kris finished, heatedly.
"Please, doctor, can you review your… um…" Kris cast her glance down to the doctors wad of papers on his desk, one more taking in the term "Psychiatry" on his name plate set there.
"Your decision…? Please Doctor Phillips?" Sabrina jumped in for Kris.
Doctor Phillips leaned back in his chair, taking note of how agitated the two ladies were. To be expected of course. But his profession carried heavy responsibilities and he wasn't about to allow his decisions to be clouded by emotions.
"Ladies, I am very sorry but I have no other choice. Miss Garrett is currently a danger to those around her…" Again he gave Sabrina a look that said it all. "…and could also possibly be a danger to other patients within this hospital. I must therefore ask you both to respect my decision. But please be re-assured, Kelly will receive the utmost care whilst on the ward. We have excellent facilities."
Doctor Phillips stood up.
"Now if you would please excuse me, I do have other patients…"
Kris stood up, her anxiety all to plain. Yet Sabrina remained seated. Kris looked down at her friend.
"Come on Bri," Kris frowned. "We've done all we can. We'd better go contact Charlie and… give him the news."
Sabrina eyed Doctor Phillips as she stood then, cradling her injured arm.
"We'll be back tomorrow, Doctor Phillips… and we will be expecting to see Kelly. And some results from your utmost care and…excellent facilities! You might want to start by finding out what's wrong with her!"
Sabrina couldn't help herself. She turned and left, angry with herself, angry with doctors, and somehow, unrealistically, and remorsefully, angry at Kelly. Kris kept pace with Sabrina as they walked briskly through the corridors of the psychiatric ward, both feeling the urge to run from there, even though they both knew that a sedated Kelly lay in one of those rooms, under supervision.
They finally reached the exit doors to the car park and emerged into the low evening sunlight, Sabrina breathing heavily. She stopped and leant back against the outside wall and closed her eyes.
"Oh Bri! Are you … alright? Your arm…?" Kris now felt torn between going back to be with Kelly, and keeping a close eye on Sabrina. In her minds eye, she saw again, the mess of Sabrina's arm and a totally uncomprehending Kelly standing in shock.
"Sure Kris," Sabrina let out a sigh, bringing Kris back to the present.
"Sure! I'm okay… my arm has a nice hole in it where Kelly just tried to knife me and now Kelly is stuck on a psycho ward! The case we're supposed to be working on is falling apart round our ears… " The tension that had mounted inside Sabrina was becoming overwhelming. Kris understood immediately where Bri's line of thought was leading to.
"Hey Sabrina! Hey, listen!" She stood in front of Sabrina, who then opened her eyes to look at Kris.
"Listen, none of this is your fault, okay? Stop taking the blame for everything, huh?!"
Kris all to well knew how Sabrina always tried to take full responsibility for the team. But they were a team. And teams shared.
"I'm not gonna let you do this to yourself, okay?" Kris said, a note of frustration in her own voice.
"Kelly's attack was NOT your fault! The way this case is going…or not going…" Kris corrected herself, "…is NOT your fault, okay?"
Kris waited for a response. Sabrina shrugged.
"C'mon Kris, let's go … give Charlie the good news huh?" She pushed herself off the wall and allowed Kris to take her uninjured arm and help her to the car.
Kris decided to drive Sabrina home where they contacted Charlie. The response from Charlie was pretty much as they both expected. He now wanted them both off the case. Off any case for the immediate future. And as much as both Sabrina and Kris had protested, they knew better than to argue with him. They both now sat subdued and worried, in Sabrina's lounge, cradling mugs of rapidly cooling coffee.
Kris shifted and set her mug down on a nearby table. Sabrina watched as Kris stood up, looking really tired, she noticed for the first time that day.
"Hey Kris…why don't you bunk here for the night, huh?" Sabrina offered.
Kris turned, rubbing at her sore neck muscles.
"Yeah… I might just do that." Kris gratefully acknowledged the offer, but then a vivid image of her bloodied kitchen splashed through her mind. She turned, not wanting to let Sabrina see her change of expression. Did she really want to go back there and clean up right now? She didn't think so. She felt nauseous enough as it was. And tired. Really tired. All she wanted to do right now was sleep.
"Kris?" Sabrina winced as she stood also, concern deep in her voice.
Kris turned back and plastered what she hoped was a bit of a smile on her face.
"Uh, thanks Bri, yeah that would be great! We both need to sleep huh?" She saw her own tiredness and anxiety reflected in her friends face. And something else she couldn't quite put a label to.
"You need some painkillers? I'll get you some…"
Sabrina watched Kris go into her kitchen and heard the sound of a cupboard being opened, the clink of a glass…the sound of the tap being run… all normal everyday sounds that should bring a sense of rationality and … everydayness… was there such a word, Sabrina wondered momentarily…? Ah well… but things were not normal right now were they? Things were going so very badly wrong and…she just felt so helpless, dammit! What the hell is wrong with Kelly? What the hell is going on?! Sabrina recalled with a stab of…fear? The look on Kelly's face as she came at her in Kris's kitchen…
"Jeez!" Sabrina jumped. "Ow!"
Kris had returned with the painkillers and some water. Sabrina turned back to Kris, the haunted look still evident.
"Oh God Bri sorry! Didn't mean to startle you…!" Kris set the items she had down on the table and turned back to Sabrina, who looked back at Kris, feeling somehow lost. Kris's heart sank further as she now saw a vulnerable and … afraid… Sabrina stare back at her. Kris bit her lip in some slight indecision, then stepped up to her friend and carefully embraced her in a gentle hug. Sabrina returned the gesture by patting Kris with her free arm, whilst feeling a lone tear escape and trundle down her cheek.
She sniffed. "Kelly is going to be okay… we're going to be okay Kris…we're going to get through this …okay?" Sabrina uttered these words to re-assure herself as much Kris.
Kris stepped back, her own tears gleaming in her eyes. She held Sabrina's shoulders lightly.
"Yeah I know!" Kris sniffed also. "And I'm not letting our case go either!"
Sabrina smiled, despite the odds stacked against them.