A/N I do not own the original characters of Rescue but definitely own Caz. If you have not already read my other work Collapsing Serenity then this story will not make much sense as it is a follow on set a few years after. Enjoy!
The filtered dawn light trickled down from the sky through the trees surrounding our night campsite waking me. It was peaceful and quiet and I sighed as I turned over in my tent gazing at my boyfriends form snuggled in his bright orange sleeping bag. I knew that we had to get up soon to start our canoe leg for the day but was too comfortable to move or worry about the fact that the other four were probably already up and packed.
The seven of us were on a training vacation in Canada on invitation from the Ontario Search and Rescue crew based out of Toronto. We were spending the week canoeing through a Provincial Park a few hours north of Toronto and it was a really peaceful way to get fit and bond as a team since the addition of Lachie, the brother of Dean and Chase. With the recent commotion about the Fire Brigade changing to Fire and Rescue and thus the potential loss of our jobs, all of us needed to escape for a while.
About ten minutes after I had woken, Chase started to stir, his sleeping eyes slitted against the bright sunlight.
He just grumbled as I smirked. Chase had never been a morning person, especially when we were on an overnight rescue or overnight expedition. It was one of the reasons that we worked so well together, I was the morning person who got up early, packed up and got our gear ready whilst at night when I was exhausted, he was lively and alert enough to organise the final details before sleep.
Heidi and the others in the team at first thought it was strange but since they have gotten used to our system they just address anything that needs to be done to the right person for the time of day and treat us as pretty much the same person with two different personalities.
The fluorescent tent shook as one of the others grabbed it in an effort to wake us up.
"Get up slackers, we are nearly ready to go and neither of you are up." Dean's voice shifted me from my trance and I began to move straight away, pulling on my uniform and my boots before exiting the tent.
"Good morning guys, how did we all sleep...?" My perky and bright voice startled Lachie and Lara who were busy rolling up the tent that was still on the ground. Dry bags and packs surrounded the area that our Kevlar canoes occupied.
"Good morning Caz, we slept wonderfully until it was time to get up... half an hour ago" Lachie's voice was dry as he sneered at me.
Lachie and my relationship was one of mutual shit stirring as we constantly tried to get on the other's nerves but underneath we respected each other's skills and Lachie accepted my relationship with his younger brother better than Dean did and treated me as a little sister.
Quickly i got my gear together and poked Chase until he decided that it was a really smart idea to get up... well it only took me taking the fly off the tent and all of the pegs and then threatening him with rolling the tent with him inside the 25 metres that stood between the tent and the icy cold lake. The entire team was on the ground in hysterics by this point as they knew that whilst i wouldn't actually do it to Chase, i was well known for doing it to other people.
About ten minutes later we were in the canoes with our gear stowed ready to embark on our next leg of canoeing before we got to the 2.5km portage to another lake. Fifteen minutes into the journey, my stomach started to grumble as it realised that it not been fed since dinner last night.
Heidi in the canoe next to me laughed at the audible complaint and threw me a muesli bar that she had gotten ready. I just smiled at her preparation. Since being diagnosed with both Type I Diabetes and Addison's disease nearly two years ago, i had to be careful that i ate at regular intervals otherwise i would get a low blood sugar and potentially collapse.
The entire team knew and had experienced the warning signs before me becoming dangerously hypoglycaemic and there was always a muesli bar and a glucagon injector in each of our packs in case of emergencies.
The next island loomed ahead of our three canoes and with it the next portage. All our treks with our gear and canoes over the dry land between lakes and rivers had been previously under nine hundred metres and so weren't too difficult. The upcoming one was over two kilometres over really rough ground.
Getting out of the canoe i hauled my pack out and started to walk to the shore, my feet getting stuck in the slippery mud. Just before dry land, my foot got stuck under a rock and i pitched forward towards the water. A firm grip on my bicep stopped my fall and stabilized me until i could free my foot.
I looked up to the eyes of Lachie as he smiled and commented, "Walk much, or does Chasie carry you everywhere?"
I just laughed and continued on. Soon afterwards all of our gear was on the bank and the canoes had been lifted out of the water ready to be divided up between the seven of us.
Dean, Lachie and Jordon elected to carry the canoes leaving Heidi, Lara, Chase and I with the packs. Heidi and Lara grabbed theirs and started the hike up the hill before the guys whilst Chase and I grabbed the others and waited for the canoes to go up the slope.
Carrying a canoe is not an easy process and is rather painful on the neck, not that the three guys would admit to it so it was up to the three of us girls to set the pace and the breaks. Not when we were tired but when we decided that the guys would be sore and want the break.
Stopping for the third time i decided to actually take my bag off and get my drink bottle out to prolong the rest break. I was not sore or anything but could see how much it was taking out of the guys and that they all refused to admit it. Heidi and Lara winked at me and sat down as well.
Ten minutes later we got up and packed drink bottles away to finish the walk. Pulling my pack onto my shoulders i stepped backwards to steady myself and adjust the straps of the pack as the ground beneath me gave way, sending me tumbling head first down the steep slope.