This story was written a while ago and I am just trying to post it now. It should post daily until it is complete. Hopefully this will be the kick start to getting my other updates posted (they are written just can't get them to upload).
US Military Base, Germany – 2008
"Look alive people," the head doctor called out to the assembled medical staff on the tarmac of the Ramstein Air Base. They knew the drill. Quickly assess and arrange transport for all of the wounded to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in order of severity. The giant plane had finally come to a stop and the rear was opening up to allow them into the belly of the plane, sometimes referred to as the belly of hell by the nurses, since there were always so many wounded on board.
Bella Swan jumped into action as soon as the door hit the ground. She quickly assessed the first two patients, who had minor wounds, before reaching a third. The large man was unconscious and his vitals were weak but stable. After doing her physical assessment, she quickly read his medical file, gasping at the contents. She knew he needed immediate attention.
"Sir!" she called, getting the doctor's attention. As he made his way towards her, she quickly finished the check on her patient's file so she could relay the information quickly and efficiently to him.
"Nurse Swan," he said, looking at the patient as he listened to her account.
"Sergeant Emmett McCarty," she began without any preamble. "Vitals are stable. He's 24, no previous injury. Shrapnel wound to his left arm and chest. The shrapnel has not been removed, Sir."
"What the hell?" Dr. Slater said, pulling the dressing off the wound to confirm her statement. They both knew that the longer the shrapnel stayed in the wound, the higher the chance of infection. "Get him in right away. Stay with him all the way, Swan."
"Yes Sir," she responded, motioning for the orderlies to transport her patient to the waiting ambulance. She unhooked all of his equipment, readying him for transport, and moved next to the cot as the orderlies began the move. In less time than should have been possible in the cramped and chaotic space, Bella and her patient were loaded into the ambulance and on their way.
Once at the hospital, she relayed his information to the next doctor and began prepping him for surgery. She followed his cot right to the operating theater door, before dashing back to the ambulance bay to assist with the next patients.
Before she finished her shift, seven hours later, she checked in post op to ensure that the sergeant had made it through okay. This was not an uncommon practice for Bella Swan. The large transport planes seemed to land almost daily, carrying injured soldiers from both Afghanistan and Iraq to the base in Germany. Landstuhl was the largest US military medical facility overseas and their main job was to patch up soldiers enough to get them home to the States, or back to the field. She grabbed her coat and bag, making the short walk home, before falling into bed, and preparing to do it all again the next day.
Bella Swan grew up in the military, an army brat through and through.
As the only child of Master Sergeant Charles Swan, an SFS MP with the US Air Force, and Renee Swan, a self-proclaimed housewife extraordinaire, most of her life was spent traveling from base to base, both in the US and overseas. As such, she was an easy going girl with friends spread far and wide. When she finished high school her family had been stationed in Japan, so with a heavy heart she left to attend college in Boston, to follow her dreams of becoming a nurse.
It came as no surprise to them that she graduated top of her class. She was offered her choice of jobs, choosing New York City for the challenge. It certainly was that! In the meantime, Charlie and Renee had visited when possible and had been transferred three times, Italy, Texas and finally Germany.
It was in Germany where the doctors first diagnosed Renee Swan with cancer. Renee had suffered from stomach pain and upset for nearly a year before Charlie had finally managed to talk his wife, who hated doctors with a passion, into getting a check up. By the time the doctors found it, it was too late. Bella quit her job immediately, packed up her life in two suitcases, and flew to be at her parents side for Renee's last few months.
Bella was a constant at her mother's side, attending all appointments, and taking over her day to day medical care. After Renee's passing, Bella decided to stay with her father, who had not taken his wife's death well. She applied for a job at Landstuhl and even though she was non-military, she was hired on the spot and started working almost immediately.
As a triage nurse, Bella was usually on call for all incoming planes. She didn't mind as she loved to keep busy and help where necessary. During her time off, she cooked, read, watched sports with her father, or spent time with friends. Of all the overseas army bases she had been on, this was her favorite. The people here were all warm and friendly and she had managed to find three great friends in other nurses on the base. Angela Cheney, whose husband was an airplane mechanic, Lauren Mallory, an army brat like herself, and Jessica Stanley, an incurable flirt who had a thing for men in uniform.
All in all, life was good.