No Real Monsters Ch. 04byterowl©
Terri woke up with an IV in her arm. Looking around she knew something wasn't quite right, but she couldn't quite place it. The pain hit first, but it was dulled. She struggled to remember why things didn't make sense. Shifting slightly on the recovery bed, she alerted Lucy to the fact that she was awake.
"Terri? Look, don't move too much. You've still got the broken ribs, although Samantha set those as best as she could. And now you have a chest tube. Are you hurting?"
The concern in her friend's voice was genuine, she could hear it, but Terri was more worried about what Mike would do to her once he found out she wasn't bringing in her money like she was supposed to. She tried really hard to move out of the gurney. Her body would not obey her though. With a groan, only her right hand rose slightly and came down back beside her.
"What do you mean chest tube?" she managed to get out finally.
"You had a collapsed lung and went to surgery. You've only just woken up from it. Dr. Fox was able to get you stable again. You'll be in bed for a couple of days with those ribs. Now, are you hurting? She gave you a PCA."
Terri glanced around her, seeing Lucy by her side and the fact that she was indeed in the recovery room off the surgical ward. With another groan, she murmured, "He's going to kill me."
"He won't get near you here. We won't let him," Lucy stated bluntly, extremely sure of herself.
One of the other nurses from the operating area nodded to Lucy. Lucy stood up and began to wheel Terri to another area. "There, we can move you over to the recovery ward now that you're awake. Soon we can take you to a room on the floor."
Terri was starting to wake up more and more now and this time the groan she uttered was pain filled. Lucy stopped the gurney immediately and looked at her friend with a critical nurse's eye. She shook her head and reached over pressing the button on the PCA pump once.
"You may not think you are, but I can tell from that grimace on your face that you're in pain. There, that will make you feel better. Now remember, you can't heal if you're in too much pain. You're a nurse, you know better!"
Terri was about to protest but the pain medication made her very sleepy. She decided to doze for a little while. With the beating, the surgery and everything she really was worn out. She would let Lucy take care of things for a while and just relax.
The next time Terri woke, Lucy was offering her ice chips. She was still in the recovery area and it struck her as odd considering the only time she'd ever been here before was to pick up patients to take them to their beds on the floor. At Lucy's behest, she ate some ice chips and let them melt in her mouth to moisten her lips and tongue. It actually felt good to do that, so she let Lucy feed her a few ice chips at a time until she had finished a whole cup.
Once she had finished the cup, it was like this was what the nurses in the recovery room were waiting for as they came over and checked her vital signs once more. The nurse nodded to Lucy, writing a few notes on Terri's chart. She placed the chart on the end of the gurney.
Lucy nodded back to the nurse and then looked to Terri. "Well, we can head back to your room now."
With that, Lucy stood from the seat she had been occupying and with the help of one of the aides she wheeled Terri back to the floor. Once they were on the floor, they found the room assigned to Terri. She and the aide gently helped Terri back into the bed settling her with pillows as needed to make sure that she was comfortable.
Lucy sighed and patted a pillow behind Terri. "I have to get back to work. I've taken a lot of time to make sure you were settled, but Dr. Fox wanted me to make sure you didn't pull your IV or PCA out." She gave a grin to her friend.
Terri managed to look sheepish. She knew that had Lucy not been there when she first woke up in recovery and such, she probably would have pulled out the IV and tried to get out of the gurney. In this case, she would have undone all that work that Dr. Fox had completed too.
With a wink at her friend, Lucy started to head out the door. Dr. Fox and Jon nearly bumped into Lucy as they came down the hall, intent on coming into the room to see Terri. Lucy wanted to stop and ask why Jonathan was going in to see Terri, but with Samantha there, she really didn't dare do so. There was a look at Jonathan that he didn't even see, one of jealousy, but Lucy went on her way to get back to work. There would be words later.
Dr. Fox walked in first, Jon hanging back so that Terri couldn't quite see him. Samantha picked up the chart and offered a smile to Terri who lay in the bed and looked up at the doctor who had so kindly given her a job when she first came to town. She had been desperate for a job when she came to town and they couldn't look at her too closely or they would have known how Mike had come into her place of employment and nearly killed her and a co-worker. It was a nasty piece of work. He was still wanted there for aggravated assault and had forced them to move to this state in order to get away from the cops.
"How are you feeling now, Terri?"
"I'm...well, I still hurt, but it's better, thank you, Dr. Fox." Terri's voice was soft as she answered Samantha. A wince belied her words as she shifted slightly in the bed.
Samantha shook her head. "You know I gave you a PCA pump. Use it. You'll be much more comfortable and heal better." Saying this, Dr. Fox moved over toward the IV pole and pushed the button for the medication so that Terri got her pain medicine.
At that point, Jon stepped into the room more fully. He couldn't help himself, he was drawn to this woman and the more he was around her, the more he realized it. Terri was still paying attention to Samantha and didn't notice Jonathan coming closer to the bed.
"I know. I just hate that it makes me so sleepy."
"Sleep helps the body to heal!" Dr. Fox said with a small amount of amusement in her voice. She looked back to Terri and shook her head a little. "You can't expect to heal overnight with the injuries you took. You had broken ribs, which pierced a lung so one collapsed. I had to punch a hole in it and drain the fluid and blood out of it in order to fill it with air again you know."
Nodding, Terri sighed heavily. It wasn't the first time Mike had hurt her so badly. It was just the first time she had collapsed at work like that. "I'm sorry I..."
Shaking her head, Samantha stopped her. "You did not cause any trouble. You were hurt and now you're getting better. And do not worry about him. We take care of our own here. That includes you now."
At that Jonathan had to speak up. "Yes, Terri, that definitely includes you." There was almost a growl in his chest as he said this. He had put two and two together as they talked. This person who had hurt here would not hurt Terri again if he had anything to do with it!
Terri was surprised to see Jonathan there. She couldn't move fast, but the shock was evident on her face. Her eyes shifted to him and she gripped at the blankets slightly before a hand went to her hair, suddenly self-conscious of how she looked. With her blonde hair down around her shoulders for once and her green eyes watching him, she must really look a sight.
"I...I never expected to see you again," she murmured. "I didn't even call you." The blush that crawled up her cheeks at the memory of their first encounter was funny considering all he did was spill her coffee.
A hearty laugh was given at that comment. "I go where I am needed even when not called. And I am actually needed here. You need someone to keep this monster at bay and that's just what I'm going to do. My card did say I'm a lawyer if you'll recall."
She began to shake her head vehemently. "I can't...he'll..." Her breathing began to get erratic and she was soon close to hyperventilating at the thought of doing anything to keep Mike from hurting her again.
Dr. Fox was quick, she pulled a syringe from her pocket and injected it into the IV line. The effect was nearly instant. Terri calmed down and soon was asleep. With a slight shake of her head and a frown, she turned to Jonathan.
"I told you to take it easy with her."
There was a look on Jonathan's face that was full of confusion and yet something else too. It was almost a fury. How could someone strike that much fear into a person? What had he done?
"Do you know where she came from before she came here?"
"Yes, I do. I did some looking after I hired her. Discreetly, of course. I didn't want her to know that I knew her history. Her husband nearly killed her and an old co-worker of hers. Claimed she cheated on him before."
"Oh." He looked at the woman he was beginning to think was his mate. The more he saw her the more he realized he didn't want to be without her. The more he wanted to be there to protect her and take care of her.
"I want the information. I want to look into this so I can get to know her and what he did to her. I need to be able to take care of her if...if I'm going to be able to make this work," he said to Samantha finally.
Samantha grinned. Yeah, Jon had it bad. When the mating bug bit, sometimes it bit hard.
"Come to my office and I'll get you the information I found. I put it away so that no one else would find it. I didn't want her to know I knew and I didn't want any of the other staff to see it."
Jonathan and Samantha stepped out of the room. As they went out the door, a lone figure slipped from behind the door where she'd been listening moving silently until she stood over the bed looking down at the now sleeping Terri. Lucy's eyes which had been so kind to Terri before had hardened toward the girl she had always called her friend.
"Why you? Why did he have to pick you? I liked you!" There was now a distinct note of jealousy in her voice. "Well, we'll just see about this!" Lucy turned on her heel and headed out of the room a moment later...