After we got to the hospital, I was alone in the ER. The doctor removed the bullet from my leg, and stitched up both that wound and the slash on my neck. I'd have some trouble walking for awhile, but if I rested and didn't exert myself or rip the stitches, I'd be all right. Gave me some pain meds too. I think I'm going to need those... them's some good stuff...
Steve had collapsed after they took me in, apparently. He had been shot, in the shoulder where I'd seen that dark spot. After they released me, Jagan, Foster, Dani, and I were sitting in the waiting room. We were really getting afraid for him.
What if he didn't live? What if he didn't heal up and live another day? I sure as anything wanted him to live. There had been so much time lost by my pettiness, and I wanted him to be here for us to reconnect. To make up that lost time.
We had always been two souls akin to one another, however great or small our differences.
After what seemed forever a doctor emerged from the double doors and look up from his clipboard at us. I untangled myself from Jagan's hold around my shoulders, and rising, I said: "Well?"
He took a deep breath. "The procedure went very well. The only worry we have is infection, but if nothing goes awry, he should heal up as good as new. He's in minimal pain right now, a little bit groggy, but otherwise resting easy presently."
"Can we see him?"
"Well, that's up to him, seeing as only one of you is a family member--"
"We're all family here," Foster said sternly.
The doctor didn't question him. "I'll take you all back then..." And he led us to Steve's room.
"So how ya doin', mate?" Foster questioned Scarecrow.
"Just as fine as I'd expect after being shot in the shoulder," he replied, smiling from his bed. His shoulder was wrapped in sterile gauze. "Gees, the sh*t you guys get me into..."
Foster grinned, an arm around Dani.
Old Scarecrow was back, alright.
Jagan beamed at me. I wiped away the tears that I’d been crying, and smiled at my brother. He returned my gaze evenly.
Jagan stepped forward. “I know that maybe this isn’t the right time, but, Scarecrow, I would like to know... Was this your first and last back with SCIT? Or can I count on you once you’ve healed?”
“Oh, this ain’t gonna be it,” He answered, “Someone’s got to stick around and keep an eye on my little sister, and frankly, I don’t trust you, Cover...” His tone was playful but I’m not intirely sure that he was kidding.
But Jagan just nodded, and offered his hand to Steve. “It’ll be great to have you.”
Steve shook Jagan’s hand. “Yeah. Sure. Just remember that I’m watching you, and if you lay a finger on Beth, I’ll—“
I broke in: “You’ll be sure to rip his arm off and feed it to him, right?”
“Actually, I’ll rip both arms off. You were close...” Everyone laughed.
I sat on the bed next to Scarecorw (straining my stitches a bit. Ouch.), and held his hand in mine. He squeezed his fingers tightly around mine, and not for pain’s sake. Things were okay between us.
"How are you, Baby B?" His eyes drifted to my neck. It was so ironic how our scars matched now. A funny trick that fate was playing. Something else to connect us further.
"I'm fine, Crow," He smiled up at me and I pushed a lock of hair out of his eye, fingering his brow fondly. "Perfectly fine..."
I knew everything was going to be all right. And sure as anything it was about time.