Code Blue Ch. 01
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Ok…here is a story that’s totally made up so I hope it’s ok.
I saw it happen but I just couldn’t quite believe it. I saw the perp’s arm go out the window holding the gun. I heard the shots and watched as blood bloomed first on my arm then my partner’s chest. I knew I had called for back up and then that call that we all dread. “Officer down! Officer down!” In minutes fellow officers trying to run these maniacs off the road surrounded us.
Mark had drawn his weapon at the first shot and now it lay on his lap. His hands too weak to hold it. I pulled our car over to the side of the freeway and dragged Mark out. Blood was pooling on the seat and his chest was soaked in it. Where the fuck was that ambulance?!
“Mark come on man stay with me! Mark!!” I was screaming in his face trying to keep him alert. I pressed my fist into the wound on his chest to try and slow down the bleeding. His eyes began to glaze over and his mouth hung open. He stretched out a hand and grabbed my shirt to bring me closer. He began to speak, gurgling blood.
“Tell Mindy and the boys I love them…please Ryan…please tell them from me.” He started to die right in front of my eyes.
“No. No. No.Mark come on buddy….You need to hang on!” His last breath came out in a soft rush and then nothing. I began to resuscitate him oblivious to the blood covering his chin and mouth. I checked his heart but it too had stopped. I didn’t notice the ambulance pull up and two guys dragged me off him so they could work. “We’ve got him now Officer. Let us work ok.”
I sat by the side of the freeway and watched as my partner of more than eight years lost his life to a bullet. I forgot that I had also been shot and it wasn’t until one of the paramedics came to tell me that Mark had lost his battle that I noticed my shoulder hurt like all hell. It felt good though..The pain. It did something to distract me from the ache in my heart.
I watched as they put Mark’s body on a gurney and load him into the ambulance. I couldn’t bare it. This was not the way it was meant to happen. Good people died all the time but Mark was different. It hadn’t mattered to me that he was married and hence straight, I had loved him from the moment we began to work together.
Late one evening after a really bad day, we had gone to a bar to drown our sorrows. I of course had spilled my guts about my feelings for him. I expected him to beat the shit out of me but he just looked at me and grinned. “That’s pretty flattering. Thank you.” That’s all he said and I was stunned. The next day there were no awkward silences or strange looks just an understanding between two men of something that could never be.
Now here we were, almost nine years later and the only thing I could do was watch. You’d have to be a policeman or in a similar line of work to realize how much your partner means to you. You become like brothers. Each looking out for the other and more than once we had placed our lives on the line without questioning about what it would mean to die. It was just something you did.
When the sheet went over Mark’s face I began to wail. High and animal-like. I lost all control. I felt hands grab my arm and one of the paramedics led me to the ambulance. “Let me take at look at your shoulder ok?” I waved him away. I didn’t give a crap about my fucking shoulder! I felt blood trickle down my hand and I began to shiver.
He forcibly lifted me into the vehicle and began to check out my wound. “It’s not too bad but you’re obviously loosing blood so we need to roll.” He thumped on the window as a signal for his buddy to get a move on. We moved through the quiet city streets with no real sense of urgency. I suppose there was no need considering Mark was dead and their only other passenger was in no danger of expiring.
I felt myself starting to drift off and realized I was lying down with an IV in my arm. I was light-headed and still shivering and they took me into surgery straight away to remove the bullet still lodged in my collarbone.
I woke with my whole body aching and I was definitely high on pain medication. The first eyes I saw were that of Mindy, Mark’s wife. Her cheeks were hollow with grief and she twisted a tissue between her trembling fingers. “Ryan..What happened? Tell me what happened!” She began to rant at me and I just let her unburden herself. “Why didn’t you call for backup sooner? Why didn’t you save him? Why?” My breath hurt in my chest and I felt the vomit rise in my throat.
I saw the pain and anger in her eyes and I asked myself the same questions. Mark was a father and devoted husband, I was single. It was just all so bloody unfair! I swallowed my emotion. “I am so sorry Mindy. amsterdam shemale It all happened so fast and I tried so hard to save him.” I began to sob. “His last words were for you. He told me to tell you that he loved you and the boys. Mindy I don’t think he suffered at all. He seemed to just fall asleep.” I hoped she believed me. It was total bullshit of course but what else could I say? That the pain must have been awful? That he drowned in his own blood? The images came flooding back then and I covered my face with my hands biting back a groan as the movement made my shoulder scream. “Don’t you know how much I wish it was me that died instead of Mark? I wish it had been me.” She left then with nothing else to say.
I heard the report on the radio that an officer had been shot but it wasn’t until I arrived at the hospital that I found out that Ryan had also been injured. The loss of Mark would be felt for years to come. He was a true gentleman and the love he had for the community he served and his family was plain to see. But it wasn’t Mark that I loved. It was Ryan. I had joined the force about three years ago and even though Ryan and Mark had been partners for such a long time, Ryan seemed to sense that I needed someone to guide me and show me the ropes.
The corridors of the hospital were a sea of blue uniforms. We crowded everyone else out and it made me proud. We were all devoted to each other in a true brotherhood and when one of us hurt, we all did. The loss of Mark spread through us like a wildfire. There were tears and understandable anger. They had eventually run the perps off the road and into a retaining wall on the freeway. One had been badly injured and the other had walked away without a scratch. Secretly I know we all felt cheated and wished they had both died. Now they would both be charged with the murder and attempted murder of two police officers and a slew of other various charges.
I made my way up to Ryan’s room to see if I could get in to see him if only for a minute. I was of course denied entry by the nurse from hell so I settled for waiting on one of those God-awful plastic chairs. A strong hand clasped my should shaking me awake. I must have fallen asleep. It was the nurse from hell. “Ok you can go in and see him now.” Wait, had I slept that long? I checked my watch; yep I had been here for almost four hours! No wonder I had sore shoulders and a crick in my neck.
I walked quietly into Ryan’s room. His eyes were closed so I assumed he was sleeping but looking closer I saw tears glistening on his cheeks and his breathing was ragged. “Ryan? Ryan it’s Ian. Can I sit with you?..Please?” He startled and looked at me not saying anything. I sat and he reached out a hand to grasp mine. I know it was an awful situation but I felt a small shock at our connection. He began to cry, hard and I couldn’t do anything at first but sit there. Then I took a chance and scooted my chair forward and wrapped him in my arms. His body shook as he emptied his sorrows onto my chest. “Why Mark? Why wasn’t it me Ian? Why wasn’t it me?” I heard the desperation and pain in that question. I felt guilty. He was going through hell and here I was drinking in his smell and the feel of his body against mine.
I rocked Ryan gently. “I am so sorry baby.” I froze at my slip. There wasn’t a change in his body language so I hoped that he hadn’t heard. “I’m here for you. Whatever you need, just say the word ok?” He sniffled quietly and nodded. He moved a little and groaned. I remembered then that he had been shot too. I held him away from me and looked at his shoulder and chest covered with a bandage. “Are you ok? I mean your shoulder? Are you in pain?”
Ryan stiffened a little and drew away. He blushed and looked down at the sheets. “Yeah I’m ok thanks.”
What just happened? We were connecting and then it all changed. Maybe I had the signals all wrong and he wasn’t actually gay. We sat for a few minutes, the silence uncomfortable and the tension clearly felt by both of us. I stood to leave. “Well you let me know if you need anything ok. I’ll get word to you about Mark’s memorial.” I waited for Ryan to say something but he just looked away. I gave him one last look and left totally confused.
Either he wasn’t gay and I had just made an absolute idiot out of myself or he was but either wasn’t “out” yet or in denial. All scenarios were a problem any way you looked at it and I was beginning to wonder if it was worth the hassle. Well at least I would still get to see Ryan at work and maybe that’s what I would have to learn to live with.
When Ian came to my room I was so caught up in crying that I didn’t hear him come in. He sat so quietly like he was afraid of disturbing rotterdam shemale me. He had only been on the force for three years but I had come to know him pretty well. He seemed like a softly spoken guy and not the kind of person you would think would fit into the role of police officer. He was liked by everyone and had a calm way about him which put most of the perps at ease.
When he lent in and hugged me something happened between us. Some kind of jolt, a connection that I wasn’t prepared for and it made me very unsure. I felt like a shit because Mark had only been dead for a few hours and here I was getting turned on by Ian, who by the way wasn’t my type..well I didn’t think he was anyway.
I almost fell out of bed when he called me “baby” and I think he was hoping that I didn’t notice so I didn’t give my reaction away. I tried not to read too much into that comment. I remembered where I was and why I was there and drew back immediately. Ian looked at me like “What?” but I didn’t have the words to describe what I was feeling. We made more small talk and he left promising he would let me know about Mark’s memorial.
The doctor came in to check me out and let me know that if I wanted to go home tomorrow then he would release me. Hell yes I wanted out of here but then that would mean going back to a life without Mark in it. I wanted more time to deal with things but I knew staying here meant that all I was really doing was hiding out. Hiding from the guys at work and hiding from the possibility of seeing Mindy. Seeing her at the memorial was going to be bad enough.
“Now if you do decide to leave you’ll have to take it easy. No heavy lifting and not too much driving or you’ll be back in here with torn stitches.” He left me alone to my thoughts. All morning most of the guys from my precinct filtered through my room. Making the usual noises of sympathy about me being shot and the passing of Mark. The truth was that most of the time as a unit we didn’t like to face the death of a fellow officer. It served to remind us of our own mortality and that was not something you wanted to think about.
I began to wish for tomorrow but dreading it too. Mark’s memorial would be horrific and seeing Mindy and the boys there was going to rip my heart out but I wanted to honor the memory of my partner. I could hide away from everything after it was over. I relaxed back against my pillows and let sleep take me away.
In the dream I was running with Mark down a dark alley. We had been chasing an armed perp for at least ten minutes and not gaining any ground.
I had already called for back up but our movement on the ground made it hard for help to arrive quickly. The guy turned right and ran into a warehouse. It was so dark there was no chance of seeing him in there so that meant using our flashlights, which also meant letting the guy know where we were.
I heard the sirens in the distance and knew help was coming but I also wanted to get this guy. He was a serial rapist and needed to be off the streets.
Mark and I slowed to a walk and considered our options. Mark wanted to err on the side of caution and wait but I felt like the more time we gave this animal the more distance he put between us and him. Agreeing to take it easy we entered the abandoned building. Holding our flashlights up with our weapons we scanned the various rooms watching for the slightest movement.
I squinted in the surrounding shadows as we both moved silently through the enormous building. A muzzle flash lit the darkness and Mark screamed at me to “move!” I hit the ground in seconds but Mark was still standing with his mouth hanging open. A small trickle of blood oozed from his lips. He raised a hand to his chest and it came away covered in blood. His knees gave away and he sunk slowly to the concrete floor. I trained my light across the room trying to get a glimpse of the perp but nothing. Mark panted in agony and his hands clutched at my shirt. “Why didn’t you listen to me? You killed me Ryan. You killed me.” I sat up in my hospital bed shaking and covered in sweat.
Immediately there was a comforting hand on my arm. “Ryan it’s ok. You were having a dream. It’s ok. I’m here.” It was Ian.
I drew a shaking hand across my face and sagged back against the pillows. I looked at him questioningly. “Oh I came back because Mark’s memorial is Friday.” It was Thursday. So that left me one day to steel myself against the coming agony.
I looked back at Ian. “Thank you for letting me know.” I was still shaking and my voice was sore from yelling at Mark to stay alive.
“Ryan, it’s not your fault that Mark got shot and it’s certainly not your fault that he died. I know you guys were together for a long time and blog shemale I also feel I knew him well enough to say that if he were here he would tear you a new one for being so down on yourself.” Ian’s words came out in a rush. I think he was nervous about how I would react to his little speech.
I avoided the subject all together and asked him if he could stop by my place and give me a ride to the memorial. His eyes widened in surprise but he said that he would. Once again the silence was awkward. What was going on here? Ian stood to leave but gave me one last glance. “Ok well I’ll see you Friday? I’ll stop by a little earlier and that way we can sit up the front at the church. It’s going to be a packed house.” I smiled at his consideration that I would want to be right up front. A small smile spread across his lips and he nodded silently and left once again. So Friday would be my day of reckoning. Hell here I come!
I looked in the mirror and smiled wryly. I looked like hell and I hadn’t been sleeping due to the nightmares that kept me company at night. There was a quiet knock on the door and I knew it had to be Ian. Collecting my wallet and keys I went downstairs to let him in. A small gasp escaped from me before I could stop it. He looked beautiful in his dark dress uniform. We looked at each other in mutual admiration and I am sure we were both at least five different shades of red. I mentally shook myself as we moved to Ian’s car. Cancel that. He had a bike. A big red Harley. My opinion of him had changed forever. He seemed like such a buttoned up kind of guy but I guess under that mild mannered extior there beat the heart of a rebel.
I couldn’t stop the smile if I had wanted to. He looked at me.”What? You didn’t think I was cool enough for one of these did you?” I blushed..Caught. He had totally nailed me!
I ran my hand through my hair and thanked God that I had the obligatory buzz cut. “Don’t worry handsome. You’re hair will be fine.” Ian froze at his “handsome” comment and then laughed. Maybe this day wasn’t going to be so awful if I had him there with me.
Parking at the church was a nightmare but lucky for us the bike didn’t require as much space. As we moved through the ocean of blue I shook hands and clapped backs wondering if they blamed me too. Mark had been such a loved member of our precinct and there were at least 200 mourners.
Ian and I moved to the front of the church and found a seat. I felt Mindy’s eyes on me and I was such a coward that I couldn’t bring myself to at her.
I looked in frozen horror at the casket not ten feet away from me. There was Mark’s photo and the American flag was draped across it along with a huge wreath of white roses. The minister moved to the pulpit and began the service. I must admit I didn’t really hear any of it. I replayed the night Mark died over and over in my head like a movie I just couldn’t turn off.
I felt Ian nudge me and I stood with him as six members of the force carried his coffin to the waiting Hurst outside. I thought I was doing ok until I heard the music begin. It was a lone piper playing Amazing Grace. I sat down heavily unable to move. Mark loved the bagpipes. I felt Ian’s arm go around me and I lent against him, drawing comfort from his closeness.
I looked back to the entrance of the church and watched as the procession made it’s way to the cemetery. I ran quickly then not wanting to let Mark down by being a coward. I joined the others in their slow march and found myself marveling at our commitment to honor our fallen comrade.
We arrived at the Harkins family plot and I watched as Mark’s coffin was lowered into the waiting ground. I looked up at the bright blue sky knowing that he was up there somewhere. He had probably found a bar near by and was having a beer. That was the Mark I knew and I smiled.
I felt a warm hand close around mine and realized it was Ian’s. He was staring at the ground, not daring to look at me. Once again there was that little shock and I squeezed his hand in response.
After everyone including Mindy and the boys had left I found myself sitting beside Mark’s grave. There wasn’t a headstone yet because the ground had to settle before one could be permanently in place. Ian sat beside me and I felt my heartbreak at my loss. I rocked myself trying to gain comfort from the movement. Ian’s arms went around me and I buried my face against his chest. I let myself really cry. I cried for myself but I also cried for Mark’s family and the life that had been so tragically cut short. But I tried to take comfort in the fact that Mark had died doing what he loved. He was born a policeman and he died being a policeman. I don’t think he would have been happy checking out any other way.
End of chapter one.
Ok I hope you enjoyed the first chapter of this story. I think it’s going ok but I would certainly welcome any suggestions or comments. Stay tuned for the next chapter coming soon!
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