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In Extremis

By Genevieve Kelly

Action / Drama

Chapter 1

"Cowards die many times before their deaths. The valiant never taste of death but once. Of all the wonders that I yet have heard, it seems to me most strange that men should fear, seeing that death, a necessary end, will come when it will come."

- William Shakespeare

Julius Caesar

Chapter One

A crowd gathered outside at a pavilion downtown where most individuals waited around to donate blood to a few of the hospital's staff working a donation booth. Detectives, Wes Mitchell and Travis Marks, who was more reluctant, were among the crowd, waiting to take their turn, while the cockier of the two continued to drive his partner crazy with his usual, annoying antics.

"I can't believe I actually allowed you to drag me all the way down here, during the middle of rush hour no less, just so we can donate blood, especially when we can donate any other time and at a hospital," Travis complained as he stood beside his partner.

"First of all, our headquarters is not more than five miles from here, so it isn't very far, and in case you haven't noticed, we haven't had the chance before now to come down to do this as we've been busy trying to finish up the reports for our latest case," Wes replied without looking over at him. "If you hadn't have dragged your feet about writing up yours, then we could have been down here much sooner."

Travis glared at Wes as he asked, "Why are we even here? Why did I agree to do this with you? I hate needles and I hate giving blood. What if I were to get shot later today? I'll be in shorter supply than I already am. My blood is very precious to me."

Wes turned toward him and answered, "Giving blood is a noble act, Travis. There are a number of individuals every day, who need people like us to give up just a little of what we have so that they can live. You agreed, because deep down you know I'm right. Besides, I don't think you're going to be shot today, unless there's something I should be worried about?"

"If you're implying that I did something stupid, like piss off a shady character recently aside from those we've arrested during all our cases, then you'd be wrong," Marks responded and would have continued, but it was then that he noticed that the nurse Wes was about to go up to in order to have his blood drawn was exactly his type; flirty and super hot, then quickly cut in front of him, and walked up to take a seat in the chair at her station. "You can take that creepy dude to your left. I've got sexy nurse Barbie. How are you doing today, beautiful?"

"I'm good," she replied as Travis smiled up at her, ignoring his less than impressed partner. "I'm better now, now that you're here."

Travis smugly answered, "I bet you are."

Before walking over to sit down at the booth beside his partner, Wes shook his head as he responded, "You are unbelievable. How you can flirt with basically anything that moves is beyond me."

"You're just jealous," Travis replied as he and the woman continued to flirt while she gently began to draw his blood. "Just sit down and do what we've come here to do. Don't mind me."

"You mean, what I've come here to do," Wes answered as he finally allowed the paramedic standing above him begin his own IV. "Please, you weren't actually going to have your blood drawn, but you're doing it now because of yet another pretty face."

Travis glared at his partner as he responded, "I followed you here, didn't I? I said I would do it and I am, so shut up and let the guy beside you do his job."

Wes was going to let the subject die until he decided to speak up once more saying, "Oh, don't forget to get her number before we go, because I'm sure you're going to need that so that you and she can spend the night together, unless of course you already have other plans with that traffic cop that pulled you over last night for speeding."

"That didn't happen," Travis quickly replied as he glared over at Wes again, then turned to look back up at her. "I mean, it did, but I never gave her my number. She already had it from running my name… We don't have plans tonight, nor any time in the future. I am all yours, baby."

"You're all set, sir," the paramedic stated as he carefully finished removing the IV from Wes arm, while Travis continued speaking with the nurse helping him. "I just need to cover up the hole in your arm and you'll be set to leave any time, but I would recommend you take it easy for a few minutes to let the blood loss settle. There's some juice and a cookie beside you if you want them. They'll help with the wooziness."

Wes nodded and answered, "Thank you. I'm good. The cookie and juice only make the nausea worse for me. Are you finished over there, Travis?"

As the nurse leaned down to kiss him, Travis held up his pointer finger to indicate for a minute longer, then once he finished he responded, "Yeah, I'm finished here. We can go now. Captain Sutton will probably be calling us any minute to make sure that we're heading to our session with Dr. Ryan, even if we are now going because we want to. We've got about twenty minutes before it starts. I don't think we'll make it."

"Not now we won't," Wes replied as he and Travis slowly stood. "No thanks to you and Barbie over there."

"You're right, you're right," Travis agreed. "But she was totally worth it. I'll see you later, Ginger."

As they began to walk back toward their car, Wes stared at his partner as he asked surprisingly, "Ginger? Her name is Ginger?"

Travis smiled as he answered, "Actually, her name is Gina, but she's got that same color hair as Ginger from Gilligan's Island, same build, as well as that sexy beauty mark just like her. Everybody calls her Ginger."

"As if she didn't have all that done," Wes scoffed as he looked down at his cell phone to read an incoming text while Travis began to drive. "You're pathetic, Travis. And incredibly shallow. It looks like we're going to have to skip therapy for today. We just got assigned a new case. Sutton wants us back right away."

"It must be important if the man's willing to let us skip our class," Travis responded as he turned around and headed back toward their office. "It's too bad. I was looking forward to sharing today's experience with the group. And last night's too. That cop was mighty fine."

Wes rolled his eyes as he asked, "Why can't I have a normal partner?"

Travis replied as he patted Wes' shoulder, "Face it bro, you wouldn't trade me for anyone else. You had plenty of chances, especially when we were about to split up last month after nearly botching the take down of Crowl and his men, but you chose to stay with me. You like me and you know it."

"I don't know what you're talking about," the blond detective answered. "I must have been temporarily insane when I told the captain I'd rather stay where I was."

"Yeah, that's it," Travis responded as he looked over at his partner. "For the record, you're a great partner, man."

Wes relented as he said finally, "And a good friend. Although I'll never really understand why that's the case."

Travis smiled and then stated, "Ditto."

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