Heartbeat of Absolute

Chapter 4

Morgan tapped his fingers on his knees nervously, waiting for each and every second to pass. Just as his thoughts was wondering, his phone buzzed.

"Hey, baby girl."

"Hey, do we have any word yet?"

"No, he's still in surgery."

"And?" Garcia asked.

"You know these doctors, you don't get anything out of them, but they… they seemed positive." Morgan tried to convince Garcia.

"But you don't sound so positive."

"Penelope, I am just nervous, that's it. I just want Reid to be okay. How about Jack? Do we have any lead yet?"

"Yes." Garcia began and explained everything that has happened so far. "He said he would call back in half an hour time, to talk to Hotch."

Morgan sighed. "How is Hotch?"

"I think you know better than I do." Garcia sighed from the other side.

"I should be there, helping you guys to find Jack. There is nothing much I can do there, except getting frustrated very second."

"You're helping us already, Derek. We could concentrate here because we know that you are there and you would take care of our baby boy."

"Listen, I got to go; call me the second you hear anything, okay." Garcia ended the call and as she exhaled deeply, Garcia entered back the conference room.

"How is Spence?" JJ asked, and the others looked at Garcia.

"He's in surgery."

"He's still in surgery?" Hotch asked, surprised.

Garcia nodded.

"Guys, he's in good hands. We still have ten minutes before he calls; Aaron are you ready for this?" Rossi questioned.

"I am." Hotch answered with full confidence in his voice.

"I need to speak to my son."

"If you give me what I want, I will give back what belongs to you."

"How can I trust you?" Hotch asked.

"I am in charge here, and besides you have no choice, Agent Hotcher. Let me show you."

"Show me? What do you mean?" Hotch asked, looking at others.

"I have left you a package on the bench, right side your office building. Go and get it, I will wait on the line."

Hotch as just surprised as others, snapped out of the moment, grabbed the phone and ran out the room. Hotch reached outside of his office building in record breaking time. He jogged to the right side and eyed the bench nearby. On the third bench, Hotch saw a small boy matching to Jack's body size, sitting with his back facing Hotch. Hotch knew it was Jack but something was not right. Without calling his name, Hotch increased his speed and stopped dead. Wearing an oversized white shirt, Jack sat on a bench with tears in his eyes.

"Dad." The little boy called, fear was visible in his voice.

Hotch feared the most when Jack didn't move an inch even after seeing his father. In the corner of his shirt, Hotch could see something blinking from inside.

"Dad, don't." Jack said when he saw his father reaching his hands to his shirt.

"Don't worry, buddy. I will be careful."

Hotch tried not to get panicked in front of his son. He doubted if it is possible. Sweat trickled down his forehead.

"Aaron, what is it?" Rossi came forward, running.

"Dave, calm him down." Hotch said, before he picked up the phone.

"You sick, son of …. You strapped a bomb to my son's chest!"

"You might want to watch your language, Agent Hotcher; you don't want me push a little button here and your son …"

"What do you want?"

"Great, let's get down to our business, shall we?"

"Family of Spencer Reid?"

Morgan snapped out of the thought his mind was dragging him to and looked up, "Thank god; how is he?" Morgan said as he flashed his FBI badge.

"Is he alright?" Morgan inquired.

"He's alive." The young male doctor said. "Dr. Reid sustained a broken leg which was well taken care of. With the help of physical therapy, he would be able to walk. He also suffered from concussion which is healing. He has a sprained wrist, two cracked ribs and some severe bruising across his body."

"But there is something else …" Morgan tried to keep himself calm.

"Our major concern was his gunshot wound. Believe or not, the 6 mm did some real damage. The bullet after passing through the right lung, the bullet penetrated the right atrium, pierced through the atrial septum, punctured a hole near the posterior leaflet of the mitral annulus, and exited the heart on the left ventricle just near the circumflex artery close to the atrioventricular groove. The bullet then passed through the left lung and ended up between the eighth and ninth ribs. As he arrived, we placed Dr. Reid on urgent extracorporeal circulation.

"This circulation thing, what is it?"

"It is this technology which makes it possible for cardiac surgeons to work on the open heart. During extracorporeal circulation, the pump of the heart-lung machine takes over the work normally performed by the heart. It took us some time, but fortunately, we were able to fix the damage."

Morgan exhaled deeply, releasing the half of the burden he was holding on to. "What are his chances?"

"He is not out of the woods yet, but I am encouraged. At the same time, it is very important to carefully follow up with him. You have to understand, it is a major surgery, we have to keep him under control and make sure he doesn't suffer from any myocardial abnormalities, pericardial effusion, or valve-related problems."

"His road to recovery is not going to be an easy one." Morgan said.

The doctor nodded. "But with the help of everyone, I am hoping for him to survive this."

"He will. Thank you so much."

"You're welcome. It's my job. Can I talk to the person who would be staying and taking care of Dr. Reid?"

Without any second thought, Morgan answered. "That would be me, doc."

"Okay, then. Take some rest first, you look exhausted yourself. Later, I would brief you on very important things that you should know."

"Can I see him?"

"He is being settled in his room as we speak. I will ask the nurse to get you when he is ready and you might want to keep this" The doctor said as he handed over an envelope.

Morgan took the envelope, carefully opened it and found a bullet on his palm.

"The magic bullet that went through your friend's heart." The doctor patted Morgan's shoulder. "Your friend is a lucky man, Agent."

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