Chapter 8 acceptance
"Arizona!" Callie gently put a hand on the sleeping woman's shoulder and shook it. The blonde came to and shifted her body weight slightly. It was getting really uncomfortable to lay in the same position day after day with only being able to move around a couple of inches left or right. Callie sensed it and gave her a sympathetic smile. "There are two police officers here, the same couple as before. They have some more questions and information for you. Are you feeling up to it?"
The blonde just nodded. Might as well get it over with.
Callie gestured for the uniforms to enter. "Miss Robbins, I hope you're feeling better." The female officer started. "We've been searching for Kevin but with no luck. We went to his apartment, where he is registered at, but it empty and cleaned out. We also got the address to his father's house, since his mother passed away when he was only a child but he claims he has no contact with his son. We are going through his phone records and his computer to verify that. Is there anything about the place you were kept that you can remember? Was it an apartment, a house, some kind of storage unit, anything?"
Arizona closed her eyes and licked suddenly dry lips. "Some kind of cellar, I think. There were no windows and there was concrete walls, floor and ceiling." She took a deep breath, her forehead creased from concentration. "I slept on a matress. I had two blankets, no pillow. There was a small tv in the room. It was mostly on because I liked the noise and t felt less lonely. I remember watching the news about my disappearance and how people were out looking for me. I remember hearing when they called off the search, thinking I was dead, declaring it a cold case." Her chest tightened, restricting surrounding air from getting into her lungs. She fought the sudden wave of nausea that came crashing down over her and finally, with great difficulty, she was able to take a deep much needed breath. "I was showered about once a week I think, but I was blind folded every time he brought me. Kevin showered me every time. I could feel his hands..." Arizona swallowed another sudden wave of nausea before continuing. "... His hands on my body. I got so use to his touch so I know it was him. There was only a couple of times when Kevin wasn't there. Then there was another man, I don't know who, I never saw his face just a glimpse of his hands."
The officers were rapidly writing all the information down. "What about the man who showed up, saying he was your uncle. Did you get a good look at him? Did you recognize him from somewhere?" Callie was still standing next to the blonde, stunned from what she was hearing. She was amazed from what this woman had been through and a feel it of pride washed over her as she looked at the blonde struggling to get some of her story out. "No, I've never seen him before. I don't even have an uncle."
Callie sat down on the bed and was surprised when Arizona grabbed onto her hand, trying to get some support and strength from the doctor. Callie smiled and patted the cold hand before the blonde continued with a trembling voice.
"I remember the smell of cigarettes. It was...It was very strong,and almost constant."
"Does Kevin smoke?" The female officer interrupted.
The blonde shook her head. "No. But his father does. Or at least he did when we first started dating."
The male officer stepped in this time. "How do you know Kevin doesn't smoke? I mean, you could smell the cigarettes but how do you know it wasn't him?"
Arizona glared at him and she could feel Callie squeezing her hand. She clenched her jaws, blue eyes brimming with tears. "I spent the past ten years in a fucking room with a man that was supposed to be my husband. He came to that room, every day for those ten year. He hurt me, he beat me, he raped me and tortured me. Don't you think I would know if he smoked or not?"
His face was now flushed with embarrassment and mumbled an apology. Callie knew Arizona had had enough and decided to break the interrogation. "Okay, that's enough for today. She needs her rest. I'll let you know if there are any changes or if any new information comes to light." The Latina was mainly looking at the male officer, staring him down, hoping he felt bad for upsetting her patient. Detective Birmingham hastily made his exit while Detective Harper lingered.
"I'm sorry for my partner. He can be a bit... Insensitive at times." She handed Arizona her card. "If there is anything you remember or if there is anything you need, don't hesitate to call me. The number at the bottom goes straight to my office so you don't have to asked to be transferred. Take care of yourself in the meantime."
They were left alone. Callie could almost hear Arizona's heartbeat echoing through the room. The look on her face spoke of anger, confusion, sadness and torment. So many years of physical, mental and psychological abuse were written on her face and in her eyes. Callie had finally gotten some insight of what Arizona had endured over the years and how she had been treated. It made Callie feel sick to her stomach, thinking about some psychopath pawing and groping the blonde's body to fill his own filthy wants and needs.
Callie looked up as Arizona let out a shuddering breath. Her eyes were now dry from tears but her pale face was still wet from the previous round. Callie resisted the urge to reach up and brush them away. She didn't want to touch the blonde in case it would scare her. The Latina cleared her throat not really knowing what to say. "Um... Do you want me to stay for a bit?" She hoped Arizona would say yes but she never got the chance before they were interrupted by Callie's pager. Taking a quick glance at it she noticed that it wasn't an emergency. "Its okay, it's not a 911. Someone else can take it... If you want me to stay?"
Callie cocked her head to the side to get a proper look at the pretty face in front of her. Arizona shook her blond locks and attempted a smile. "No, you go. I'll be fine. You can't hang around 24/7. You've got a job to do."
"Yeah, but there..."
"Callie, please, I'm fine. Go and break bones and put them back together again, or whatever it is you're doing."
The brunette was slightly surprised with Arizona's attempt of a joke and a smile spread across her lips. "I like your sense of humour. Don't lose it." She placed a warm hand on Arizona's cold one and gave it a squeeze before standing up. "Let the nurses know if you need anything and if they give you a hard time, let me know and I'll break their bones." She winked and gracefully strode down the corridor.
Arizona was left with a flushed face, warmth spreading inside her chest like a woollen blanket and butterflies fluttering in her stomach. Callie was one of a kind, an extraordinary human being and such a loving, caring doctor. She was so easy and comfortable to be around, so gentle and kind. It made Arizona feel somewhat safe and cared for, for once. It would take some time to get use to that feeling, considering its been a decade since anyone even bothered to ask her how she was feeling and being generally concerned for her wellbeing.
It was getting close to dinner time and Callie was sitting in the hospital chapel, feeling totally and utterly drained. The Latina usually came here when she was in desperate need for some peace and quiet. It was calming, in a way, that there might be someone, or something, else out there to believe in. Callie did not believe in God but she did have faith and great respect for the unknown and the spiritual world and life after death.
It was three hours ago since she left Arizona's room and it was already dark outside. Her shift was finished but she couldn't bare the thought of going home to a messy and alone apartment, since Christina had the night shift . Her thoughts wandered back to earlier when Arizona had told some of her story. She didn't want to think about all the inhumane things that she had been put through but her mind wouldn't let her. He hurt me, he beat me, he raped me and tortured me. The words replayed in her head. Callie wanted to kill the son of a bitch. What on earth could cause a person to do such horrid things to another? Something must have snapped in his head or maybe he was just born sick and mentally disturbed. It was beyond Callie how fucked up some people are. She couldn't comprehend or understand this man's screwed up way of thinking. I probably never will. Sighing, she stood up. She wanted to see Arizona before leaving.
The blonde was half sitting up in the big hospital bed. Her slender fingers were playing with a stray bit of thread that had torn itself loose from the bedsheet, wrapping it around her index finger, unwrapping it again before she repeated the procedure over and over. Callie knew she was trying to keep her mind of things by occupying herself with literally anything. She made a mental note to bring her in some magazines and crossword books tomorrow so she wouldn't go crazy from boredom.
"Hi." Callie felt a bit fidgety, a little unsure of herself.
Arizona looked up and the piece of thread was suddenly forgotten. "Hi." A sad smile graced her lips.
The brunette came up next to the bed but kept a comfortable distance between them. "I was just checking in on you before I leave. Do you have everything you need?"
Arizona gazed at the beautiful doctor questionably. "I'm sure you have other patients far worse than me. Why am I so special or are you this nice and caring towards all your patients?" The blonde had to ask. The trust issue was back again and she was pushing Callie away. "Are you being so nice to me cause of all the publicity you'll get? I mean, I've been missing for ten years, everyone thought I was dead and yet, here I am, alive and kicking. What's in it for you, Callie? What will you get in the end of all this?"
Callie knew what was happening. Sighing, she sat down and took a hold of the hand that only a minute previously had been playing with the white piece of thread. "I know you're scared, Arizona. You're scared, you're picking a fight and you're trying to push me away." A large hand was placed gently on the blonde's cheek, forcing her to look into brown orbs. "I am telling you now, Arizona that there is nothing I will get at the end of this." She paused and smiled. "Except maybe a beautiful friendship."
Arizona tried to break free from the hold and turned her face to the side. Callie, however, was too determined to not let this go. "Look at me, Arizona." Blue eyes flickered around the room before settling on the olive skin before her. "I know you're trying your hardest to trust me, and I really appreciate that and I think you're doing a good job trying. I know that there is nothing I can do or say right now that will make you trust me, but you've got to stop pushing me away. I'm only here to help you. I care about all my patients, but I must admit that... Maybe I'm giving you a little bit of the famous Dr Torres's VIP treatment. Get use to it and try to accept it."
"I'm sorry." The words were only a whisper but to Callie they were as clear as daylight.
Letting her hand drop from its comfortable place on Arizona's cheek, she smiled and stood up. "Don't be sorry. Just try to get use to the idea that I'm not leaving. Now try to get some sleep and I'll see you tomorrow."
As she turned her back she was stopped by a small hand grabbing her wrist. "Callie, would you... I mean, could you maybe... I...just I..."
The tall Latina pulled the chair over to the bed, sat down and held the fragile hand in hers, smiling. "I'll stay until you fall asleep, sweetie."