One Way Or Another

Chapter 49

08/31/2005 Wednesday 8:00AM-8:00PM

Chapter Forty-Nine

After the doctor left it wasn't much longer before the same nurse came to get Reilly and take her to see Nick. Being so critical and a member of law enforcement meant that Nick had priority and he had been moved quickly and set up in the ICU during Reilly's conversation with Doctor Gates.

Everyone followed Reilly, but stayed back as the nurse led her into Nick's room quietly keeping an arm carefully within Reilly's reach as they entered the room. Reilly stopped dead in her tracks when she saw Nick lying in the hospital bed. It took all of her strength just to take in Nick's appearance.

He looked small in the large bed with the many tubes and wires attached to him and the machines surrounding him. There were at least two IV poles showing that Nick was getting a blood transfusion in one and meds in the other. There was also a tube down Nick's throat to help him breath and keep his airway clear. He was pale; paler than the sheet covering him to his waist and Reilly could see the large white square bandage that covered the wound in his chest.

Sam had snuck into the room and she came up behind her mother just in case she was needed. Reilly walked over to Nick's side and gently brushed her fingers across his cheek. She could hear the steady whoosh whoosh sounds of the ventilator as it worked to help Nick breath. She could hear the beep beep of the heart monitor as it monitored his heartbeat. She bent down and softly placed a kiss on that cheek.

She quietly whispered in Nick's ear. "Don't you dare leave me alone Nick Stokes. You promised you'd be here for me. You promised." She reached up and wiped a tear from her face so it didn't fall onto him. "I love you Mr. Texas, you pain in my ass CSI."

Sam felt her throat closing up and the tears welling up in her eyes as she watched her mother. She had never seen her mother this way. Her father had never made her mother elicit this kind of feeling for him; this kind of love. She prayed that God would not let Nick die, because of the love that Sam could see the two had for each other. Her mother deserved some happiness for a change.

XXXXXXXXXXXXX

Reilly woke disoriented. She slowly took in her surroundings and realized she was still at the hospital. At first she panicked thinking about her babies. But then she remembered Nick. She shot upright in the bed and looked around the room she was in. She could see Sam asleep on a couch in the room while Jillian and Bill Stokes appeared to be dozing in two armchairs near the couch.

As Reilly sat up, Jillian woke up to see her looking confused and she immediately got up from the chair and rushed over to her.

"It's okay, Reilly." She said as she took a hold of one of Reilly's hands.

Doctor Gates had told them that Reilly would probably be confused when she first woke up because of how tired she'd been when they'd finally gotten her to lie down. Once they did though she'd fallen asleep almost immediately.

"How's Nick? How long have I been asleep?" She asked, continuing to look around the room for answers. "Where is everyone?"

"Nick is the same and it's almost eight at night Reilly. You've been asleep almost ten hours now; and everyone has left as visiting hours are over for them and they need to go to work tonight." Jillian soothed as she spoke to her.

"What?" She tried to think. "Ten hours?"

"Yes. You're okay, just a little disoriented. The nurse is getting another bed brought in her so I can stay with you. Bill and Sam will stay at Nick's tonight." Jillian replied. "Your friend Archie left some food and an envelope for you." She added indicating the rolling table next to the bed.

Reilly followed where Jillian was pointing and she saw the food bag and the large white envelope, but instead of reaching for either, she asked, "When can I see Nick?"

"Anytime you want. We've been here since about ten this morning and we've taken turns. Dr Gates has a new doctor helping him who's a heart/lung specialist, Dr. O'Malley and Dr. Gates has been in several times to check on you and keep us updated on Nick. I'll go get the nurse and let her know you're awake and want to see Nick."

"Thanks mom." Reilly said as Jillian smiled and left the room.

After Jillian left and Reilly could see that both Sam and Bill were dead to the world around them, she reached for the envelope.

Reilly,

Hope you are taking care there. Archie called and I've sent the best doctor we could find to help care for Nick. He should be there when you wake up. (Yes I know you're sleeping!) He says if Nick can avoid any serious infections then he should be fine, but I'm keeping close tabs on everything for you. Don't worry; anything Nick needs he'll get.

We're here for you too and we've been working on a few things here on our end. Come to find out, John Smith was not your basic criminal, but I'm guessing you are Arch already figured that out. The man is ex-military; dishonorable discharge from the army. Uncle Sam used him till he didn't need him anymore and when he failed his own psych exam he was put out to pasture so to speak. The man was once a one man wrecking crew for Uncle Sam.

And it seems psych problems run in that family. The older sister, Jackie, you know all about, but the younger sister, Allyson, has had her own problems with the wrong side of the sane meter. Seems she was in love with John, her own half-brother and they were planning much more than just getting Nick for their sister.

They wanted to help her, but in the end it seems they were finally giving up on her. John had called a couple of his former military buddies after they got to the cabin at Lake Mead. He was making plans to dispose of Nick and Jackie and get himself and Allyson out of the country. They were probably going to meet up with those buddies when you and your Scooby gang found them. You're probably the only reason that Nick is alive right now. You and your CSI buddies did a good job finding and containing them.

Your Scooby gang will be receiving an accommodation for a job well done on this case from the governor himself. So try and smile and pretend you know nothing when the time comes. All of the above information is being secured for your records and remember my name if you have a boy. Word has reached me you're expecting twins, so I at least expect a nod in the name department.

Take care and remember wherever you set up residence the state of Kansas thanks you and will forward your job credentials to your new boss. You can't use Kansas Federal Special Agent if you move as your title anymore; but Nevada Federal Special Agent has a nice ring to it, don't you think? Either way, I'll remain your contact here in DC and you have Archie on your side out there in Vegas.

Reilly, I'm not going to get mushy here, but everyone here is grateful Nick was found and that you are okay. Don't forget all of your friends you aren't supposed to have here and keep in touch somehow. Archie will have your new paperwork for you next time you see him. Take care.

Congratulations and Good Luck

There was no signature, but Reilly hadn't expected one. It was just to tell her all the loose ends would be taken care of and no one would be reprimanded. That's all that mattered to her. Her 'Scooby Gang' was good to go. She smiled; she kind of liked that name.

She smiled as she refolded the letter and stuck it in her pocket to dispose of later just as Jillian came back into the room with Hillary following closely behind her.

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