The Story Continues

How He Shows Concern

Lynus stumbled from the emergency ward and pressed his hand against the wall of the corridor to steady himself when his vision blurred from exhaustion. His head pulsated from a headache and his stomach clenched from mild nausea. He pushed the ache and discomfort aside, though, and pushed away from the wall to continue down the hall.

He was just a tired from overwork, that was all. Code Blues needed all his skills and concertation, after all.

Lynus was just about to clock out and Dr Stiles had been called to the operating theatre when the patient came in. He was weary from the day’s activities already as they had to deal with a squadron of guards and a guild who got caught up in an avalanche in the Frozen Grounds, but there was no way he would simply walk away from that. The guard was an obvious Code Blue. He had to help, no mattered how tired he was.

The patient...wasn’t in very good shape, even for a Code Blue. His chest was crushed, heart was badly damaged.

It was close. So close. If...if Lynus had hesitated for even a second to offer a precise cure spell to the man’s heart they would have lost him. Right there and then. No turning back. No chance of revival. It was that close.

And he honestly didn’t like being that close to someone dying in front of him.

Despite the way his head was lowly thumping from a headache, Lynus shook his head to clear it. There was no point in looking back on it now. The patient was still in dire straits, but he was alive. Slow medical healing was needed now. Lynus himself wasn’t. His fellow medics and healers would take good care of the patient now.

Sooner he got back to the inn, the better. He could get some sleep and maybe something to eat. When was the last time he ate something? He couldn’t remember. But that was probably just because he was mentally drained from such a traumatic operation.

“Ah, Lynus,” came Dr Stiles’ voice. “Good, you were in on that Code Blue. I heard about it from Darrell.”

Lynus managed to straighten his posture and turned his attention to the head doctor, watching as Dr Stiles walked toward him as he readjusted his medical coat, appearing as if he had not long stepped outside the operating theatre himself.

“A-ah, yes,” Lynus replied as he placed a small smile on his lips and tried his best not to show how tired he really was. “It was a close call, but we managed to pull him back from the brink.”

“I heard that you managed to repair the hole in his heart,” Dr Stiles said, which surprised Lynus immensely. “That is what Darrell informed me. That is quite an advance skill, not even those of the cardio ward are able to do such a thing without specialised equipment.”

An unexpected sense of uncertainty touched Lynus as he allowed those words to mull around in his head. He did find a tear in the man’s heart and he had wanted to heal it, but…when he figured out how he might be able to do so, it was…already healed. As if his subconsciousness (or maybe his healing spirit) knew what to do before his mind did.

He…didn’t know how to tell that to the head doctor, though.

Lynus instead decided to prattle off the patient’s stats and what procedures they had completed. But his words became jumbled as his vision suddenly and unexpectedly greyed out. He automatically reached out toward the wall to steady himself. He managed to grasp onto a hand railing there and held onto it as tightly as he could as he dropped to his knees, his chin dropping toward his chest. His blood was pumping in his ears and his head was spinning.

Not again. He was on the verge of passing out.

A hand rested on his shoulder and someone was trying to talk to him, but all he could hear was the sound of his pulse in his ears as he concentrated on keeping consciousness, to blink away the grey shadows that were threatening to consume his vision.

The hand on his shoulder slipped to the back of his neck and Lynus felt himself being pulled toward something, or rather someone. As Lynus’ cheek rested against something soft, the hand that was gently grasping the back of his neck disappeared and something strong was wrapped firmly around his shoulders. He squeezed his eyes shut when he felt as though he was swaying, a vertigo that accompanied the slight feeling of nausea.

No, wait…he was being moved. He could feel something, an arm if he was to guess anything, slip under the back of his knees.

Lynus forced his eyes to open and he tilted his head back. Though his vision was blurry, and seemingly off centre, he was able to see that Dr Stiles was incredibly close to him. He wasn’t looking down at him, though, his gaze forward and his lips pressed together in displeasure as though he was searching for something.

Was…Dr Stiles actually carrying him?

“I need a bed.”

“What happened?”

“Exhaustion, most likely. Get an IV ready just in case.”

“Understood.”

Lynus vaguely recognised the voices but they didn’t really register in his mind. Only that he felt so tired and yet so dizzy. And that dizziness was making him feel unwell enough to ensure that he didn’t fall asleep. He wanted to, though. So badly.

A strange feeling of calm fell over him as the warm arm around his shoulders tightened and the sound (but now what he was saying) of Dr Stiles’ voice infiltrated through the foggy haze of near unconsciousness. That sense of calm was more likely due to the fact that if there was anything significantly wrong with his health, he was in the best place, in the best hands.

“I’m sorry,” he whispered out of habit before he simply closed his eyes and allowed for Dr Stiles to…take care of him for now.

It felt as though only a few minutes had passed as Lynus opened his eyes. Once again his vision was blurry and his head ached, but he was able to recognise that he was in a hospital room. And that he was lying on something soft. A bed more likely than not.

He lolled his head to the side. He wasn’t on an IV drip, thank goodness, but he was attached to a heart monitor, the sleeve wound around his right arm to record and monitor his pulse and blood pressure. And from the numbers, his blood pressure was a little on the low side.

A hand suddenly resting against his shoulder caused Lynus to carefully roll his head to this other side, his gaze immediately locking with that of Dr Stiles who was sitting in a chair that was pulled up right next to his bed.

Had…he been sitting there, waiting for him to awake the entire time?

Lynus licked his dry lips. “W-what happened?” he asked, his throat unexpectedly tight.

“You fainted from exhaustion,” Dr Stiles told him with a slight scolding tone to his voice, but it was all but overshadowed with his concern. He also unexpectedly looked somewhat guilty. “I didn’t realise you were pulling double shift today.”

Lynus couldn’t form a reasonable response to that, so instead he made the attempt to push himself up into a sitting position. Dr Stiles seemed to make a sound of displeasure, but instead of insisting he lay back down, he stood from his seat and reached out to slip an arm around Lynus’ shoulders while the other grasped his hand in order to help him.

The room spun for a moment as Lynus unwittingly leaned against Dr Stiles’ chest as he waited for the dizziness to stop. He sighed and clutched his forehead when the room finally stopped spinning before he winced. He fainted, did he? He must have scared some of his fellow medics with that little stunt.

“I’m sorry,” Lynus murmured softly as he dropped his hand from his forehead, and was about to explain himself when Dr Stiles interrupted him.

“None of that,” Dr Stiles chided lightly as he slowly and cautiously removed his arm from around Lynus’ shoulders to see if he would be able to stay upright on his own before abruptly launching into his usual interrogation he gave to patients. “When was the last time you ate or drank anything?”

Lynus didn’t know how to answer that so he made no attempt to verbally reply. His silence, however, told the head doctor enough. If the way he pressed his lips together in displeasure was anything to go by.

“You’re not leaving that bed until you’ve had something to eat and drink,” Dr Stiles said to him sternly. “And you’re not leaving this room until you can stand without stumbling. I’ll get Angie to arrange something for you straight away. But I’m also a little concerned about your weight. You are eating properly, aren’t you?”

“Y-yes,” Lynus answered quickly with a flush to his cheeks. “Matron always makes sure I have dinner every night. I’ve honestly never been so well fed before.”

Dr Stiles still didn’t look pleased. “You must have a fast metabolism. Maybe even an overactive thyroid. I’d like to do some tests on you.”

“W-what?” Lynus spluttered as Dr Stiles pulled a notepad from his pocket and started jotting down a few notes. “That’s not necessarily. I mean, I have put on some weight since moving here.”

But it seemed that Dr Stiles won’t be reassured that easily. “Still on the un-healthy side for your height and age. I’m still going to order some blood test, even if I have to tie you to the bed to get them done.”

He…wouldn’t put it passed the head doctor to actually carry out that threat.

“I might have to talk to Matron about putting you on a special diet,” Dr Stiles continued.

“Th-there’s no need for-”

“I might also have to place you on emergency roster for the next few days.”

“But-”

“After you take some time off first. I’ll also talk to Hamza about keeping you out of the labyrinth until your exhaustion has lifted. That reminds me, I better send someone to get Axel here pronto. But don’t think you can talk your way out of this room just yet just because Axel would be able to carry you around. That’s beside the point. And then there’s the concern of…”

Lynus sat in stunned silence as Dr Stiles prattled off and continued to take notes, all but ignoring him now.

A small part of Lynus wanted to vehemently protest everything simply because he didn’t like to cause trouble and fuss from anyone, and that the hospital bed he was occupying could be given to someone else in more need than he. But he managed to stop himself so not to provoke the head doctor’s concern and frustration with him any more than he had. He knew better than to talk back, after all.

Especially not after invoking his protectiveness as well.

But that sense of protectiveness and the way he was prattling on about him and his health…though a part of him felt unworthy, Lynus still greatly appreciated it. It was nice being cared for. He had always done the caring, the nurturing, and though he still wanted to do that with others, it wasn’t exactly a bad thing to be on the receiving end. Once in a while at least.

It also proved something important to him. He wasn’t just an associate of Dr Stiles. Not just an employee under his watch. He was a little more than that.

And that made him happy.

“I’m sorry for causing you to worry,” Lynus murmured as he rested himself against the pillows behind him and closed his eyes. “And…thank you.”

Dr Stiles sighed before the edge of the bed unexpectedly dipped and Lynus felt a hand gently brush against his forehead, to softly push aside stands of his hair. “Get some rest now,” was all Dr Stiles said.

And Lynus quickly fell asleep.

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