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    Horror films, reading books (Stephen King & Sue Grafton are two of my favorites), watching tv, and writing. I love to travel and visiting different historical sites.
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    Castle, Bones, Big Bang Theory, Marvel's Agents of Shield

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  1. Chapter 51 Patrick watched the signs closely as they drove down the highway. After some research Patrick had discovered that Heavens Gate itself was a rock formation and the only way to reach the top of it was by scaling the side. That was impractical for many reasons so instead they were meeting Aprils mother, Grace, by the entrance to the Queen Creek Waterfall and spreading Aprils ashes there. "So everyone is doing well?" Robin had gotten a phone call a few minutes ago and Patrick knew from her side of the conversation that Sam had had her baby. "Thats great! I cant wait to meet the newest member of the family. We have a gift for you and will come by to see you as soon as we get back." She laughed out loud. "I promise no sweater vests. I've seen the pictures, I know he had an unusual fascination with them when you first met." Patrick was offended. "Hey - I looked damn good in those! Robin turned to him and decided to indulge him. "Of course you did dear." She returned to her conversation. "Please send me a picture and I will see you both in a few days. Congratulations Jason." Patrick couldn't help but see how happy she was about Jason's news. "Sam had the baby?" "Yes, a beautiful baby boy: 7 lbs, 6 oz, 21 inches long and came out screaming like crazy." Robin was thrilled that Jason and Sam's little boy was healthy and strong. Patrick threw her a little smirk. "Screaming, huh? Already taking after his mother." She jokingly punched him in the shoulder. "Be nice. She turned her attention back to the road. Did April's mom say what time she would be here?" "She texted me while you were on the phone." He handed her his phone. "Can you read it?" Robin took the phone and opened up the message. "She is there and waiting for us." She saw the turn off and pointed. "There it is." Patrick had seen it but knew that Robin was just being helpful so he bit back a sarcastic comment. Both of them were nervous about today and the trip out hadn't helped. Their flight out of Port Charles had been delayed which had led to them missing their connecting flight in Atlanta. By the time they landed in Phoenix and drove to the hotel in Queen Canyon it had been well after midnight and they were too exhausted to do anything other than sleep. The reality was they had no idea what they were going to say to April's mother when they saw her. The young woman had been convinced that her mother had given up on her but their conversations with her over the past week made it clear that that was not the case. Grace had always loved her daughter even if she didn't agree with her choice of a boyfriend. The woman was grateful that she had the opportunity to let April know that before she passed away. "Man," Robin stared in shock at the almost full parking lot they had pulled into, "I didn't think that this place would be this busy on a Tuesday morning." "I know." Patrick found a spot and parked the rental car. He reached over and took Robins hand in his. "Are you ready?" She took a deep breath and nodded her head. "As ready as Ill ever be." She leaned over and gave him a kiss. "Let's go." Patrick opened up his door and went to the back seat. There, held in place with pillows and a seat belt, sat the urn containing Aprils ashes. Just like in life, Patrick was treating the woman with respect. He carefully undid the seat belt and picked up the urn. He had just shut the door when he heard a familiar voice call out his name. "Dr. Drake!" He turned around and smiled at the woman coming towards him. Grace Gilbert was a small black woman with a strong walk and a warm smile. She walked over to Patrick and Robin and hugged them. "It is so nice to finally meet you." "You too, Mrs. Gilbert." Robin leaned back into Patrick after Grace released her from the hug. "I thought I told you to call me Grace." It was a joking admonishment, not a serious rebuke. "And we told you to call us Robin and Patrick." "So you did." The woman nodded her head in agreement and then focused in on the urn in Patricks hand. Tears filled her eyes and she put out her hands. "May I please?" Patrick didn't even hesitate. "Of course." He gently set the urn in her hands. "I want you to know that I wish I could have..." "Stop!" This time the rebuke was serious. She hugged the urn close. "You saved my daughter's life and gave me a chance to tell her I love her and say goodbye." Tears filled her eyes and spilled over onto her cheeks. "She died because it was her time to go home. I wish I had gotten to see her one last time but that is on me, not you. You stood up for my daughter and protected her and I will never be able to repay you for doing that for her." He heard Robin sniffle and pulled a handkerchief out from his pocket. "I thought you might need this." She took it and wiped away her tears. "Thank you." Grace smiled at them. "Now, I have some people I want you to meet." She turned around and led Robin and Patrick down the trail. "I know April thought she was alone but there were a lot of family who loved her and prayed for her every day." She led them to a clearing by the waterfall. "They want to meet the people who saved her life." Robin gasped as she realized why the parking lot was so full. There were over 40 people standing in the clearing talking and enjoying the view of the waterfall. "This is Aprils family?" "Some although the majority of them are friends from before she left. She was a member of choir at church and they wanted to come and sing with her one last time." Grace was a lay minister and the choir director at the church in their little town. "My girl had a beautiful voice." She led the doctors to the group. "Everyone, I would like you to meet Dr. Patrick Drake and Dr. Robin Soltini - they are the doctors who were there with April for the last few weeks of her life." Before they could move the couple was suddenly grabbed and pulled into the group, being hugged and thanked by everyone they met. At one point Patrick lost sight of his girlfriend in the sea of strangers but she quickly reappeared, being held in a tight hug by an older woman with Aprils eyes. Grace pulled Patrick away and smiled at him. "That is my mother. I don't think you know this but she was also on that call with me and spoke to April too." Overwhelmed by everything he was seeing, he couldn't even speak so he just shook his head. "We lived with my mother for years after April's father died." She saw a strange look cross Patricks face. "Yes, she told us all about you and Robin. About her HIV status and how she is a grandma who lives with her daughter and granddaughter." "I thought it was just her medical status." Patrick was beginning to realize just how closely April connected to Robin. "But Robin reminded her of those days." "Yes." The woman wrapped her arm around the doctor. "You and Robin made her feel like she was safe, like she was home again." She gave him another brief hug. "We need to get started. My mother and I would be honored if you stayed with us during the ceremony." Patrick briefly thought of saying no but decided it was best to just go along with whatever she wanted. He held up his arm so she could slip her arm through it. "We would be honored." ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Patrick held Robin tight as Aprils mother finished speaking about her daughter. "My daughter was an amazing young woman who lived a troubled and difficult life. My greatest comfort today is in knowing that I had the chance to tell her how much I love her before she left this earth. I know in my heart that she is in a better place and has finally found the peace that eluded her in life." Grace nodded at Patrick and Robin before she said her final words. "I would like to end this ceremony with Aprils favorite hymn." From behind them, the couple heard several voices start to sing. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me I once was lost, but now I am found, Was blind, but now I see More and more voices joined in as the hymn continued. 'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, And grace my fears relieved How precious did that grace appear The hour I first believed Through many dangers, toils and snares I have already come, 'Tis grace has brought me safe thus far And grace will lead me home Through their tears, Patrick and Robin finally began to sing. The Lord has promised good to me His word my hope secures; He will my shield and portion be, As long as life endures Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail, And mortal life shall cease I shall possess within the veil, A life of joy and peace When we've been there ten thousand years Bright shining as the sun, We've no less days to sing God's praise Than when we've first begun Grace approached the couple and carefully set the urn containing Aprils ashes down on the ground. "I know you said you wanted to spread her ashes but..." "She is your daughter Grace." Robin reached over and pulled the grieving woman into a tight embrace. "I think it is time for you to take her home." "Thank you for making it possible for me to." Grace picked up the urn. "I am going to ride with my family back home today but I expect to hear from you two on a regular basis." "Count on it." Patrick shook her hand. "Have a safe trip back and let us know that you got home safe." "I will." She smiled at the couple on last time before turning to leave. "I will talk to you both soon." They watched her leave and Patrick wrapped his arms back around his girlfriend. "Ready to go?" "No." Robin's voice seemed almost distant as she looked out over the waterfall. "Not until I say something." Patrick turned her around in his arms. "Robin, today has been emotional for a lot of reasons..." "I need to say this." She took a deep breath. "I need you to understand something." Patrick was worried. "Robin? What is it?" "The other night you told me you loved me and I didn't say it back and I need to explain why." Robin saw him open his mouth and she put her hand over it. "I need you to let me say this." He shut his mouth and nodded his head. "I have loved three men in my life. Stone died of AIDS but he worked for Sonny and lived a dangerous life. Jason and I didn't work for a lot of reasons but one of them was his love for danger and my need to be safe." She sighed. "And then Roger was a firefighter who died on a call. All three of them lived life on the edge and that need for danger took them away from me." "But..." "You love to take risks too. You race cars at over a hundred and fifty miles an hour, you take risky surgeries, ones that increase your exposure to HIV and AIDS, you love the adrenaline rush and living on the edge. It scares me but it also one of the many reasons why I am with you and that scares me even more." She took his hands in hers. "I am petrified that I am going to lose you just like I lost Stone and Roger. That one day you will be at the track and crash or that you will get caught in another situation like the one with Jason where you continued to operate even though there was a knife wielding maniac holding someone hostage in your OR." Patrick was beginning to wish he hadn't let her know about Manny Ruiz's attack during Jasons first surgery. "Robin, that was a long time ago..." "But it is indicative of a pattern." The tears filled up her eyes once more. "And I have to make the choice whether or not I can take that chance again." "Don't make any decisions today Robin, please?" Patrick thought he could see where this was going. "Patrick, this isn't a decision I made today." She squeezed his hands. "I have been afraid of what I am feeling but I finally realized that, no matter the risk, fear should not stop me from doing what I want or being with who I want so here it goes." Robin smiled at him. "I love you." "Robin..." She wrapped her arms around him. "I am in love with you and I have been for a long time." He relaxed as he heard the words he had been wanting to hear come from her lips. Knowing that she wouldn't have said it unless she meant it, he leaned down and kissed her. "Well, I already knew it but it is nice to hear you say it." He brushed a lock of hair behind her ear. "I love you too Robin." Robin pulled him close and they held each other as they watched the water fall and hit the rocks below. Patrick kissed the top of her head and didn't even attempt to get her to leave - they were both where they wanted to be.
  2. Patrick and Robin try to solve a murder: Patrick (playing Andrea Floyd): How dare you, you little slut! Robin: Ooh, you want to role play later? Patrick: Come on, stay with me. Loved that Robin was bringing out her inner Scorpio and solving a crime but I also love the playfulness between these two. It was a side we didn't get to see as often as we could have.
  3. S11.E01: Fake News

    45-yrs old and still have a flip phone. Why? Because I just need it to make calls and text - anything else I can do on my IPod. My only problem with my flip phone is the texting - it replaced my sliding keyboard phone which I loved and they don't make anymore. I really enjoyed this episode. Murphy has always been a political show and I had no doubts that the revival wouldn't change that. Avery and her have a great chemistry and I enjoyed the fact that, while they are both starting new shows, both shows are different in their approaches. Avery is doing more of a man on the streets thing while Murphy's is a sit-down round table, more traditional show. I hope that they bring up secondary viewings (DVR and streaming numbers which can be calculated for days after the original airing) because that could significantly change who actually ha the higher share. I could honestly see people tuning in for Murphy live while recording or streaming Avery's and watching it later because she is a known quantity and he is not.
  4. Chapter 50 “Is everything arranged?” Robin sat down on Patrick’s couch and smiled at him. “Yes it is.” He got up from behind his desk and joined her. “We fly out tomorrow at 11:00, I have the hotel booked and Alan has given us five days off in a row.” He kissed his girlfriend on the cheek. “All we need to do is pack and we will be good to go.” It had been a month since April’s death and the couple was honoring her wishes and spreading her ashes at Heaven’s Gate in Arizona. It was a place April had told Patrick that she had always wanted to visit there and they felt that she would like her ashes to be spread there. Robin scooted a little closer to her boyfriend. “And her mom?” He wrapped his arms around her and nodded. “She’ll be there.” The day after April died Epiphany informed them that April’s mom had called the hospital and spoken with her daughter. “She can’t wait to meet the people who kept her daughter alive long enough for her to tell her she loved her one last time.” April’s mother lived in California and had heard about the accident due to the media coverage Patrick received. The young woman had moved and changed phone numbers too many times for her mom to keep up with and she was devastated to find out the dire straits her daughter was in. According to Epiphany, April and her mom spoke for over an hour that day and April was happy when she passed away. The news that their surgery had given April the time she needed to reconcile with her mother had been just the kick in the pants Robin needed to stop feeling guilty. In the end, April had been loved and knew it and that was all anyone could ask for. It had been Patrick’s idea to invite her to Arizona to help spread her daughter’s ashes and she had easily agreed. He had even paid for her plane ticket and hotel room. “I’m glad she is going to be there.” She picked up a file from his coffee table. “Now we need to finish up this last surgery and then we can be on our way.” “Mr. Muldoon.” Patrick reviewed the file. “We just need to go over a few last minute details and have him sign the waiver and we will be good to go.” He stood up and held out his hand. “Shall we?” She took his hand and allowed him to help her off the couch. “You bet.” ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Patrick took one last look at the chart. “Alright, everything looks in order. I have the hospital barber coming by in a minute to give you a quick shave and then we can get started.” “Is he any good?” John Muldoon was in a good mood all things considered. He had an aneurysm and he needed to get it removed before it ruptured. The surgery was in a delicate part of the brain and the slightest mistake could kill him. “He’s not Vidal Sassoon but he is very talented with a razor.” Robin smiled at the man. “Almost as good as Dr. Drake is with a scalpel.” “Great.” “I just have one more thing for you to sign.” Patrick pulled out the waiver he had added to the release forms since his exposure. He placed it on the clipboard and handed it to the man. “You already have my pension and my wife.” The man joked. “I’m not sure I am ready to give up my first born just yet.” “It’s nothing like that.” Robin was trying to be reassuring. “Dr. Drake was exposed to end-stage AIDS in the operating room six weeks ago and…” “You were exposed to AIDS?” The man’s joking demeanor disappeared. “Yes but I have test negative and…” “I’m sorry but I can’t let you operate on me.” John threw the clipboard back at Patrick. “I could see it now – I survive the surgery only to die because you infected me with AIDS?” “First of all, there is almost no possibility of you contracting HIV from me even if I were infected. And even if, by some infinitesimal chance, you caught something – it would be HIV and not AIDS and you can live a long and healthy life with HIV.” Robin smiled proudly at her boyfriend before turning to the patient. “Dr. Drake is right – I have been living with HIV for over 20 years and I am very healthy.” “What kind of place is this?” Mr. Muldoon began yelling at the couple. Alan happened to be walking down the hall when he heard the ruckus and came running in. “Is something wrong?” “Yes I want another doctor.” He glared at Patrick and Robin. “What kind of place is this?” Alan opened up the chart. “Dr. Richardson is scheduled to assist.” “I’ll take him.” He crossed his arms and rolled his eyes. “I can’t believe that you have two doctors on staff here with HIV treating patients without warning.” Alan was quick to defend his doctors. “They are both excellent doctors.” “And Dr. Scorpio is an amazing researcher and diagnostician.” Patrick could handle the man saying nasty things about him but he would not let Robin be insulted. “I don’t care.” Mr. Muldoon wasn’t about to back down. “Let me just say that you are risking your health by not letting Dr. Drake operate on you.” Robin didn’t want this man to risk his life to prove a point. “Robin…” Alan was trying to maintain some peace. “What?” She turned to the Chief of Staff. “We both know that Patrick is the better surgeon.” “Why don’t you two go and I’ll talk to Mr. Muldoon?” Alan was trying to keep the situation from escalating. Patrick turned around and stormed out of the room with Robin right behind him. ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ “So what do we do now?” Patrick and Robin had waited for Alan to come back and tell them that Patrick was still operating but instead the patient went with Dr. Richardson. They had taken advantage of the free afternoon to catch up on paperwork and check on patients who wanted their help before they left for their trip. Now they were standing at the nurse’s hub waiting to see how Mr. Muldoon’s surgery went. Robin was about to answer when Alan walked up to them. “I was hoping you were still here.” “How did the surgery go?” Robin didn’t like the look in his eyes. “There were complications.” Alan sighed. “Dr. Richardson did his best but the patient didn’t make it.” Patrick stood there in shock at the news. He took a minute to absorb it before speaking. “Thank you for letting us know.” He reached down and took Robin’s hand. “Let’s go.” _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ “Get comfortable and I will go get us something to drink.” Robin had insisted that they come to her place so they could decompress after the day they had had. Patrick sat down on the couch and sighed. He kicked off his shoes and was just about to lay down when he felt something rub against his legs. Smiling, he reached down and picked up Callie. “Hey girl.” He stretched out on the couch and set the calico on his chest, petting her gently. She began purring and rolled over onto her side, giving him full access to her belly so Patrick could give it a rub. “I really needed this today.” Normally Patrick had no use for cats but Callie was special. Robin had found the cat at a shelter when they lived in Vermont. It took a few months but she had finally warmed up to Patrick and he had to admit that she was a pretty great cat. “At least you aren’t scared to have me touch you.” “Neither am I.” Robin came back in the room with a couple of beers. She handed one of the beers to Patrick and set her down on the coffee table. She then gently picked up the cat and set her on the floor. “Sorry Cal, he’s mine.” Patrick sat back up and took a drink from his beer. “Jealous?” “Please.” She scoffed before sat down next to him. “How are you doing?” He knew that she was not going to back down and it was in his best interest to open up to her. “What a pointless waste of life. I guess this is why you didn't want to be a surgeon, isn't it?” She nodded her head. “Yes. I didn't want my patients to have to choose between me or their fear. Wait till you come across the guy who won't even let you touch him because he's afraid he'll get infected.” “I hate that you have ever been treated that way.” Patrick pulled her close. "I hate it even more that I can't stop it." “I know.” She turned to him and kissed him gently. “Now, Rylee and Michelle are gone for the night and I am in the mood for a dance.” She picked up the remote and pushed a button. Moments later soft music filled the air. “Dance with me Patrick.” Patrick stood up and pulled her close as he picked up the beat of the song and began to sway with her. Close the door and leave the world behind you Open the window and listen to the breeze blow through the pines Take a deep breath, what more can you do Let the sun fall down all around you Let the night surround you in a blanket of starlight I'll whisper you a lullaby, let the sun fall down That old dark cloud acts like he knows you He takes up too much time, time you could be spending holding me He can't have you now, it's you and me here in this room Oh, oh, let the sun fall down all around you Let the night surround you in a blanket of starlight I'll whisper you a lullaby, let the sun fall down Robin reached up and gently stroked Patrick’s cheek before she leaned her head against his chest and closed her eyes. The world will keep on turning It'll all be there, come morning So tonight Let the sun fall down all around you Let the night surround you in a blanket of starlight I'll whisper you a lullaby Oh, oh let the sun fall down all around you Let the night surround you in a blanket of starlight I'll whisper you a lullaby, let the sun fall down Oh She leaned back and saw tears in his eyes. “Patrick?” He kissed her. “I want to be with you.” “I told you I would wait.” Robin didn’t want him doing something he was uncomfortable with. Patrick leaned down and kissed her again. They were still kissing when he picked her up and began to carry her to the bedroom. “Robin, I want to make love to you.” He swallowed. “I want to make love to you because I am in love with you.” “Patrick…” “I have been scared of saying it because I didn’t think you were ready to hear it but now I’m more scared of missing my chance to tell you.” He leaned over and gently touched his forehead to hers. “I love you Robin. I love you and it’s okay if you are not ready to say it back yet because I know you feel the same way I do.” This time the tears fell from Robin’s eyes. A part of her wanted to say it back to him but her fear was winning out. Patrick carried her to the bed and set her down on it. He kissed her again as he laid down next to her. Moving slowly, he wiped away her tears and ran his hand through her hair. “If you can’t say it, it’s okay. Just show me Robin.” Robin wrapped her arms around his neck and pulled him to her for a searing kiss. For now actions would need to speak louder than words. Song: Let the Sun Fall Down by Kim Richey (highly recommend people find it and listen, one of my favorites)
  5. Chapter 49 Robin was giggling as Patrick carried her into his apartment. “I think April really enjoyed that cake.” “Yes she did.” He slammed the door shut with his foot and carried her over to the couch. Sitting down, he reached over and began taking off her shoes. “Do you think she’ll be okay with leaving the hospital on Monday?” “I do.” She nodded her head. Patrick and Robin had spent a lot of time with the accident victim and were shocked to find out that she had no place to live. It took a lot of persuasion but Robin was able to get the Quartermaines to secure a small, furnished apartment for April not far from the hospital. Patrick had discovered that April had an Associate’s degree from one of the local community colleges and they were able to get the young woman a job at the AIDS clinic working in the file room. “I feel better now that I know she has a home to go to.” “Because you my dear,” he kissed her neck, “are an amazingly persuasive woman.” Robin moaned at his kiss. “You know what that does to me.” “Yes I do.” He pulled away from her and reached down to begin massaging her feet. “How are your feet feeling?” “Oh they hurt. I can’t believe that Maxie chose those shoes for us to wear.” The six inch stilettos were not comfortable in the least. “I’m used to heels but they usually have a more stable heel. She’s lucky I didn’t break an ankle walking down the aisle.” “Well you were still the most beautiful woman there, wobbly walk and all.” Robin had taken Patrick’s breath away when she appeared at the chapel doors. The dress was dark blue and cocktail length with a gathered waistband, spaghetti straps and a softly shirred skirt. Maxie had declared that the women would wear their hair down and Patrick loved the soft waves that flowed down to her shoulders and framed her beautiful face. “Don’t tell the bride that.” Robin laughed and then moaned as his hands gently massaged her aching feet. “Oh Dr. Drake, you have the best hands.” “I know and you have certainly enjoyed them quite a bit over the last few months.” It had been several weeks since he stuck himself with a contaminated needle and Patrick was doing well. Their love life had not suffered at all, even though the still hadn’t made love since that night. However, they were both creative people and found mutually satisfying ways to be together. Patrick had never been as satisfied as he was with Robin. Work was going great too. His father’s hangover remedy had helped him with the nausea from his protocol and he was still operating on a daily basis although he had seen an upswing in the number of HIV positive patients who were requesting his services. A local news station had done a story on April and his role in not only saving her life but also stopping her from being transferred from GH. Sneed had been furious about the story but the board had been thrilled with the publicity. Patrick was one of the best surgeons in the states and the handsome doctor was the perfect doctor to bring in additional funding. Since April’s surgery, Patrick had been requested to help HIV positive patients with migraines, stitches, and even a broken arm in addition to his normal workload. Robin couldn’t say she was thrilled with this development but these patients deserved the best and Patrick was certainly that. “Yes I have.” Robin leaned over and kissed him. “And I love every moment of it.” “You do huh?” Patrick leaned over and kissed her on the neck again, letting his lips linger on that special spot a moment longer. “Yes.” The word came out as a hiss of pleasure and her hands wrapped around his neck to pull him closer. She was just reaching for his belt when she heard a loud beeping sound coming from her purse. Seconds later Patrick’s pager went off as well. She pulled her pager out of her purse and looked at the page. “It’s Epiphany.” Patrick looked at him pager. “Mine too.” He pulled his cell phone out of his pocket and made the call, scared of what he was going to hear. “Epiphany, you paged me?” Robin watched his face while he listened to what the nurse had to say. Her face fell as his head dropped. “I understand. We’ll be right there.” He set down the phone and pulled Robin close. They would leave in a minute but first he just needed to hold her. ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ The couple walked in to see Alan standing by April’s bed, carefully covering the young woman up with a sheet. He heard their footsteps and turned around to address to them. “April died from complications caused by AIDS. Once the blood vessel ruptured, there was no way to control it because of the kaposi sarcoma. Unfortunately, when the disease progresses this far, there's very little we can do about it.” Robin walked over and stared down at body in the bed for a minute before speaking. “Don't you ever get tired of that? I mean, you're always so kind and so level when you have to break the bad news and give all the awful details. I mean, how many times have you actually given that speech since the AIDS crisis started? We tried this medicine, we tried that one, but in the end, it doesn't matter. Because the truth is AIDS kills people.” “Robin…” Patrick had never seen her like this. He reached for her but she turned around and fled the room. “Alan, I need to…” “Go Patrick.” Alan patted the doctor on his shoulder. “She needs you.” ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ “Here you are.” Patrick walked up to her as she sat on the dock. He sat down next to her. “When you took off, I figured you went to one of two places. The hospital roof, I know you go there to let yourself hurt, or here. I went to the roof first but you weren't there. Then I remembered you brought me out here the day that I was exposed to AIDS and told me to look past the water at the horizon, try and see the bigger picture.” Robin gave him a sad laugh. “That sure sounds like me - full of unsolicited advice and positive affirmations. You know, why didn't you just tell me to shut up, that no perspective is going to change the truth, AIDS kills - millions and millions of people every day and there is still no cure. I mean, maybe it's not even possible.” Patrick hated seeing her like this, so hopeless. “You don't believe that.” She shook her head. “You can throw more money at it, you can develop new drugs. The drugs are working, but no one knows how well really or for how long. The doctors tell me that if I stay on the cocktail, that I could live a long and healthy life, but nobody knows for sure. The only thing that's for sure is that, if and when the drugs stop working, AIDS is going to ravage my body and kill me just like it killed Stone and just like it killed April.” He watched her for a moment and made a decision. “I don't know where this defeatist attitude came from, but it's unacceptable.” Robin was shocked. “Gee, sorry I'm not cheerful enough for you.” Patrick turned her around so she was facing him. “Look, I don't need you to dance the jig but you've conditioned me to expect a certain something from you: positive reinforcement and optimism in the face of adversity.” He took a deep breath and continued to try and get through to her. “Look, when I was exposed to HIV in the operating room, you were right there for me, pushing me to get immediate treatment, quoting statistics, endorsing the protocol, assuring me that I was going to be ok.” Robin sighed. “Because your chances are excellent, my case is a little bit different. I have HIV and yes, thanks to the cocktail, my viral load is zero but this disease is still inside of me. It's like a time bomb waiting to go off.” She rubbed her forehead. “I have tried not to dwell on it. I've tried not to be fatalistic. But maybe I'm just in denial. Maybe I just can't face the truth.” Patrick let his frustration take over. “You want truth? April died but that doesn't mean you will.” Tears fell from her eyes as she turned away from him. “We can't assume that and it's arrogant to think that we can. Just like it was arrogant of us to paint all these pretty pictures for April of a life that she never had any chance of experiencing. I mean, her defenses were already up. She had accepted the fact that she was going to die and then you and I came along spinning all this nonsense about the future and her happiness.” “We saved April's life. We gave her time that she would have never had. Now, that's got to count for something.” He ran his hands through his hair. “Look, time is the most precious commodity we have, and I learned that from you. You could live with HIV for the next 30 years, walk out of your house and get hit by a bus or, if you still live in Port Charles, stray bullets. None of us know how much time we have left. The only thing we can do is make the most of it and that's what I plan on doing with you. So you can be as mad and angry as you feel you need to be, but I am not going to let you give up. I'm not going away.” Robin wiped her eyes and turned back around. “Ugh - you picked a lousy time to start being wonderful.” Patrick held out his arms. “Come here.” He had to wait only a moment before she walked into his embrace. He wrapped his arms tightly around her and slowly began to rock her as they stared out over the water. Somehow, someway they would make it through this and they would do it together.
  6. Chapter 48 April shook her head at the handsome doctor standing before her. “I don’t know if I can trust a man who got a C in Women’s Studies.” Robin had been regaling April with stories of them in their college days while they ate supper. Patrick’s suggestion of sharing supper with the young woman had surprised her but she was more than happy to do it. She picked up the plate from April’s tray and smiled at her. “I even offered to help him with his final paper but Mr. Ladies Man insisted that he knew more about women than the professor.” “Not one of my best moments.” Patrick admitted. He took the plates from Robin and began putting them in the picnic basket. Robin began laughing. “Not one of your worst either.” Her phone rang and she looked down at the caller ID. She sighed and shook her head. “Maxie.” Patrick continued to pick up the dishes. “You better get that – it’s probably about the wedding.” Matt and Maxie’s big day was only a couple of weeks away and Maxie was in overdrive trying to get it just perfect. “And if I don’t answer she will just keep calling.” Robin headed to the hall. “I’ll take this in my office – I have a feeling that this is going to take a few minutes.” She gave Patrick a quick kiss on the cheek. “I will see you both in a little bit.” Patrick watched Robin as she left the room and then turned back to April. “My brother and her cousin are getting married in a couple of weeks and she is one of the bridesmaids.” “I see.” April watched him carefully. “Dr. Soltini is quite a woman – it’s easy to see why you fell in love with her.” Patrick closed the basket and then sat down next to her bed. “Don’t you have anything better to do than worry about my love life?” “Don’t get testy – she’s in love with you too.” April smiled at him. Patrick shook his head. “Robin is still dealing with losing her husband. She’s not ready for anything more than what we are doing right now and I am fine with that.” The look on April’s face reflected her confusion. “I thought he died a long time ago.” “Oh.” Patrick instantly understood what was going on. “No, Robin was married to an old friend of mine and he passed away a few years ago.” “I see.” She sighed. “You need to tell her. Take it from me, you don’t want to waste a moment. If I infected you with HIV…” “You didn’t.” The last thing he wanted was to have April feeling guilty for infecting him. He had made the decision to do the surgery and he didn’t regret it for one moment. “If I did time will be an issue.” She pushed the button on the bed and raised the head to a more comfortable position. “I’m not stupid, I know I don’t have much time left and I am grateful that you and Dr. Soltini are here to help me. This can be a lonely disease. My boyfriend infected me and then took off, my family doesn’t want anything to do with me and my friends are too frightened of catching it to come near me. It was my fault that I let my shame and embarrassment over being infected stop me from getting the medications I needed but I have accepted that I am alone in this.” “It’s not too late for you April.” “Yes it is.” April took a deep breath. “May I ask you a favor?” “Of course.” Patrick figured she wanted a special dinner snuck in tomorrow. “If Robin ever gets to the point I am at, don’t leave her. Don’t let her go through it alone.” He was caught completely off guard by her request. “Honestly, I would never let Robin get to this point and, if she ever does, I would never leave her side.” “Because of obligation?” Patrick heard Robin coming down the hall and he wanted to end this conversation before she got back in the room. “Because she’s Robin and I care about her.” “I promise Maxie, first thing in the morning.” Robin rolled her eyes as she smiled at Patrick and April as she waltzed back into the room. “Alright – good night.” He held out his hand and pulled her close to him, trapping her between his knees and wrapping his arms around her waist. “What are you doing first thing in the morning?” “The bridesmaid dresses are back from the seamstress and she wants to make sure all the alterations are correct.” Robin winked at April. “For some reason mine was a little long.” April laughed and noticed the protective way that Patrick kept his arms around her. “I can’t imagine why.” Patrick stood up and set his chin on top of Robin’s head. “I think we need to let you get some rest but I will be back in the morning to check on you.” She nodded her head. “Sounds good doc. I’ll see you both later and have a great evening.” Patrick picked up the basket and took Robin’s hand in his. “We will.” ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Robin stood at her kitchen sink washing the dishes while Patrick dried them. “Tell me again why we are doing this instead of just loading them in the dishwasher?” “It’s leaking and there aren’t that many dishes anyhow.” Robin washed a knife as she spoke. “Mac is coming over this weekend to get fix it.” As much as she cared about Patrick, she knew that his mechanical skills started and ended at the track. She dropped the knife into the clean side of the sink. “Get drying.” He was so busy watching her that he didn’t pay attention to what he was doing and grabbed the knife by the blade. “Damn it!” Reacting on instinct, Robin went for his hand but he quickly pulled away. “Don’t touch me!” Robin was shocked at first but quickly figured out why he was keeping his cut away from her. She handed him a towel and ran over to a cabinet by the stove. She pulled out the first aid kit and slipped on a pair of gloves before taking the kit back over to the sink. “Alright now – let me see it.” “No, I can’t risk blood on blood contact and…” “That’s why I have on gloves.” She held up her hands. “See? Now let me take care of you.” Robin sat down at the table, took the towel and laid it down on the table. “Let me do my job.” Reluctantly, he set his hand down on the table. The new cut was just below his wound from the day before. She inspected the new cut and was relieved to see it wasn’t that deep. “Just a surface wound. I’ll put some antibacterial cream on it and bandage you up. You’ll be back in the OR tomorrow no problem.” “You know a week ago that would have been my only concern – when I could get back in the OR.” He shook his head. “Funny how things change.” "You just have a different perspective and that is not a bad thing." Robin finished bandaging him up and threw her gloves into the garbage can. Patrick began to throw the towel in behind them but she stopped him. “I’ll put it in the dirty clothes.” She reached for it but he pulled away from her. “No.” “Patrick,” Robin knew he was being overprotective and decided to let him, “go ahead, it was an old towel anyway.” It was easier to replace the towel than fight him on the issue. He relaxed as he threw the towel into the trash. Before she could say anything, he pulled the garbage bag out of the can and tied it up. Robin watched him head out the door to the garage and listened to him throw the bag into one of the outside cans and slam the lid on it tight. Moments later he walked back through the door. “Make sure that no one opens up that can – I want to make sure that the virus is dead before the garbage is picked up on Monday.” She nodded her head. “I promise. Now, I think we should discuss dessert.” She leaned up and gave him a slow, passionate kiss. “What are you in the mood for?” "You're killing me." He stepped back and shook his head. For the first time in his life, Patrick was afraid of hurting the woman he was with and he wasn't sure what to do about it. He wanted to be with her so much but he also wanted to protect her. “I want this, you know that I do.” “Well I am here – just come and take me.” She took a few small steps towards him. “I understand what you are afraid of.” She stepped closer and wrapped his arms around her. "It was the same thing I was afraid of after I was first diagnosed. But that is the difference - I know I am HIV positive and you have not tested positive." "But I could." "And I know that just like you knew that it was a risk to be with me but you took it anyhow." “Robin,” he kissed her forehead, “I want to make love with you but I won’t put you at risk to do it.” “And I am not asking you too. Patrick, you know as well as I do that we have other options.” She put her arms around his back. “Options that will not put either one of us at risk but still let us be together.” Patrick thought about what she was saying and realized she was right. They may not be able to have sex but there were many other ways they could be with each other. “Dr. Soltini, I love the way you think. What did you have in mind?” Robin jumped up on him. She wasn’t worried about not warning him she was doing it – Patrick would always catch her. She giggled and then kissed him again. She had no sooner ended the kiss when his mouth attacked her neck, hitting that one spot that drove her crazy. Her arms tightened around his neck as he set her down on the table. “Well for starters, I think we have some whipped cream in the fridge…”
  7. Chapter 47 Robin walked into the locker room and smiled as she saw her boyfriend changing out of his street clothes and into his scrubs. “Don’t put that on – I’m enjoying the view.” “Well this view still has rounds to do so I need to put my clothes on.” He threw the scrub top on over his head. "Alright but before you take off, I have a proposition for you." She sat down on the bench. “Michelle and Rylee are spending the night at the Quartermaines which means I have the house to myself.” “That’s nice.” Patrick was only half listening to her. “Yes it is so why don’t you come by and have dinner with me?” Patrick thought quickly. “I’m busy.” “No you’re not – I checked your schedule and we have very few chances to be alone at my place.” Robin took a sip from her coffee cup. “After all, we don’t have to worry about the neighbors at my house.” He shook his head. He was at war with himself - he wanted to be with her but he didn't trust himself alone with her at this time. He looked at her and made his decision. “When do you want me?” “Pretty much always.” Patrick laughed in spite of himself. “Cute. I mean what time?” “Seven work for you?” “I’ll see you then.” ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Patrick stepped up to the nurse’s station. “Leyla, we need to go over what I need you to do tomorrow with the Jacobs surgery.” The dark haired woman took a step back. “Actually, I have requested a new mentor. I will be working with Dr. Julian from now on.” Patrick was shocked at her cold demeanor. “And why did you request the change?” “I just felt like Dr. Julian would be a better match for me.” Leyla took another step back. “I imagine you won’t be doing surgeries for a while…” “Why wouldn’t I be doing surgeries?” Leyla had not been in the room with Patrick and Robin during the surgery. The nursing student took another step back. “I don’t have to explain myself to you or anyone else. I have the approval of my professor to ask Dr. Julian to take over as my mentor. No matter what, I will not be working with you anymore.” “And this having nothing to do with my surgery yesterday or the accident I had while operating on an AIDS patient?” “Dr. Drake, they are making wonderful advancements in HIV therapy. I’m sure you will be fine.” Having said all she wanted to say, Leyla walked away to go meet with her new mentor. Michelle stood in the background observing the whole exchange and quickly followed her fellow student down the hall. “Leyla, may I speak to you for a minute?” Leyla rolled her eyes and turned around. “Yes Michelle?” “I have a question for you.” She took a step towards Leyla. “Up until yesterday, you have done everything you could to try and get my mother’s boyfriend into bed. Now you are dropping your pursuit,” she snapped her fingers, “just like that. Why?” “Look, if Patrick wants to take chances with life threatening diseases, that is his choice. Just like it is mine to distance myself from them.” “Great point of view for a nurse to have.” The sarcasm dripped from Michelle’s tongue. “I hope you never are in a position where you have to help me.” “You weren’t just infected with HIV.” “And neither was Patrick.” Michelle had heard about the accident from her mom and knew Patrick’s first test was negative. “We won’t know that for six months.” “I know one thing right now – you are an intolerant bitch.” Michelle was furious with Leyla’s behavior. “And I am sure that our professor will be thrilled to know why you are removing yourself from Dr. Drake’s team.” Leyla panicked. “I haven’t done anything wrong. You can’t…” “I can and I am. You are refusing to work with a doctor because of their possible medical status. I think your ethical decisions need to be reviewed.” Michelle stared the woman straight in the eyes. “You might want to think about transferring to another hospital because, if I have my way, you won’t have to worry about working with Patrick or my mom ever again.” Leyla didn’t say another word, just scurried off down the hall. Michelle heard a slow clapping behind her and saw her mom standing there. “Mom, I didn’t see you there.” “I guess not.” Robin started laughing. “I’m surprised that she didn’t leave a trail of smoke of behind her as fast as she was moving.” “I have no patience for people like her.” “And she knows it.” Robin reached over and hugged her daughter. “I am so proud of you.” “I learned it from you.” Michelle heard herself being paged over the intercom. “I’ve got to go – I’ll see you tomorrow.” “Have fun tonight sweetie.” Robin watched with pride as Michelle hustled down the hall to meet up with her mentor, Noah Drake. “Hopefully you won't be the only one.” ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Patrick nervously paced in front of Robin’s door, debating whether he should just turn around and go home or actually ring the doorbell. Today had been an eye opening experience for him. Patrick had thought that he worked with open-minded and caring people but several had disappointed him, avoiding him like the plague. Fortunately, the people he depended on most were there for him and proved that his faith in them was well founded. It wasn’t just Robin and Alan; Epiphany and Liz were constantly checking on him, Dr. Leo Julian informed him that he refused to be Leyla’s mentor after her treatment of Patrick, and his father, Matt and Maxie had spent the day shadowing him and heading off any potential problems at the pass. Patrick didn’t know what he had done to deserve their support but he truly appreciated it. After several minutes of debate, he finally pushed the doorbell. Robin threw open the door and Patrick just stood there in awe of her beauty. She was in a simple, black spaghetti strapped dress with her hair down and looked gorgeous. “I was wondering if you were coming in.” “You knew I was out here?” “The car was a dead giveaway.” Patrick’s sports car was his pride and joy and Robin loved ribbing him about it. “Come on in.” Patrick hesitated for a moment but eventually walked into the house. He entered the living room to see a little table set up with candles and wine glasses. He opened up the wine and poured. “How much longer until dinner is ready?” She wrapped her arms around him and pulled him close. “At least another 30 minutes.” Gently, she turned him around so he was facing her. “Enough time to do this.” Robin got on her tiptoes and kissed him. Patrick couldn’t help but do what came naturally and kissed her back. He leaned down and allowed her to push him down on the couch. Robin began to lay him down on the couch and suddenly his brain kicked in and he broke away. “I think I smell something burning – maybe you should check on dinner.” “I think that I should check your pulse.” Robin was surprised at Patrick’s decision to pull away from her. "Is something wrong?" He stood up and headed to the table. “I had an interesting conversation today.” He picked up the wine glasses and handed one to Robin. “Leyla asked to be moved to another mentor.” Robin nodded her head. “I know – Michelle really let her have it when she heard. Unfortunately, ignorance can be found everywhere. Leyla was out of line.” “Or maybe she was just exercising reasonable caution.” He sat down next to Robin. “We still don’t know if I am negative for certain yet." He took a deep breath. "Maybe we should just put us on hold.” “Why?” Robin got a sinking feeling in her stomach. “Now that you’ve actually been exposed you realized that it’s not worth the risk, didn’t you?” Patrick’s head whipped around. He set the glass down. “No, Robin, I swear that’s not it. I just don't want either of us to get sick.” "Wait a second, who's HIV status are you worried about - yours or mine?" He took her hand in his. “If I am infected, the strain I have may not be the same as the one you have and it could fatally compromise your system. I could never live with myself if I got you sick.” Tears came to her eyes as she realized how much he truly cared about her. “I get it, I really do. I feel the same way about you. It would kill me if I ever made you sick.” “I need you to understand that it is not that I am not attracted to you or don’t want to be with you. I have always and will always want to be with you.” He leaned over and kissed her cheek. “I’m just…” “Scared, I know.” Robin remembered how cautious she had been with Jason when they first got together. “And I understand. I am just going to ask you to remember that you have been willing to take the risk with me and I am willing to take the risk with you. We are always careful and I want you to know that when you are ready, whether it is tomorrow or after your six-month test, I will be here waiting for you.” “I have no idea what I did to deserve you but I am so grateful I did it.” He kissed Robin again and then placed his forehead against hers. “Do you think we can take dinner to go?” Robin leaned back and regarded him curiously. “Do you have someplace to be?” He winked at her. “No, we do.”
  8. Chapter 46 "She is out." Robin softly shut Rylee’s door as she spoke to Patrick on the phone. The little girl had passed out watching cartoons and Robin finished tucking her into bed before calling her boyfriend to check on him and say goodnight. “She didn’t even make it to In Summer.” “But that’s the best part of the movie!” Patrick smiled at his little brother as he took a drink from his beer. After hearing from his father that Patrick was spending the evening alone, Matt had shown up at his brother’s place with beer, pizza and plenty of movies to watch. He needed to let Patrick know he wasn’t alone. “I know you love Olaf but the best part is when Anna punches Hans.” Robin and Patrick had watched Frozen with Rylee many times over the past few months – it was second only to Inside Out in Ry’s eyes. “Dare I ask what movies Matt brought over?” “We just finished Shaun of the Dead and are getting ready to start Hot Fuzz.” “You’re doing the Blood and Ice Cream triology?” Robin loved Simon Pegg and was a huge fan of his films with Edgar Wright. “Does he have The World’s End?” “Of course.” Patrick threw a fake glare at his brother for getting him in trouble with his girlfriend but Matt just shrugged his shoulders and took another drink of his beer. “But I promise that we will do the same marathon next week.” “Fine.” Robin heard a knock on her door. “I wonder who that could be?” “You won’t know unless you answer it.” Mac had texted Patrick and let him know he was on his way over. “Though if it is one of your other boyfriends…” “Like I have time for that.” Robin looked through the peephole and saw her uncle standing there. She began unlocking the door as she continued her conversation. “Besides, aren’t you always telling me that you are the best lover on the planet?” Mac rolled his eyes as he walked in the door. “I did not need to hear that.” Robin giggled. “I’m going to talk to Uncle Mac. You have fun with Matt and I will talk to you in the morning. Good night Patrick.” “Night Robin.” Robin hung up her phone and hugged Mac. “What are you doing here? You do know that Ry is sleeping.” “Which is why I waited until now to come over – I was warned that Rylee instigated a no boys rule tonight and I did not want to break that.” He kissed his niece on the cheek and held up a bag. “Besides – I didn’t want you to have to share these.” Robin jumped up and down like a little kid. “Chocolate chip cookies?” Mac nodded his head. “Yes!” She grabbed the bag from her uncle’s hand and walked into the living room. Mac sat down next to her on the couch. “So, how are you doing?” She studied her uncle and sighed. “Patrick called you, didn’t he?” “Actually we met up for a beer but yes, he told me what happened today.” Mac gently squeezed her hand. “He also told me that he tested negative and he has no reason to think he won’t stay that way. He was more worried about you.” “Me?” Robin laughed nervously. “I’m fine.” Mac shook his head. “No, you’re not. Come on Robin, I know you better than anyone and I can see that you are covering right now.” “Mac…” “I was there Robin. I was there for you when Stone found out he had AIDS and died. I was there for you when you found out you were HIV positive. I was there for you when you were adjusting to a new life and started on the protocol. I was there for you when Roger died and when Michelle was going through her rough patch. Please, let me be here for you now.” Tears came to her eyes. “I’m scared. I know it’s irrational. Patrick had a minimal exposure, he has already tested negative and he is on drugs that weren’t even created when Stone and I were infected, not that either one of us would have known to take them. He’s healthy and strong and I have no doubts he can beat this.” “But?” Mac knew that Robin was holding something back. “But when I look at him, I see Stone. Suddenly I am 17 years old again and I cannot stop the man I care about from being sick.” “Robin, that is a perfectly normal reaction.” Mac was glad Robin was getting this off her chest. “You said yourself that his first test came back negative…” “So did mine.” Robin began crying. Mac realized that he had reached the crux of the problem. Robin was scared for Patrick and this was bringing back memories of Stone and his death but she also knew that an initial negative test did not mean you were out of the woods. “Robin, look at me.” She lifted her head and he gently wiped away a tear. “I understand what you are saying but the PEP protocol is highly effective is preventing infection, right?” “Not 100% but still…” “And the chances of contracting HIV through the exposure Patrick had is low, right?” Mac had done some research online before coming to see his niece. He needed to be prepared and the PEP protocol was not something he was very familiar with. “Yes, it is.” “Then your two situations are different in a lot of ways and you need to remember that.” Mac reached over and pulled her into a hug. “I know that you think you need to be strong for Patrick right now and you will be but you need someone here for you too. Someone to hold your hand or just reassure you that when he gets a cold, it’s probably just a cold – let me be that person for you.” “What would I do without you?” Robin leaned her head on her uncle’s shoulder and let herself cry. “Sweetheart, you will never have to find out.” He kissed the top of her head and settled back on the couch. “Now, how about we watch a movie and just chill out for the rest of the night.” “That is the best idea I have heard all day.” Robin wiped her eyes and turned on the TV. “Have you seen Hot Fuzz?” ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ “I’m on my way back and we can talk about what I have found out when I get there.” Dean was packing his bag as he spoke on the phone. Damien was looking through the pictures Dean had sent him of Robin and her family on his computer. “Did you get to see her?” Dean looked at a picture of Rylee and smiled. “Yes and you are right, she is beautiful. I can’t believe I let Michelle and Robin talk me into signing those papers.” “You were young and you made a mistake – we can fix that now but we need to be smart about it. Michelle’s boyfriend is a rich man who knows a lot of influential people.” Damien had been thrilled that Dean wanted to know more about his daughter and was using it to his full advantage. The deal he had presented the man was simple: Dean would help Damien get Robin and he would help Dean get to be a part of his daughter’s life. “Luckily you do too now.” Dean scoffed at the mention of Michael. He hated the way the man had so easily laid claim to his daughter. Michael could have Michelle, that shipped had sailed years ago, but he could not have Rylee. “Whatever we have to do – I have missed years of my daughter’s life and I don’t want to miss anymore.” “Patience Dean. If we go about this the wrong way, you may never get to see her again.” He closed his laptop. “We will be meeting up at a cabin in Canada – fewer distractions there.” “Whatever.” Dean shut his suitcase and headed out the door. “I am on my way – the sooner we get planning, the sooner I get to be with my daughter.” Damien hung up the phone and shook his head. Dean was not the brightest man but he would do for what they needed. Personally Damien couldn't stand the man, it was obvious that he didn't care about what was best for Rylee. This wasn't about getting to know his daughter or being a good father - it was about Michelle finding a better father figure for her daughter. He wanted to claim Rylee like a prize just to soothe his own ego and wounded pride. In the end it didn't matter, Dean was perfect for what Damien had planned. He picked up his phone and made one final call. “Get the plane ready – it’s time for phase two.”
  9. Chapter 45 “Noah?” Robin approached the older doctor in the hallway. “I need to talk to you about the Donaldson case. Something has come up so I have given my notes to Dr. Case and he will be consulting with you.” “Wait,” Noah grabbed her as she tried to walk away, “I specifically requested you on this case. Why are you passing it off to another doctor?” Robin refused to look Noah in the eyes. “I just thought that…” Noah got a sinking feeling in his stomach and made a decision. “Why don’t we have this discussion in my office?” He led her into his office and sat down with his son’s girlfriend. “Robin, what is really going on?” “Nothing.” She played with the cuffs of her lab coat. “I just bit off more than I can chew.” “And if I talked to Mr. Donaldson and asked him why you are no longer his doctor, what would he say?” Noah wasn’t about to back down. Robin bit her lip and sighed. “Don’t say anything to Patrick, please? This is the last thing he needs to worry about.” “So he refused to work with you because of your HIV status?” “Yes.” She finally looked at Noah. “I can handle this, it’s not like this is the first time it has happened but Patrick has enough to worry about and he gets a little overprotective.” Noah reached over and held her hand. “Robin, his first test came back negative.” “Thank God. He told you?” Robin was worried that Patrick would keep what had happened in the OR a secret from his father and was glad he wasn’t. He would need all the support he could get over the next six months. “Yes and Matt and I were with him when Alan gave him the initial test results.” He was hoping to get her to relax a little bit and confide in him. “He said he had something to take care of and that he would call you later.” “Okay.” Robin felt a little of the tension she had been carrying with her leave her body. Patrick was on the PEP protocol and his first test had come back negative so chances were good that he would remain that way. “Thank you for telling me.” “Not a problem and now you can return the favor by telling me exactly what happened with Mr. Donaldson.” Noah wanted to be prepared when he met with his patient. “Please Noah, don’t make a big deal about this.” Robin could see he wasn’t going to let this go so she finally told him what had happened. “Fine – he recognized my name from the article about the epidemic. He said that he didn’t feel comfortable having someone who was sick taking caring of him and requested that I find another, healthier doctor for him.” “Son of a bitch.” His voice was soft but full of emotion. He hated that she had to go through this even in this day and age. “Robin, I am so sorry.” “You have nothing to be sorry for. Besides, it will free up more time to help your son.” She stood up and headed to the door. “I really need to check on April one last time before I head home – it’s my night to take Ry to dance class.” Noah followed her to the door. “Well don’t let me stop you – I would hate to have Ry mad at me because I stopped Grandma from getting her on time.” He kissed her cheek. “I will talk to you later.” “Ok,” she gave him a quick hug, “bye Noah.” _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Patrick set two beers down on the table as he sat down. “Thank you again for meeting with me.” “You said it is about Robin.” Mac picked up the beer and took a sip. “I would do anything for my girls.” “I know and she needs you now.” Patrick grabbed his beer and saw the bandage from his earlier cut as he took a drink. “I had an accident during surgery today – I stuck myself with a needle covered in a patient’s blood.” He took another drink. “A patient with end-stage AIDS.” “Oh my God. Are you okay?” Mac was horrified that Robin’s boyfriend had been exposed. “My first test came back negative and I started the PEP protocol within two hours of my exposure but we won’t know for certain for another six months. I have no reason not to be optimistic at this point in time.” He played with the label on the beer bottle. “The reason I want to talk to you is that I am worried about Robin and you may be the best person to talk to her.” “Why?” Mac knew that Patrick loved his niece, even if he hadn’t admitted it to her yet. He also knew that Patrick wouldn’t be here if he weren’t truly worried. “She’s been so supportive and understanding but she’s not okay. She’s covering, I can tell.” “How?” “She’s too level, almost brittle, like she’s holding a lot inside.” He took another swig from the bottle. “We both know that Robin has lived with HIV for a lot of years but I think she’s more scared than she’s letting on. The fact that her first boyfriend died of AIDS I’m sure doesn’t help. It’s bringing back a lot of bad memories.” Mac nodded. “She is a very stubborn and strong woman.” Patrick sighed. “That’s no doubt but everyone has their breaking point and I think Robin may be getting to hers.” “Thanks for the heads up.” Mac was worried for his niece too. He remembered all too well the hell Robin went through during her teen years with Stone’s death and discovering her own HIV positive status. “Are you going to see her tonight?” Patrick shook his head. “Robin has Rylee tonight – Michelle is working the night shift at the ER for her clinicals. I was told by Miss Rylee herself that I was to be gone tonight and let her have a night alone with her grandma.” Mac laughed. “That little girl is so much like Robin it’s scary.” “My only plans tonight are to go home and make up a pitcher of my dad’s hangover cure – he swears it will help me with my nausea. Then I just want to curl up in bed and leave today behind me for a few hours.” He doubted he would sleep but he didn’t want to ruin Robin’s plans for the night because of his accident. “Meanwhile I will crash my niece’s party and try to get her to talk to me after Ry goes to bed.” He finished his beer. “Thank you for letting me know what is going on.” “I just want what is best for Robin.” “I know you do.” Mac stood up and smiled at the man. “You know, if you need someone to talk to, I have been told I am a pretty good listener. I had to be raising three girls.” Patrick laughed for the first time since his accident. “I guess so.” “Do you like hockey?” Patrick nodded his head. “The Stanley Cup finals start this weekend and it would be nice to watch the games with someone who actually knows what is going on.” Mac laid his business card down on the table. “My cell number is on the card – why don’t you give me a call and I will tell you what time to be there.” “I’d like that Mac.” He felt better having talked to the man and wanted to get to know Robin’s uncle better. “Good, I’ll be waiting to hear from you.” He put his hand out to Patrick. “Have a good evening Dr. Drake.” Patrick finished his beer and stood up to shake the man’s hand. “You too Commissioner Scorpio.”
  10. I may be a terrible person but I am behind Gabi and Kate 100%. I wasn't sure if Kate was really going to work with Gabi or just lying to her until she laid into Abby yesterday. I'm sorry but it takes a hell of a lot of nerve to ask the woman whose husband you murdered to help save your marriage. Kate had every right, even if she wasn't in cahoots with Gabi, to let Abby have it. They are both right, Chad is much better off without Abby. I hope they remember all this talk about Abby not being completely responsible for what she did due to her mental illness when everything comes out regarding the paternity switch because I am pretty sure that Gabi has a good case for temporary insanity due to the situation Abby and Stefan put her in. Or she could be suffering from PTSD due to her being incarcerated for a murder she didn't commit and then beaten so severely she can never have another child again only to find out that the woman who is responsible for it is not only getting away with it but also pregnant. I would call that extenuating circumstances. Who am I kidding? No one cares about Gabi's mental health, just Abby's.
  11. Chapter 44 Patrick took a moment to compose himself before entering April’s room. His blood had been drawn, his prescription picked up and he was fighting the nausea from his first dose but he was bound and determined not to let his patient see it. He took a deep breath and entered the room. “Hello Miss Gilbert.” He went about quickly taking her vitals and doing an exam. Within a minute he was done and headed towards the door. Thanks to the PEP protocol, he needed to get to the bathroom as soon as possible. “Everything looks good – I will be in to check on you later.” Robin was walking down the hall and saw Patrick running out of April’s room. “Patrick?” He didn’t even nod in her direction, just kept running down the hall. Robin grabbed April’s chart and entered the woman’s room. “Good morning April, you are looking good today.” “Thank you for noticing. The other doctor was barely in here long enough to say hello.” Robin winced. “Dr. Drake has a few things going on right now…” “Then he should leave his problems out in the hall and not bring them into my room. I have problems of my own.” April was trying to figure out why the doctor was so cold. “Is it because I don’t have insurance?” “No, April he fought to keep you from being transferred to County.” Robin knew she would have to tell April what had happened. “April, something happened during your surgery.” She rolled her eyes. “Did he leave in a sponge in there? Don’t worry, they can pick it up during the autopsy.” “Dr. Drake cut himself with a needle covered in your blood.” Robin sat down on the bed. “His bedside manner isn’t great on a good day but given the circumstances…” “Given the circumstances he was pretty good to me.” April took a moment to absorb the news and then looked at Robin. “Be there for him – you have no idea what he is going through.” “Actually I do.” Robin smiled at the woman. “I’m HIV positive.” April paused for a minute before asking her question. “Do you mind me asking how you got it?” “No.” Robin heard a noise and turned around to see Patrick in the hall. She gave him a small smile and turned back to April. “I got it from my first boyfriend.” “Was he an IV drug user?” April couldn't believe that the woman she saw before her used to be a drug addict. “No, but he did have unprotected sex with someone who was before he and I got together.” “How long ago was that?” April could see that Dr. Soltini was in good health. “Over twenty years ago. Stone, my boyfriend, was diagnosed first and was already in full blown AIDS by that time.” Robin felt a tear coming but she didn’t try and stop it. She still shed tears for the men she had loved and lost from time to time. “He had six months from the time he was diagnosed until he passed away.” “I didn’t mean to upset you.” “You didn’t – talking about it hurts but it also makes me realize how far I have come and how much I have to be grateful for.” She wiped away the tear. “I was lucky – I got on the protocol as soon as it became available and have been able to maintain my health through the years.” “Unlike me.” April wanted to explain what had happened to her. “I got it from my boyfriend too but neither one of us knew we had it. One night he got drunk and we got into a fight. He hit me, I fought back and the cops were called. They took us to the hospital and I found out I had AIDS. My boyfriend took off and I haven’t seen him since.” “Why didn’t you go to the clinic?” Robin was curious about why the woman wouldn’t take advantage of their services. “Denial – I just couldn’t believe that I was infected.” April shook her head. “Besides, what was the point? I am not just HIV positive, I have full blown AIDS. Face it doc, I’m toast.” “But you have a chance to live a better life than the one you have been living.” Robin took April’s hand in hers. “The medications we are giving you will help you live a longer, better life.” “I can’t afford this.” “Don’t worry about it.” Robin smiled at her. “The Quartermaine Foundation is assisting with the hospital bills and the Stone Cates Memorial AIDS wing is helping with the medications.” Tears filled April’s eyes. “I don’t know how to thank you.” “Just get better and be patient with Dr. Drake. He fought for you April, please remember that the next time he comes in. If you give him a chance, you will find he is a very good man and an even better doctor. ” Robin got up. “I need to go check on my other patients but I will be by later to check on you.” April couldn’t help but notice how protective Dr. Soltini was of Dr. Drake. “I will see you later.” ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Patrick stood at the nurse’s hub trying to catch his breath. He had been listening to Robin’s conversation with April when another wave of nausea had hit him but he was unsure if it was from the protocol or guilt for the way he had treated April. After a trip to the bathroom he had went by April’s room to see the women but Robin was already gone and April was sleeping. He opened up a chart, determined to at least read the lab results before he got sick again when a hand grabbed his shoulder and shook him. Patrick paled and grabbed the counter. “Please don’t do that.” “What’s the matter sport?” Noah went around to the other side and looked at his son. “Rough night? If you are going to be doing that I need to give you the recipe to my hangover cure.” Patrick barely had a chance to respond before Matt came up and joined them. “I heard about your surgery earlier – everything go okay?” Patrick looked at his brother and father before waving them over to the lounge area. “Let’s sit down.” The three men sat down and Patrick took a deep breath. “There was an accident during surgery. There was a power surge in the OR and my hand slipped while I was stitching up a bleeder. I cut myself.” Matt paled at the news, he knew the patient’s HIV status, but Noah had just come in for his shift and didn’t have a clue. “So you and the patient have some testing done but I am sure it will all be…” “The patient has end-stage AIDS.” Patrick saw the news hit his father. “I’ve been exposed.” “Oh my God.” Noah leaned over and took Patrick’s hand. “We are going to get through this. Did you have your first test?” “Alan is running it as we…” He stopped speaking as he saw Alan approaching them. “Alan?” “I have the results from your first test.” “You can go ahead and tell me Alan.” “I’m pleased to say that your first test is negative.” Alan saw the three men relax. “You will need to finish your PEP protocol and retest in six months but you are over the first hurdle.” Patrick nodded his head. “Thank you Alan.” Noah could sense something was still bothering his son so he waited for Alan to leave before saying anything. “Patrick, this is good news.” “I know.” He stood up. “I have something I need to do. Dad, if you want to text me your hangover cure, I would appreciate it.” Noah and Matt both stood up and grabbed Patrick pulling him into a group hug. “We love you.” “I love you guys too.” He pulled back. “If you see Robin, tell her I will call her later.” Patrick walked to the elevator and pulled out his phone. “Do you have a few minutes to talk? It’s about Robin.”
  12. Alcazar threatens Robin and Patrick goes into protective mode: Robin: And for the record, I don't appreciate you calling my father when I specifically told you I didn't want him involved. Patrick: It's too late, your father got involved the minute he made Skye disappear. That's why Alcazar's trying to intimidate you, because, once again, your father got involved in a covert mission without thinking of the consequences to the people around him. Robert: Wait, wait, wait. We're getting a little judgmental here. Now, what consequences were you thinking about when you were counting all those notches on your bed -- Robin: No -- just stop. Bickering is not helping either of your causes. Patrick: Ok, if we stop, will you consider our causes and let your father keep an eye on you? Robin: Hmm, let me think about that -- no! Patrick: Look, you can be as mad as you want. I am not going to apologize for wanting to keep you safe. [Pager beeps] Patrick: I got to go. Robin: Don't let me stop you. Patrick: This isn't over. Robert: Do you have to bust his chops over everything? Robin: Why are you defending him? Robert: Well, it's easier than defending myself. I mean, we both know who you're mad at here. Robin: Ok, once again, you've given yourself way too much credit. My world, my being, has not revolved around you since I was -- uh -- 12. Robert: My point exactly. I was gone for all that time when you needed me the most, and I'm still paying for it. But him? Well, he's here, right now. And this guy really cares for you, and he's prepared to put up with all of your garbage -- Robin: Oh -- Robert: To that end. I mean, explain to me the downside of all of this. Later... Robin: Hey. Do you have time for a quick consult before you go? Patrick: Who's the patient? Robin: A young, caucasian female with a cautious heart and a possibly fatal case of independence. What would you prescribe? Patrick: I already told you -- two weeks in Paris. Robin: Ah -- the patient can't fly. Patrick: Ah. Common problem with humans. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ You know, it always bothered me that the show had a real opportunity to create an old school adventure story with Alcazar and the Scorpios and completely blew it. It was rights there - kidnappings, adventure, young lovers on the run (Scrubs), a chance at redemption for a father - and it was just dropped within a couple of days. Robert was beat up, Skye made a phone call home and Alcazar found her. Fast forward three months later she's begging Patrick to save Alcazar's life while Robin lies dying on the floor of the Metro Court. How much more tension would have been in those scenes if he reminded her of the danger Alcazar put Robin in just a few months earlier? If Alcazar had followed through on his threats and Patrick had to work with Robert to find Robin and bring her home? It's the same with a possible Nikolas/Robin/Patrick triangle - the pieces were there, they just never bothered to put them together and it could have been great.
  13. Chapter 43 Patrick was still yelling at Sneed when Robin walked back in the trauma room. “This patient will not make it to County – her injuries are too severe.” He glared at Robin. “Where the hell have you been?” “Trust me.” Robin went back to monitoring their patient. “Your patient has end stage AIDS, probably due to life style choices.” Sneed took a breath and Robin took the opportunity to interrupt her. “I’m sorry but are you saying that she doesn’t deserve treatment because she made a bad decision?” Robin looked at Patrick. “Didn’t I tell you there were still people like her out there?” “Yes but I didn’t think we actually worked with one.” Patrick picked the handset to the phone up and called the OR floor. “Is my OR ready yet?” Sneed didn’t back down. “I have told them that we will not be performing surgery on this patient.” “Ms. Sneed, did you happen to notice that very large building across the street? The one called the Stone Cates Memorial AIDS wing?” Robin was worried that their patient was not going to last much longer. “That is for outpatient treatment and assistance with medication. If your patient had taken advantage of their services she might not be end stage now.” Sneed was not about to back down. “General Hospital is a private hospital and as such I have to make sure that we are financially viable. This patient is terminal and will die whether she gets surgery or not.” “My patient is not going to die because of bureaucratic nonsense.” Patrick was about to say something else when Alan walked in the door. “What is going on here?” “I cannot authorize treatment on a patient with end-stage AIDS. It is financially irresponsible.” Iris was not happy to see the chief of staff involved. “Robin?” Alan now knew exactly why his best researcher had called him down to help out. “She has cerebral edema due to a MVA. We need to operate immediately.” Robin didn’t have a single doubt what Alan’s answer would be. Alan turned to Sneed. “You do not make decisions about patient care. Your job is to find a way to pay for it.” He walked over to the phone in the room. “Get an OR ready for Dr. Drake immediately.” Patrick looked at Robin who winked at him. Sneed saw her and shook her head. “Fine but I cannot assign any staff to the case. Anyone who has contact with this patient will be made aware that she has end-stage AIDS.” “Well then it’s a good thing that the staff here isn’t full of close-minded bigots.” Epiphany came through the door with Liz and Andy Archer right behind her. Andy was the best anesthesiologist on staff and immediately began to get the patient, April Gilbert, ready for surgery. “Now would you please get out of our way so we can treat this young woman?” Even Iris was afraid of Epiphany – she stormed out of the room without another word. Alan smiled at the head nurse. “Thank you for being so quick.” He turned to Patrick. “Do you need any more assistance? I would be more than happy to scrub in.” “No, that’s okay.” Patrick was still trying to figure out what had just happened. “In that case I am going to contact AJ and Michael and get to work on finding a way to use the Quartermaine foundation to assist with Miss Gilbert’s medical bills. We have been thinking about creating a fund for patients in similar situations and I believe she is the perfect test case. Good luck.” Patrick stood back with Robin and watched the nurses and Andy get April ready for surgery. “That was a risky move, calling Alan.” “Not really – he was Stone’s doctor and mine when we were first diagnosed. I knew he’d have our backs.” Robin saw that April was almost ready and gently nudged Patrick in the ribs. “Let’s go save our patient.” ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Patrick stood at the sink scrubbing his hand furiously. He didn’t understand what had just happened. Flashback “I found the bleeder.” He got a needle and some surgical sutures and began sewing it up. Robin kept the suction going as he worked quickly but confidently to sew it up. He was almost done when there was a sudden, short surge of power in the room. He was caught off guard and the needle slipped, puncturing his glove and then his finger. “What the hell was that?” “Power surge doctor – it won’t happen again.” Andy checked his instruments and nodded that it was safe to continue. Robin had been watching closely. “Dr. Drake – did you cut yourself?” “I need to finish stitching up this bleeder.” Robin was trying not to panic. “Dr. Drake, you need to go and wash your cut immediately. I will hold off the bleeder.” Robin stepped over to control the bleed as Patrick stepped away from the patient. He had no sooner left her side when her pressure began to drop. Machines began going crazy and Patrick didn’t even hesitate to go back to his patient and finished suturing up the patient’s bleed. He had fought too hard to lose her now. End Flashback “Patrick?” Robin walked over to the sink and took the sponge from his hands. She unwrapped another bar of soap and another sponge. She took her gloved hands and gently washed his hand. “We need to get you started on antiretrovirals immediately and you need to get tested, not just for HIV but for Hep C.” “I need to check on my patient.” Patrick was still in shock over what had happened and had reverted back to doctor mode as a defense mechanism. Robin studied him closely before she spoke again. She set the sponge and soap back on the sink. “Fine – get dressed, check on our patient and meet me at the front desk in fifteen minutes. There’s something that you need and you don’t even know it.” “I really don’t feel like having any company right now.” He felt like he could barely breathe at the moment and he didn’t want Robin to see him as weak. “Fifteen minutes or I come looking for you and, trust me, you don’t want that.” Robin walked out the door before he could say another word. Patrick shook his head as he watched her leave. He knew there was no point in arguing with his girlfriend so he dried his hands and headed to the locker room to change. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Robin held Patrick’s hand as she pulled him out onto the dock. Patrick instantly began complaining. “You pulled me away from a patient for this – the smell of seaweed and dead fish?” She stopped walking and put up her hand to him. “Will you just stop for a second? Take a breath. Look out at the water and try to gain perspective – that’s what I do.” Patrick shook his head. “Yeah, you’re right. Big help, thanks for sharing.” He said sarcastically before he turned around and walked away. “Would you stop fighting this for a second and listen to me?” She waited until he stopped and continued speaking. “I know what you are feeling.” Patrick rolled his eyes at her. “That’s a little presumptuous.” “Maybe.” Robin admitted. “Would you mind just hearing me out?” He didn’t say anything but his posture relaxed and Robin knew he was giving her a chance. “When Stone told me that he was HIV positive and that I might be infected my entire world stopped. I couldn’t comprehend it, that this person that I loved so much could do this to me. Just how you love being a doctor, right? I mean how could it turn around and bite you so badly?” Patrick looked away, unsure of what to say. She was right of course but he wasn’t ready to admit it so he just let her continue to speak. “For a while I just went through the motions. I got my first blood test and I, I was in complete denial. I just kept telling myself that there is no way I am going to get this virus. Months after endless months I just waited until one day Alan called me into his office and he didn’t even have to say anything, I could just see it all over his face. This boy that I loved was dying from this thing and now I had it.” Patrick felt a tear coming as she told him her story but he blinked it back. “I wanted to just crawl into a hole and never come out.” Robin stopped and wondered if she was scaring him. “But you’re not there yet and please believe me, I am not trying to tell you how to feel, I’m just saying that I know.” He couldn’t take it, the honesty and pain in her eyes. He walked away and stepped closer to the ocean. Robin took a moment to collect herself and spoke again. “Except for one thing, unlike me, you have a chance. You might have dodged this bullet." She took a step closer to him. "Now wouldn’t that be something, if this accident happened and you were not infected. I choose to believe in that possibility and I expect you to do the same.” “What’s your point?” He didn’t mean to sound harsh but he was trying hard not to fall apart in front of her. “My point is that what you did in the operating room today is the bravest things I have ever seen. You risked your own life to save your patient.” He still couldn’t believe that he had done it himself. “Yeah.” “I don’t believe that people get AIDS as punishment. I think that sometimes horrible things happen to the best of us.” She took a few steps and was by his side once more. “But I can still hope. This may be the longest six months of your whole life but I promise you’re not alone.” He took a deep breath. “Six months, huh?” “But if you test negative in six months, you are pretty much home free.” She gently nudged him. “Look on the bright side, it will give you time to work on your people skills.” He sat down on the steps of the dock. “Guess you won’t have to worry about Leyla or any other woman hitting on me for the next six months.” She sat down next to him and wrapped her arms around his arm, holding him close. “I would give anything for this not to have happened to you.” Patrick wrapped his arm around her legs and pulled her even closer. Robin was right, he had a chance, options that were not available to her all those years ago, and he would take full advantage of them in a few minutes but for now all he wanted to do was hold her as he stared out at the sea. He didn't know what was going to happen but he knew one thing with absolute certainty - as long as Robin was by his side, he would get through it.
  14. You know, it always bothered me that the show had a real opportunity to create an old school adventure story with Alcazar and the Scorpios and completely blew it. It was rights there - kidnappings, adventure, young lovers on the run (Scrubs), a chance at redemption for a father - and it was just dropped within a couple of days. Robert was beat up, Skye made a phone call home and Alcazar found her. Fast forward three months later she's begging Patrick to save Alcazar's life while Robin lies dying on the floor of the Metro Court. How much more tension would have been in those scenes if he reminded her of the danger Alcazar put Robin in just a few months earlier? If Alcazar had followed through on his threats and Patrick had to work with Robert to find Robin and bring her home? It's the same with a possible Nikolas/Robin/Patrick triangle - the pieces were there, they just never bothered to put them together and it could have been great.
  15. Chapter 42 “Robin wait!” Patrick ran down the hall attempting to put on his scrub top as he chased his very angry girlfriend down the hall. “Let me explain.” “Explain what?” She didn’t slow down as she made her way to the nurse’s hub in an attempt to get him to back off. “How I caught you literally with your pants down?” Robin had gone into the locker room to grab her afternoon pills and walked in to find Leyla on top of Patrick on the bench, both of them clad only in towels. Robin had no doubts that the student nurse had started it but Patrick didn’t look particularly put out to have the young woman so close either. He grabbed her arm and turned her around to face him. “You have to know that I would never cheat on you.” “It doesn’t matter.” Robin shook her head. They had only been officially dating for a month and the last two weeks had been filled with constant interference from Leyla. “You are around her by your own choice. You know that she is after you, you know it bothers me and yet you still agreed to be her mentor. Now she is in our surgeries, ignoring my requests and disrespecting me at every turn, and you let her.” Patrick ran his hands through his still wet hair. “I told Leyla that the way she was acting was inappropriate and that the next time it happened I would write her up.” “But only after I said something to you otherwise you would have let it go.” Robin sighed. “If you are unhappy with me, just tell me, don’t drive me away by…” “I am very happy with you.” Patrick didn’t understand why she was so upset – he had spoken to Leyla and she was now cordial with Robin in the OR. “You looked very happy with her a few minutes ago.” Robin grabbed a chart and headed to the computer to enter her notes, turning her back on him once again. “She fell coming around the corner and landed on top of me. It was an accident.” Robin rolled her eyes. “Sure it was.” Patrick thought about it for a moment and then threw up his hands. “You know what Robin, think what you want.” “Fine.” The keyboard vibrated under her hands as she angrily typed her notes. “Fine.” He turned to walk back to the locker room when the paramedics came bursting through the door with a patient on a gurney. The patient was on a backboard and bloodied with multiple bandages around her head. Patrick ran over and Robin was right behind him, the last few minutes instantly forgotten. “What do we have?” “Car versus tree.” The paramedic began speaking but the woman interrupted him. “Stop – don’t touch me! I have AIDS.” Robin looked at Patrick and he yelled at the paramedics. “Get her into Trauma Room 1 and I want an OR up and ready to go for me in the next half hour.” The doctors followed the paramedics into the trauma room, put on the gloves and moved the woman off the gurney and onto the exam table. Within minutes of her arrival the woman was unconscious. Patrick about pulled the phone off the wall in his haste to talk to the surgical floor. “How soon until I get an OR?” “You don’t.” Iris Sneed, head of hospital administration pushed through the door. “According to the paramedics, this woman does not have insurance – she is going to be transferred to County immediately.” Robin looked over at Patrick who was flashing Iris a look of pure hatred. “Like hell she is. I don’t care if I have to do this surgery in this room by myself – she is getting treated at GH and she is getting treated by me.” _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ “As you can see, our school is up-to-date and has the best security system on the market.” Principal Porter walked the man around the schoolyard as the preschool classroom played. “We pride ourselves on being one of the best schools in the state.” “I’m very impressed.” He saw two little girls playing in the sandbox and stopped to smile at them. “Hi.” Both girls giggled but answered him. “Hi.” The littlest one stood up and put out her hand. “I’m Rylee and this is my friend Jess.” “Nice to meet you Rylee.” He shook the little girl’s hand. “And you too Jess. Principal Porter was just showing me around your school. Do you like going to school here?” Ry nodded her head enthusiastically. “Yes, we play and paint and read.” “That’s great. I have a little girl just about your age and I am trying to see if this is a good school for her.” He was about to say something else when he heard someone yell out for the little girl. “Rylee!” Michael walked across the playground. “Michael!” The little girl took off running and jumped into the young man’s arms. “I thought mommy was picking me up.” “Mommy had to stay over at the hospital so I came – is that okay?” Rylee happily nodded her head. “Good. I thought we might go over to my house and see if Cook has made any of her famous brownies.” “Yeah!” Rylee jumped down from his arms and ran over to the principal. “Can Michael take me home now?” “I think that would be just fine.” She took great pride in being familiar with her students families and she knew that Michael Quartermaine had been given permission to pick up Rylee. “Good afternoon Mr. Quartermaine.” “Good afternoon Principal Porter.” Michael shook her hand and then held it out to the man with the principal. “I don’t believe we have met. Michael Quartermaine.” The man took Michael’s hand and gave it a firm shake. “Dean Chambers.” “Mr. Chambers is looking at moving here and wanted to check out our school before making a decision.” “I think that this place has everything I am looking for.” He turned to the principal. “I apologize but I need to be leaving. Thank you for the grand tour and I will be in touch.” Before anyone could say anything else Dean left the playground. Michael kept a close eye on the man as he departed – he had a bad feeling about the man. “Principal Porter, where did he say he was from?” “I’m not sure.” The woman had been in the middle of planning the school assembly when the man walked into her office and asked for a tour. “He has a little girl right around Rylee’s age but I really don’t know anything more than that.” “Okay.” Michael felt a little tug on his sleeve. “Ready to go Squirt?” “You bet.” Ry took his hand and headed out the door. “I want some brownies.” “Excuse me?” Michael knew that Michelle and Robin were both big on manners. “I meant, may I please have a brownie?” The little girl smiled at him one more time. Michael picked her up and hugged her close before heading to his car. “I think that can be arranged.” He got to the car and quickly buckled Ry up in her car seat before heading home. “So, what did you do in school today?”