222 pages / 79000 words
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Drew is a fireman who loves the rush and is looking for a roommate to share costs. Scott is a doctor looking for somewhere to live that isn’t with his now ex-lover. The match seems more than perfect when Scott moves in and it’s more than just costs that they share.
So what happens when along comes EMT Eric with his blond good looks and boyish smile? Will this twosome be able to become a threesome or does it spell disaster for all?
It wasn’t that Drew hated hospitals; in fact he rather liked them. They were busy and bustling, and he spent enough time in them he understood that all the bodies and noises were part of large, organized mass of effort to make people healthy.
He just wasn't fond of spending time in them as a patient.
He looked around the triage area, not even able to see Dave as a curtain had them separated from each other. ''Hey,'' he said in a voice slightly louder than conversational level.
''Hey yourself,'' he got back, Dave sounding surly.
''How much longer, do you think?'' Drew asked, knowing full well that Dave wouldn't have any more idea than he did.
''Dunno. The doctor said they just wanted to keep an eye on us for a bit.''
Drew sighed and Dave fell silent behind the curtain. That was the rub of it—there wasn't even anything wrong with them. They'd just been in the wrong place at the wrong time, depending on how one looked at it. Drew was looking at it from the perspective of a fireman just doing his job, clearing a warehouse that had gone up, and suddenly being confronted with large barrels with a hazardous material sign on them.
They hadn't known the barrels were there, nor what was in them. They'd evacuated, the chief had gone ballistic on the owners for improperly storing god knows what, and the whole team had been trooped down the hospital to get checked out.
''They didn't even blow,'' Drew said for the fourth time in three hours.
''Yeah, yeah. And we'll be let go as soon as the doctor's confirm we're fine.''
Drew snorted. He was fine, and if he wasn't, sitting in an open triage unit wasn't going to help any. ''What do you think of that Dr. Campbell?'' he asked. ''Kind of young, yeah?''
Dave growled. ''I'm sure he knows exactly what he's doing. And he's probably your age—not exactly a spring chicken.''
''Hey,'' Drew protested. ''I'm not even thirty yet, old man.''
''Forty ain't old, and shut up. The doctor is fine. We're fine. And any minute now, that kid of a doctor is going to show up and tell us we can leave.''
Drew grumbled a minute or two and let silence reign again. Dave was pissy. Drew was pissy. He thought about Dr, Campbell for a couple of minutes, and aside from deciding the man was really cute, he couldn't come up with anything else. ''Call Vicki Lynn?'' he asked finally.
''Yeah, soon as they let me have a phone. She's not real happy. Worried, you know?''
''Of course.'' He didn't have a phone. The fact that he hadn't asked for one didn't really make a difference in his mind. Damn hospitals. He sighed again.
''Will you stop that?' Dave said irritably. ''Sound like a dying cow.''
''Oh, shut up,'' Drew said mildly.
''This keeping you from something?' Dave went on, poking at him. ''Big date?'
''Right, I always schedule my big dates for two in the afternoon. Easier to get reservations that way.''
The curtain pulled back suddenly and the doctor was standing between the two beds, clipboard in hand. ''Not a bad plan,'' the doctor said with a smile. ''Have to date someone who works shifts, though.''
Drew winked. ''That's the only kind of people I know, Doc.''
''Shut up and let the man talk, Smyth.'' Dave glared at him before turning pathetically hopeful eyes on the young doctor. ''We sprung?''
''Well, yes and no.''
Dave and Drew both groaned.
The doctor held up his hand in what Drew assumed was supposed to be a placating manner. ''Now, now. Protocol, gentlemen. I've talked to your chief. The barrels have been confirmed to be empty, and you both check out as fine for that, obviously. We did the standard oxygen tests too, just because you'd been in a smoke filled environment, and all is well there, too.'' He pointed to Dave. ''You can go as soon as you get your boots on.''
Dave beamed. ''Thanks, see ya, and I'm outta here,'' he said, swinging his legs over the side of the bed. He paused. ''What about Drew?''
''Ah, that's the other thing.''
Dave looked at him with worried eyes and Drew groaned. He was going to wind up with Vicky Lynn at his house mothering him, he just knew it.
Dr. Campbell shook his head. ''Nothing dire, the lab's just taking longer with your blood work. As soon as they call up, you'll be free to go.''
Drew rolled his eyes, but Dave looked relieved. ''Aw, you care,'' Drew said with a grin. ''Say hi to Vicky Lynn for me.''
''Will.'' Dave pulled on his boots and grabbed his coat. ''See you tomorrow, Drew.''
He watched Dave practically run out of the triage area and shook his head. ''His wife is going to be pretty happy to have him home,'' he said to the doctor, just to keep the man there for a couple more minutes.
He was really cute.
Dr. Campbell smiled at him, nodding. ''I bet.'' He glanced around, still holding onto his clipboard, and added, ''Do you need to call anyone? Tell your hot date you're still here?'' His eyes were teasing, and the smile had become something closer to a grin.
Drew grinned back and shook his head. ''No one like that to call,'' he said, meeting the doctor's eyes. Testing the waters.
But the doctor just nodded and took a step back. ''Okay then. I'll let you know as soon as I hear from the lab.''
Drew gave himself a mental whap on the head and nodded back. ''Sure thing, Doc.''
Dr. Campbell left, and Drew sighed. He really didn't like hospitals all that much. He looked around him and counted the various boxes of things he could see, then he counted the IV stands along the wall by the nurse's station. He looked up at the ceiling tiles and then over at Dave's empty bed.
''Ah shit,'' he groaned, catching sight of his coat and shoes. One of the guys had brought his stuff by and taken his equipment back to the station, but he was stuck without his car, and with Dave gone, without a ride home. He closed his eyes and leaned back on his plastic covered pillow, feeling altogether annoyed with the world.
''You okay?'' a voice asked, and cool fingers took his wrist, seeking his pulse.
''Yeah, I'm fine,'' he said, opening his eyes to look at Dr. Campbell again. He didn't take his hand back, choosing instead to just let the man touch him. ''I'm pathetic,'' he said to himself, watching the doctor feel up his wrist.
''Oh, I wouldn't say that,'' the doctor disagreed, looking at his watch. ''You're fine.''
Drew smirked and turned it into a grin before the doctor could see. ''No, I'm without a way home, is all. Guess I'll have to walk—or find a cab I suppose.'' He pulled a face, knowing how hard that would be.
''Yeah?'' The doctor gave him a glance and then let go of his wrist. ''Where do you live?'' he asked, picking up Drew's chart again. ''Oh, that's not far. What, about a five minute drive from here?''
Drew nodded. ''Yeah. The walk'll do me good.''
''Well, it won't kill you, anyway. But I can give you a lift, if you want. The lab called, and my shift is done. Just have to do about five minutes of paperwork—the rest can wait until I get back.'' Dr. Campbell gave him a quick smile. ''It's no trouble.''
''Yeah?'' Drew hoped he didn't look as surprised as he felt. ''That would be great, thanks.''
''No trouble,'' Dr. Campbell repeated. ''Get your stuff together, I'll be back in a few.''
Drew watched the doctor walking away and shook his head, smiling as he reached for his shoes. He figured it was just a strange day all around.
Sometimes love is complicated.
Copyright 2016 Chris Owen