Angel In Scrubs: Flash Fiction
It was another long shift in the Trauma Unit at St. Bernadette’s. The hospital was oddly quiet, and Annie was still hours away from the light at the end of the tunnel. Her feet ached, and her mind wandered. Not that she wanted anyone to get hurt, but she desperately needed a distraction. It was the anniversary of her mother’s death, and the silence around her made the noise in her head all the more deafening.
Her mother passed away at the age of fifty-eight, a mere two years ago. The memory of her mother’s strained smile, hiding the pain as best she could, was drifting in and out of Annie’s head. They tried to make light jokes and discuss ridiculous stories that popped up in the news, all to distract them both from the cancer ravaging Annie’s mother’s body.
“Don’t you worry about me. Your father has been waiting for me for ten years now. It’s you I need to worry about. You haven’t socialized in ages! How will you ever meet the love of your life, if you are stuck in that hospital day in and day out?” Her mother insisted.
“Mom, please don’t start. I don’t have enough time for a pet, let alone a boyfriend. I love my job; I’m making a difference in people’s lives. It matters to me,” Annie replied earnestly.
“My angel in scrubs,” her mother murmured, admiration setting in her eyes as she gazed at her daughter.
“Hardly,” Annie said with a laugh. “I’m just a person with little to no reaction to blood and gaping wounds.”
“Stop selling yourself short, Annie Bananie,” her mother scolded. Annie shrugged, and her mother touched her hand. “You’re my angel. And soon, I will be yours.”
Annie’s lip quivered, and she could feel tears welling up, but she refused to cry in front of a dying woman. She needed to be strong. Annie was losing her best friend in the whole world, but her mother was the one suffering.
“Mom, I love you,” was all Annie could say without breaking down.
“Oh Sweetie, I love you too. And don’t you worry. I’ll be watching over you soon. Maybe I will even find you a handsome man with a cabin by the lake, a couple of dogs, and cooking skills to save you from a life of stale Pop-Tarts.”
Annie nodded and laughed. “Don’t forget about him being Channing Tatum’s twin brother.”
Her mother chuckled. “No, no. Mustn’t forget that.”
“Annie, snap out of it girl! We have a patient coming in!” Debbie, the head nurse, called out to her.
Annie’s eyes darted to the entrance where the EMT’s were wheeling in a patient on a gurney. She ran to meet them; Debbie quickly followed. They both stood on either side of the stretcher, gripping the rails and guiding the bed swiftly.
“We have a car crash victim, thirty-five-year-old Caucasian male with multiple contusions and a possible broken neck,” the EMT spouted quickly.
Annie looked down at the man’s wide open eyes, his neck fitted with a brace. “Sir, can you tell me your name?”
He looked up at her and answered groggily, “Nick…Nick Walters.”
“Ok, Nick, we are going to have to check you for some internal bleeding and a possible concussion. Can you keep talking to me while we get you to the machines?” Annie asked. The man nodded as best he could. “Good, why don’t you tell me about yourself. Do you have a wife? Kids?”
“Are you hitting on me, nurse, or just asking for a friend?” Nick joked.
Annie shook her head and smiled. “How about you answer the questions, Nick.”
He smiled. “No wife, no kids. Just two chocolate labs and a cabin by the lake.
That stopped Annie dead in her tracks. She let go of the gurney and stood shell shocked in the middle of the hall. She glanced up absently and felt tears creeping up into the corner of her eyes. Annie pressed her palms to her forehead and smiled.
She whispered to herself, “You did good, Mom. Not exactly Channing Tatum, but killer blue eyes.”
“Annie, what the heck are you doing standing there?” Debbie snapped from several feet away.
“Sorry, Debbie. Just….having a moment,” Annie replied loudly. She jogged off to catch up to the man in the gurney.