** Susan sipped the large glass of brandy before placing it on the wooden table before her. It had been three months now since she had lasy seen little Susie and not a day had gone by where she had not thought about the girl. Chloe had not been in contact at all since their argument. Typical Chloe, running away from her problems instead of sorting them out. Susan sat in the darkened living room of her ground floor flat. Maybe I've made a mistake in moving to Phoenix, she thought. Staff at Great Hope Hospital gave her the cold shoulder and made no real attempt to get to know her. Last night she had had yet another blazing argument with the Chief of the ER, Dr David Kingston. He made it quite clear he didn't think she was capable of handling Trauma situations and was letting her personal life interfere with her work. Maybe he's right, she thought sadly. My life is a comlete mess because I hang on to the past. Why can't I move on? Sometimes I feel like ending it all. A loud knock at the door broke her thoughts. "Okay I'm coming" she sighed as the person knocked once more. "Chloe?" she exclaimed, opening the door to the surprise sight of her sister and neice.
"Susan, he's left me" Chloe sobbed, the tears falling down her face onto the denim jacket she was wearing.
"Are you talking about Joe?" Susan asked leaning against the door.
"Of course! He said he didn't love me anymore. We had a row because I was fired from my job at the department store. Then he said he didn't want to be tied down for the rest of his life with a a baby and a lazy, unreasonable, selfish girlfriend. Why did he have to leave me Susan, why?"
"Come inside" Susan said before taking Susie out of Chloe's arms. "Everything will be okay" she reassured her sister.
"No!" Chloe shouted in tears. "Things won't be okay. I'm pregnant!"
Susan stood still for a moment, a little lost for words. Chloe would yet again bring another child into the world without the emotional and financial support of a proper family. She felt sorry for the child growing inside her sister. Would Chloe abandon this baby like she previously did with Susie? Or would something else happen to dramatically change all their lives forever? **
"What.............?" Susan asked rubbing her eyes irratably.
"Incoming RTA, 2 majors, 3 minors" Abby answered.
"Oh" she replied suddenly realising she lay in an empty room in the hospital, catching up on some rest.
"Are you okay?" Abby asked, noticing the blank, sad expression on her collegue's face.
"I'm fine" Susan smiled, tying back her chestnut brown hair. If only that was the truth, she sighed. Why am I always reminded of memories that I wish to forget? Perhaps it is time I face up to the past.
"What have we got?" Susan asked grabbing a pair of gloves and running alongside the incoming paramedics.
"24 year old woman, stab wound to the chest. BP 80/50, pulse 60" Pickman informed her.
"Is my mommy gonna be okay?" a little girl asked. The tears were flowing down her cheeks and her white t-shirt was drenched in bright red blood.
"C'mon sweetheart, lets find you some clean clothes" Lydia smiled taking the girl by the hand and leading her away from Susan and the paramedics.
"Daughter told us a man ran up to them from behind and grabbed her mother's handbag. When she refused to let go he pulled out a knife and stabbed her"
"That's terrible" Susan shook her head. How could people be so capable of such cruel and heartless crimes? "Alright gently on my count, 1, 2, 3" she counted as they moved the patient on to another gurney. "Okay lets get a CBC, type and cross match, Chem 20, blood gas and PT. Start her on a round of atropine, hook her up to an IV drip of Dopamine and lets give her 10 of morphine"
"What's the bullet?" Mark asked as he walked through the doors of the room.
"24 year old woman, stab wound to the chest" Suan answered him.
"I'll intubate, you throw in a central line" he ordered.
"Pupils unreactive, GCS score about a 5"
"I'm in bag her" Mark called to Malik as he completed the intubation. "Order a chest and abdominal series x-rays, lets slao get a paratenial lavage"
"Weak breath sounds" Susan noted as she threw her stethoscope back over her shoulders. "Put another four units of O- on the rapid infuser and hook her up to a monitor"
"Heart rates down to 50" Abby said worringly.
"Another milligram of atropine" Suan ordered. "5 of morphine and I'll put in a chest tube"
"BP 70/40, heart rate still falling" Yosh told the two doctors.
"Lavage is......positive" Mark sighed.
"We've lost the pulse!" Abby shouted.
"Start compressions" Susan replied.
"No we need to perform a thoracotomy" Mark said. "Thoracotomy tray now!"
Susan stood back as she watched Mark cut open the woman's chest. Why did innocent humans have to endure so much pain and suffering?
"Suction please" he asked, breaking her out of her thoughts. "Just as I thought there's a hole in her heart. Okay I'll suture the wound and we'll take her up the OR"
"V-Fib!" Yosh called as the machines started bleeping madly.
"Internal paddles" Susan ordered as Abby fetched them for her.
"Okay go" Mark said as he finished sewing the damaged vessel.
"Charge to 60, clear!"
"Still in V-Fib" he shook his head.
"Charge to 80, clear!"
"Back in sinus rhythm" Mark smiled cheerfully. "Great work Susan"
"Well I couldn't have done it without you" she laughed, feeling her cheeks turn a slight shade of beetroot. "Page the OR, tell them we're on our way. I'll go talk to the daughter"
"See you later then" Mark nodded.
Susan took off her blood stained gloves and gown before heading through to the waiting area where Lydia sat with the little girl.
"Is mommy gonna be okay?" she asked again.
"I think so" Susan nodded.
"Thank you" Jade whispered to her. "Thank you for saving mommy"
Susan sat outside the hospital, rubbing her arms in a bid to keep warm. She hoped Jade's mum would make it out of the OR alright. A young daughter would be lost in the world without her mother. Likewise a mother would be lost without her daughter to look after. Susan had learned that the hard way.
"Hi Susan" Mark greeted her, taking a seat beside the female doctor. "It's pretty cold out here, I should be wearing a jacket"
Susan laughed at his words. "Well the weatherman forcasts snow for this afternoon" she told him. "Winter is definately here"
"Oh I love the snow" Mark replied
"Do you even say that at six o'clock in the morning when you are trying to defrost your car in the cold?" she asked, grinning as she spoke.
"No I take the EL" he laughed.
"Mark!" she punched him playfully.
"I do seriously like the snow though. I remember when I stayed in New York for a short while. It was Christmas Day and the streets were covered in a beautiful white blanket. Twinkling Christmas lights lit up the street, the smell of turkey floated in the air, it was so pretty"
"It sounds magical" Susan gasped, listening to his every word.
"I'll take you there someday" he promised. "We can even go ice skating in Central Park"
"Well I'm not helping you up if you fall" she laughed, remembering Mark was the world's worst skater.
"Just for those cruel words Susan, I'm not taking you anymore"
The pair laughed for a few seconds before falling into a minute of ackward silence. A few years ago the pair could have talked non stop but now they didn't quite know what to say to each other.
"Mark....." Susan began in a quiet voice, almost resembling a loud whisper. "I am sorry"
"Sorry for what?" he asked, taking a sip of coffee from the polystyrene cup he was holding.
"Sorry for leaving you. I still remember what happened at the station before the train departed. I f only I could turn back the clock and........."
"Susan" Mark interupted. "Stop this talk immediately. I don't hate you, you're my friend. The past is the past, we've both moved on. I've found Elizabeth who has made me so happy. I'm about to be a father again, life couldn't be better. You have nothing to apologise for"
Maybe you have moved on Mark but I haven't, Susan thought. All my life I have been trying to find comfort, love and companionship in one person. Now I've just realised the one person I have been looking for was right in front of me. That one person was you, Mark Greene. I need you Mark, I need you more than ever. It is you I wish to wake up beside each morning, it is you I would like to cuddle up to on the seatee and watch romantic films, it is you I want to hold me in your warm embrace and comfort me when I'm upset. I haven't moved on, I don't want to move on.
"I better get back to my patients" Mark said as he began walking to the entrance of Cook County. "See you later Susan" he waved goodbye.
"Bye Mark" she whispered sadly. She had left it too late to return. The only one person she had left in the world had........gone.
Elizabeth sat alone in the OB room. No man crouching at her side, guessing if it would be a boy or a girl, discussing a thousand possible names. No Elizabeth was all alone.
"Congratulations Dr Corday" Janet Coburn smiled. "You are expecting a healthy
"Thank you" Elizabeth smiled. She only wished Mark was here to share her joy. He promised to arrive early for the scan but had not bothered to show up at all. She had been ecstatic since finding out about her pregnancy. All week the couple had been looking forward to the scan but obviously Mark hadn't quite shared the same amount of enthusiasm as Elizabeth. He's probably held up with a patient, Elizabeth told herself whilst staring at the picture of her unborn daughter. Or held up with Susan. She seems more important than I am. I love you Mark, please don't leave me now.
"Another patient saved by Dr Dave" Malucci laughed, signing off a chart.
"Mmmm, Dr Dave the super hero" Chuny grinned sarcastically.
"Call me Dr Dave the gorgeous medic if you wish!"
"Well romeo" Susan started. "A woman named Courtney phoned earlier, asked if you were free tonight"
"Everyone wants a piece of me" he shook his head before picking up the phone.
"I hope that's not a personal call Dr Malucci" Kerry warned him as she limped into reception.
"Uh, of course not Chief" he lied. "Just checking up on a patient in the OR"
"Always the compassionate, caring man Dave"
"You're too kind Chief" he grinned cheekily.
"41 year old woman, suspected overdose" Zadro told the doctors as the paramedics rushed another patient through the doors.
"Alright Drs Lewis and Malucci, work on her in Trauma 3" Kerry instructed before heading off to an Exam room.
"Who made her Chief of the ER?" Susan growled, throwing down her pen.
"The same idiot who promoted Romano to Chief of Staff" Dave replied running beside the moving gurney.
"Her sister raised the alarm" Zadro continued. "Suspected overdose of paracetemol, BP 70/30, pulse 50, we intubated and bagged on route"
"Okay lets get a tox screen, Chem 20, pump her stomach, start her ona round of Atrophine and Dopamine, start an IV of normal Saline, 5mg of charcoal, and a drip of of 10cc's bolus every two minutes" Dave ordered following Zadro and Doris into the trauma room.Susan froze outside the double doors. She couldn't move a single muscle in her body as she watched them lift the patient onto the bed. The scane was all too familiar for her.
** Susan kissed Susie on the forehead and placed her gently onto her crib. "Goodnight sweetheart" she whispered before gently closing the door behind her. "Chloe are you still in the bathroom?" Susan asked, knocking twice on the wooden door. "Chloe?" After receiving no reply, she turned the handle of the door only to be met by a horrible sight. "Chloe!" the horrified doctor screamed, crouching down beside the body of her sister. Her wrists were bleeding furiously and beside her lay an empty bottle of pills. "Oh Chloe" Susan managed to choke through her tears as she checked for a pulse. "Why Chloe, why?" **
"Dammit she's seizing!" Dave shouted. "Find out if she has a histort of epilepsy and lets give her 50mg of Donnatal and 1mg of Phenobarbital. Dr Lewis, we need you!"
"Sorry" she replied quietly before gently pushing the heavy double doors open.
"Lydia are my labs back on Mr Merrik?" Mark asked as he started clearing a few names off the board in reception.
"No, I don't think so" the nurse answered.
"Any incoming traumas?"
"No it's been a quiet morning so far"
"It sure has been"
"Mark" Elizabeth growled as she marched towards him.
"Hi" he smiled unaware of what he had forgotten about.
"You better have an excellent excuse Mark Greene" she snapped, frowning at him with her small blue eyes that had lost their usual sparkle.
"Excuse me?" he replied.
"You forgot didn't you?" Elizabeth asked angrily. "I can't believe you would forget the most important event for us"
"Elizabeth I have no idea what you are talking about. Please calm down, have I missed a meeting concerned with our wedding?"
"Do not tell me to calm down! Ten minutes ago I had my scan but somebody didn't seem to bother to come"
"Oh no" Mark said, realisisng what he had just forgotten to attend. How could he be so stupid in letting down Elizabeth and his unboen child?
"So what emergency held you up in the Er? Oh let me guess, Susan Lewis"
"That's not fair" he replied. "You are more important to me than Susan"
"Really Mark?" the Englishwoman looked surprised. "So where were you when I was in the OB department?"
Mark sighed as he realised he hed been talking to Susan at that particular time. Now he knew why Elizabeth was so disappointed with him. "With her" he sadly answered.
"Okay" she whispered, shaking her head in anger and sadness. "That's okay" she repeated before walking away.
"Elizabeth!" Mark called after her in frustration.
"Just leave me alone Mark. Whatever you have to say I don't want to hear it. Why don't you go pour your heart out to Susan?"
"Oh and just incase you are interested, we're having a baby girl" With those last words the female surgeon quickly walked away, never once looking back at her fiance.
Mark stood silently beside the Admin desk watching Elizabeth leave until she was out of sight. "I'm sorry" he whispered. "Forgive me Elizabeth"
Susan yawned as she continued to work through the very large pile of chart reviews that sat before her. She loved being a doctor because it gave her the chance to help people but hated the piles of boring paperwork that had to be done most days.
"Isn't that gorgeous?" Randi cooed as she watched a shopping channel on the television in reception.
"Don't you agree Dr Lewis?" Conni asked.
"Yeh and I would need to save up ten months salary to afford it" Susan answered.
"Dr Corday's engagement ring is gorgeous" Randi said, twisting a strand of her hair around her finger.
"It is isn't it?" Conni nodded. "Her and Dr Greene make a wonderful couple"
Susan sighed as she listened to their conversation. Perhaps it could have been her people described as Mark's perfect partner. At that exact moment she wanted Mark to hold her and say she was the most precious person in the world to him. She wanted a world where her and Mark lay in each others arms and no one was there to keep them apart. Especially no Elizabeth Corday. Why did she hate the woman? Susan certainly didn't know her well. Was it because she had stole the man whom had held Dr Lewis's heart over the past years? Or was it because she hated seeing another woman make him happy?
"Dr Lewis, phone call for you" Frank said as he handed her the receiver.
"Thanks Frank" she replied. "Hello Dr Lewis speaking. Hi dad. Yes, yes, of course I'll be there. Yes I promise. 11.30, okay, yes. Goodbye dad" Susan placed the phone down gently and took a great, deep breath.
"Is everything okay?" Frank asked.
"Fine" she smiled politely. All Susan knew was that tomorrow would be a very emotional day for her.
John closed the door of his locker and grabbed his brown leather bag. "Hi Elizabeth" he greeted her as she walked into the room.
"Carter thank goodness I found you before you left" she gasped for breath.
"What's wrong" he asked placing his thick, black scarf around his neck.
"You know Susan Lewis well don't you?"
"Yes" he answered, scared where Elizabeth's questions would lead to.
"I heard she was good friends with Mark"
"Yeh they were.....friends" John said, the ends of his smile beginning to tremble. He didn't want to hurt her with the truth.
"Just friends then?" she enquired, folding her arms together.
"Sure just friends. Anyway I need to go so....."
"John!" she cried grabbing his arm to prevent him from walking away. "Please I need to know the truth. Did Mark ever hold stronger feeling than friendship for Susan?"
John looked at the desperate expression on Elizabeth's face. He felt truly sorry for her.
"Please" she pleaded with him.
"Mark did love Susan but never had the courage to tell her" Carter started. "The day she left Phoenix, he followed her to the train station and finally told her how he really felt. Susan still left but Mark was left heartbroken for months"
"I see" Elizabeth nodded.
"This doesn't still mean Mark loves her" John tried to assure her. "If he didn't love you he would not be marrying you"
"Thank you John" she said sadly before heading out of the room.
What have I done, John asked himself. What have I just gone and done?
Susan exited the hospital through the automatic doors and felt the bitter wind against her face. Tiny droplets of snow fell onto her duffle coat as she walked with dificulty through the great piles of it that lay on the ground. I wish it was Summer, she thought. Oh how she loved those warm, sunny mornings in Chicago.
"Susan!" a familiar voice shouted loudly which broke Susan from her thoughts.
"Hello Elizabeth" Susan replied coldly, turning around to face the woman.
"I'm warning you to stay away from my fiancee" Elizabeth glared at the other woman.
"I said, stay away from Mark"
"Elizabeth if I wish to speak to Mark, I will. You nor anyone else cannot stop me speaking to my good friend"
"You are simply jealous of the fact that Mark loves me. He doesn't want you anymore, why can't you see that?"
"You obviously don't trust him" Susan smirked. "You see me as threat to your "happy" relationship"
Elizabeth stepped forward so her face stood only a few centimeteres away from Susan's. "Like I said before, stay away from Mark"
"Or what Lizzie?"
"Or there will be trouble"
Authors Notes: So the tension is rising between Susan and Elizabeth. How will this battle end? Can Mark and Elizabeth patch up the problems in their relationship? What emotional problems will tomorrow bring for Dr Lewis? Did Chloe survive after her overdose? Stay tuned for chapter four where I guarantee an extremely dramatic scene. As always thanks for reading and feedback is greatly accepted.