A Simple Twist of Faith

Here's the second part. There are a few spoilers for season three and four. (Although I'd hope by now we've all seen those seasons :-) There will be violence in this chapter, so you're warned! Please write feedback! I need to know what can be improved upon, and what people are enjoying. Enjoy!

Carter reached a glass down from the cupboard and started to fill it with water. The sound of the water masked the sound of the door opening, and footsteps entering the kitchen.

Before Carter could react, a powerful force grabbed him from behind, throwing him into the opposite wall. The glass shattered on the ground, as Carter managed to remain on his feet.

Out of the corner of his eye he saw the man come at him again. Instinct kicked in, and he raised his knee feeling it firmly connect with the mans groin. He grunted and doubled over. Carter delivered a solid punch to the mans face knocking him over, and made a dash for the phone.

Just as his hand grabbed the receiver, Carter was tackled from behind, pulling the phone from the wall as he fell. His attacker landing on top of him, and glass biting into his hands and chest.

The attacker was on his feet faster than Carter, and quickly kicked him in the midsection. As Carter curled into a ball to protect his stomach, a powerful kick was delivered to his back.

Carter could feel the darkness starting to consume him. He felt the man's foot connect with his head, and gave up the fight.

Satisfied Carter was unconscious, the man fled the apartment, shutting the door behind him.

Kerry Weaver was not a happy person. After working a double shift, all she wanted was to go home and soak in a nice hot bubble bath. Of course that wouldn't be happening anytime soon. Not only had Dr. Carter left before the end of his shift, but there was a wild rumour flying around that he'd also killed a patient.

She stalked into the exam room to find Anspaugh, Mark and Carol already there.

"Dr. Weaver, glad you could join us," Anspaugh greeted her. "I know it's been a busy day, and we all want to go home, so lets make this quick."

"What exactly is going on here?" Kerry demanded.

"There have been some very serious accusations made against Dr. Carter," Anspaugh started.

"What kind of accusations?" Kerry asked, a bit softer.

"Dr. Benton believes that Carter killed this patient by accidentally injecting him with potassium instead of epinephrine," Mark started.

"What?! Who was helping him that witnessed this?"

"No one. Carter said he stumbled onto this patient during the mass casualty alert who was already in v-fib, and there wasn't time to get help."

"So he got confused and accidentally injected the potassium," Kerry finished. "So how does Peter fit into this?"

There was a moment of silence before Carol spoke up.

"The patient was Peter's brother."

"Oh God. I didn't even know Peter had a brother," Kerry stated.

"It was his half brother actually. Same father, different mother. That's why they have the same last name."

"And why was he a patient here?"

"He had end stage lung cancer. He was a very heavy smoker."

"Dr. Greene informed me that two days ago another patient who was crashing died when Dr. Carter tried to run it without another doctor. Now, I know we don't want to believe this, but Dr. Carter may be at fault. That is why it is my recommendation that he be suspended until further notice," Anspaugh declared.

"Carter didn't do this," Mark said. "He's just not that careless."

"I'm sorry, Dr. Greene, but there's nothing else I can do."

Carter slowly drifted back to consciousness. His skull pounded in time with his heart beat, and it took him a moment to realize he was actually lying on the kitchen floor in his apartment. It was the shrill beeping of his pager that had awoken him.

Unable to find the strength to reach his pager, he succumbed to the darkness once more.

Mark hung up the phone feeling discouraged, and a little worried. He'd tried phoning Carter several times, but always got the busy signal. He had also tried paging him, but to no avail.

Mark sighed and made his way back to the exam room where Carol was starting to clean up.

"Hey Carol," Mark greeted her.

"Oh, hi Mark. Transport should be here anytime for the body," Carol filled him in.

"This is wrong, Carol. Carter didn't do this."

"We don't know that for sure, Mark. Everyone makes mistakes."

"This just doesn't feel right. Has anyone ordered a blood test on this guy?"

"They're doing an autopsy to find the cause of death. Anspaugh wants to know why he went into v-fib in the first place. The fact that no one even noticed something was wrong has Anspaugh worried about law suits."

Mark nodded his head, thinking.

"Okay. As soon as you know anything, you come find me. Alright?" Mark asked.

"Sure, Mark."

Mark went back to the desk to get a chart and resume working. He had this nagging feeling that something here was terribly amiss.

Carter slowly drifted back to consciousness for the second time, and wished he hadn't. Incredible pain radiated from his chest and head, and he could feel something warm and moist under his hands.

Slowly, he moved to a sitting position and caught his breath. Carter wasn't sure what exactly had happened. One minute he was getting a drink, the next some guy was attacking him. Feeling a little disoriented, Carter decided the first thing he should do is clean his wounds.

Groaning, he made his way to the bathroom and took in his appearance in the mirror. A huge, dark bruise had started forming around his eye. His shirt had been cut by the glass, and blood had soaked through in numerous spots.

As he changed his shirt and cleaned himself up, he discovered it wasn't as bad as originally thought. None of the cuts on his chest and hands would need stitches, and none of his ribs were broken.

Carter knew he should report this to the police, but found that not only had his phone been ripped off the wall, but the phone cord had been stretched so far it had broken in half.

Carter was disturbed from his thoughts by a sudden pounding on the door. His first instinct was to hide. What if his assailant had come back? That thought was quickly dismissed as Carter realized his attacker probably wouldn't be knocking.

Peter angrily pounded on the door again. Carter had to be here.

"Carter! Open up the damn door!" he yelled.

It hadn't been Peter's idea to come here. He was still so angry at the kid that he wouldn't care if he never saw him again. Carla and Jackie had ganged up on him. They said they were sick and tired of his foul mood and bitching, and that he had to clear things up with Carter, or don't come back. Peter knew having either of those two women mad at you wasn't a pleasant experience.

Finally, Peter heard the door unlock and slowly open to reveal a very unhappy looking Carter. The first thing Peter noticed was the vicious bruise around Carter's eye.

"What the hell happened to your face?" Benton demanded.

"I walked into a door," Carter replied, his voice dripping with sarcasm. In light of what had just happened, Carter was not happy to see Peter.

"Whatever, Carter. I need to talk to you about what happened this afternoon."

Carter almost invited Peter in when he remembered the kitchen floor was still covered with broken glass and blood.

"So what do you have to say?" Carter asked, his voice devoid of emotion. Still shaken from the attack, the incident, and manners, were last on his list of things to worry about.

"I think it would be better if we talked inside."

"Well I don't."

"What the hell is your problem, man? If you'd rather not talk then I don't know why the hell I'm wasting my time with you. I don't know why I even bothered with you in the first place!" Peter snapped.

It was then that Peter noticed the cuts on Carter's hand, and that he was standing awkwardly. Almost bent over, protecting his ribs. Peter lowered his voice and tried to soften it.

"What are you not telling me, Carter?" Getting no response, Benton tried again. "What the hell's going on?"

Carter lowered his head, and Peter pushed past him into the apartment. It didn't take him long to find the blood and glass all over the floor.

"Carter," Peter's voice softened considerably. "What happened?"

"Isn't it obvious? I tripped carrying a glass of water," Carter snapped. He was starting to lose control of his emotions.

"Cut the crap, Carter! What the hell happened?"

"Why do you care! I thought you were through with me!" Carter threw back Benton's hurtful words from earlier.

Peter closed his eyes for a few seconds and counted to ten. He hadn't come here to dig a deeper hole.

"Carter, believe it or not I came here to talk about today. I didn't come to pick a fight. Now drop the bull shit and tell me what the hell happened!" Peter said this as he subconsciously took a step closer to Carter. He was momentarily stunned when Carter backed up so quickly his back rammed into the counter.

The flash of fear in Carter's eyes had been replaced by a look of sheer agony as the counter dug into his bruised back.

Peter pushed his anger aside. He couldn't just stand here and watch Carter in obvious pain. He knew he was the last person Carter would open up to. The only way to find out what had happened was to be forceful about it.

Before Carter could react again, Peter walked over and yanked up the back of his shirt, exposing the terrible bruising on his lower back.

Peter had only gotten a glimpse of Carter's back before he jerked away and moved to the center of the kitchen.

"I think you should leave now Dr. Benton."

"No. Not until you tell me what's going on. This time, Carter, I want the truth," Peter said as sincerely as he could muster. He had already made a terrible mistake by ignoring Dennis Gant, and Dennis had paid the highest price. He would not make that same mistake with Carter.

Carter sighed and his shoulders slumped sadly. *This is what it takes to get Benton to care?* Slowly, he started to explain what had happened. He knew there was no backing out of this.

"I don't know what happened." He saw Peter about to object, but kept going. "I came home, got a glass of water, and this guy attacked me. I blacked out. When I came to, he was gone." Carter made it as brief as possible. Benton was the last person he wanted to talk to about this.

"Why didn't you call the police?"

"If you'll notice, my phone isn't exactly in working order."

Peter glanced over at the phone, and sure enough the cord was broken. What the hell had happened to cause this?

"Carter, I don't know what the hell is happening here, but I think you should come to the hospital and get yourself checked out."

Carter snorted and slumped down in a chair, careful of his back.

"I'm sure I'm not very welcome at the moment. How long do you think it is before they start calling me the grim reaper," Carter dryly remarked.

"Carter, people are fallible, you..."

"I killed your brother! How can you stand to look at me?" Carter pleaded.

"Half-brother, Carter. If you'll notice, I'm not exactly crying a river. It's a long story that I don't want to get into. Basically, we shared the same father, and last name. That's all I know about him."

"I killed him. It doesn't matter how close you were to him. He's dead. I was so sure it was epinephrine."

Peter was starting to feel uncomfortable with where this conversation was going. He was never able to comfort people. Other peoples emotions and feelings were never something he concerned himself with. He had focused his life on fixing physical problems, not emotional ones.

"Carter, you don't look very good, man. Come with me to the hospital," Peter asked. He could see bits of blood starting to stain the front of Carter's shirt.

"No. I don't think I could face them right now."

Mark sat in the lounge looking over Michael Benton's chart. It appeared that earlier in the day he had gone into v-fib, and epinephrine had been administered.

"Hey, Mark," Carol greeted as she strolled into the lounge. "I've got the labs on Michael, and I'm afraid it's not good news."

Mark silently took the labs and looked over them. Two things popped out at him. The high levels of epinephrine, and the fatal level of potassium.

"Damn," Mark muttered. "Carol, I'm gonna be in the morgue. You can page me if a trauma comes in."

Part 3
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