A Simple Twist of Faith
Here's the fourth part! Unfortunately due to the story taking a life of it's own, the twist will start to surface next part. Keep you reading, right? Enjoy!
Jerry was doing his best to keep up with the pandemonium. Charts were piling up, phones ringing off the hook, and people from the waiting room wouldnít stop pestering him about how long theyíd been waiting. Of course this was the day Randi called in sick.
"Excuse me," a man in a boring brown suit said to Jerry. "Iím looking for Dr. John Carter."
"Iím sorry, heís not working tonight. Youíll have to sit in chairs and see someone else," Jerry replied, as he turned to answer the phone.
"Maybe I should introduce myself. Detective Andersen, Chicago PD."
The detective could see the light dawn in Jerryís eyes as he realized why the detective was there.
"Of course. Heís in Exam 4. Down that hall on your left."
The older detective curtly nodded and made his way down the hall. Twenty five years on the force and he still got stuck investigating these assault and battery cases. He didnít blame his partner for calling in sick today.
Arriving at the exam room, he pushed open the door and was greeted by two inquisitive pairs of eyes.
"Detective Craig Andersen, Chicago PD," he introduced as he flashed his badge. "I take it youíre Dr. Carter?" he asked, looking at the young man on the gurney with the obvious bruising.
"Thatís me," he answered with no enthusiasm.
"Iím Dr. Benton. I treated Dr. Carter when he came in."
"So I guessed. I need to ask you about the attack this afternoon.," Craig said as he turned his attention to Carter. "Would you like Dr. Benton to leave?"
"I donít care. He can stay if he wants to."
"Iím staying," Benton said in a voice that suggested the only way to get him out would be to carry him.
"Whatever," Andersen muttered. "So, start from the beginning. Say, from where you parked your car at the apartment building. Did you see anyone suspicious around? Anyone who didnít belong?"
"No. I parked my car, got to my apartment, went to the kitchen for a glass of water.."
"So, locking your door isnít high on your list of priorities then."
"I donít know. Maybe I locked it. I canít remember," Carter mumbled.
"Locks are there for a reason," Andersen said. "Itís guys like you that keep me in business," he said low enough that only he could hear. "Continue."
"When I got the water, someone grabbed me from behind. I tried to fight back, but he was strong. I passed out, and he left." Carter finished that last part quickly. He didnít want to be speaking about this anymore than he had to. Especially in front of Benton.
"I see. Did he say anything?"
"Did he take anything?"
"Did you see his face?"
"Did he leave a note?"
"Well that was very helpful. It should be so much easier to catch this guy now."
"Drop the sarcasm," Peter growled from the corner of the room. "We donít need it here."
"Well excuse me." Andersen turned his attention back to Carter, who was starting to look a little tired. "Can you think of anyone whoíd want to hurt you? Any wayward patients?"
"Well, ... I....uh,"
"Just spit it out," Andersen sighed, earning another glare from Benton.
"A patient I was... looking after... died today."
"Uh huh. And you donít think that pissed off his family? You didnít intentionally kill the guy did you?" the detective joked.
Carter paled considerably at this comment. Noticing this, Peter kept his anger in check, and decided it was time to set this wise-ass cop straight.
"Detective Andersen. Outside. Now," Peter growled as he held open the door for the detective.
"Oh, Iím sorry," Craig said as he arrogantly strolled out the door. "Hit a nerve, did I?"
"Can it. As far as Iím concerned, you are a nuisance, and Iíd like nothing better than for you to leave. Unfortunately, you canít as Carter is depending on you to catch this guy, as sad as that may seem. You are treading on very thin ice right now. I suggest you curb your attitude right now, or youíll find yourself on your ass so fast..."
"Alright, alright. I get the point. Dr. Carter messed up and youíre protecting him. Thatís admirable, but I need to know what happened this afternoon."
Peter took a minute to calm down before answering.
"A patient died today when Carter was attending to him. There is some question as to whether or not Carter made a mistake. The patient was Michael Benton. My half brother."
At hearing this, the detectives eyebrows shot up so far, Peter thought they might disappear.
"Oh, really. And youíre not upset about his? Not a tear to shed for your brother?"
"Half brother," Peter corrected. "We werenít close. This was the first time Iíd seen him. Except for having the same father, we have nothing else in common. All I can tell you is that he was a gambler, and was constantly in debt."
"I see. And you donít think any of his other relatives would like to know about his untimely demise?"
"It wasnít so untimely. He had lung cancer. He didnít have long left. As far as family goes, his father is dead, and I donít know about any of his other family. Weíve been searching, but havenít found anyone," Peter finished.
"Thank you for your time. Be sure to thank Dr. Carter for me." The detective was gone before Peter could blink.
As Peter was about to go back into the exam room, he heard someone shouting his name. Turning, he saw an out of breath Mark Greene jog over to him.
"Peter, you have to see this," Mark panted as he came to a stop in front of Peter.
"What?" Peter sighed. He was getting tired of people bothering him.
Mark held out the bottle he had found in the room Michael had been in. Peter begrudgingly took at and glanced at the label.
"So, it was under the table that had been beside Michaelís bed."