A Time to Heal
O.k. they are not mine, nor will they ever be ~Sigh~ yadda, yadda, yadda,.
Ok I also promised myself I would not do a S2 storyÖ..but it couldnít be helped. So here it isÖ..let me know what you thinkÖÖ
Jim stared at Alex as they carried her away. Jim felt his chest tighten.
That could be meÖ No, no, noÖdonít go there. Jim didnít want to thinkÖ. because if he let himself thinkÖ. he would have to acknowledge how badly he had treated Blair these past weeks. God the look of hurt on Blairís face when he said those damaging words. "I need a partner I can trust." Then he really twisted the knife in when Blair caught them kissing on the beach. Jesus! She pointed a gun at Blair. HIS GUN! And yet he did nothing. Worse still he pushed Blair further away. He looked over and saw Blair standing by Simon and Megan looking so lost. I need to talk to him. But not right now. I canít think straight. As he was staring at Blair, Blair looked up and blue eyes met blue eyes. Jim quickly looked away. Jim stood and walked towards one of the jeeps, missing the hurt look that crossed Sandburgís face.
God, thought Blair, he canít even look at me. Well Iíve got no one to blame but myself. Blair felt numb and empty inside. Iíve lost everything. My friend, my homeÖ. everything that really mattered to him. All for what? All for my dissertation Blair thought with disgust. What good was it now?
"Blair are you o.k."
Blair looked up into the concerned eyes of Simon Banks. O.k. he thought no far from it. Actually he felt sick. He still hadnít recovered from drowning. He felt congested and hot. He felt miserable and so alone. But no one would know. Yea it was time to make a few changes in his life. He put on a forced smile and saidÖ.
"Yea Simon, Iím fine thanks man."
Simon didnít buy it.
"Yea, right. Well letís get back to the hotel. Everything here is wrapped up and we all could use some rest before we go home."
HOME!!!! Blair felt his heart break yet again. What home? I donít have a home anymore.
A deep depression overcame him. He turned and noticed Jim in one of the jeeps already full with local officers. No room for me, in the jeep, in the loft, in Jimís life. The knife twisted a little more in Blairís heart. God it hurt so badly. But truth be told it was his own fault. Naomi always told him not to get too attached. Never stay in one place for too long. But it felt so good to come home to someone. To have such a good friend. A best friend. A place to call home. The last part of his heart shattered. Nothing mattered anymore. He climbed into the jeep next to Simon and Megan. Despair and depression weighing heavily on him. YeaÖ. definitely time to make some changes.
By the time they arrived at the hotel it was dark. Jim went to his room without saying a word to anyone. Megan and Simon looked from Jimís retreating back to the crushed look on Blairís face. Neither knew what to say. Little did they know that a plan had already formed in Blairís fevered brain.
"Blair." Simon started to say something but was cut off by Blair.
"Simon, Iím o.k."
He stopped at the look Simon gave him.
"O.k. so Iím not quite o.k. But I will be. I just need some rest."
Simon didnít like the way Blair looked.
"Go on Simon. Go get some rest. We all need some rest."
Simon squeezed Blairís shoulder.
"O.k. Iíll see you in the morning."
Megan kissed Blair on the cheek.
"Hang in there Sandy."
Blair smiled tiredly at them as he watched them go. He waited until he was sure they were gone. Then he asked the clerk to cancel his room and get the next available flight back to Cascade. As luck would have it the next flight left in an hour. Things happened quickly then. Everything seemed like a blur. The next thing he knew he was sitting on a flight back to Cascade.
* * * * * *
Jim, Simon and Megan stood together waiting at the front desk ready to check out. Then they would go for a quick bite to eat and off to the airport. Jim was getting impatient.
"Damn it!! What is taking Sandburg so long?"
He paced back and forth a few more times.
"Calm down Jim. He might have overslept. Iíll ask the clerk to ring his room."
Simon walked over to the counter.
"Excuse me could you please ring Mr. Sandburgís room and let him know that we are waiting for him."
Simon did not like the confused look that crossed the clerks face. He didnít think he really wanted to know.
"UmmmÖ. Is there a problem?" Simon asked.
" Iím sorry senior. Senior Sandburg checked out last night and took the first flight back to cascade."
Three dumbfounded people looked back at him.
"Are you sure it was Senior Sandburg?" Asked Jim.
"Si Senor. I booked the flight myself."
If Jim felt anything he didnít show it. Well what did you expect, Ellison?
God he was an ass. He should have said something to Blair. All of a sudden Megan spoke up.
"I donít know about anyone elseÖ..but Iím not so hungry anymore."
They all agreed to go directly to the airport. It was going to be a long flight.
* * * * * *
Blair stood in the middle of his office. He didnít feel safe here anymore. His last memory of his office was of Alex pointing a gun at him. He remembered the fear as he walked towards that fountain. Images of him desperately trying to breathe and only sucking in water slammed into him.
"Damn it calm downÖ..you so donít need a panic attack now." He whispered to himself. He felt so incredibly alone now. He sat at his desk put his head in his hands and cried. He cried for the loss of his home, the loss of his life, but most of all for the loss of his friendship. The best thing that ever happened to him was gone. He cried for a long time. Finally he pulled himself together. He had so much to do this morning. He reached into his backpack to pull out a fresh change of clothes and two prescriptions fell out on to his desk. The meds he got when he left the hospital. He left promising the doctors he would take the medication. With everything that went on he simply forgot. He really didnít feel well. His chest hurt. He felt congestedÖÖ..he knew he had a fever. So tired and so much to do. He was about the throw them away but stopped. As much as he hated taking prescriptionsÖÖhe just might need them. He quickly stuffed them in his jacket pocket. He changed and cleaned himself up. He looked up 9:30!!!! Where had the time gone? O.k. O.k. Time to start making those changes, he made his way to chancellorís office and knocked.
"Hi Chancellor Edwards. You got a minute.?"
"Mr. Sandburg how nice of you to show up."
Blair winced at the sarcasm in her voice.
"Actually Mr. Sandburg, I wanted to meet with you. You saved me a phone call."
"Ummm. About what?" Blair had a feeling he wasnít going to like this.
"About your little trip to Mexico. I understand you were recently hospitalized. I know you were attacked in your office. Iím glad to see that youíre o.k. I also understand that you have been through quite a lot Mr. Sandburg. But you can not go and come as you wish. Do you realize you have an incredible amount of absences! I think itís time for you to make a decision. You either want to be a copÖ.or a teacher. The University can not tolerate this behavior anymore."
Anger flared to life in Blair.
"You have no right to force me to make that decision. I have spent years of my life devoted to Rainer."
"Blair you have yet to submit a part or even a rough draft of you dissertation."
"umm. Actually that is what I wanted to talk to you about." Blair said softly.
Edwards glanced up and sighed. "What exactly about your dissertation ?"
"Well I was wondering if I could change the topic." He saw the chancellors frown. "Since I couldnít find a test subject." He quickly blurted out.
"Mr. Sandburg changing your dissertation topic now is really not recommended. Please tell me you have something to hand in."
"Well no I donít. But it wouldnít take me long to type up somethingÖ.a day or twoÖ" He was cut off.
"Mr. SandburgÖlook I do feel for you. I know youíve been through a lot but that does not excuse your behavior. You are attacked in your office and land in the hospital. Once out of the hospital you drop everything run off to Mexico. Now you want to change the topic of your dissertation yet you have nothing to hand in. You have resonsablities to this University that are not being met. Mr. Sandburg you leave me no choice but to suspend you until Iíve met with the dissertation committee."
Blair was stunned. SUSPENDED!
"But Chancellor EdwardsÖ."
"Was there something else Mr. Sandburg?"
Blair stared at her disbelievingly.
"No." he said weakly. He turned and left. It was not suppose to happen this way. He made his way back to his office. What would he do now? Everything was gone now. EVERYTHING! HOME, FRIEND, JOB. All gone! Where would he go? His trip to Mexico just about tapped him out. He hardly had enough for a hotel room. He picked up his backpack and one of the bottles of medication fell out of his pocket. He picked it up. Jim should have never brought me back he thought sadly. Yea one more change to make. He pocketed the bottle once again. He gathered up all his Sentinel research and boxed it. Then he wrote a letter to Jim.
Hi. I hope you are doing o.k. I put something together for you. This is something I wanted you to have. I wonít need it anymore. Iíve put together all my sentinel research. You are going to have find a new guide to ride with. This should help. Simon can help you find someone you can trust. Megan has found out about your sentinel abilities. She would make a good guide for you. Sheíll find everything she needs in the research. Itís time for me to move on. Itís been great Jim, the time Iíve spent with you. I wouldnít change any of itÖ..well maybe the drowning part. But being your partner was the best thing in my life and itís something I will truly miss. Well thereís nothing left holding me here anymore, so time to move on. Iíll cherish the time I had with you. Youíll always have a place in my heart. I never had a best friend before and for that I thank you. I hope you get everything you want out of life. Hey no hard feelings huh? Iím leaving this lifeÖÖ.
If I left anything behind in the loft just sell it or throw it away.
Detaching with love,
Blair placed the letter on top of the contents in the box and sealed it. He addressed it to Jim. Heíd use the last of his money to send the package courier so it would get there today and the rest of what was left of his meager cash to gas up the Volvo. Blair gathered his back pack and picked up the box. He took one last look around his office. His eyes filled with unshed tears and he quietly shut the door.
* * * * * * *
Later that afternoon Simon sat with Jim in the loft. They were both tired. But Simon was reluctant to leave Jim alone.
"Simon I donít know how to fix this. God Iíve been such an ass. How could I say all those terrible things to Blair? I need a partner I can trust. !" Jim mimicked his own words. "God Iíd be in an institution now or dead if it werenít for Blair."
"Have you tried to call him?"
"No, I donít know what Iíd say."
"How about Iím sorry for starters."
"SimonÖ." He was interrupted by a knock at the door. He got up and opened it.
"Iíve got a package for Mr. Ellison."
Jim signed for the package and brought it by Simon setting it on the coffee table.
"Itís from Blair."
Jim looked at the package like it would take a hand off if he tried to open it.
"Well are you going to open it or not?"
"Simon I donít think I can."
Simon sighed and got up. He pulled the box open. He looked at the contents confused. He picked up the letter and read it aloud. Jim could smell the salty tears that had fallen upon the letter as it was written. He could picture Blair crying as he wrote it. As Simon read the letter cold fear gripped Jim.
"Oh dear godÖ..Simon we have to find him. I have to speak to him. Make him understand."
Jim looked up and Simon was already on the phone.
"This is Captain Banks. I need and A.P.B. on a green Volvo licenseÖ." Simonís words drifted as Jim read the letter again. The words were like a punch to his gut. "Iím leaving this lifeÖÖ" Please donít let it mean what I think. Oh god Blair what have I done to you. Please god please let me find him.
* * * * * * * * *
Turns out Blair didnít have enough money to send the package and fill the Volvo. He paid for the package and put what was left into the gas tank. He was parked on the side of the road. The gas having run out sooner than he thought. Fuck, fuck, fuck. 10 more miles and he would have been out of Cascade. Oh well it didnít matter now. Oh man he felt awful. He knew he had a fever. His chest felt tight and he was so congested he was having trouble breathing. As he pulled out the prescription bottles he was struck with a coughing fit. Soon he thought no more painÖ..no more loneliness. No one would miss him anyway. Well maybe Naomi. But she had her circle of friends that would help her thought it. She would be o.k. She always manages to land on her feet. His one regret was that he would not hear her voice one more time. Speak to her one last time. He looked at the letter addressed to her on the dashboard. He opened the first bottle and slowly swallowed every pill with a bottle of water from his backpack. Then he started on the second bottle. Just to make sure. Then he leaned back and let the tears fall. He cried until he fell asleep. This is it he thought. His last thought before darkness claimed him was if Jim.
"Goodbye Jim." He whispered. Oblivion.
* * * * *
Jim sat in Simonís office feeling helpless and useless. He jumped as the phone rang.
Simonís large dark hand snatched it up in a flash.
"Banks." He shouted. He listened then said. "Were on our way."
Jim stood up so quickly he almost knocked the chair over. Simon looked at Jim. God this is gonna kill him he thought.
"A patrol car found Blairís Volvo parked on the side of the road heading out of Cascade. It was out of gas. Blair was unconscious. They found two empty prescription bottles in his lap. He is still alive. Theyíre taking him to Cascade General. We can beat them there. Iím driving Jim."
As Simon predicted they arrived before the ambulance. Jim paced until the ambulance pulled up. He stood by helplessly as they wheeled Blair in. God he looked so pale. Jim could feel the heat coming off the young man in waves.
"God Simon, this is all my fault."
Damn it Jim you wanna hold off on the guilt and pity party. Blair is going to need all the support he can get right now. He is going to need all of us."
"What can I do?"
It felt like hours had passed before a doctor came out to speak to them. The same doctor it turns out that treated Blair when he drowned.
"Are you hear for Mr. Sandburg?"
Simon and Jim jumped up.
"Yes, yes, Dr. Burden right?"
The doctor seemed surprised that Jim remembered his name.
"Yes, thatís right."
"Is Blair going to be alright?" Jim asked worriedly.
"Come letís go somewhere more private."
He brought them to the staff lounge.
"Please have a seat."
They all sat closely. Jim was terrified. Please, please, please let him be alright. Were the only thoughts through Jimís mind.
"Well Mr. Sandburg ingested two very powerful bottles of prescription drugs. Weíve pumped his stomach and given him charcoal for what we may have missed. The problem is we donít know how long it was in his system before he was found. He also has pneumonia. His fever is pretty high its 104 were trying to get it down now."
Simon closed his eyesÖÖ..and asked almost in a whisper.
"Will he be alright?"
"Honestly, I donít know yet. He was nowhere near recovered from his drowning incident. If he makes it though the next 24hrs heís got a good shot of making a full recovery. Then we can see if the drugs did any damage."
"Damage." Both Simon and Jim said in union.
"Yes, like I said we donít know how long it was in his system before he was found. It could have caused brain damage, damage to fine motor skills, among other things. But letís take this one step at a time. Letís get through the next 24hrs."
"Can I see him?" Jim was beside himself.
The doctor looked at Jimís face. The worry, the sorrow and heartbreak all clear on his face.
"Actually it might help. Come on Iíll take you to his room."
Simon squeezed Jimís shoulder. "Keep me informed."
"Yea Simon.. Thanks. "
"Hey I care about the kid too."
"I know Simon. I know." Jim said his eyes filled with unshed tears.
Anxiety filled Jim as he neared Blairís room. Jim was stunned when he finally saw Blair. He looked so small and frail lying in the hospital bed. God he is so pale. The heart monitor beeped in the background. An oxygen mask covered Blairís face. An I.V. ran in to his hand. *God Blair I am so sorry.* Jim pulled a chair close and sat by Blairís bed. He leaned forward and put his hand on Blairís forehead.
"Please Chief, " he whispered "please be o.k."
Time passed yet there was no change in Blair. Jim kept his hands constantly on Blair. Holding his hand, stroking his forehead, petting his hair. Jim squeezed Blairís shoulder as he sensed a change in Blair.
"Chief?" He said softly. "Can you hear me Chief?"
The monitor suddenly went crazy as Blair stiffened and went into a seizure. Cold terror gripped Jim he shot up and ran to the door.
"Help! Help! I need a doctor in here!"
The room filled in seconds with hospital staff. Jim was pushed out into the hallway. Never in his life did he feel so helpless.
God Iíll find a way to make this up to you but please be alright. Jim looked up and saw the grim face of Captain Banks walking towards him.
"Simon I thought you went home."
"No, not yet. Howís the kid?"
"Not good. Simon he just went into a seizure. I just donít know. The doctor is in with him now."
Simon didnít want to tell Jim this it was going to kill him. But he had to find out sooner or later.
"Yea," Jim really didnít like the look on Simonís face and he had a feeling he wasnít going to like what he was about to say.
"I called the University and spoke to Chancellor Edwards." Simon said her name with a sneer. " I wanted to tell her what happened to Blair and to get his classes and responsibilities covered. Well turns out heís been suspended."
Jim was shocked SUSPENDED!!! Then Jim exploded.
"Well she said it was mostly because of his absences and she said he his responsibilities to the University were second to the P.D. Also she said he has yet to hand in any part of his dissertation and then flipped when Blair told her he wanted to change his topic to something along the lines of the police force. But she said his little trip to Mexico was the final straw and he is suspended until the dissertation committee can meet. God what a mess."
Jim couldnít speak. Blair did this because he felt he lost everything. Guilt swept through Jim.
"Simon this is all my fault."
"Hang on there Jim, Iím just as guilty. I always forget that Blair has a job with the University. I just expect him to be at the station. To be your partner." He sighed disgusted with himself. They both looked up when the doctor came out.
"How is he? Is he going to be o.k? What caused this seizure?"
"Relax Detective. Heís stable for now. Look you have to remember that Mr. Sandburg overdosed on two very powerful drugs. Frankly Iím not all that surprised at this seizure. But he is stable now. Why donít you go home and get some rest. I doubt heíll wake up at all tonight. You look like youíre about to fall flat on your back."
"Actually Iíd like to stay here. Keep an eye on him. I want to be here when he wakes up."
"Like I said I doubt heíll wake up tonight. You really should go home and rest. Mr. Sandburg is going to need a lot of support and you wonít do him any good if you collapse from exhaustion. So go home and rest Detective. Mr. Sandburg will be with us for a while."
Jim looked confused.
"You just said he was stable. How long will he be here?"
"Detective surely you know that when a suicide attempt is brought in we are to hold and evaluate them in the phyciatrict ward for 30 days at least until we feel he is not a danger to himself or anyone else for that matter."
"Doctor Blair canít stay here for that amount of time. Especially in the psychiatric ward."
"Jim," Simon tried to interrupt.
"No Simon. He canít take that! Especially not after all heís been through." Jim turned to the doctor. " Sir can you release him into my care."
"Detective he attempted suicide and he almost succeeded. He needs help. He needs to be watched so he doesnít try it again."
"Please Doctor I can do this. Iíll sign anything. And I can make sure Iím with him for 24/7. Please Iím begging you not to do this to Blair."
Dr. Burden felt torn. But he saw the look on Jimís face and somehow he knew that Jim would do anything for Blair.
"Well Ö.I guess I can release him into your care. Youíre sure youíll be able to be with him 24/7 and make sure he takes his meds and sees a therapist."
"Yes.! Yes to all even if I have to cram the meds down his throat."
"Fine weíll discuss this further when Mr. Sandburg wakes up."
Jim felt relieved. "Thanks Doc."
"Now Detective go home," he smiled kindly "and get some rest."
"If Blair wakes upÖ."
"Youíll be called immediately."
Jim smiled. "Thank you".
"Come on Jim," Simon tugged on Jimís arm "Iíll drive you home."
* * * * * *
The next morningÖ..
Blair wanted to stay in the darkness. He felt numb. He didnít want to come out of his save havenÖÖBut the constant beating was so annoying and was pulling him out of a deep sleep. But the constant beeping was annoying. What the hell is that he thought anyway. But something else was pulling him out of the deep sleep. It sounded like a voice. NO, NO, NO!!!! I want to stay here. I donít have to worry or think or do anything here. Please leave me here.
That voice sounded familiar.
"GoÖÖaÖÖaway." Blair said weakly not realizing he spoke out loud.
Jim jumped to his feet. One hand on Blairís forehead the other grasping his hand. He hadnít gotten much sleep last night and came back as soon as the hospital allowed him to. But Blair was still unconscious then. But he was coming to now. Blair could tell him to go fuck himself and that would be fine so long as he woke up.
Blair slowly opened heavy lids. He couldnít make out anything at first. A blur came into his view. His vision started to clear and the first thing he noticed were the blue eyes that stared into his own. Blair groaned and closed his eyes.
"BlairÖÖ..please Chief open your eyes."
Blair opened his eyes. "What am I doing here Jim?
"What are you doing here?" Jim echoed his question.
"Chief Ö.GodÖ.whyÖ.Blair why did you try toÖ..try toÖ.."
"Just putting things the way they were suppose to be Jim."
"I donít understand."
"You never should have brought me back Jim. I wished you just left me alone and let me have stayed dead."
Jim felt like he had been sucker punched. He let go of his pain and let the tears fall.
"Please Blair, please donít talk like that. Iím so sorry. I never should have kicked you out. We really have to talk buddy."
"Whatís so funny?"
"You made your choice Jim."
"Chief I donít understandÖ.."
"You should be with Alex. You had no trouble falling all over yourself for her in Mexico."
Jim started to get angry.
"Damn it Blair I couldnít help that. It was something going on with my senses."
"Blair what do you want me to say here. It wasnít something I had control over."
"SHE MURDERED ME! She killed me. Yet you ran off to her. Then she held your gun on me. I really thought you were going to let her shoot me. No Jim, I donít want you to say anything. Just leave me alone."
SHUT UP! He told himself.
"Iím so sorry Blair. I really am. I never wanted to hurt you. I just wanted to make sure you were o.k. I know Iíve made a lot of mistakes. I really fucked up. Big time. Please letís try to work though this. Iíll do anything. You are the most important person in my life. My familyÖ..my brother. You may not be my blood brotherÖÖ..but youíre my brother by choice. I need you Blair. So much. Give me a chance to make this up. I donít know if I can, but Iíll try. Just donít leave me."
Blair was shocked. Jim never talked about his feelings, NEVER. This more Jim said about his feelings in all the years Blair had known Jim.
"Do you mean that Jim? Cause I donít think I can take it if you donít. Iím so tired Jim."
Jim stroked Blairís hair. "Just promise me one thing Chief."
Blair looked at him. And was shocked to see fresh tears fall.
"Please, you must promise me that youíll never do anything like this again. Donít ever try to hurt yourself. Promise me. I really thought I was going to lose you for good. Blair I couldnít take it if something happened to you. Swear it, Chief, please."
Blair felt his own tears fall. "Iím sorry Jim. I just felt like you didnít need me anymore. I felt like you Ö..you threw me away."
Jim pulled Blair into his arms and crushed him to his chest. They held each other tight. Yes, now the healing could begin. Finally Sentinel and guide were together. They could start healing each other.