When no one responds, I screech, “Is she alive?”
Seven sets of eyes swing in my direction. They shove her into the ambulance.
“Move. I’m coming with.”
My emergency training kicks in, forcing my reaction from panicked to professional.
“Who’re you?” An officer asks, stopping a firefighter from shutting the back doors.
“I’m her mother. Nathan!”
He looks up from where he watches the exchange.
“Take my car and meet me at the hospital. The keys are in the ignition.”
Nudging the officer out of his way, he takes hold of the door. “Stay strong, Cami.” They slam shut. Through the window, I see him jogging to my car.
My eyes drift down to take in my beautiful, broken girl as the ambulance roars to life. Sirens blare, and the lights cast an eerie glow through the hazy snow. As the other paramedic works on Evelyn, I hold her hand and pray. I pray in a way I haven’t done in fourteen years.
I pray she hangs on long enough to get to an O.R. I pray the ambulance makes it through the rough conditions and gets us there fast and safe. I pray Nathan doesn’t have any trouble following us.
But mostly, I pray that the universe isn’t about to fuck with me again and take away the one thing I’ve fought nearly my entire life to protect.
A trauma team waits in the ambulance bay. As soon as Evelyn’s unloaded, they kick me out into the waiting area. She’s immediately rushed into surgery. All I’ve been told so far is that her injuries are extensive. Several broken bones, massive internal bleeding. They won’t know until they get a CT scan if she has a head injury too.
Nathan arrives shortly after we do and finds me alone in the waiting room. After they take Evelyn up to the O.R., a nurse comes and brings us to a private waiting room instead.
I need to pass the time, so I pull out my phone and call the two other people who exist in my life.
Kiersten’s up first. She’s out of town and can’t do anything, and I need time to stall. I don’t have a clue what I’ll say to Law.
I keep it brief with her, holding onto my pain long enough to tell her Evelyn was in an accident. She offers to leave right away to be with me, but I tell her to stay. It’s her family holiday, and the roads are dangerous. After promising hourly updates, she tells me she’ll be home as soon as the roads are safe, and lets me go. Once I hang up, Nathan stands and hugs me hard.
“I have to get back to work. If you want, I can get someone to cover for me so I can stay.” The statement lingers like a question.
“I have people coming. Go back to work. I’ll keep you updated.”
“Keep the faith,” he says, giving me one last lingering hug.
I’m thankful for a few minutes alone to call Law. I know why I need to call him, and it’s more than my desperation for the comfort only he can bring. He doesn’t know that, though, and if questions arise, being alone is the best way for me to answer them.
The phone rings three times before he answers, and at the sound of his voice, I nearly lose it.
“Did you miss me already?”
I pace across the ugly blue carpet in a path that quickly becomes comforting. Words fail me. The only thing I can do is choke on the sob that overcomes me.
“Cami, what is it?” His voice turns insistent.
“You need to come to the hospital.”
A clattering sounds through the phone. “I’m coming, baby. What’s happened?”
His engine roars in my ear moments later. This is my Law, just like old times. I need him, and he’s there. No questions asked.