We arrived at the hospital in time to see the bustle of activity of the hospital staff around the box of the truck.
Boomer parked the bike and I jumped off as I watched them physically pry Rosie off of BarnYard and shove her out of the way. Robert and Greybeard stood off to the side, looking for the first time since I’d met them, helpless.
I watched as the trauma team moved BarnYard onto a gurney and rushed him inside leaving us all in their wake. Someone was sitting astride him on the gurney and I was pretty sure that didn’t look good.
Some of the boys moved up to stand near Robert and Grey as many of the women, myself included, moved towards Rosie. I heard gruff pronouncements from the men that “the Dr’s would take BarnYard….or else!”
As I stood in front of Rosie I realized that I’d seen that kind of look on someone’s face before. Mine, the night Michael had died.
Rosie’s face was devoid of expression, her blood covered hands and arms were cold to the touch. I looked into her eyes and realized that she wasn’t quite there, there was an emptiness I’d not seen in her before. She was trembling and hunched around herself as if she were cold.
I wrapped my arm around her shoulders and pushed through the group of women and then the group of men as I headed for the door of the emergency ward, Rosie in tow. “Classic shock” I thought as I wracked my brain trying to remember what I’d learned in that first aid course my father had forced me to take when I was young.
All the while I kept up a running patter of “it’ll be ok Rosie, you did everything right, he’ll be fine, you’ll see, the Dr’s will take care of him, you have nothing to worry about, lets just get you warmed up” etc.
We entered the hospital and headed towards the desk, a nurse looked up and saw all the blood on Rosie’s clothes and raced around the counter to us. I explained that she wasn’t hurt, and the blood wasn’t hers, but that she’d held her brother’s wounds all the way into town.
The nurse and I turned to look at Rosie as the trembling increased to flat out shaking that could have probably been called convulsing and in doing so I realized I could hear her teeth clacking together like some kind of eerie drum beat. The nurse barked orders at someone and a man appeared with a wheel chair and a blanket.
“I could feel him slipping away Baby” Rosie said softly to me as they wheeled her away.
I shook my head as I turned to head back towards the doors only to find, standing in a quiet group, Robert, GreyBeard, Boomer and all the others that had come into town with us. I’d not even heard them come in behind us, so intent I’d been on Rosie
I looked to their right and through a window to see a rather large waiting room. “Good thing it’s large” I thought, “we’re liable to be here for a while.”
I headed into the waiting room, trailed by a gaggle of bikers. I flopped down to slump tiredly on a couch and found myself almost immediately flanked by Greybeard and Robert. My back stiffened as I wondered what was next.
I sat there mutely watching the rest of the people that had arrived with us file into the room and take seats in little groups around us. I heard Snot making a phone call to check in on Wizard, the fellow that’d gone down and those that stayed behind with him as I held myself rigidly still between these two huge men.
Out of the corner of my eye Greybeard leaned his head slightly towards me and I turned to look at him.
“Thank you for looking to Rosie, Baby…I’m afraid we were all too preoccupied with getting Barry here to see what this whole fucking thing was doing to her,” the big man spoke, “ she’s always been the closest to Barry” he added.
“no big” I mumbled, tremendously unsure of myself.
Robert shuffled his weight about on the seat beside me and I swung around to look at him. He looked uncomfortable, as if he’d found himself in unfamiliar territory as he quietly said “uh yeah thanks”
I could’ve stopped myself…but mostly because I’ve never been one to think before I speak…I smarted…“well ya know? This all coulda been avoiding if ya just hadn’t a shot yer fuckin brother!”
Robert shifted up stiffly in his seat as all conversation in the waiting room came to a complete stop.